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.
“We need to bring back the literacy test before we let these people vote”
Or print the ballots in cursive.
There was a thread back when this event all happened that involved a map. All the key points, where Z was, where he parked his truck, where TM came from and where he was living, and where the eyewitnesses were located.
That thread and the evidence laid out cemented for me that Zimmerman is innocent. Yes, he’s a guy watching out for his community, and there have been burglaries. Yes, he was armed. That is all prudent.
If Trayvon had continued to where he was staying, he’d still be alive. Instead, he doubled back to confront Z and was in the process of beating him to death, or so he thought. When Zimmerman’s weapon was exposed due to the beating and thrashing he was taking from Trayvon, Trayvon tried to grab the gun, but Zimmerman got it and fired.
My conclusion: Zimmerman was acting quite appropriately, including calling 911 to keep law enforcement updated. It was Trayvon’s actions that were “creepy” and thug-like. Trayvon caused the confrontation, actually started it by attacking Zimmerman.
Imagine how this would have played out had Trayvon simply had a civil conversation with Zimmerman. Zimmerman could have asked him who what and where, and Trayvon could have explained rationally that he was staying there, just down the block.
The only real problem Mr. Zimmerman has is that he’s already been tried and convicted by the media. If he wins, he loses. If he loses he loses. NBC should be sued out of existence for their part in ruining Zimmerman’s life.
AThank you for this. IF this goes further, it would be the most compelling defense for Z. But let me ask you something.
Do we know anything about Z? I mean we the judge has surpressed the prior conduct of M which paints him clearly as a racist thug, but how about Z? Was he a rational person? Was he quick on the trigger before? Any prior felonies? How many times did he call 911?
"Culture", as in petri dish.
“She knows no better because she, and millions like her, do not know the difference between right and wrong and good and bad. Discernment is foreign to them.”
Interesting she said in testimony she goes to church.
re: “ Instead, he doubled back to confront Z. . .”
This is the key right there. According to Zimmerman’s testimony, he lost sight of Trayvon and was heading back to his vehicle, when Trayvon suddenly appears and confronts him about why he is following him.
Did Jeantel’s testimony contradict this? I thought I read that she said that Trayvon told her he was going to confront Zimmerman?
I just realized that no one has as yet mentioned “Eubonics”
She said "creepy ass-cracker" which is not racial.
In Feral Urban Youth (FUY) speak "creepy" means pervert and "ass-cracker" refers to homosexual sodomy.
That usage also explains her implication that St. Travon might get raped, and his response to "stop playing him."
So exactly what would be wrong with Zimmerman following Martin? Zimmerman was "Neighborhood watch" doing his job. He sees one of the same type of youths who have been robbing homes in his neighborhood. So he follows that youth to see what he is up to, perhaps to see if he does suspicious things like peering in windows and checking out the area. You and I have seen people out on walks in our neighborhoods. We can usually discern whether or not they are just walking or they are "casing the area". I have seen young black guys (who may look like Martin) who I don't recognize as one of our homeowners kids, and I might be curious as to what they are doing. Watching (following), I can soon get a feel if they are up to no good or there for a purpose, like innocently selling magazines for instance.
Of course Zimmerman needed to "follow" Martin, and not jump to any conclusion, but watch to try to discern what he was doing there. If Zimmerman had asked Martin what he was doing there....... should that in itself been an intimidating "confrontation" to Martin. If he was innocent, could he just have replied that he was passing trough on his way home or even just a mumble something like "minding my own business" said politely might have been enough. However jumping on Zimmerman and slamming his head on the pavement and punching his face clearly indicates the fact that Martin is a hoodlum.
When did "neighborhood watching" become "conflict instigation"...... it happens when the hoodlums see themselves as too tough to allow the man to actually watch them.
“creepy” means pervert and “ass-cracker” refers to homosexual sodomy.
Does that mean that if Trayvon had lived, he would not have been able to host a cooking show?
Or more likely, does that mean that if Trayvon had lived, he would have hosted a cooking show?
I can’t keep up with what is “in” with gay behavior anymore that I can with what the “correct” term is to refer to members of Trayvon’s race.
Hating Whitey but taking his money and blaming him for their self-inflicted pathologies.
Seems like the fact that she is a liar would do that. No jump required.
I still don’t believe that she is 19 — she looks more like 25 — and this is what “puppy love” looks and sounds like????.
She has a criminal lawyer who is a scheme teamer.
She says that she first met Trayvon when he came around her “area”.
Could that be an “area” as in a juvenile detention “area”.
This mumbler looks like she had had a lot of run ins with the police and knows her way around the system and spent a lot of time in the “area”.
Did she just open things up for her previous bad acts to come into play as they interact with Martin???
