Skip to comments.Trayvonís Friend Rachel Jeantel Prompts National Debate About Black Youth Culture
Posted on 06/28/2013 11:41:07 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
Jeantel and attorney West
After Rachel Jeantel left the witness stand following another six hours of grueling cross-examination by George Zimmermans lawyers, she immediately prompted a national debate about the language and attitudes of black youth culture and whether her testimony had helped or hurt the defendant.
Jeantel was billed as the prosecutions star witness because she was the last person to talk on the phone to Trayvon Martin right before he was killed by a gunshot from Zimmerman. Her testimony is crucial because she reported that Zimmerman aggressively followed 17-year-old through the subdivision until he had no choice but to confront Zimmerman.
But that key fact in her testimony has been somewhat lost in the raucous debate about the language used by the 19-year-old Jeantel, her disrespectful attitude toward the defense, her inarticulateness and seeming lack of intelligence.
It is a fascinating instance of black youth culture, with its language and attitudes, splashed across a national stage as it collides with the protocol of the criminal justice system.
The key question will be how the jury five white women and one Latinaviews Jeantels believability after her two days of testimony. Will they be influenced by her language and attitude to view her as not very likable, and then make the jump that she is not to be trusted and believed?
Will they see Martin as an unsavory and less sympathetic character because he referred to Zimmerman as a creepy-ass cracker, according to Jeantels testimony, and also a nigga?
Will they understand that the word cracker that Jeantel attributed to Martin is less a malicious slur draped in his ill will toward Zimmerman than a toothless slang word black teens use to describe white people just as they use the word nigga to describe everybody, including each other?
While many observers in the white and black communities are lambasting Jeantel for her lack of intelligence, more savvy trial-watchers will focus on the fact that she never wavered in her contention that Zimmerman was following Martin, which is the most important aspect of her testimony.
High-profile defense attorney Billy Martin told host Rev. Al Sharpton on MSNBC that despite all the noise about her language, the jury is going to look at facts that make her believable, key facts. The key word she was consistent on is, this creepy guy is following me. And the key elements here are not some of the slurs that may have been used. They may be offensive and the jury may not want to hear them, but on the key elements, was he following him, and did Trayvon Martin have a choice, I think the jurys going to be convinced that Zimmerman, based on her testimony, was in fact following him and Trayvon Martin had no choice but to try to run, and he could not.
Attorney Martin said that when he was a prosecutor in Washington, D.C., a lot of nasty and offensive language would have to be repeated aloud in court during trials, particularly involving homicides.
This is not unusual in a homicide case to have vulgar language and activity that people find uncomfortable, he said. I think a juror and juries look right through that and look at what are we really trying to determine. Theyre not trying to see if one was a good person or a bad person. There are facts here. And these facts will show who was the aggressor, who had the ability to flee and who had the gun I dont think these slurs are going to make a difference.
In fact, former federal prosecutor Kendall Coffey said the tactic by defense attorney Don West to try to emphasize Jeantels inability to understand English and her lack of intelligence she said she couldnt read a letter she had a friend write to the Martin family because it was written in cursive might ultimately backfire.
There were a couple of points where the defense was starting to be a little patronizing, Coffey said. That always backfires. I like the way she stood her ground on that. You saw throughout some of the questioning how she would correct some of the defense lawyers, not rudely but simply standing up for herself. So whether the jury found her sympathetic or not, I think there had to be sort of a grudging respect for this very young woman who was dealing with a situation she couldnt have imagined ever encountering, who by and large stuck true to her testimony and true to her beliefs.
The defense tried to damage Jeantels credibility by showing how her story changed over the past year, particularly how her testimony differed from the description she gave in the letter her friend wrote for her.
Why wasnt creepy-ass cracker in prior interviews? West asked.
Nobody asked me, replied Jeantel.
The letter, in which Martins name is spelled incorrectly, gives her blow-by-blow account of what happened, which she said was intended for Trayvons parents, not for public consumption.
He started walking then noticed someone was following him, read the letter. Then he decided to find a shortcut cause the man wouldnt follow him. Then he said the man didnt follow him again. Then he looked back and saw the man again. The man started getting closer. Then Trevon turned around and said Why are you following me!! Then I heard him fall. Then the phone hung up. I called back and got no response. In my mind I thought it was just a fight. Then I found out this tragic story. Thank you.
In her testimony, she described Martin calling Zimmerman a creepy-ass cracker, and said she warned him to walk away, saying it might be a rapist.
After Martin told her he was going to try to lose him and get to the home, the man who was following him reappeared, prompting the confrontation.
Jeantel has consistently said she heard Martin ask Zimmerman why he was following him. But in an earlier account, she said Zimmerman replied, What are you talking about? But on the stand she said Zimmerman replied, What are you doing around here?
Jeantel testified she heard Martins phone headset fall and then Martin say Get off!after which the phone went dead.
West asked Jeantel why she did not tell Martins family or their lawyer, Benjamin Crump, that the teen yelled Get off! Jeantel said, because Crump is not law enforcement.
West at one point tried to imply that Martin could have started a fight with Zimmerman but decided not to tell Jeantel about it.
Of course, you dont know if he (Martin) was telling the truth or not, West said to Jeantel.
Why he need to lie about that sir? replied Jeantel.
