'Trayvon-Like Dudes'

The Times reconstructs the events that led up to Trayvon Martin. In the course of doing so it interviews Frank Taaffe, who's defended George Zimmerman actions in the past:


Adding to the uncertainty and flux was the sense among some residents that this secured community was no longer so secure. There had been burglaries; at least seven in 2011, according to police reports. Strangers had started showing up, said Frank Taaffe, 55, a marketing specialist, originally from the Bronx, who works out of his home in the Retreat. He made it clear that he was not talking about just any strangers. 

"There were Trayvon-like dudes with their pants down," Mr. Taaffe said.
As the father of a black boy, this is chilling. Frank Taaffe has no real way of knowing how Trayvon Martin wore his pants. I doubt that he much cares. 

What amazes is the casualness of the racism, a casualness which does not see black boys as boys at all--but an indistinguishable super-predators in waiting. "Trayvon-like dudes."

This is my last post on this subject, until I hear something definitive. Watching people drag somebody's dead child through the mud is too much for me. 
Presented by

Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

Why Principals Matter

Nadia Lopez didn't think anybody cared about her middle school. Then Humans of New York told her story to the Internet—and everything changed.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A History of Contraception

In the 16th century, men used linen condoms laced shut with ribbons.

Video

'A Music That Has No End'

In Spain, a flamenco guitarist hustles to make a modest living.

Video

What Fifty Shades Left Out

A straightforward guide to BDSM

More in National

From This Author

Just In