Zimmerman family challenges Holder on New Black Panthers, says no arrests ‘based solely on your race’
In a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder on Monday, obtained exclusively by The Daily Caller, a family member of George Zimmerman asked the nation’s top law enforcement officer why he has chosen to not arrest members of the New Black Panther Party for their rhetoric — some of which may fit the federal government’s definition of a hate crime — throughout the Trayvon Martin case.
The family member believes the reason Holder hasn’t made those arrests is because he, like the members of the New Black Panther Party, is black.
“I am writing you to ask you why, when the law of the land is crystal clear, is your office not arresting the New Black Panthers for hate crimes?” the family member wrote to Holder.
“The Zimmerman family is in hiding because of the threats that have been made against us, yet the DOJ has maintained an eerie silence on this matter. These threats are very public. If you haven’t been paying attention just do a Google search and you will find plenty. Since when can a group of people in the United States put a bounty on someone’s head, circulate Wanted posters publicly, and still be walking the streets?”
The New Black Panthers have issued ultimatums to the Sanford authorities, saying they want Zimmerman arrested “dead or alive.” They have placed a bounty on Zimmerman’s head, and have called for the building of an army of vigilantes to track him down and effect a citizen’s arrest.
Most recently, the New Black Panther Party has called for violence.
In a conference call recorded over the weekend, the militant group said it planned to “suit up and boot up” and prepare for the next stages of the “race war.”
So far, however, no members of the New Black Panther Party have faced legal consequences.
After citing the U.S. Department of Justice’s published definition of a “hate crime,” the Zimmerman family member wrote that there is “no other explanation” for Holder’s failure to authorize arrests of New Black Panther Party members, other than the fact that Holder himself is black.
“I would surmise that, based on your own definition of a hate crime, you have chosen not to arrest these individuals based solely on your race,” the family member wrote to Holder, insisting too that the was “NO racial component” to the “tragedy” that occurred on the late February night when Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin.
The Daily Caller has confirmed the identity of the Zimmerman family member but is withholding that person’s identity out of concern for the family’s safety.
The family member also criticized members of Congress who have forcefully criticized police for failing to arrest Georgfe Zimmerman, as well as “the Congressional Black Caucus, the NAACP, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Spike Lee, [and] President Barack Obama,” adding that “many” who have commented on the case without having a complete understanding of the facts “no doubt understand the laws of our great nation.”
Noting President Obama’s White House event last week celebrating the 1960 novel “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Zimmerman’s family member drew a novel comparison to the American literary classic.
“Strangely enough this case has a lot of parallels to those of Harper Lee’s ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’” the letter to Attorney General Holder read. “George Zimmerman has been treated much like Tom Robinson was, chastised for not being the right (or wrong) color and found guilty based on race factors.
“You have the opportunity to act as Atticus [Finch] and do the right thing. Your boss would refer to this as a ‘teachable moment.’”
DOJ spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler has not responded to The Daily Caller’s request for comment on why Holder hasn’t authorized the arrest of any New Black Panther Party members, nor has she answered whether that decision is related to Holder’s race.
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