Empathy, thy name is Trayvon Martin shooting gallery target

I wonder if this is a cynical ploy to steal money from those racist scumbags who also happen to be gun enthusiasts, or if this was designed by one of those racist scumbag gun enthusiasts.

Oh, I suppose there’s another explanation — the makers had heatstroke.

Found via CopyRanter.

Empathy, thy name is Trayvon Martin shooting gallery target

41 thoughts on “Empathy, thy name is Trayvon Martin shooting gallery target

  1. 1

    Speaking as an American gun owner who used to enjoy going down to the range for an afternoon of shooting until I realized just what reactionary thugs my fellow shooters had become post 9-11 and after November 2008, I find this both disgusting and embarrassing.

    From sane shooters everywhere, I offer my most humble apologies.

  2. 2

    Given the Skittles in the pocket, I suspect this is could be a “fuck you, scumball” to the stand-your-ground lot. But Poe’s Law does have a huge range of unwritten corollaries. A lot of the assholes who pack guns are too fucking stupid to understand they are being ridiculed.

    About 30 years ago a gay friend of mine had a t-shirt with a small target printed on the left chest. I don’t remember the details, but it was produced in response to the shooting of a gay man (To, SF, NY ??? – just can’t remember).

  3. 3

    While I see the potential to make lots of money from racist gunowners from this, the idea of making it has my stomach do the same exact twirl it does when I consider that I *could* be a faith healer and make lots of money, but that I would hate myself.

  4. 4

    As subversive memes goes, I don’t know that this would have much effect if it were, say, put up around a local neighborhood to raise awareness. I can only hope something like that was in mind when it was designed, but even then it’s a rorschach for how people will see it.

  5. 5

    KG, it’s hard to mistake this paragraph:

    Granted, I haven’t had to endure the experience of being continually profiled. No doubt it would be frustrating. But if someone who looked vaguely like Ben Stiller were wanted for crimes against humanity, I would understand if I turned a few heads at the airport. However, if I were forced to wait in line behind a sham search of everyone else, I would surely resent this additional theft of my time.

    No, it’s not about dark-skin. Thanks for clearing that up, Sam.

    (Also, I have to wonder at this hypothetical Ben Stiller-lookalike whose less pissed off about being specially screened than he is about being screened after Granny McBleachy was sham-screened too. Anybody here get pulled over while driving as a minority? Does it piss you off even more when they pull over white people too, since they’re clearly not any sort of problem?)

  6. 6

    Whoops! Sorry, wrong thread. (Damn multiple tabs).

    In relation to this one, I can’t see how this could be anything but a satire, with the prominent skittles in the pocket (though I suppose there are those who thing Trayvon deserved to get shot for being a gangsta thug at other times), but I don’t doubt it won’t have any effect beyond being a rorschach (well put, Jason.)

  7. 7

    The Skittles and Ice Tea don’t seem like they are there to provide satire, but to establish character, otherwise this is just any-old hoody-with-target. You don’t get the “joy” of murdering unarmed black kids if the character isn’t established first.

    So my call is Not-Poe, and just your run of the mill racist bullshit.

    “Can’t you take a joke”? Etc. etc. in 3… 2…

  8. F

    Regardless as to whether this is a product of or against racist violence nuts, it says something either way about shooting someone who has their hands in their pockets or carrying a drink. Not exactly in attack-mode, the target.

  9. 9

    No problem, Brownian, but now you’ve got my curiosity piqued. Where’s that thread? Guessing Pharyngula, given that’s your usual haunt, but I can’t find it immediately.

  10. Art

    People are going to print targets of the enemy of the day. Whatever is popular at the time. I’ve seen targets of Clinton (Mr and Mrs), Obama, Care bears, Sparkle Ponies, OBL, many stereotypical depictions of black men and Muslims, and Barney the dinosaur.

