Our position of privilege tells me that what happened to Trayvon Martin is less likely to happen to my sons than it is to the sons or daughters of many of my friends. Less likely than it is to happen to the sons or daughters of people I do not know. Less likely than it is to happen to children of color.
I grieve for Trayvon and for his family and for every family that has had to endure such a heartbreaking experience. I grieve for all who have been victimized by violence. I grieve for our society in which such acts occur.
I grieve that there have been calls for a bounty on George Zimmerman. Vigilante justice is wrong. It is not the answer.
I grieve that for all our efforts to dismantle racism and overcome racial prejudice – for the significant progress we have made on the journey toward the Beloved Community – so far remains to go.
I tremble as I ponder the trust and friendship that I receive from people of color. Trust and friendship that provide continuing definitions of grace.
I confess that I have spoken too late and too timidly on behalf of Trayvon and his family.
I acknowledge that I have failed to work as faithfully or diligently as I should have done to address the racism upon which our society is structured.
I grieve. I tremble. I confess. I acknowledge. I will do more.
I will sign a petition started by Trayvon’s family. I hope that the investigations that have been announced will be fair, full, and transparent. Only in that way can justice be done for everyone involved.
I will be on Union Square for the Million Hoodie March this evening.
I will look for additional opportunities to speak and act.
I will place a hoodie at the front of the workshop I will lead at a Presbyterian gathering on peace and social justice on Friday.
I will pray for Trayvon Martin’s family and friends; for George Zimmerman and his family and friends; for those who investigate this event; for the people of Sanford, Florida; for our country; for peace, for justice.
For in the end, our lives intertwine in this country and on this small rock hurtling around the sun.
In the end we are made, not for ourselves alone but for each other.
In the end, is not Trayvon my son? Is not George my son?
We are brothers and sisters. We are all each other’s sons – all each other’s daughters
See you along the Trail.
This post has been revised in response to comments and observations made on Facebook and in other places. Some language has been edited; other material has been added. I am grateful to all those who took the time to read and comment.