In a pair of columns released Monday and Tuesday, Fox Sports columnist Jason Whitlock voiced his belief that rap music and its widespread use of the N-word were major factors in Trayvon Martin’s death.
Whitlock, an African-American, certainly doesn’t believe that rap and N-word use were the only things to blame.
“Although I believe the jury reached the only logical conclusion based on the trial, I’m highly disappointed Zimmerman was not held criminally responsible for following Martin, ignoring police instructions and shooting a 17-year-old kid after losing a fight his pursuit instigated,” he wrote. “Zimmerman and the Sanford police force that initially bought Zimmerman’s explanation profiled Martin.”
But Whitlock wrote that the Sanford police and George Zimmerman “had an enthusiastic, unapologetic accomplice — N-word-addicted, gangsta rappers and the record companies that pay and promote them.”
Whitlock heavily criticized rappers, specifically citing “the N-word-addicted rapper-turned-sports agent Jay-Z.”
“They have branded young black boys and men within pop culture as criminal, violent and people to be feared. America is still a predominantly segregated society,” he wrote. “We learn about each other through TV, the entertainment industry. Thug rappers and their employers are partially to blame for Zimmerman seeing a black kid in a hoodie and immediately thinking ‘punk criminal.’ The same group is also partially responsible for making young people think it’s cooler to pose as a wannabe thug than a wannabe scholar.”
He further criticized rap music in his Tuesday column: “The rap music industry, the record labels and the commercial artists preach a message to young black people that expressing the most unethical, intimidating, violent, divisive and classless behavior — characteristics necessary to survive incarceration — are success tools in America’s free society.”
He rejected the idea that widespread use of the N-word redefines it as something positive.
“This popular mantra is every bit as intellectually dishonest as the mantra that slavery, Jim Crow, segregation, lynching and discrimination are issues that no longer affect modern American society.”
Whitlock’s sentiment toward the word runs counter to the feelings expressed by Rachel Jeantel on “Piers Morgan Tonight” on Monday.
The often contentious Whitlock has been on every side of race issues and has previously called the National Rifle Association “the new KKK” and has likened conservative columnist Thomas Sowell to the “house negro” character in the film “Django Unchained.”
When reached for comment, Whitlock said, “My column speaks for itself.”