    The Sparkle pony and Barney targets are, as I understand it, quite popular with shooters with young children. The kids get obsessed and play the same barney DVDs over and over again until the Barney song plays in their parent’s sleep. Shooting barney seems to be cathartic. On one hand I’m aghast that people would target hoodies but perhaps it serves for people to both take out their frustrations and indirectly face their fears. To the extent something like that allows people to face their fears, and the irrationality of their fears, it is constructive. To the extent shooting such targets reinforces their biases and scripts it is destructive.

    What is clear is that Zimmerman was not firmly engaged with unvarnished reality. He was playing with a series of assumptions and scripts in his head that had little, if anything, to do with Martin. He was seeing a thug, an armed thug, who was up to no good, and a person who not only was up to no good but someone who had done evil and gotten away with it many times before because nobody had stepped up to their civic duty. He also saw himself as being the vigilant and conscientious citizen who would not remained unengaged and allow evil doers to go unchallenged.

    He was clearly playing out action between stock characters from central casting working a standard array plot points. These stock stories and characters are the tacitly accepted grist for cheap graphic novels and ‘patriot’ internet forums. High on the mind altering stories of ordinary citizens become extraordinary heroes through determination and forthright action he played out his part to the best of his ability. Unfortunately he didn’t realize the Trayvon wasn’t aware of his predetermined role in these stories. He didn’t know he was supposed to shout “Drat … thwarted again” and run away when the hero shows up.

    In a game of “hero versus villain” it always pays to make sure everyone knows their role and lines. Trayvon didn’t know that he wasn’t supposed to bow up at the guy intimidating him by following him down a dark road with a truck. Trayvon assumed that he had a right to get in the face of anyone so rude. He considered himself the person standing their ground against an aggressor. According to script playing in Zimmerman’s mind the villain is supposed to be scared off, not fight. And certainly not knock the hero down. It never plays that way in the comic books. The hero isn’t supposed to lose. So … to get back on script … the hero …

    Had Zimmerman stuck to the reality of who he was, and who Trayvon was, and what was actually going on it would have not blown up and ended with one dead and one indicted. If Zimmerman had not brought the gun he would have simply had got his ass kicked and gone home. Perhaps he would have grasped the error of his ways in making assumptions about people and the danger of acting as a watchdog when you really don’t have the skill set or temperament.

    Outbursts of out of proportion violence are almost always the result of weakness and fear. Trayvon wasn’t out to kill Zimmerman. Anyone who has been slowly followed by a vehicle at night knows how frustrating and intimidating it is. It makes you feel small. You are alone, at night and a vehicle with lights on follows ten feet back. You are in a spotlight. You can’t see inside the vehicle. Might be one short, over-wide guy with an attitude patrolling the neighborhood, or it could be a half-dozen skinheads looking to stomp you to death. But the one thing you know is you are one person up against a two-ton vehicle. You are at their mercy.

    Then the vehicle stops. You’re thinking ‘Oh-shit … it is going down. Flip or fly’. But who walks into the light? It isn’t a squad of goons … its … this short guy and he is acting like he is in charge … nobody without a badge or backup gets to talk that way to me … SNAP.

    Zimmerman has a slight, but fast, kid in his face. He tries to step back … either he trips of Trayvon pushes .. he falls back. Whacks his head. Trayvon is on top of him. He swings a few times as kids do and bloodies Zimmerman’s nose.

    Zimmerman, assuming this isn’t going to go down like a playground fight with both people walking away, the comic books are about life and death, not establishing the pecking order, assumes that now that ‘bloodthirsty villain ‘without morals or restraint’ is dominating that he is doomed. The hero in the stories never just takes it, gets beat on for a bit, and the villain never would let the hero live.

    Trayvon was most likely fighting to tell the bully to back off. He wasn’t a killer. Had Zimmerman just balled Trayvon would have punched himself out and stopped. Throwing punches is exhausting. Most fights are over in ten or twenty seconds. Trayvon would have said some words. Perhaps spit in his face. And then walked off. Zimmerman would have escaped with few small cuts, a bloody nose, and bruises.

