George Zimmerman Found Not Guilty In Trayvon Martin Killing; Rappers Respond

posted Sunday July 14 ,2013 at 12:45AM CDT | 287 comments

George Zimmerman Found Not Guilty In Trayvon Martin Killing; Rappers Respond

2 Chainz, Nicki Minaj, Meek Mill, Wale, Raekwon, Twista, Ghostface Killah, Big Boi, Jim Jones and Juelz Santana are among those who respond to the verdict in the Zimmerman trial.

George Zimmerman was found not guilty of second degree murder and manslaughter today (July 13). He was accused of murdering Trayvon Martin on February 26, 2012. Many believed that Martin was singled out and killed by Zimmerman for racial reasons. Martin, 17, was Black and Zimmerman is Hispanic.

"You have a little Black boy who was killed," said Benjamin Crump, an attorney for Martin's parents, according to usatoday.com. "It's going to be reported in history books and 50 years from now, our children will talk about Trayvon Martin's case like we talk about Emmett Till."

Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black male, was tortured and murdered in 1955 in Mississippi after being accused of flirting with a white woman. Till has been referenced in rap lyrics by Kanye West, Lil Wayne and others in the last decade, and David Banner has worn shirts with Till's image on them in videos.

Members of the rap community voiced their displeasure with the verdict in the Zimmerman case on social media. 

Reef the Lost Cauze said that the verdict caused him to feel afraid for his own son:

Meek Mill and fellow MMG artist Wale drew comparisons between the Zimmerman trial and NFL quarterback Michael Vick, who received two years in prison for dogfighting:

Jim Jones, Juelz Santana, Nicki Minaj, Big Boi, and others were more vocal with their displeasure:

An attorney told usatoday.com that they were not surprised by the verdict in the Zimmerman case. "The prosecution had no clear narrative, witnesses that appeared poorly prepared, and at the end of the day, this is more of a loss by the prosecution than a win by the defense," criminal attorney Darren Kavinoky said.

Zimmerman was not initially charged with a crime because police citied Florida's "stand-your-ground" law, which allows someone who believes they are in imminent danger to take whatever steps are necessary to protect themselves. Florida State Attorney Angela Corey, however, charged Zimmerman with murder on April 11, 2012, as per usatoday.com.

Among the more than 50 witnesses who testifed at the trial were "forensic experts who testified about the angle in which Trayvon was shot, the position Zimmerman's gun may have been in, and where DNA and blood was found," usatoday.com reported. "Other witnesses offered conflicting statements about how the fight happened, who had the upper hand when Zimmerman shot and who was screaming for help in a 911 call recording."

The verdict means that the jury felt "that Zimmerman justifiably used deadly force and reasonably believed that such force was 'necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm' to himself—Florida's definition of self-defense," according to usatoday.com.

The six jurors "decided Zimmerman didn't 'intentionally commit an act or acts that caused death' or demonstrate a 'depraved mind without regard for human life'—Florida's definitions of manslaughter and second degree murder, respectively," as per usatoday.com. 

"I think he's going to be great," Zimmerman attorney Mark O'Mara said during a press conference after a verdict. "I think he is still worried. Hopefully everyone will respect the jury's verdict."

Martin's parents were not in the courtroom when the verdict was read, according to reports. Martin's father Tracy posted his reaction to the verdict on Twitter.

The Rap community's reaction to the Zimmerman case is not the first time Rap artists have responded to a high profile legal case. One such case was that of Yusef Hawkins, a 16-year-old Black male who was shot and killed by a White mob in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, New York on August 23, 1989. Hawkins went to Bensonhurst to inquire about a used car. The mob of white kids who killed Hawkins were waiting for Blacks they thought were trying to date neighborhood White girls. Joseph Fama, who fired shots that struck Hawkins, was convicted of second-degree murder in 1990, according to nytimes.com

Chuck D mentions “A son slain in Bensonhurst,” referring to Hawkins on the 1989 Public Enemy song “Welcome To The Terror Dome.” Chubb Rock says, “In your hearts and mind, never forget Yusef Hawkins” on his 1990 hit “Treat ‘Em Right.” Big Daddy Kane raps, “In the streets of New York, I think of Yusef Hawkins” on the Kool G Rap & DJ Polo 1990 single “Erase Racism.” Kane says later in the song, “When I think of areas like Bensonhurst, notice how I mention Hearse.” X Clan rapper Brother J mentions marching on Hawkins’ behalf on “A Day Of Outrage, Operation Snatchback,” a cut from X Clan’s 1990 album, To The East, Blackwards.

