The big distraction of the week/month/summer is the acquittal of Casey Anthony. I didn’t follow the trial, and don’t know if she really killed her two-year old daughter Caylee. I have, however, been fascinated with the racialization of the case. The black bloggasphere is using the Casey Anthony verdict to discuss racial inequality in the criminal justice system, rehash the OJ Simpson case of the early 1990s, and even ponder if there is a secret hip hop police force (one that targets rappers to stop the emergence of a new Malcolm X, MLK, etc).
Here are some of my favorite pieces that inject race/racism into coverage so far:
Beautyshop Buzz: Is race a factor in the Casey Anthony case? (Terrence Romney)
Casey Anthony is White America's Own O.J. (Gregory Kane)
Dr. Boyce: If Casey Were Black, She Would Have Been Guilty (Dr. Boyce Watkins)
Let's Not Be Distracted by Casey Anthony (Dr. Wilmer Leon)
Hip-Hop Reacts to the Casey Anthony Verdict (XXL Magazine)
Shades Of O.J. Case In Casey Anthony Verdict? (NPR Race)
Kim Kardashian Tweet Resurrects O.J. Verdict Rage (By Michelle Balani)
Does it really make sense to use this occasion as an opportunity to discuss race, or are we just "playing the race card"?
Assuming that we don't immediately move on to the next summer sensation story (Shark Week, missing white women every summer, Lady Gaga, and cats-that-look-like-), hopefully people start talking about the gender/social class dynamic of the case. Beyond Casey Anthony, we need serious discussion of for-profit prisons, decriminalizing addiction, and jury nullification.
I nominate Nas to set that agenda: