White xenophobia in America

Trayvon Martin latest Black victim in Florida

By Dr. Kwame Nantambu
April 12, 2012

Dr. Kwame NantambuThe 26 February 2012 killing of the unarmed 17-year old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida speaks volumes as to the omnipresence of white xenophobia (“fear of other races”) in America. And it must be pointed out that this putative fear, real or imagined, only targets the African-American (Black) male.

Conventional wisdom suggests that enshrined in Florida’s utter unconscionable, disgusting and untenable “stand your ground” law is that George Zimmerman, a white male, felt his life was threatened by a Black teenager who was wearing a hoodie that night in Sanford, Florida.

Florida’s “stand your ground” law authorizes a victim to use deadly force if he fears for his life. Ergo, on that fatal night, George Zimmerman shot the Black teenager. The salient truism that Trayvon Martin was unarmed is totally immaterial and irrelevant according to the strict adherence to Florida’s “stand your ground” law. The bottom line is that Mr. Zimmerman acted in self defense— that’s it.

And this unfortunate racial incident in 2012 seems to concur/coincide with the 1857 US Supreme Court Dred Scott decision to the extent that “the Black man has no rights which the White man is bound to respect.”

The stark reality is that if Mr. Zimmerman had encountered a white, blonde unarmed teenager who was also wearing a hoodie that very same night, his white xenophobic subconscious mind-set would have never kicked in.

In fact, one can correctly assume that Mr. Zimmerman would have calmly and voluntarily offered to give the white teenager a ride home. Furthermore, Mr. Zimmerman would have never asked the unarmed white teenager: “What are you doing around here”? as he allegedly asked the unarmed Black teenager Trayvon Martin.

Such racial profiling only applies to the African-American (Black) male.

In addition, if the reverse were true in that this Black teenager had killed Mr. Zimmerman, a white male, then, he would have been ceremoniously arrested and charged with murder on the spot and carted off into police custody in Sanford, Florida. Let’s be real!

The unarmed Black teenager would never have been allowed to go free as the Sanford, Florida police officers allowed Mr. Zimmerman to do so. Furthermore, it took the law enforcement authorities more than six weeks to charge Mr. Zimmerman with “2nd degree murder.” Again, this would never have happened if the culpable racial mix/dynamics were different.

Indeed, it must be pointed out that an African-American male is shot in the back on a regular basis by the NYPD because the white policeman “thought he had a gun.”

And a October 2008 report by the American Civil Liberties group found that “Los Angeles police officers are more likely to stop and search black … residents than they are whites, even though whites are more often found carrying guns or contraband.”

The study also poignantly confirmed the truism that “African-Americans are over-stopped, over-frisked, over-searched and over-arrested” by white police officers in America.

Everyone remembers the Rodney King encounter with the LAPD on 3 March 1991 and let the record reference Dr. Henry Louis Gates’ encounter with officers of the Cambridge Police Department in July 2009. Dr. Gates is an erudite, well-respected and internationally known African-American Harvard University Professor.

These are just de jure examples/evidence of the nature of the racist beast in America today. The societal status of the African-American (Black) male is totally immaterial and irrelevant. White xenophobia is only triggered by racial hue as in skin color of the victim.

Indeed, one may have naively assumed that with the anomalous election of America’s first African-American (Black) President, Barack Obama, this white xenophobia mind-set would have gradually been relegated to the ash heap of America’s societal history— not so fast!

It is at this very crucial juncture in 2012 that all Americans should heed the salient but apocalyptic admonition of the slain African-American Civil Rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as follows:

“Now the judgement of God is upon us and we must either learn to live together as brothers or we are all going to perish together as fools.”

In the final analysis, as equal human beings in the eyes of the Creator, the obvious question that comes to the fore is : “Why can’t we get along?”.

Shem Hotep (“I go in peace”).

Dr. Kwame Nantambu is Professor Emeritus, Department of Pan African Studies, Kent State University.

13 Responses to “White xenophobia in America”


  • Not condoned but somewhat understandable: as in:
    “Not every Muslim is a terrorist but every terrorist is a Muslim.
    Again, must you wait for a perp to prove that he has a gun?