The rap community also commented extensively in songs and videos about the Rodney King case. King was beaten by Los Angeles police officers following a high-speed car chase in 1991. Much of the beating was caught on video tape and aired on television news outlets. In 1992, three of the four police officers charged in the beating were acquitted of all charges. The fourth officer was eventually also eventually acquitted of all charges. The acquittals are often considered to be the catalyst for the 1992 Los Angeles riots. 

Ice Cube, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre and others rapped directly and indirectly about the King case.

Additional Reporting By Roman Cooper

RELATED: Willie D Talks Reuniting With Scarface For Trayvon Martin, Remembers "Fuck Rodney King"

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Comments 287 Posts

  • Da Truth
    Let's be honest, the dude made out like OJ Simpson.
  • Anonymous
    For the last time Zimmerman is Hispanic! You have to have white skin to be white, get real.
  • Anonymous
    "9 times out of 10 the lead is white. Look at any major movie release, 9 times out of 10 the lead actors are white" Iris Alba is the star of Pacific Rim. Chris Rock is in Grown Up's 2. Denzel Washington is sharing top billing in 2 Gunz. After Earth starred Will Smith and his son. Do your homework before spouting off.
  • Anonymous
    For beats/instrumentals, visit winningteambeats.com
  • Anonymous
    I am not to attached to this situation and im white and I feel he should have at east got manslaughter. Cause lots of people have been found guilty with only cercumstatial evidence. I dont see why this one wouldn't either. People shouldent have made it about race, thats where people fucked up cause courts are not supposed to work based off of race. If people would have treated it like a normal criminal case, like it was, then they prolly would have had blacks and other colors on the jury. Plus the dude wasnt even white and they still tricked yall motherfuckers into making it a racial issue lmao
  • Kizman
    I love how so many sheltered Caucasians insist either that race had nothing to do with Zimmerman's profiling of Travon Matin or that Travon Martin deserved what happened to him because he was a "thug" based on his appearance and the mischaracterizations of him by the far Right media and Zimmerman's defense. Why does smoking a joint at 17 make Travon Martin a thug but overdosing on heroin makes Corey Montieth a "troubled, yet promising talent" like Brittany Murphy, Amy Winehouse, Kurt Cobain, Heath Ledger, Lindsay Lohan, Amanda Bynes, George W. Bush etc.?? It's because there are double standards in our system that allow certain populations to be subjected to civil rights violations. Meanwhile, the benefactors of White Privilege, a DOCUMENTED social phenomenon, continue to trivialize the fact that RACE was the catalyst for Zimmerman's pursuit of Martin. It makes me sad to see that, even in 2013, such abhorrent ignorance and bigotry still persists. I pray that you all find enlightenment and that you are never subjected to profiling that leads to you being offended, much less killed.
    • Anonymous
      You realize those names you mentioned have/had talent? If you make other people money, and are talented at it, then America doesn't care whether you OD's or not. They'll remember that person anyway they choose too. Trayvon was just some punk kid who posted pics of himself holding guns. Doing fight club, and smoking weed. While those things didn't make him a bad person, they labeled him a thug wanna be, and no jury is going to give someone life based on those traits.
  • Justice 4 All
    If you are being chased by a dude with a gun, what do you do? BEAT HIS AZZ if you can!
    • Anonymous
      "What about the other 150 actors/actresses that star in major releases? Directors?" There are countless others. I just don't care enough to bother copy and pasting them all. I will add Tyler Perry to that list. He's one of the biggest, most successful directors out there right now. Dude has his own studio, and employs countless actors of color in his films that get major studio releases. You couldn't be more wrong if you tried.
  • Dentaldamboy
