July 17 2013

Hillary's Choice: Pander!

Charlotte Hays

We haven’t commented on the highly-charged George Zimmerman case because it doesn’t directly impinge on the issues with which we normally deal at IWF.

However, Hillary Clinton’s disgraceful remarks on the verdict are another matter.

Speaking to an African-American sorority group, Ms. Clinton said this (courtesy of Politico):

“My prayers are with the Martin family and with every family who loves someone who is lost to violence,” she said in an almost 30-minute speech. “No mother, no father, should ever have to fear for their child walking down a street in the United States of America.”

She said she knew this week has “brought heartache, deep painful heartache” to families in the wake of the not guilty verdict in George Zimmerman’s trial last Saturday.

Clinton also referenced U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder’s announcement Monday that the Justice Department will review the case.

“Yesterday I know you heard from the attorney general about the next steps from the Justice Department and the need for a national dialogue,” she said. “As we move forward as we must, I hope this sisterhood will continue to be a force for justice and understanding.”

Like Ms. Clinton, all decent people feels sadness for Trayvon Martin’s family and their unspeakable loss. We should all say a prayer for the Martin family (and also for the Zimmerman family).

But Ms. Clinton, the likely Democratic nominee for the presidency in 2016, didn’t stop with the heartfelt sorrow we all feel for the Martins. She had to pander. And it wasn’t just pandering: it was pandering that stirred racial animosity and denegrated a jury’s verdict, arrived at after a hard-fought trial.

Mrs. Clinton disgracefully portrays the United States as a place where black parents must fear for the safety of their children walking down streets. The jury, however, in its verdict seemed to indicate that Trayvon Martin had done more than merely walk down the street. It's unpleasant to say this because young Trayvon is dead. But it is an inescapable conclusion, if you are willing to accept the verdict. 

Ms. Clinton has a great opportunity to show that she is worthy of being president. She could have shown that, unlike the current occupant of the White House—who, to his credit, seems to be back-peddling on this sad matter—she would refuse to demagogue on the race issue. You don't have to believe that every jury is infallible to stress that, until our system is changed, we must accept verdicts.

She could have talked about the law, the jury system, and the need to refrain from persecution because of a verdict that is hard for some to accept. But she did none of these things.

She opted to fan the fires of racial unrest at a time when we need the country to find unity.

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