By Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger
With leaders from all sides of the political spectrum coming together and calling for a Grand Jury investigation into the senseless slaying of teenager Trayvon Martin, surely there has to be one wacky voice. And who better than Fox & Friends contributor, Geraldo Rivera. On the show, Rivera recently blamed Martin’s hoodie as the culprit for the fatal attack:
I believe that George Zimmerman, the overzealous neighborhood watch captain, should be investigated to the fullest extent of the law, and if he is criminally liable he should be prosecuted. But I am urging the parents of black and Latino youngsters particularly to not let their children go out wearing hoodies. I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin’s death as George Zimmerman was.
Rivera had opened the bidding with an equally inane column styled, “Trayvon Martin Would Be Alive but for His Hoodie.” There, after deriding low slung pants, he admonishes parents to take the hoodies off their kids too, imploring them, “don’t let your child go out into the hard cruel world wearing a costume that is really a sign that says ‘shoot me.’” Fleece as fomenter? Really?
That stupidity brought immediate comment from the saner and hipper side of the planet. “i didn’t even know geraldo still did stuff ppl listened to. damned if i listen to him now. but
#BEATEMDOWNhoodies ARE on sale for $25,” media personality Bomani Jones tweeted. “Dear Geraldo Rivera: I’ll use small words so you can follow me, okay? Hoodies don’t kill people. Paranoid racists with guns kill people,” tweeted Wil Wheatonof Los Angeles. “That’s like saying Martin should not have left the house while being Black. As the Million Hoodie marches emphasize, there is nothing inherently devious about hoodies. It’s our culture’s racist stereotype for “suspicion” that makes hoodies worn by people of color — not soccer moms or Anderson Cooper — an act that could be met with violence,” journalist Kristen Gwynne wrote on AlterNet.
With President Obama saying that if he had a son he’d look a lot like Trayvon Martin, and Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum both calling for a Grand Jury inquiry into the matter, and calling the case a “tragedy” and a “horrible case,” respectively, Rivera looks like an old gum-shoe newsman looking for a story and some notoriety.
Clothing manufacturers must have thought the same thing. American Apparel, who makes the popular outerwear, noted its product is bought by “every type of person you can imagine—pink hoodies to toddlers, black and navy hoodies to businessmen and successful entrepreneurs, as well as plenty of college students of all backgrounds and everyone else in between. We even sell hoodies for dogs.” Creative Director Marsha Brady (no, not that Marsha Brady) added, “To say that this classic garment implies that its owner is a dangerous criminal to be ‘feared’ is absolutely ridiculous. We’re incredibly sorry about the young man who was shot while wearing one, and feel very strongly that oversimplifying the discussion by criticizing the victim’s clothing does the country, Trayvon Martin, and all those who support the end of crimes such as this one a massive and dangerous disservice.”
So it seems the journalist who brought us the underwhelming mystery of Al Capone’s vault on live TV, and who regaled us with wild claims about a million Satanists lurking among us and raping children during secret rituals, now finds himself saddled with another self-inflicted wound.
Blaming a hoodie for a shooting? If that’s true, innocent African-American kids and other hoodie affectionadoes like New England Patriots football coach, Bill Belichick, had better look out.
~Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger
119 thoughts on “Haughty Couture: Geraldo Rivera Blames Hoodie For Trayvon Martin Slaying”
The above reports on and contains video of a witness who backs up Z. While the witness was not photographed, he was recorded live and he sounds credible. He had a view of the fight from an upper story window and said the guy who was screaming and was on the bottom was wearing a red shirt. Z was wearing a red shirt.
“At one time at the age of 23 I owned a Beretta 9mm, a Florida State Issued Colt 357 magnum and a Coast Guard Issued 38.”
When and where did the Coast Guard issue .38’s?
Exposed: The Corporations Behind the Law That May Let Trayvon Martin’s Killer Go Free
Suzanne Merkelson March 23, 2012
It’s been widely reported today that the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the shadowy corporate front group that unites state lawmakers with corporations to pass state laws favorable to corporate interests, helped pass the law that might allow Trayvon Martin’s killer, George Zimmerman, to escape prosecution. Florida’s “Stand Your Ground,” the law that might help Zimmerman to claim self-defense (despite evidence to the contrary) is just one of many state laws that is nearly identical to ALEC’s model Castle Doctrine Act. The Florida senator who introduced the law, Durell Peadon, was also a member of ALEC. The law passed in 2005.
According to the Center for Media and Democracy, 98 percent of ALEC’s revenues come from corporations, corporate trade groups, and corporate foundations. Each member pays annual fees of between $7,000 and $25,000. ALEC is also supplemented by direct grants. We don’t know all the details about all of ALEC’s funders and members. Here’s a partial list of what we do know about the corporations and foundations who helped fund the group that drafted the law that keeps Trayvon Martin’s killer free — and put more guns on our streets:
ALEC received $1.4 million in grants from ExxonMobil from 1998-2009.
It has also received grants from two Koch family-backed foundations: Charles G. Koch Foundation, the Claude R. Lambe Foundation.