    Due to my stance on the Trayvon Martin / George Zimmerman fiasco, I have been accused over a hundred times of being a racist. Am I racist? To an extent. But if I am, truth be told it's probably against white people. I hate the tired argument of "Some of my best friends are black!" every time someone is accused of being a racist. But it's a bit different when *as mine are* 90% of your friends are black. And not for some misplaced white guilt or wanting to kick everyone's asses in pickup basketball *not being stereotypical. Our team will fuck you up*, or even wanting the comfort of knowing that my friends are cooler than your friends because statistically speaking, black people are infinitely cooler than white people. *With the exception of Nick Cannon* It's because they *my close friends* are the most down to Earth, genuine, authentically good people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Does being black factor into it? Probably. Because when you're a minority, you deal with shit that others don't, and you *hopefully* learn from a very young age what's truly important in life. My love for people of all cultures, especially black people, is why I am so troubled and disgusted with the Trayvon Martin case. It's making black culture look AWFUL. The fact that there are police teams on high alert in Florida and across the country because they are anticipating riots, speaks volumes about the current state of unintelligent black people in America. *The 5-10% that is woefully inept. Which is the same percentage I'd give to any race* Some of you stand on your soapboxes and cry "Racism!" without realizing YOUR actions are the problem. I've personally seen dozens if not hundreds of posts threatening to retaliate if Zimmerman is found innocent. Stop the bullshit. YOU ARE HURTING YOUR OWN PEOPLE! If I was black, I would go around slapping the shit out of everyone making the Zimmerman trial a big deal and a race issue. Even if it WAS a race issue, and Zimmerman chased Martin while wearing a KKK outfit and screaming the N word, what the FUCK does that have to do with the rest of the state? The rest of the country? What the fuck does it have to do with ANYONE who isn't George Zimmerman?!??! OJ Simpson killed at least 2 people *that we know about* He walked. There were no insane riots like the LA Riots when the piece of shit Rodney King got his ass beat *which I still think he believed due to his driving drunk and my strong anti drunk driving stance* For whatever reason, the white culture in America *with the exception of right wing Republicans and spoiled rich kids who hate their parents* doesn't go around pointing fingers and blaming everyone else for their issues most of the time. They also don't go around massacring their own people. Look at the gang activity in NY. In LA. Look at Chicago. If you truly give a shit about your people, concentrate more on stopping them from killing their own. The babies. The children. The parents. The people we know 1000% are innocent. Then, when you give that enough attention and make enough progress, you can donate your energy to year old cases that may or may not have anything to do with race, where the victim may or may not have started the altercation. Until then though, let's all work together to focus on the real problems that are right in front of us, instead of letting the media dictate what we should pay attention to.
    • Anonymous
      whateva bicuspid x "For whatever reason, the white culture in America *with the exception of right wing Republicans and spoiled rich kids who hate their parents* doesn't go around pointing fingers and blaming everyone else for their issues most of the time" ^ lol now you're showing us that you spend too much time on the internet you love the attention though
  • Anonymous
    "Stop watching Spike Lee movies. They're dulling your mind." ^ lol what does Spike have to do with this? American history says this same scenario has happened plenty of times, before you even knew Spike existed. Your bitch ass has a problem with Spike.
    • Anonymous
      Spike Lee polluted most of his films by bashing white people, and screaming racism. John Singleton started too, then realized it was better to sell out and continue working than piss off the people who fund your dream job.
  • George Zimmerman
    "look at the major movies" Yes. Let's look at the major movies starring people like Denzel Washington. Jamie Foxx. Samuel L. Jackson. Will Smith. Anthony Mackie. Kevin Hart.
    • Anonymous
      Cool, you got 5 or 6. What about the other 150 actors/actresses that star in major releases? Directors? Producers? Script writers? Executive Producers? Look @ any commercial dude, 9 times out of 10 the lead is white. Look at any major movie release, 9 times out of 10 the lead actors are white and most of the cast for that matter...Go look it up, take the blind eye off.
    • George Jefferson
      Even the blue smurfs are white. Damn
  • George Zimmerman
    By who Kyle, you? lol I'm too trill to be phased by some cyber loser.
  • L BOOGIE
