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This Is My Son

 I took this picture of my son 3 years ago. It is framed beside a picture of his sister beside our front door. Like #Trayvon, he was born in 1995. His name starts with the letter T. He plays football and basketball, loves sweet tea and almost always has candy on him. He is now 6'2" and weighs 165 pounds. His features are sharper, sleeker. He is actually more dashing. Way more dashing than I could have ever dreamed of being when I was his age. He volunteers at the Humane Society. He holds doors open for women. He carries groceries. And he does listen to hip hop. He sometimes wears his jeans low (not too low if he doesn't want us to embarrass him). But even if his appearance had changed as they often do once a teenager begins to rebel. Don't we all now there is a child beneath all the nonsense --- all the heavy makeup, the short skirts, the tattoos, the drinking from Solo cups, the puff puff pass, the foul language we all once (and some still do) thought was cool? And he is occasionally grumpy and clueless. Filled with angst. Trying to make sense of who he actually is. Just as I was when I was his age. Just as I do now.

This is my son. I have been avoiding the similarities because they are almost too painful to bear. But it is undeniable. Each time I look at pictures of Trayvon Martin I see my son and my eyes fill with tears of sadness and anger. He is Trayvon Martin. But why is Trayvon Martin now infamously, Trayvon Martin?

This is the question that must be answered if we as humanity ever expect to be as enlightened as we believe we are because we own iPhones and iPads.

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