    As it was Zimerman was still playing out the titanic and life and death struggle for moral supremacy common to comic books. The hero had to win to save ‘truth, justice and the American way’ so, disoriented, and eyes watering, he pulled the gun …

    Guns are the magic wand of popular media and patriots. Wave a gun and problems are solved. All virtue and justice flow from the gun and the right to bear arms. They are the gift that gives and a universal good. Always appropriate. For guns don’t kill people … George Zimmerman does.

  11. 14

    Could this be a highly cynical form of protest? The bag of skittles seems like a detail someone would only add to show the absurdity.

    Otherwise… what the fuck.

  12. 15

    As subversive memes goes, I don’t know that this would have much effect if it were, say, put up around a local neighborhood to raise awareness. I can only hope something like that was in mind when it was designed, but even then it’s a rorschach for how people will see it.

    I don’t think it’s meant to be a poster, the way it’s curling makes it look like heavy card stock that’s been printed onto, I’m pretty sure it’s another in a long line of highly dubious shooting targets.

    That said, all the gun ranges I’ve shot at explicitly state that you’re not allowed to shoot at likenesses of actual people, if this was just a hoodie with a target on, that might be ok, but I think that the skittles & iced tea identify it specifically as Trayvon Martin so I suspect it would be frowned upon.

  13. 16

    And now that I clued into the fact that that’s the Sam Harris racial profiling bullshit, I think I can find it myself. 🙂


    I’m not a difficult man to figure out.

  14. 17

    The bag of skittles seems like a detail someone would only add to show the absurdity.

    That’s the part I don’t get. Would they be some sort of dog-whistle for bigots?

  15. 18

    Well, it’s pretty much the only guaranteed way to identify hoodie dude as Trayvon. And yeah, this case has become a racist touchstone of sorts. It’s like the racists think this really will ignite some sort of “Race War”, when really it’ll be racists trying to purge the blacks and sympathizers.

  16. 20

    @Art, Zimmerman was not ‘overly wide’. That was a 7 year old mugshot. He has since been working out and is quite buff. Chances are, if Zimmerman had not been armed, after getting over his surprise, would have beaten the crap out of Martin, who weighed half as much as he did. You can carry MUCH more weight behind a punch at 240lbs(Zimmerman) than you can at 140(Martin).

  17. 21

    Regarding Sam Harris’ profiling statement, I think he’s right in that we should profile certain groups of people, but I think he’s dead wrong that we should profile people who ‘look muslim’ (whatever the hell that means, it’s like Arizona’s law to detain people who “look illegal”).

    Suicide bombers are overwhelmingly young males, that’s who we should be looking at.

    I’m a Brit, I first flew over here in 2004 for work, and I was pulled out of line at Heathrow and subjected to extra screening; When I inquired as to why, I was told “we don’t like young men traveling alone”, to which my response was “fair enough” (I should point out that I have a British complexion, which means I’m really sort of a pale blue color and can get a sunburn in a matter of minutes, so it clearly wasn’t a racial thing).

    Profiling is perfectly fine, as long as you pick the right target group, picking people who “look muslim” is going to miss a lot of other people – Richard Reid, the shoe bomber, was white, if he’d shaved his beard and put on a suit, he’d have been completely ignored.

    Whilst it’s true that all the suicide bombers and hijackers we’re aware of are overwhelmingly muslim, they were also all young males, which is the group that should be getting profiled, not only because “young & male” is easily identifiable while “muslim” is not.

    Of course it goes without saying that random checks should also be carried out, if you make it obvious that you’re only checking a particular subgroup, then the “bad guys” will simply try to recruit outside of that group, but with limited resources, you should focus your attention on groups that have been shown to be a threat.

