Op-ed pick: “Black boys denied the right to be young”

Eugene Robinson, in a column about the Trayvon Martin case in the Washington Post, writes that “our society considers young black men to be dangerous, interchangeable, expendable, guilty until proven innocent.” That means we are robbing boys of their childhood, he says:

If anyone wonders why African Americans feel so passionately about this case, it’s because we know that our 17-year-old sons are boys, not men. It’s because we know their adolescent bravura is just that — an imitation of manhood, not the real thing.

We know how frightened our sons would be, walking home alone on a rainy night and realizing they were being followed. We know how torn they would be between a child’s fear and a child’s immature idea of manly behavior. We know how they would struggle to decide the right course of action, flight or fight.

Read all of Eugene Robinson’s column here.