"If I were a person of color … I would pick up a brick and start walking toward that courthouse"
"The Wire" creator David Simon says the Trayvon Martin verdict exposes an ugly double standard in Florida's "stand your ground" law:
"You can stand your ground if you’re white, and you can use a gun to do it. But if you stand your ground with your fists and you’re black, you’re dead."
He added that "If I were a person of color in Florida, I would pick up a brick and start walking toward that courthouse" where George Zimmerman was found not guilty Saturday in Martin's shooting. He praised those who have responded without violence.
Simon addressed the verdict on his blog, "The Audacity of Despair."
"In the state of Florida, the season on African-Americans now runs year round. Come one, come all," he wrote. "And bring a handgun. The legislators are fine with this blood on their hands. The governor, too. One man accosted another and when it became a fist fight, one man — and one man only — had a firearm. The rest is racial rationalization and dishonorable commentary."
Simon has chronicled the flaws of urban institutions for three decades, first as a reporter for the Baltimore Sun, and then as the author of "Homicide." That led to a television career that included HBO's "The Wire" and "Treme."
The Martin case hit him especially hard.
"If I were a person of color in Florida, I would pick up a brick and start walking toward that courthouse in Sanford," he wrote. "Those that do not, those that hold the pain and betrayal inside and somehow manage to resist violence — these citizens are testament to a stoic tolerance that is more than the rest of us deserve. I confess, their patience and patriotism is well beyond my own."