Great counter point!
Why? She's dirt simple to manipulate against liberalism's’ enemies and she's too damn stupid to know it.
It was Zimmerman who was returning to his car when he was cold cocked by St. Skittles.
why are they taking this piece of human debris and placing her on a pedestal?
IChing posted a youtube video of Trayvon’s mother mouthing the words “she lyin’” to her husband during Ra’Chel’s testimony. (applying proper ghetto spelling).
I posted this to another thread the other day. It is appropriate for this thread as well. What’s really scary about this is the number of people who are defending her as if this is perfectly normal. Unfortunately, they’re right.
“At the risk of being called a racist, Im going on a rant.
The surprise that some people seem to have after seeing this persons intelligence level surprises me. I live in an area of the country that is over 50% black. I believe there are people on this website from states like Vermont, upper New York, Montana, etc., who dont have a clue about what this culture really is like and what it is like living around them. I want to enlighten them.
This woman is not an exception; she is the rule. Where I live, you wont just see her at the drive through at McDonalds or as the cashier at Walmart. She will also be your pharmacy technician and your bank teller. Im not exaggerating.
There are Trayvons everywhere in my city. Some examples of the animals: an upcoming young engineer is shot in the head when he answers the door to some Trayvons, an elderly woman known as a philanthropist is beaten to death by a Trayvon who breaks into her house, just a couple of days ago a woman who sells candy and sodas out of her house was killed in a robbery by two Trayvons. Im sure they got enough money in the robbery to retire to some tropical island.
Am I saying that there arent white people who commit crimes? Of course not. But, just watching the local news will show a vast disparity in the races when it comes to crimes. How often do you see a pack of white people beating some one up for their tennis shoes?
So, anyone can call me a racist if they want. All I know is what I see.
It isn't just cursive. The woman can't read much of anything.
So?...It's been estimated that the U.S. spends more than $11,000/year/child and **this** is what the taxpayers get?
Those who oppose homeschooing and vouchers say that that government should set and oversee the standards homeschooling and voucher schools should achieve. Well!.....I have an idea!
Let's make the standards for homeschooling and voucher schools the same as the standards that apply to government schooling. If illiteracy and innumeracy is considered passing for the government, then that should be passing for home and voucher schools as well.
Lemme axe dis....
Does she get a pass for the “retard” comment because of her race, too?
No, they should conclude she is not to be trusted because she admitted on the stand that she has lied a number of times already.
If Trayvon had called 911 saying "there's some creepy-ass cracka following me", they would have told him that was the neighborhood watch guy, and nothing further would have happened.
But Trayvon decided to assault Zimmerman. Bad idea.
With all this publicity and her natural proclivity for absurdity, I think she has an excellent chance to be elected to Congress.
Thats real retarded, sir, Jeantel said.
GASP!! She used the R word. Can she be intolerant and ignorant if she is a person of color?
Particularly when you consider the "per capita" angle, it's pretty significant.
If one is on public assistance, he or she should lose voting rights for the duration.
Yikes, don’t do that!!!
I was in a teaching cert class and the subject was Ebonics. I took exception to the teaching of it and was promptly dubbed a racist by one of my darker class mates. My white prof blamed both of us for not being nice though I found out later from others that this student had been trouble earlier.
I called BS...I emailed this “racist” accusation to the Dean, all my profs and the head of the University...Pat Robertson...as this was at Regent U. The dean called me to say I hadn’t followed “proper procedures”. BS....
You're heartless! If they cut off her EBT card now, she could starve to death in a couple of years.
That thing would add an entirely new dimension for kids who want to go 'necking'.
It would have a "disparate impact" on minorities and therefore is RACIST! And I say, so what.
In addition to being able to read a voter must not receive checks from the government unless that check in for services rendered. Otherwise they'll vote for more checks.
That is absurd. 75% of university students voted for Obama as well and even higher if they went to an Ivy League school. Should they as well go through a literacy test? This is a young woman immersed in a ghetto culture. She is the real deal. If anything she was sincere. Whether she lied and fabricated testimony is another issue. Her lack of “sophistication” makes her a credible witness because her description of events have always been consistent. If anything putting her on the stand reinforced the argument that our citizens are ignorant and uneducated, Exactly what the elites want. White college aged liberals get their news and information from Jon Stewart and the likes. Blacks IMHO do not even get that. it’s whitey this and cracker that all over BET. Our culture is dying a slow death and reversing this will require a hurculian effort.
I wuz gonna axe dat too. Fo' shizzle ma nizzle.
(Hat tip to Urban Dictionary).
