Social Media Plays A Role Case Of Trayvon Martin

The Internet Safety Project Newswire's picture
Last month, Trayvon Martin, a seventeen year old Florida teen, was gunned down by George Zimmerman, who claimed self defense under Florida's Stand Your Ground law, that gives citizens the right to defend themselves when they feel threatened. Since the events, the public has expressed outrage over the crime and handling of the investigation. Much of the public's outrage is expressed, expanded, and inflamed using social media. For both better and worse, social media has played a prominent role in the events following the Martin case. A petition created on by Martin's parents, Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton, to promote justice in the court. Over 500,000 people have shown support for the petition, including celebrities like Spike Lee and Wyclef Jean. However, these same celebrities have had a negative effect as well. Recently, Spike Lee re-tweeted an address claimed to be George Zimmerman's, which turned out to be false, and actually the residence of a retired Florida couple, forcing the couple to leave after receiving hate mail and other harassment, compelling Spike Lee to apologize for his actions. Refusing to learn from Spike Lee's actions, fellow star Roseanne Barr tweeted George Zimmerman's actual address, then deleted the tweet, and threatened to re-tweet the original address. Coming under criticism similar to Spike Lee, Roseanne has also been asked to apologize. Social media has had both negative and positive impacts on the case of Trayvon Martin, but which is more prevalent? Should social media play such a strong role in current events? Is it the voice of the people? And what happens when people use social media in the wrong way?


csmith82's picture
Social media is a tool like an axe. An axe can be used to chop wood or to chop other people's limbs. Social media can help people stand up to injustice or to form a mob for a witch hunt. Please avoid being part of a mob. People want the ability to have an influence in events around them and social media gives them a way (sometimes it is their only way), unless a better way is found for them to influence current events it will be used.