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Trayvon Reflection

Several days ago, I pulled up to a house. It was hot, I was dehydrated and dizzy. The house had a huge tree in the front yard. Overall, the neighborhood was nice and welcoming.

The owners of the home drove into their driveway just as I started to sit down. I told them what I was doing, and asked if I could use their gorgeous front yard as a resting ground. Husband and wife were happy to oblige, offered me cold water and went on with their business inside.

After several minutes, the cartoon birds stopped flying around my head, and Fiji and I were cool. However, I was frustrated due to the humidity and hills, so I decided to rest a little bit longer to remotivate my mental.

There is no excuse for what happened next, but I can only imagine what my pitbull, boxer , whippet mix and I look like to onlookers. With the trailer and bike, we must look rather vagabondish. As I was sitting in the yard, an older man drove by really slow in his car, staring me down with a mean look on his face. He was holding up several other cars behind him. I gave him a “What are you looking at” expression. He sped up and parked in the house garage two doors down the street. He came out of his garage, put his hands on his hips and continued to watch us. I ignored him, but in the back of mind and after a long day of riding, I thought to myself, I could really just punch this guy for being a judgmental, unkind, annoying Butthole. Instead of asking if I needed help or finding out in a kind way what I was doing in his neighbor’s yard, he presumed the worst and dealt with it in a way not befitting of a sane human being.

All that to say, it was at that moment that I thought about Trayvon Martin. If he punched George Zimmerman who had prejudged him and stalked him in the night, I could understand. I’m not saying it’s right to deal with stupidity in that manner, but I comprehended the frustration that comes with being prejudged and stalked in an overtly unfriendly way.  Hey, I wanted to punch the guy and he didn’t do nearly as bad as Zimmerman did that night.

I’ve run into so many wonderful people so I don’t speak for everyone. But, some people jump to conclusions way too fast, resulting in bloodshed, violence, “good” people turning into murderers because of their judgmental, over-the-top fears of other people. It’s really quite sad.

This trip has taught me that despite what we see on the news, good still exists in the world. I would even say there is more good than bad. So, I hope to impart this message to you, the next time you see a girl and her dog, sitting in an awkward place, or a young man walking through a neighborhood at night, and you really feel that uncomfortable about it,  call the police. Don’t be a vigilante, butthole who ends up finding out you were acting like a dumb nut to a completely innocent person. I’d rather a cop pull up, ask me if I was ok, and confirmed my being there with the owners than putting up with that nosy grumpy man.  Or if you’re not uncomfortable, you can ask nicely if I’m ok.

 

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5 thoughts on “Trayvon Reflection

  1. It is a sad world that we live in where we never know who we can trust and we walk around fearful that every stranger is the perpetrator of cirme… I bet the old man was just being a stereotypical grumpy old man, unhappy in his old age and wanting to share his discomfort. He probably wasn’t really fearful of his safety- I can’t imagine you posing too formidable a persona with your trailer and your doggy 🙂

  2. Jasmine, it is an awkward situation and one where the response is very situation dependent.
    I was in a similar situation last month in Germany, when I had to cross a farmer’s field and
    pass through a stranger’s yard. Fortunately no one noticed. I would have had a hellava time
    explaining with my German. Earlier that same day I had misinterpreted a trail marker, entered a waste treatment facility and was was stopped at the gate. The guard spoke no
    English, and didn’t understand my flawed German. He contacted the office and got an English speaker on the phone and everything got sorted out. There was no tension, but
    there was uncertainty.

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