Zimmerman’s Natural Rights; Trayvon’s Civil Rights
The jury’s favorable verdict for George Zimmerman confirmed an age-old truth about the criminal-justice system that explains the wide variance of outcomes for blacks and whites. Whites come before the court protected by their “natural” rights—the rights of real persons, no matter how guilty they may be. Blacks, on the other hand, have no such guarantees. The rights they allegedly have are largely construed to be “civil” rights— constitutional concessions grudgingly given. The system, especially in former slave states (as Florida is), hasn’t rid itself of Justice Roger’s Taney’s declaration in the Dred Scott decision: The black man has no rights that the white man (or system) is bound to respect. Leid Stories’ discussion today begins here.