There's a really good chance that all six jurors are aware of the Paula Deen controversy and while they may not agree with her use of the "N" word or the resulting social punishment, they are most likely to agree that if Deen is a racist for using the "N" word, then so is the Skittle Boy for using the "C" and "N" word.
We see comments like the above with some frequency here on Free Republic, and I agree. However...I am always surprised that our nation's system of socialist-entitlement and compulsory schooling is overlooked as a MAJOR reason for society's collapse.
Nearly all the current teachers in our nation's institutional schools ( government and private) were trained by MARXISTS!!!!! That will have consequences in the voting booth and for cultural stability!
And....Since the very beginning of compulsory socialist-entitlement schooling ( mid-1800 to early 1900) progressives have controlled teacher training and curriculum development.
Children who attend secular schools **WILL** learn to think and reason in a godlessly secular manner. They must just to cooperate in the classroom. And...They risk learning that any voting mob powerful enough to give them tuition-free schooling is powerful enough to give them lots of free stuff. One to three generations of this and we get Wilson and Franklin as presidents. Another 80 years and we have a full blown Marxist in the White House.
( Yeah! I am shouting and jumping up and down and having a fit. I am exasperated that so few people see the damage that compulsory socialist-entitment schooling has done to our nation and society.)
she said she couldnt read a letter she had a friend write to the Martin family because it was written in cursive
At first, she wrote the letter. Now, someone else wrote it for her. So just out of curiosity, who wrote the letter? Was it someone involved with the DA’s office?
A friend or family friend apparently (IIRC from the addled testimony)
Yes, and they are the future.
However, who is to blame for this underclass, which by the way includes many whites. First grade teachers, both black and white. Decades ago, first grade teachers abandoned their all-important function as the transmitters of our culture and civilization and began turning out illiterates by the hundreds of thousands.
The illiterate and resentful underclass is the result of their neglect and malpractice.
Don’t post if you are clueless about the details of this case. Your post is an embarrassment.
I'm not offended by the term 'cracker', but really? A presumably black writer can say that a clearly racist word is 'toothless' on what grounds? The day we finally admit that people of all skin tones are capable of racism is the day we finally make real progress in race relations, and not a moment before.
But don’t you see this is exactly the type of mental deficient the Democrats want to create and have been doing so since the 1950’s when they took over the educational system. I taught in Detroit in all black high schools for three years in the seventies. Nothing has changed or improved. She was there then, she’s here now. No/Low information voters and illegals will keep the communists in power forever.
It started long before that, with socialist John Dewey, the so-called "father" of modern education.
The best thing for Conservatives to do on this is just cite that great Bill Cosby essay (the one that’s real and been verified) on Black youth culture. No need for anything else, Cosby nails it, and avoids any sort of “you’re racist” rebuttal.
“Id say from what Ive read that Zimmerman followed Martin and could very well have instigated the conflict and that its Martin who fought in self defense”
Yes, Zimmerman either followed him, or tried to. That is legal.
There is no indication Zimmerman started a physical confrontation with someone 6 inches taller than him. Nothing in the phone calls to 911 suggests Zimmerman wanted a fight, and nothing in his demeanor afterward would. Most people trying to start a fight don’t ask for the cops to come watch it.
Martin suffered no physical injuries. It therefor becomes hard to argue he was attacked first. But even if Zimmerman started the confrontation, Zimmerman would still have the right under Florida law to use deadly force IF he became convinced Martin was going to kill him, or cause him serious injury.
Miss Ebonic’s testimony was that Martin reached his home. All Martin had to do was...go in. Or he could have gone back and called Zimmerman names. He could have shoved Zimmerman. But once he started pounding Zimmerman’s face and smacking him into concrete - note the injuries to Zimmerman - then Zimmerman could reasonably fear serious harm or death & use deadly force to prevent it. There is nothing mild about having your head pounded into concrete...
“75% of university students voted for Obama as well and even higher if they went to an Ivy League school. Should they as well go through a literacy test? This is a young woman immersed in a ghetto culture. She is the real deal. If anything she was sincere. Whether she lied and fabricated testimony is another issue. Her lack of sophistication makes her a credible witness because her description of events have always been consistent.”
Someone who cannot read probably cannot form intelligent ideas about the issues. The exceptions to that rule are so rare as to be statistically meaningless.
She was not the real deal. She admitted to repeatedly lying under oath. How credible is testimony given under oath by someone who admits it does not bother her to lie under oath?
My guess is that she told St Martin to go back and teach that cracka a lesson. I do NOT believe “cracker” is a term of endearment by blacks towards whites. I do not think Miss Ebonics believes cracker is a neutral term. I think the ‘don’t you diss me’ attitude she displayed on the stand was shared by St Martin, and that night it killed him.