ALEC has received grant money from the billionaire conservative and American Spectator publisher Richard Mellon Scaife‘s Allegheny Foundation and the Coors family’s Castle Rock Foundation.
Here’s a bit of history on the sponsor of the Florida law; it’s an eye-opener:
“FL State Rep. Dennis Baxley, Sponsor of ‘Right to Kill’ Law, Also Proud Racialist, Vote Suppressor”
Those Stormfront.org bloggers are really into anthropology, aren’t they?
Hoodie photos show solidarity
The famous and the unsung took to Facebook and Twitter in hooded sweatshirts on March 22 in solidarity with Trayvon Martin, a black teen who was shot and killed by a Hispanic neighborhood watch captain in Florida. (AP)
It’s a good thing that Geraldo Rivera wasn’t old enough to wear a zoot suit in 1943.
i see your new black panther party and raise you
“I have never seen such an incompetent investigation,” said Walt Zalisko, a former Jersey City police commander who now owns a police management consulting company in Central Florida. “There are so many problems with this case. The problem up here is that officers receive very little training, and there is very little understanding of diversity issues.
“The good ol’ boy network is so prevalent here.”
Zalisko, who has followed the case closely, said he was startled by Zimmerman’s claim that he had left his truck so he could check the name of the street he was on. Making a point that Chief Lee also made, Zalisko said it’s implausible that Zimmerman would not know where he was in a tiny gated community that he patrolled regularly.
“That’s a lie right there,” Zalisko said. “There are so many inconsistencies in the story. At the very least they should have arrested him, and let the state attorney sort it out.”
Several experts interviewed said Lee’s biggest mistake was to speak publicly about the decision to not file charges, because it made him look like he was defending Zimmerman.
Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/03/21/2706876_p3/sanford-commission-votes-no-confidence.html#storylink=cpy
Zimmerman states lie after lie in his police statements. Another reason he should go to trial.
This is offered not as a brag, am sure you all can do better.
It is meant as a encouragement to all to take the time to let your voices in opposition be heard or seen.
Gentlemen, (New York Times Public Editor) firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr Andrew Rosenthal exhibits a slanting which is not justified. It is of course his right to give his slant. But feel he exceeds the margins of reasonableness in the first three paragraphs of “If I Had a Son He’d Look Like Trayvon’”,.
Here Mr Obama’s drawing upon his daughters is in my eyes using them to give a face to all young Americans who would hopefully use the chance to speak as a guest to Congress without risking public slurring as a possible reprisal.
Obama added that clarification himself, as I recall.
Mr. Rosenthal makes it as an Obama personal matter.
Not so, it was the President leading the nation to exercise their bill of rights. And defend their childrens’ right also.
Mr Rosenthat writes:
“….in a similarly personal fashion. He said: “If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon,” as clear a statement as he could really make that he sees a racial aspect to the shooting –….”
Again I think this is an incorrect interpretation. Obama’s words were delivered not in an agititorial fashion a la MLKjr or Jesse Jackson. it was calm, measured carefully as a spontaneous answer, and Presidential In my ears,
Obama as President was appealing to ALL parents, regardless of color, to understand that this young man could be their son, just as it could be his. He is placing himself as a face representing all fathers, not as a race card player. As a person he regarded Trayvon so, and as President he wants the parents to see him so and that the tragedy involves us all.
Being factual, am sure Mr Rosenthal’s interpretation will get a large support in Jim Crow South.
But we have freedom of speech, as does Mr Rosenthal.
Mr Rosenthal writes:
“…Mr. Obama, whose Justice Department is looking into why Mr. Zimmerman was not arrested….”
This is a clear misstatement of facts. The Justice Department has had for some years back a clarity of understanding how the “stand your ground” law is used in Florida justice system. And the issue of why Zimmerman was not arrested, has never been a motivating factor. Rather the question whether there was assistance needed to clarify racial intent, which had not been adequately established.
Here Mr Rosenthal is in error.
If Mr Rosenthal would challenge the Presidential interventions as being unwise, that’s another matter
To suggest Obama panders to the public, that of course no other President has done and he should be criticized. To suggest he is playing the race card, or is making a play to keep the support of his black voters, or that he is inciting race unrest are also possible grounds for criticism.
But such slanting and spin as shown here is despicable in an editorial writer in my eyes.
As for Presidential intervention there have been worse.
When Mr Obama pre-judged Manning, then he was directly interfering and effecting the course of justice.
Not that Manning who exposes war crimes can expect any justice in the USA, where the war criminals have been given if not immunity or pardon, at least a promise of no pursuit from Mr.Obama.
Has Mr Rosenthal touched on the last-mentioned matter?
End of email to the NYTimes Public Editor.
I think this whole ‘stand your ground’ law has been abused in almost every case I have read about. The stabbing of a thief and this case are horrible interpretations of this law in my honest opinion.
and oh, STFU, New Black Panthers. It would be a shame for Zimmerman not to see a day in court. i was also worried he might take his own life, still hoping he makes it to a trial.
