Today is Trayvon Martin’s birthday. He would have been 19—one foot out of childhood, another stepping toward being an adult and independent and a life fulfilled. College. A career. A wife. Some babies. A home. Happiness. All of these were waiting for him—there for the taking.
But he is gone from here.
A monster with a predilection for hitting and violence and stalking and pulling guns on those who get the best of his small, small self made this so. He is a murderer. Found innocent in a twisted justice system but guilty all the same of taking precious life that was not his to claim. His name is not worth the time it would take to type it.
Instead, we say Trayvon.
Jahvaris’s big brother.
Rachel Jeantel’s friend.
A kid who deserved more than what he got from the “neighbor” and the local police department and prosecutors and the state of Florida and this mess of a country so blinded by race it can’t see the beauty of color. Of different. And how different isn’t really different at all.
Yes, Trayvon deserved more. All of our babies do. And we are reminded of this when we say Trayvon’s name. Indeed, when we remember him.
Happy Birthday, Trayvon. We will never, ever forget.
The Trayvon Martin Foundation, an advocacy group dedicated to increasing public awareness of racial, ethnic and gender profiling, educating kids on conflict resolution techniques and advocating for crime victims and their families, is sponsoring the “I Am Trayvon Martin Peace Walk” in Miami Gardens this Saturday to commemorate Trayvon. Register here.
Photo credit: The Trayvon Martin Foundation.
Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.