Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Zimmerman Debt

A coffee shop will be whatever you want it to be as long as you’ve paid for something.

He sits with a blue-collar bronzing tan along his arms next to a Mountain Dew and round of chewing tobacco atop the table in front of him. He stares at the table with seemingly nothing going on for the Sabbath, but to partake in being out of the sun for a few hours.

At the cash register, a man chats with the barista about the Zimmerman trial while shuffling about. The chatting man looks stifled and eagerly discontent.

A new customer enters the shop. The barista must bid the chatting man adieu. Turning his prattle toward the sitting bronzed man, “Yeah man, I’m from Florida where that boy got shot” says the chatting man.

“Ya don’t say” replies the sitting man, somewhat endeared he’s made a new friend aside from his Mountain Dew.

“Yeah man, my mom was in a Wal-Mart out there when the verdict went down and people started flippin’ out. They had to take all of the Caucasian customers and line them up in the back storage so they wouldn’t get hurt” continues the chatting man. “Everybody wants to jump to a conclusion y’know.” He looks over to me.

For a moment I expect he expects me to chime in on his rant. Perhaps because he and the sitting man are white, and I am not.

The sitting man leans back from his table, “Yeahhhh… it’s a crazy world we live in” he says.

“Ain’t it the truth” the chatting man replies, and then opens the door to exit the coffee shop.

Unlike him, I don’t need a publicized act of sociologically charged injustice spattered across the headlines of every social media to know America can be whatever you want it to be for the right price. Unfortunately, for the less privileged, that price is our lives.

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