Charles Barkley Agrees with Zimmerman Trial Verdict

It seems like everywhere you go someone wants to know your opinion of the verdict in the second-degree murder trial of George Zimmerman. For us black folks, it’s almost like the time Michael Jackson was arrested for child molestation. Back then, no matter where you went, everyone white assumed that black folks still had jehri curls and wore sequined gloves, and had an opinion on whether we thought that Michael was a pedophile. Yep, I love it when “certain people” are interested in the opinions of black folks in such trying times. Yeah, funny how they never asked us about O.J. Simpson.

Let’s listen to Juror B37 below:

Fast forward to today and any and everybody black has to have an opinion on the Zimmerman not guilty verdict. As such, I wasn’t surprised to see Charles Barkley sharing his opinion of the verdict in an interview on CNBC. What was surprising, however, wasn’t his response. Instead, for me, I was shocked that something like this would be brought up on CNBC of all channels. What, is someone going to shove a mic in the face of Paula Deen as she continues her “forgive me negroes” comeback tour? Nonetheless, never at a loss for words and no stranger to being brutally honest, I appreciated Charles Barkley’s honest response. Why? Because it’s not a popular opinion.

CHARLES BARKLEY: Well, I agreed with the verdict. I feel sorry that young kid got killed. But they didn’t have enough evidence to charge him. Something clearly went wrong that night. Clearly something went wrong. I feel bad for anybody who loses a kid, but if you looked at the case and you don’t make it — there was some racial profiling, no question about it. But something happened that changed the dynamic of that night, and I know — that’s probably not a popular opinion among most people but just looking at the evidence I agreed with the verdict.

Charles Barkley

I just feel bad because I don’t like when race gets out in the media because I don’t think the media has a pure heart, as I call it. There are very few people have a pure heart when it comes to race. Racism is wrong in any, shape, form — a lot of black people are racist too. I think sometimes when people talk about racism, they say only white people are racist. There are a lot of black people who are racist. I don’t like when it gets out there in the media because I don’t think the media has clean hands.

MARIA BARTIROMO, CNBC: I’m glad you made that point.

CHARLES BARKLEY: Obviously I feel sorry that young kid got killed but just judging by the evidence, I don’t think that guy should have went to jail the rest of his life. Something happened bad that night, obviously.

MARIA BARTIROMO: I like what the juror said, they both should have walked away. And if there is a shadow of a doubt, there is a shadow of a doubt.

CHARLES BARKLEY: And let me tell you, Mr. Zimmerman was wrong to pursue — he was racial profiling. I think Trayvon Martin, God rest his soul, I think he did flip the switch and started beating the hell out of Mr. Zimmerman. But it was just a bad situation. And like I said, the main thing I feel bad for, it gives every black and white person who is racist a platform to vent their ignorance.

That’s the thing that bothers me the most because I watched this trial closely and I watch all these people are television talking about it. A lot of people have a hidden agenda. You know, they want their racist views, whether they are white or black —

MARIA BARTIROMO: The bias comes out.

CHARLES BARKLEY: The bias, it definitely comes out. It was a bad situation, we all lost. And I feel bad for his parents. You don’t ever want to see anybody lose a kid. (CNBC Closing Bell, July 18, 2013)

Listen to Charles Barkley below:

Whether you agree with Charles barkley or not depends highly media bias associated with the coverage of the trial. As someone who has watched said coverage closely, I think it’s fair to say that Charles Barkley is correct to mention that the media doesn’t have “clean hands,” when it came to it’s reporting. And why should they? The truth is the media outlets are no more interested in promoting peace and justice as they are interested in their bottom line: advertising revenue. So yes, while you grind your teeth as you sit and watch, many of us walk away with biased ill-formed opinions and ignorant statements. Like Charles Barkley said, the media coverage associated with this trial gave a platform for racists on both sides to spew their nonesense. And guess what? Many of us fell for the bullshit from pundits and talking heads hook, line, and sinker.

Interestingly enough, someone else who expressed an opinion similar to Charles Barkley was former U.S. president, Jimmy Carter. In a recent interview, President Carter expressed his thoughts on the verdict, and made what I thought to be a clear explanation for the verdict.

“I think the jury made the right decision based in the evidence presented because the prosecution inadvertently set the standard so high that the jury had to be convinced that it was a deliberate act by Zimmerman and that he was not defending himself and so forth. It’s not a moral question, it’s a legal question and the American law requires that the jury listens to the evidence presented.” – Pres. Jimmy Carter

Watch the following to understand why Zimmerman was not guilty: