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Commentary: The Legacy of Trayvon Martin Hangs Over New York's Mayoral Election
Black Entertainment Television ^ | September 9, 2013 | Keith Boykin

Posted on 09/09/2013 3:59:49 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

If Bill de Blasio wins this week's Democratic primary for New York City mayor, he can thank a Black teenage boy for his victory. No, I'm not referring to his biracial son, Dante, whose TV campaign commercial introduced voters to de Blasio's interracial family and Dante's huge afro.

Instead, I'm talking about Trayvon Martin, the 17-year-old unarmed Florida boy who was shot and killed last year by George Zimmerman. After all, it was the Martin case, and the Zimmerman verdict that followed, that prepared New Yorkers for Dante de Blasio's subtle but powerful message against racial profiling.

All summer long, the momentum against racial profiling in New York has been building. It started with outrage after the Zimmerman acquittal on July 14. It continued when a federal judge ruled against the city's stop-and-frisk tactics on Aug. 12. And it came to a dramatic head when the city council overrode Mayor Mike Bloomberg's veto of a police oversight bill on Aug. 22.

During this time, de Blasio's anti-Bloomberg, anti-stop-and-frisk message moved him in the polls from a second-tier candidate to the clear frontrunner. The week after the Zimmerman verdict, de Blasio was in fourth place with 15 percent of the vote. Today he's in first place with 39 percent of the vote, almost enough to meet the 40 percent threshold to avoid a runoff election.

While the New York Times, New York Daily News and New York Post have all endorsed establishment candidate Christine Quinn for mayor, the public has been sending a decidedly different message. Some see Quinn's campaign as a fourth term for Mayor Bloomberg after she helped him amend the city charter on term limits to allow the mayor to run for a third term. And because Quinn had long failed to take a strong position on stop and frisk, she has come across as a typical, cautious politician afraid to stand up against a powerful mayor.

When the city council debated police oversight legislation last October, Quinn refused to be pinned down on her position. "I support the idea of ongoing reform," she said, but she quickly added, "I have not yet taken a position on these four specific bills." Now, a year later, after watching de Blasio's late summer campaign surge, Quinn is finally denouncing stop and frisk. It may be too little, too late.

In a city where Democrats outnumber Republicans six to one, it shouldn't be hard for Democratic candidates to figure out where to stand on this issue. Sixty percent of New York Democratic primary voters think stop-and-frisk policies are "excessive," according to a recent poll. But the one candidate who was smart enough to figure out how to campaign on that issue was de Blasio.

Even Bill Thompson, the only African-American candidate in the race, has sent mixed messages on racial profiling. He and Quinn both oppose police oversight bills that would help rein in the very stop-and-frisk policies to which they say they object. That type of political doublespeak could explain why polls show Thompson is losing the Black vote to de Blasio, and Quinn, the only woman candidate, is losing women voters to de Blasio as well.

Maybe they didn't get the memo. While many observers were focused on Dante de Blasio's hairstyle, it was the substance of his words, not the size of his afro, that made the case for his father in that now-famous TV ad.

Dante describes his dad as unique among the Democratic candidates for mayor for one major reason. "He's the only one who will end a stop-and-frisk era that unfairly targets people of color," Dante says. That's not entirely true — City Comptroller John Liu has been most consistently opposed to stop and frisk — but the message feels authentic coming from a young Black male.

Nevertheless, Dante's words didn't sit well with Mayor Bloomberg, who blasted de Blasio's campaign ad as "racist," an odd charge when 83 percent of the people stopped by Bloomberg's police officers were Black or Latino. And this is the same mayor who increased the annual number of stop and frisks from 100,000 to 700,000, even though 88 percent of those stopped had done nothing illegal.

In the same interview in which Bloomberg attacked de Blasio, the billionaire mayor suggested the poor were whiners because they have air-conditioning, and he credited Quinn for doing a "very good job" of keeping liberal legislation off the city council floor. That's not helpful.

Bloomberg's blessing may be the kiss of death for Quinn and a badge of honor for her opponents. After the Trayvon Martin saga, the last thing New York voters want is four more years of Bloomberg's aggressive racial profiling. But if Bill de Blasio wins the election, he should cut Mayor Bloomberg a check for attacking him. And then he should thank Trayvon Martin, whose tragic death launched a nationwide conversation that has come to define this campaign.



