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Giving “George Zimmerman” A Platform

by on February 5, 2014

Based on the article “George Zimmerman to fight rapper DMX in celebrity boxing bout”, George Zimmerman is due to fight rapper DMX in a celebrity boxing match.  For those who might have forgotten, Zimmerman was freed after he shot Trayvon Martin, a 17 year old, in February 2012.

Zimmerman says the boxing match was all his idea, since he has been boxing for a long time now and saw this boxing opportunity as a way to help him keep up with his weight loss goal.  With the help of Damon Feldman, owner of Celebrity Boxing, they received more than 15, 000 e­-mails of people wanting to step into the ring with Zimmerman.

It looks like most of these people requesting to fight Zimmerman are not his biggest fan; DMX, who was selected from the large pool of applicants, clarified that he is no fan of Zimmerman and added he plans on “beat[ing] the living (expletive)” out of Zimmerman. 

Although a lot of these people see this as an opportunity for revenge, is this the way to go about it?  They are forgetting that by doing this they are giving the bad guy a platform; not only are they giving Zimmerman exactly what he wants, the money and the attention, but they are promoting violence and standing against the peaceful legacy the Martin family worked so hard on establishing. It is clear to me that Zimmerman wants to remain in the public limelight, so why should we, as Trayvon supporters, give him this satisfaction?  Why would any supporter of the Martin family participate in such an event with such a person?

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3 Comments
  1. Peter Cappiello permalink

    Zimmerman was found not guilty of both second-degree murder or manslaughter.

    In regards to your last paragraph, I do agree that it is giving Zimmerman a platform, when, as Rev. Al Sharpton said in the CNN link attached, Zimmerman’s “only claim to fame was killing an unarmed young man.”

    That said, the above article was pulled from CNN’s “entertainment” section. I don’t think Zimmerman’s prospective fight is particularly newsworthy, but he is a household name and so is DMX, which is why I think it made its way to the entertainment section.

    Fights happen all the time between people who aren’t Zimmerman, and on that logic, I’m not sure if this match is “promoting violence” any stronger than a Floyd Mayweather/Manny Pacquiao bout.

    As far as your lines about the “peaceful legacy the Martin family worked so hard on establishing,” and saying “we, as Trayvon supporters,” I interpreted that as you giving up impartiality/neutrality.

    Journalistically, I do not take the same stance. I’m not a supporter of the Martin family, nor an opponent. Same for both parties. My stance is that I am a journalist.

    The final line in your response had me thinking for a long time. I think that would be a really good question to ask multiple Martin supporters. I’m not sure if DMX has explicitly stated that he is a Martin supporter, but if he is, he would be the best person to ask that question to at this stage in the story.

    -Peter

  2. After also reading the article “George Zimmerman to fight rapper DMX in celebrity boxing bout” I agree that it is wrong to give Zimmerman a platform when the only reason he is in the spotlight is because he killed unarmed Trayvon Martin. I think it is completely absurd to glorify this man and give him, according to the article, “motivation to get back in shape and continue with my weigh loss goals and also be able to help a charity out”. This idea is extremely insensitive to everyone who was affected by Trayvon’s Murder.

    While the idea of fighting Zimmerman on Celebrity Boxing gives those infuriated with Trayvon’s case an outlet to express their anger and get the chance to be face to face with him, I do not believe that any good can come out of this.

    This is definitely not the way to go about getting revenge because it just enforces the idea that violence is the answer. While I cannot think of any other constructive ways to get revenge on Zimmerman, besides ostracizing him from society, we should not be giving him the satisfaction of all this attention, even if it is negative attention.

    I am not sure what DMX promising to “beat his ass” will solve. I agree that asking any Trayvon supporters why they would participate in this would be interesting. To hear any responses to this question besides purely for revenge would be helpful to those confused or frustrated with this potential fight.

    -Emily Abrams

  3. ccorso permalink

    After reading “George Zimmerman to fight rapper DMX in celebrity boxing bout” I realized that this is another case where people are using the ability to make profit off of something immoral and wrong. Zimmerman is obviously using this platform to stay in the national spotlight and to make some money. The Celebrity Boxing organization should be ashamed of themselves for taking advantage of people feelings to make money. I have to be honest this is a fight that I would watch and pretty much anyone who know the George Zimmerman story will want to watch it too. Still, that doesn’t stop it from being immoral and promoting violence, while the company and the networks are reeling in the benefits. This happens in the media all the time and is something that needs to end.

    Chris Corso

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