  18. 22

    I read this as satire, though clearly Poe’s Law is in full effect. @Jason, you’re pointing out how a fundamental postmodern paradox applies here (basically, one cannot critique an idea without explicating the idea to be critiqued, which will actually generate support from those predisposed to be sympathetic to the idea that one is trying to critique – the shorter version: one can’t criticize something without simultaneously reinforcing it); unfortunately, one cannot necessarily gauge the impact of a text without producing that text and releasing it into contemporary discourse. “Self-deportation”, a current Republican platform plank that started as a scathing satire of Republican immigration restrictions, is a great example of Poe’s Law run amok.

    @kyoseki: Alternately, we could simply accept that living in a free society carries a certain degree of risk, and that that risk is an acceptable price for a lack of authoritarian policing. Everyone dies sometime; if the price for a happier life-while-it-lasts is a minor increase in the likelihood that I’ll be intentionally killed by another person instead of diabetes, cancer, or heart disease (or fatally wounded by a car crash while on my bike – so far getting hit has been non-fatal, though permanently-damaging in one case), I think it’s worth it. The beneficial impact of profiling is not sufficient to justify the practice when compared to the harmful impact. Support for profiling assumes support for a police state (that is, a state where the civilian population is actively surveyed and coerced into compliance with authoritarian directives through the threat or use of force – I’m clarifying because I got into an argument in another blog comment thread with someone who was asserting that there was an overapplication of the term ‘police state’, not recognizing that there are different degrees of policing that can go on in different societies that share the same structure), which must be justified in stead of taken for granted.

  19. 23

    It’s trolling.

    You’re supposed to think “that’s so wrong” and laugh at the audacity of a target encouraging you to shoot a non-threatening person and at the unreasonable presentation of the Martin-Zimmerman incident which fits a common meme but not the known facts.

    Of course, the racists will take it in their own way.

  20. 25

    Reading the comments on this thread are illuminating to say the least. Think about the mental dynamic that must form when your perception of the target is that it is racist.

    Was the shooting of Trayvon Martin a racist act? Many in America assumed immediately upon news of the shooting that George Zimmerman was WASP white.

    Had Trayvon Martin been the shooter and George Zimemrman the victim, what would your cnclusion be after viewing a George Zimmerman target? (Which by the way have been produced by the New Black Panthers and continue to be sold.)

  21. 27

    Zimmerman did not say those 2 words, it has been shown conclusively that the claim originated with one of the leftwing “news” organizations and was of course instantly accepted, embraced and disseminated by black racists.

  22. 30

    Perhaps because those 911 call tapes have now been publicly released and folks like myself have actually listened to them? 🙂

  23. 35

    “Art” – You’re an IDIOT.

    Zimmerman should have just accepted having his head beaten into the curb, based on the assumption that Saint Skittles would have stopped before he did any “real” harm?

    I’d have shot him long before Jorge Zimmerman did!

    And for those still falling for the “Jorge could have easily taken Martyr in a fight” crap, you’re idiots too.

    Saint Skittles was 6’3 / 180#, a 17 year old tattooed, gold-toothed football player and Jorge Zimmerman was 5’8 / 170, a balding, pot-bellied little nerd in his early thirties.

    I challenge ANYONE to stand up face-to-chest with someone SEVEN inches taller and tell me they don’t feel threatened. Now make that person half your age and athletic…

    For Zimmerman to follow Martyr – if he even did (which has NOT been established, btw) was no crime. The FAcT is that no crime was committed UNTIL Saint Skittles brutally attacked Jorge.

    Even so, Zimmerman took a good 90 seconds worth of beating, screaming his head off for “HEEEEEEELLLLP!”, before finally being forced to defend himself by any means necessary — AS HE WAS PERFEcTLY ENTITLED TO DO!

    When someone half your age and substantially larger has you flat on your back and they’re on top bashing your skull into a concrete curb, THIS IS A DEADLY ASSAULT and self-defense is the G*d-given right of *ALL* human beings!

    Saint Skittles’ online profiles show he was AT LEAST someone who idolized and emulated the “thug” mentality – if he wasn’t a violent thug he was certainly wearing “the uniform.” That’s no problem UNTIL HE TOOK VIOLENT AcTION AGAINST AN INNOcENT MAN.

