A Black Versus White Thing :: By Camilla Smith

By now we are all probably grateful for that royal baby being born, maybe taking the news off the Zimmerman/Martin trial for a few days. But don’t be surprised if it slowly creeps back into the headlines. In fact, Mr. Zimmerman has apparently resurfaced and not surprisingly, so has another juror. Hmmm.

Here’s my take. This is coming from my simplistic mind, and I am writing to you from the Bible belt of the great, Midwest, so keep that in mind. I come from white suburbia. Middle class. Working class. A: not-much-crime-in- my-town class. Not too much of an interracial neighborhood here. In fact, some would say we are probably pretty sheltered. Okay. I give you that.

But when I see a man with a cowboy hat and Wrangler jeans, I assume he wants me to think he is a cowboy. When I see a woman with a Louis Vuitton bag and Chanel clothes, I assume she wants me to think she has money. When I see an older gentleman in overalls and a John Deere cap, I assume he wants me to think he is a farmer.

When I see a teenager or youth dressed in a hoodie and baggy pants, ball cap turned sideways or backwards, I MIGHT assume—he wants me to think he is a gangster. Am I to assume that?

So when George Zimmerman saw Trayvon Martin, did he think Mr. Martin wanted him to assume he was a gangster? Was Mr. Martin dressed like a gangster? I don’t know. So many of our youth are dressed like gangsters these days—White, Black, Hispanic, it doesn’t matter. It is the culture. It is the style. It is outlandish and it is unfortunate. But if you wear a hoodie with your hood pulled up, your pants hanging low, and if you have piercings and tattoos, do you want me to assume that you are a gangster?

Am I going to profile you? Not personally, but I will be afraid of you. Is that profiling? I don’t hate you because of your race. I don’t hate you because of your dress. I am AFRAID! Is there a difference? I think there is! I don’t want to be afraid of a Muslim clad in their traditional dress, and I do not want to be afraid when a group of young men dressed like rappers approaching me on the sidewalk. To me, it is not a matter of hatred; it is a matter of fear. Is that a crime? Is that racial profiling?

Maybe Mr. Zimmerman was overly aggressive. Maybe adrenaline and fear came over him and he reacted incorrectly. Maybe Mr. Martin was racially profiled in the past. Maybe Mr. Martin was acting suspiciously to Mr. Zimmerman. Maybe it was a no-win situation that turned out disastrously. In any case, one young man is dead and it is a shame.

Whatever the case, we should not let this tragic story divide us. I believe that is the hope of the media and I am tired of them running the show. Almighty God is the only one who knows what really happened that day. It is unfortunate that these two men ever came in contact with one another. It should have never happened. I wish it had not. I am very sorry the Martin family lost their dear child.

Fear is rampant in this nation—it is causing us to act irrationally and do things we would have never done. It is causing our thought processes to run awry and our instincts to be dumbed down. There is only one thing we should fear—and that is the fact that Jesus Christ is coming for his church, very soon, and there are millions of unsaved people who will not make the cut. Not making the cut, missing out on eternity in heaven, now that is scary. THAT is worthy of profiling.

Unfortunately, the lost do not wear a sign saying, “I am lost.” Most do not have distinctive clothing that tells us they are not children of God. They are among us, they are interacting with us and they may be nearly impossible to recognize. But that is God’s job. We are just called to plant the seed and let God take it from there. In many cases, the seed may have already been planted by another, but we are to keep planting, John Deere hat or not!

We do not need racism and politics to divide our nation. Our nation is already troubled enough and as many of us believe, has little time left. But only God knows the answer to that, too. There could be massive, overwhelming revival—a last gasp effort on the remnant of true believers left in this nation to bring us back from the brink.

But if God intervenes and sends His Son for us without a nationwide revival, we as believers must be able to stand before Him and confess that we did our best to bring the unsaved to His kingdom. It is a huge task, and the rewards are astounding. Imagine having played an oh-so-little role in bringing just one soul to the Lord before the Rapture. Thank goodness we have the Holy Spirit to seal the deal.

Really, all we can do is pray, witness boldly, and fearlessly face those around us who are lost to the dreadful sting of sin that our world has become. It is overwhelming to adults, and I cannot even imagine how today’s youth are facing an uncertain future—as uncertain as I can remember.

Those who know the Lord will persevere. Those who do not—drugs, alcohol, prostitution and pornography, and yes, gang membership may seem their only way out. If you know where you can make a difference in a life, do so and do it quickly. People are hurting. Families are splitting. Children are suffering. God is waiting. So far, He is giving us the time.

How much time is left?

What will we do with it?

“Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done” (Revelation 22:12).