    • Do I take it that you understand your quote especially the part that says, ” …. but every terrorist is a Muslim”. Where does that come from. I never heard Timothy Mc Veigh being described as a Muslim. Shall I name all the names or did that serve my purpose. This is a Christian/Western bias that is used to stereotype peoples. In every race, creed or nationality there are upstanding citizens and hoodlums. I think the author of this article, like Selwyn Cudjoe, is a rabble rouser.

    • What about the Ku Klux Clan? What about the Oklahoma City bombers? What makes a teenager a perp? People have the right to be left alone without some idiot hunting and stalking them. Shameful on all levels.

  • Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

    The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

    Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

    What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

    How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

    And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

    • You’re definately not enlightened with history and or geography. Europeans invaded the rest of the world. Thats why European langueages are the first languages in most of the world and where they are not, they are still commonly spoken. The race problem is a problem because some people feel more entitled to this planet than others based on race.

  • So Zimmerman is “white” despite being half white half latino, and Obama is “black”, despite being half black half white.

    Speaks volumes on the author’s own bias.

    Of course, xenophobia is common in all races, a fact this guy doesn’t seem to appreciate because he can only see things from a (19th century) minority perspective.

    • It is very important to remind some important issues we are facing :

      Importance of respect of FUNDAMENTAL HUMAN RIGHT in the society is very important :
      ALL HUMAN RIGHT : life,justice, education, acces to the labor market, acces to institution for wellbeing
      The citizens have to take into acount the DIVERSITY in the society; all kind of diversity :age,gender,cultural origine (color of the skin)sex and nature of the sexuality, disability ..

  • I agree that there appears to be racial bias involved in this incident but we in Florida, following the example set by Trayvon’s parents who prefer not to overly racialize this incident but rather to look at the more salient point of the law which allowed Zimmerman to believe that he had a right to act in the manner he did. The fact is that there are people who discriminate in all societies examples would be the Tutsi and Hutu war, Japanese and Chinese during world war two, the Nazis and Jews, North and South Sudan, the English and Irish and the Indian caste system are all examples of discrimination of one group against another. As civilized societies though, we cannot allow the structures which permit people with biases to operate with impunity. It is this aspect of that incident which is most worrisome, “THE STAND YOUR GROUND LAW”. This law afforded Zimmerman the opportunity to commit this nefarious act and claim self defense,when the facts seem to suggest that Trayvon was the person in this incident who had a legitimate right to self defense since he was apparently standing his ground as Zimmerman pursued him. Now Zimmerman, a Hispanic, with aspirations to be in law enforcement, may have been over zealous or may harbor racist imperatives. I don’t know the answer to that but the fact is that he has been charged with second degree murder and the Federal Authorities are investigating his actions to determine whether they were racially motivated. Like all societies America is evolving, the fact that we have a black President with an African name is undeniable evidence of this. Trinidad too is evolving and the fact that we have an Indo Trini female P.M. is also undeniable evidence of this. My hope is that eventually we would desist from defining ourselves through race but rather as Trinbagonians.

    Nuff Said.

  • Again, must you wait for a perp to prove that he has a gun?

    They say that racial prejudice is product of primitive undeveloped intelligence, and your statement proves this to be so. What made Trayvone martin a perp, or is definition of words and terms one of your cognitive problems.

    Black men have hundreds of years of justification to suspect white men. When a black man finds himself being followed or stalked by a white man he can produce centuries of evidence to justify him feeling threatened. So your fears are based on the expectations that your victims are likely to do to you what you have been doing to them for centuries. The fact is though is that most likely they won’t, being absent that violent and primitive neanderthal gene that instinctively trigger violent reactions.

  • Xenophobia has nothing to do with race. Xeno means stranger Not race

    • Xenophobia has nothing to do with race. Xeno means stranger Not race

      You can twist it any way you want. The result is still the same.

    • Xenophobia has nothing to do with race. Xeno means stranger Not race

      Xenophobia briefly means “hatred or fear of foreigners or strangers or of their politics or culture”. If that strangeness is defined by racial differences, religious differences, political differences or cultural differences et al, than whichever operant drives it describes it. Xenophobia can be related to race or any of the human descriptions I cited including nationality. So if that strangeness, that foreigness is racial, then of course xenophobia will have something to do with race.

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