    Lauryn Hill was right. Ms. Lauryn Hill MLH On Racism The concept of reverse racism is flawed, if not absolutely ridiculous. Most, if not all of the negative responses from people of color toward white people, are reactions to the hatred, violence, cruelty and brutality that they were shown by white people for centuries. Much of the foundation of the modern world was built on the forced free labor of black peoples. The African Slave Trade, the institution of slavery, colonialism, its derivative systems, and the multiple holocausts throughout history, where whites used race as the defining reason to justify their oppression, conquest, and brutal treatment of non-white peoples, are how race became such a factor to begin with. The initial claim by the oppressors, followed a moral imperative (so they said) that people outside of Occidental and European birth were in savage and cursed conditions, and that God justified the captivity of these people, and the rape and pillage of their lands. Ironically, these oppressors would try to discard this same God, who supposedly justified this brutality, in the name of Darwin, whose famous line survival of the fittest was used to justify criminal behavior once the Bible could no longer be used as a hiding place for economic domination and evil intention. Spirituality and morality were replaced by capitalism, and with it a conscious shift of focus toward the exploitation of the vulnerable. In order to justify reverse racism one would have to first create an even playing field, undo the generations of torture, terror, and brutality, and then judge whether or not a non-white person is in fact a racist. This approach would require people to examine the need/addiction to feel superior to someone else for no justifiable reason, and the myriad policies: Spiritual, political and social, that it bore. True dominion is self evident and not the result of sabotaging another in order to achieve it. That would be an illegitimate as well as a fleeting position. The Universe, will eventually seek to right/balance itself.
  • wtf
    all w ury... thats why he got off . raciost amerikkka
  • Anonymous
    "I haven't see WET (White Entertainment Television)" It actually goes by the name PBS.
  • Jonathan
    http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/05/22/2813681/zimmerman-rode-with-cops-ripped.html http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Justice/2012/0404/George-Zimmerman-911-call-what-the-fallout-is-from-botched-editing Media turned this affair into a pointless race war.
    • Kyle
      Zimmerman is of African-Peruvian descent himself, media played everything.
  • Kyle
    It's kinda ironic (from past comments on this page) that white supremacists/Neo-Nazis/English Defence League types are celebrating Zimmerman's freedom when the dude's Hispanic. No place for racism in the world-Trayvon may have attacked Zimmerman out of fear/anger of being followed, but Zimmerman made the wrong decision to shoot when it really wasn't required. Worse still when media tries to make it into a race war.
    • James from England
      The racists here in England are nothing more than a fucking joke, go on the EDL website and you'll lose tons of IQ when you see what those ignorant berks write up there. This is the same group that mistook the Brighton Pavillion (look it up) for a mosque and are supported by benefit/welfare thieves and school dropouts. Don't take the racist on this site seriously mate, I guarantee you they don't even have the courage to call anyone a racist slur right in front of them, only when they're protected by an internet wall.
    • Anonymous
      People who carry guns don't usually spend alot of time weighing the pros and cons of when they should/shouldn't discharge their firearm. He felt his life was in danger which I'm sure alot of people (including the jury) believed, so he used his legally licensed gun. Strange how you're focused on the guy who had the gun, yet are ok with Martin starting the fight, and clearly having his own racial hang up's before the fight began. He was waiting for an opportunity to take out his rage. That shouldn't be glossed over. It should be examined.
    • Anonymous
      these white boys are so ignorant to the facts that it's funny.
  • Art
    I want to hear what Lupe has to say lmao
    • Anonymous
      Nobody wants to know what Lupe has to say. Trust me.
  • George Zimmerman
    Oprah called and said she wants to interview me. Think it's safe, America?
    • Kyle
      Not by a long shot pal. You're marked for death for the rest of your life lol
  • lucky bitch
    This dude Zimmerman avoided some serious interacial gang bang , dang hey.
    • Anonymous
      he will get his