TOPICS: New York; Campaign News; Issues; Parties
KEYWORDS:
Keith Boykin is a New York Times best-selling author and former White House aide to President Clinton. He attended Harvard Law School with President Barack Obama and currently serves as a TV political commentator. He writes commentary for BET.com each week.
1 posted on 09/09/2013 3:59:49 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
I am sorry...my white guilt card expired decades ago.

While certainly not perfect, GZ was a hero for fighting back against a wannabe thug

2 posted on 09/09/2013 4:11:45 PM PDT by Sir_Humphrey (Is it too late to save the country?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Wow, How ignorant can one person be?


3 posted on 09/09/2013 4:20:14 PM PDT by svcw (Stand or die)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Bill DeBlasio is the uber-uber super liberal candidate. He can very much be likened to Governor Moonbeam, and the results of his machinations to NYC would very likely result in NYC being in a similar fiscal condition to California. Doubtless there would be heavy garlands of liberal nonsense festooning the city when he got done “redecorating”. For example, he wants to feed all the city children in extra pre-K programs, and hike taxes on New Yorkers earning over $500,000 a year to pay for it. I do not understand how any rational being could vote for this shameless panderer.


4 posted on 09/09/2013 5:23:27 PM PDT by EinNYC
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To: EinNYC

Money votes with its feet. I welcome all the new millionaires and billionaires and the jobs and investment they bring to Texas. LOL


5 posted on 09/09/2013 5:31:19 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
subtle but powerful message against racial profiling.

Maybe in bizzaro world but only a fool doesn't racially profile.

6 posted on 09/09/2013 5:34:33 PM PDT by Altura Ct.
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“Instead I’m talking about Trayvon Martin that 17 year old unarmed teen aged Florida boy who was shot and killed by (paraphrased)the guy with the Jewish name.”...Kieth Boykin Harvard Grad,big time lawyer,and former Clinton aide

Boykin forgets to add while Trayvon was attacking Zimmerman and on the cement walk pounding the guy with the jewish name’s head into it was shot and killed by Zimmerman’s gun

The black media had the duty but not the obligation to verify and report factually. But instead quoted the reports from various “mainlining” socialist media sources: This example here serves the purpose by selecting Zimmerman as the target...

The result as we have seen is that another marxist axiom (division) has been implemented which has resulted with gangs of black youths murdering happless whites and “hispanics” who happen into areas usually where a black population is the majority. Thoseblack outlets who by their delberate misuse of the instrument of the 1st amendment are just as complicit in those deaths as the regime is.

If some of those so called conservative talk show hosts, refered to here as “talkies” many of which are lawyers had interviewed guests who run such watches and had the courage to fight PC and defend Zimmerman they would have exposed the regime and the media for the frauds they are.

The few who are still “milking this” by accepting black callers.unfortunately were allowing those callers to mis-state the facts such as as Martin was the “victim,” was “stalked,” where Martin was “stopped”,and “questioned” when there was no legal right to do so,then “killed in cold blood” as these assertions developed. They left those callers responses unquestioned and unchallanged as examples of what the thinking was. Which was a gross mistake.

If any of the of the youthful perpetrators of these racial crimes, some listed below, were asked. They would undoubtably claim they believe all those assertions were true. That so far has never come up because most of them have not yet gone to trial but sooner or later some good defence lawyer will bring this up as a defence issue.. Instead the “talkies” failed to cite the simple facts outlined and documented here, and allowed the callers miss-conceptions to go unchallanged..

Talk show hosts could have gone even deeper citing examples of policy and corruption even suggest that might be the reason for divertining attention from other problems but theyu didn’t. . Let alone ask callers what has Obama done for you? Or even warn them as unfortunately being used and deliberately mis-informed

Worse yet the Zimmerman incident is still considered as another Roman circus set up by the regime to divert attention from other problems and not understood as a socialist divisionary tactic. Leaving this socialist tactic unquestioned and unchallanged and the truth unrevealed by the political opposition.

What is the result ? Black youths believing they would get top level peer approval began attacking happless white and hispanics which may have wandered into their area which resulted in murders or serious injury and some cases stalked their white victims. In reality those victims are martyrs to the cause of American socialism., and the political opposition says nothing..


7 posted on 09/09/2013 8:13:46 PM PDT by mosesdapoet (Serious contribution pause.Please continue onto meaningless venting no one reads.)
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