I, a 60 year old white woman who wears what we used to call a hooded sweatshirts (hoodies) takes walks every day and evening including through gated communities. I have never been chased, harassed injured or threatened, accused of being on drugs or something, not even so much as asked what am I doing there. This particular situation is racial. I too think we must await the surfacing of a decent investigation and flesh out the facts, but this has obvious racial overtones that must not be ignored.
My son who works with at risk youth told me there is a script when being confronted by police and security element. Avoid cops at all costs, walk away, be brief, be polite, answer questions in a specific way. I was horrified when I learned this was necessary for many children in the community to learn. Sadly it is a tool to use until these horrible racial divides disappear. I have never been stopped by police, hauled out of a car and had the shit beaten out of me for being who I am.
This young man Trayvon is known to be a wonderful kid and I applaud his parents for raising such a great kid. Even so I worry more desperately about the harmless but less likable mouthy, pissed off (with good reason) kids who don’t do well in school are not particularly warm and who are just kids being kids. Are they to be executed as well because they wear hoodies and are not so polite? They too deserve justice and should not be threatened with murder for being in the world.
When I grew up the police were the good guys, there was this sense of decency. But in years following I have myself witnessed way too many police harassing youth/adults for being nothing more than who they are. For every story like Trayvon’s there are hundreds like it that have not come to light.
Justice for Trayvon. Justice for all. Isn’t this America still?
Wanted Dead or Alive Poster Issued for George Zimmerman by New Black Panther Party
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said Friday that the “stand your ground” self-defense law he signed while in office should not apply to the case of a teenager who was killed by a neighborhood watch volunteer in his home state.
“This law does not apply to this particular circumstance,” Bush said after an education panel discussion at the University of Texas at Arlington. “Stand your ground means stand your ground. It doesn’t mean chase after somebody who’s turned their back.”
He was referring to last month’s incident in which 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was pursued by the volunteer and fatally shot in a scuffle.
“Anytime an innocent life is taken it’s a tragedy,” Bush said. “You’ve got to let the process work.”
(Reuters) – The lawyer representing the man who shot dead a black Florida teenager said the public image of his client is almost completely wrong and that he acted out of self-defense, not racial bigotry.
Craig Sonner, a previously little known defense lawyer from Altamonte Springs, Florida, suddenly finds himself thrust into the spotlight as the attorney representing George Zimmerman, who remains free and uncharged over the incident in the town of Sanford, just north of Orlando.
The case has galvanized the nation and prompted rallies protesting the failure of police to arrest Zimmerman and, more broadly, a pattern of racial discrimination that black leaders cite in Sanford and elsewhere in the country.
Sorry, but your sources are somewhat suspect. First it was the incorrect age. Now the height does not seem credible. Your state Martin was 6’3″. I haven’t seen a report on his height, but I have heard multiple reports that he was 130 lbs. 6’3″ and 130 lbs??? Not likely.
As for the rest of it, I’m not sure it should be called a hate crime. Zimmerman was on the prowl for anyone of any color. Being black just made it a littler easier to pull the trigger. I grew up with a kid like this. There was no shortage of mothers and teachers who thought he was a wonderful kid. He was very deferential to authority. But we knew there was something weird, phoney, crazy about him and his obsession with cops. I don’t know what the shrinks call it, but Zimmerman hasn’t gotten beyond his twelve year old self and was a disaster waiting to happen. I’d be surprised if Z. was driven by hate. I think he was driven by his 12 yr. old inadequate self wanting to be a hero. And it may have been his “12 yr. old self” that was screaming while wrestling with Martin. Having secured my law degree through this blog, I’m ready to call it manslaughter. The greater crime? Martin’s death almost succeeded in being overlooked. If Martin had been just a little older, a little poorer, and not so impossibly attractive, would we have noticed?
Witness: Martin attacked Zimmerman
Updated: Friday, 23 Mar 2012, 6:19 PM EDT
Published : Friday, 23 Mar 2012, 5:47 PM EDT
ORLANDO – A witness we haven’t heard from before paints a much different picture than we’ve seen so far of what happened the night 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot and killed.
The night of that shooting, police say there was a witness who saw it all.
Our sister station, FOX 35 in Orlando, has spoken to that witness.
What Sanford Police investigators have in the folder, they put together on the killing of Trayvon Martin few know about.
The file now sits in the hands of the state attorney. Now that file is just weeks away from being opened to a grand jury.
Oh and in re to hoodies. I think the reason the hoodie scares everybody or has a stigma to some is because of the unabomber. At least in my minds eye
Mespo This would also allow for his arrest then the media can start with the thay have made an arrest in the Trayvon case. The defense could argue he’s not a risk flight plus he would not survive in jail for any period while awaiting trial sos ror him with a bail he can afford. This would help quite everything down. They need to go ahead and charge him at this point to quiet things down.
Mespo I hadn’t thought that but now thay you bring it up you’re exactly right. Which is how they should dispose of the case. It makes Trayvon the hero for standing his ground, allows for the prosecution of Zimmerman where the judge can give him x amount of years with time off and then everybody’s happy. Well except Trayvon and his family. They will be sad for the rest of their life.
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