Blind Justice

A quote from the The New Yorker article, “Whom Does Kobe Bryant Represent?”, about their interview of Kobe Bryant and his response to questions about the Trayvon Martin case:

“I won’t react to something just because I’m supposed to, because I’m an African-American,” Bryant said. “That argument doesn’t make any sense to me. So we want to advance as a society and a culture, but, say, if something happens to an African-American we immediately come to his defense? Yet you want to talk about how far we’ve progressed as a society? Well, we’ve progressed as a society, then don’t jump to somebody’s defense just because they’re African-American. You sit and you listen to the facts just like you would in any other situation, right? So I won’t assert myself.”

I couldn’t agree more with Kobe.  It doesn’t matter what color, nationality, region, gender, etc. you are, just blindly jumping to someone’s defense without know the facts isn’t any more helpful than persecuting someone without knowing the facts. This is one of the biggest problems perpetrated on our society by the 24 hour news media. “This just in…we don’t know all the facts…” Spewing forth information without facts, without ALL of the facts, causes tension and tempers to flare, and people leaping to defend or persecute blindly, or worse… completely misinformed.

Oftentimes, even after a case (when we’re talking about criminal proceedings) has gone through trial, we, the non-jurors, don’t know all the facts that were disclosed and the instructions given to the jury. Ultimately, it comes down to each individual juror interpreting what they heard, with all of their prejudices and beliefs, and voting for or against a conviction.

In almost every instance, it is better to learn the facts, what’s really going on, who’s really done what, and why before deciding to defend someone…or to yell and scream for another to be punished.

Hours after his interview hit the street and he’d been bashed in the media by folks who questioned his understanding of “being African American”, Bryant tweeted:

“Travon (sic) Martin was wronged THATS my opinion and thats what I believe the FACTS showed. The system did not work #myopinion #tweetURthoughts.”

It would be interesting to know if that’s truly what Kobe believes or if he caved to pressure and was trying to save his image. I hope it’s really his feelings on the subject, because if they are, agree with them or not, he’s come to them after listening to the facts of the case and made his decision.


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