If you only watch Fox News, you are probably unaware of the awful tragedy that befell when an unarmed, African American teenager named Trayvon Martin was shot to death by a man in Florida who thought Martin was acting suspiciously as he walked through the neighborhood. The shooter was armed with a 9mm handgun. Martin, on his way home from a convenience store, held a can of iced tea and a bag of Skittles. Martin had no criminal record but the shooter, 28 year-old George Zimmerman, did. Updated
The tragedy is not just the race element - Zimmerman was apparently "fixated on crime and focused on young, black males." But there are also questions of vigilantism and law enforcement. Zimmerman was a neighborhood watch captain where residents felt threatened by crime. Zimmerman has not been arrested and was not tested for drugs or alcohol after Martin was killed. Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law places the threshold for self-defense so low that you need little more than your word to show that your life was in danger.
The story - involving race, crime, self-defense and an innocent teenager - has all the ingredients Fox News normally can't resist. Yet it has been curiously silent.
Think Progress reported today:
Martin has merited coverage by the New York Times, the Washington Post, and USA Today. The story has been covered by all three broadcast networks and extensively on cable. But there is one outlet that has barely mentioned Trayvon Martin — Fox News.
Right now, the top story at Fox Nation shows a photo of a black man over a blaring headline: 'I’m Here Tryin’ to Get Some Obama Bucks!' Shocking Welfare Video that HBO Tried to Kill.
It's hard not to think that race has something to do with Fox's decision to largely ignore the story.
For a more complete rundown of the Trayvon Martin tragedy, check out Think Progress' What Everyone Should Know About Trayvon Martin (1995-2012).
Update: Since I originally posted this, Fox News is playing catch-up...but wait til you read how they spun this tragedy on America Live.
Think about that George W. Bush appointed judge up in Montana, Richard Cebull. He forward a racist email about Obama to friends and colleagues. He knew that email was racist, admitting as much after the scandal broke. But because it was anti-Obama, he sent it anyway. Think about what he is actually saying, if you’re anti-Obama, it’s okay to engage in racism.
Ever since Reagan went to Philadelphia, Mississippi right after being nominated, the GOP has engaged in dog-whistles that have only encourage the entrenchment of racism. Time and again, the leadership of the GOP has failed to condemn in the strongest possible terms whenever violent acts of racism rear their ugly heads. When you have GOP Congressman like Cliff Stearns and Trent Franks all but encourage their constituents in birtherism, you are just fostering a climate of hate based on race. On the opposite side, you have former GOP Rep. Mike Castle of Delaware who did stand up quite forcibly to a constituent on her racist views and his reward was to lose a primary election to Christine O’Donnell. There is your GOP.
Fux (not)News’ coverage, or not, isn’t important. They are following SOP and have not done anything surprising or unexpected.
A mother’s child is dead! All he was doing was walking home with some some snacks and this asshole decided to take the law into his own hands, ignore the police directive to back off, and killed this unarmed child in cold, heartless murder. Trayvon Martin’s only “crime” was being a black child in a place that Zimmerman took upon himself to decide he “shouldn’t” be.
Although my child is a 21 year old young woman, as a mother it is beyond comprehension how this asshole could shoot this harmless innocent child. I am appalled at the inaction and uncaring attitude of the police in this town, and the heartless attitude (as expected) of Fux, and you trolls who seemingly are thinking this is a good thing…….just another dead n****r! It all makes me sick!
But, I’m sorry… that seems to be all you care about. You couldn’t care less about the case, or how Fox News is spinning it. All you care about is that the source article says George Zimmerman is white.
It’s not like you can have a rational conversation, anyways (you’ve already proven that)and I noticed you don’t seem nearly as up in arms about Bill’s racist “gated communities in the ghetto” comment as you do about Zimmerman being identified as white.
Just calling it as I see it with you.
But way to duck the question. However, if the problem is something as simple as that you’re not smart enough to make the connection, how about we compare this to their coverage of Troy Davis?
How about when a white inmate was executed and they put a picture of a black man up on the article?
Fox News comes a-running when they can persecute black people on a nationally aired crime, but they ignore it as much as they can when the victim’s black.
But you keep on crying about “race cards” now.
Bill: They have gated communities in the ghetto? Fee, fi, fo, fum, I smell a racist.
Dan, why don’t you provide an answer for my analogy first- why is it that Fox News is using “Hero”, “Patriot” and “Decorated veteran” to describe Afghan shooter Robert Bales, but when Nadir Hasan did the same thing at Ft. Hood, they wanted him strung up on the spot?
Oh, wait- your primary concern is to correct the record on people who got the story on a source that says Zimmerman’s white. Which kinda says a lot about you and the answer you’ll give already.
And, on a related note… is anyone else surprised in the least that Fox News is tossing in terms like “Decorated soldier”, “Patriot” and “Hero with PTSD” when talking about Robert Bales, but when it was Nidal Hasan their reaction was “MUSLIM! MUSLIM! TERRORIST! NO TRIAL, JUST KILL HIM!”?
I’m pretty sure religion didn’t play a role in that, either.