Maybe if he decided to assault George Zimmerman, he didnt want you to know about it? answered West.
Thats real retarded, sir, Jeantel said. When you dont know the person, why risk it? Trayvon didnt know him.
could also always go back and link it to property taxpayers ie landowners.
Discernment is several steps abover her grade level.
She simply exists.
Liberals should be ashamed for having created the likes of her.
It sure isn’t for hickies.
you effin morons are the only one’s concerned about your color.
We never think of it until you distract us with how deplorable life is because you were born of a certain melatonin.
How in the Fk, am I suppose to care about the color of your skin?
You are skipping generations, in which there could be a real improvement of your own character and a certain symbiosis between the rest of us without your race being a subject of interest.
I’m more interested in your di ck he ad attitude than I am with your “race”, which, at this point is looking slow and lazy...........
I haven’t heard her entire testimony, but I must say, from the transcripts here I can easily draw the conclusion that Zimmerman acting as a vigilante followed Martin.
However, I seem to have read that the witness said that Martin made it home, or made it to a safe place, then went back out again looking for Zimmerma.
Does anyone know if this is true? If not, then Zimmerman may still have a problem.
Unless I hear something more I’d say from what I’ve read that Zimmerman followed Martin and could very well have instigated the conflict and that it’s Martin who fought in self defense.
This is not going to be dismissed Folks. And it shouldn’t be. This needs to go to the jury.
This article, contrary to what everyone is saying, paints this woman as yes, ignorant, but there’s a bit of street wis?”e intelligence to her.
She is uneducated, the way Obama and other black leaders have always wanted black people to be like, but she’s not stupid.
What was that advertisement. “A human mind is a terrible thing to waste?”
With the poisoning of the well by the New Left, especially the racist agitators of the New Left, the H. Rap Browns, Eldridge Cleavers, and Malcolm X, (and others) the 'burn it down, blame whitey, get over on the man' culture of perpetual victimhood was born.
The great Society and Affirmative Action, coupled with ethnic 'studies' programs to give even more people a pass at the college level became a means of milking the Government teat for all it was worth.
And self-respect, real, earned, achievement based self respect died in there somewhere, smothered in the treacle of self-esteem, of "pride" without basis in achievement.
The old line was lost to time and attrition, those who had held their children to task, who would not tolerate their babies, their young black men and women acting like ni**ers, and who would never have referred to themselves with such a deprecating term, any more than the Dutchess of Cornwall would publicly refer to herself as "bitch".
The really sad part is that the black attorneys, doctors, scientists, and the like who did work hard and graduate from colleges ahead of the wave of crap have witnessed the degeneration of their people, goaded and maintained by race-baiters like the 'reverends' who preach hatred and blame from the pulpit, but who will not hold their own people to task for their extraordinary lack of achievement, nor place the blame for that lack of achievement squarely where it belongs: on the lowered expectations of their communities, foisted by the media and their own people, upon their own people, leading to massive social decay.
No one can solve these problems for them, but neither can other communities permit this decay to take root in their own, nor can they permit the decay to dominate them in any way, shape, or form, if civil society is to continue to exist.
Either those who harbor and feed the problem will do something about it, or others will be forced to as the corruption and amorality erode civilization itself.
If that is true, who does that leave as the Eloi?
Time for people to wise up to this BS, and cut off the subsidies.
I don’t think she is not intelligent; uneducated and clever is more like it. If she is a victim; it is of a dumb downed society where getting a good education clearly is not the objective but goals stopping short of gaining material items given to you; but not earned. Once the dangling carrot is pulled; these kids are going to be in for the shock of their lives.
What you are talking about here is the difference between a republic and a mobocracy. Trouble is, in this two-party system, both parties are governed by the Mobocrats -- two flavors of the same thing.
The test should be, do you contribute more than you cost?
Voting is a conflict of interest for those on the dole.
I don’t care what color the witness, she was obviously as dumb as a bag of hammers.
Geraldo Rivera said it is sad that now the ALL WHITE jury may look down on her because she is not articulate.
No, Whoraldo, it is because she is LYING!
a.k.a. The phenomenon previously known as barbarism.
Good luck with that, after the CW the damn Radical Republicans gave the vote to every black and took it away from the whites.
Some of what we know about this lady is irrelevant. The fact that she’s not very intelligent or articulate, for example, proves very little about the case. What matters is that she’s a track record of not being honest. That’s what’s important. She’s milked her 10 minutes of fame and exploited this very unnecessary deadly confrontation for all the attention she could get. The things about her demeanor and performance - the way she exposes the attitudes and folk ways of the belligerent black underclass - is beside the point to the truth of the case. And it’s besides the point to improving the conditions of black people. Nearly all Liberals see these folks - the Trayvons and their Jeantels - as the victims and the violent vanguard of Liberalism in a hurry. For that, they’re beyond reproach by the Liberal masters who run the urban ghettos. Black folks are willing to fight and die against each other to maintain the Liberal underclass culture as it is with its angry music, angry politics, and totalitarian approach. We cannot help people who won’t turn away from their self-destruction. Any criticism is of her behavior or Trayvon’s is going to be dismissed as coming from a malicious racist heart. Stopping that criticism is important to the continued chauvinism of Liberalism.