You are not defined by the color of your skin nor by the actions of anyone that may or may not look like you. You are an individual capable of your own decisions, as was this young man on that fateful night.
His history of violence, drug use, and illegal activity is not yours. His decisions belong to him and him alone. I reject the idea that anyone else is interchangeable with Trayvon Martin. I refuse to believe the character of this young man reflects the character of all the young men in the black community. That would be racist.
I will not paint anyone with a brush dipped in his character. I do not wish to live in a world colored in that way. I cannot change what is in anyone else’s heart, but I can determine my own. I reject the idea that the actions of one person define a community.
If it is true that the verdict rendered declared open season on young black men, then I encourage all law abiding young black men to arm themselves. Learn the laws of legal self defense and protect yourself. Don’t become the aggressor and perpetuate the violence. Instead, be the protector of yourself and your loved ones. Your life has value. Anyone who wishes to take it from you has forfeited their own.
I do not wish violence on anyone, but I do believe everyone should have means to answer it if it is visited upon them.