    The bottom line fact is that he “chimped out” on the wrong man and caught a bullet for his trouble. Now he’s got eternity in a VERY warm place to figure out where he went wrong!

    Zimmerman OTOH was the sort of man all of us should strive to emulate. He QUIETLY – WITHOUT FANFARE – mentored troubled BLAcK boys (like a younger Martyr) and spent his own time and money demanding justice when a homeless (*BLAcK!*) man was assaulted by a different thug who also happened to be the son of a cop (and also WHITE!).

    When HIS neighborhood became the target of thugs and criminals, instead of hiding in his house and demanding “SOMEBODY do SOMETHING” he stepped up once again to lead the “neighborhood watch.”

    Had Martin gone home, we’d never have heard of either of them.
    Had Martin hidden until the cops arrived, we’d never have heard of either of them.
    Zimmerman did what he was TRAINED to do – he called 911 and tried to keep the subject in sight until the cops arrived.

    Saint Skittles – instead of going home – doubled back to confront and assault Zimmerman. Still, HAD HE STOPPED WHEN HE KNOcKED HIM DOWN, Jorge would have a broken nose and we STILL would never have heard of either of them.

    He did not.

    He proceeded to mount Zimmerman and repeatedly bash his head into a concrete curb – which NO reasonable person can consider anything BUT a potentially deadly assault.

    And he got the proper reward for his thuggery – a nice bullet fired by a GOOD MAN in perfectly reasonable AND PERFEcTLY LAWFUL self-defense.

    The entire media narrative – “The Passion of Saint Skittles” – has been a professionally managed PRODUcTION from the very beginning – managed by Ryan Julison of Julison Associates.

    The ENTIRE reason for the media firestorm has been the various players chasing DOLLAR SIGNS – starting with TheMartyr family and their attorney Mr. chump, on through Jesse Jack@$$, Al (not-very-)sharp-tongue, and on and on and on…

    As Ms. Martyr said repeatedly, “All we need is an ARREST” – because in FL no arrest==no LAWSUIT.

    After the lynch-mob was suitably stirred up, and intimidated the state into illegally arresting an innocent man, Mom again made it clear:

    “All we wanted was an ARREST – THANK YOU JESUS [now we gonna be MILLIONAIRES]!!”

    Unlike the REAL racists (those looking to lynch Zimmerman for not being black like 95% of those who shoot black men like St. Skittles), my opinions are not based on emotions but on FAcT – all of which is available at [ZOMG CENSORSHIP] and [ENFORCING MY GROUPTHINK!!!] (both “dot-c0m” sites) for all interested parties to consider for themselves.

    The REAL victim her continues to be Jorge Zimmerman.


  24. 37

    BTW: you’re lucky I’m leaving the rest your comment, Dedicated_Dad, up. I generally throw spammers in the trash.

    And Zimmerman had 25-30lbs on Trayvon, who was apparently 150. Sure, he had several inches, but he was a stringbean. Sure, he probably attacked Zimmerman first, for stalking him and pretending like Trayvon was some kind of a threat because he was a black kid wearing a hoodie. Sure, Zimmerman might have shot in self defense, but he was a fucking racist goon (not “coon”, like he said on that tape!) to begin with.

    Is that why you folks want race war so bad? Because you empathize with this guy who thought Trayvon was up to no good, while he was returning to his father’s house with his candy?

  25. 38

    Wow, you have gotten quite the haul there Jason. I for one as an American would like to apologize to all and sundry for certain groups currently trying to exploit the situation in some way. I can also say I know the owners of one of the local gun ranges here and they would not allow that type of target, or any at depicts people or a person on it, in their establishment. Unfortunately plenty of people have a view of the world that is still twisted and wrong (at least in my opinion) and hopefully they can change. Don’t even get me started on the recent north Carolina vote,

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