Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Cool it. It is time for Congress, the President and demonstrators to step back and let the law take its course in the case of the neighborhood watch volunteer who shot and killed an unarmed black teenager. Anger in the black community and the grief of his parents are understandable, but there has been a rush to judgment, a mob action that has tried, convicted and is ready to hang George Zimmerman. A few less passionate voices have warned the raging crowd to calm down. So far, they haven't been heard. Others have pointed to the Duke Rape Case and Atlanta Olympic Bombing as examples of where the crowd and authorities initially targeted the wrong people. While it certainly seems there was no justification for the shooting, the facts have yet to come out. The mob doesn't know what happened. It has jumped to a conclusion and disgracefully, politicians and others have followed them. Incidents like this should be a lesson to PR practitioners to hold fire, to counsel caution, to push for resolution but avoid baying like hounds on the hunt. Unfortunately, the mob never learns. Citizens will rage again, and it will be up to calmer minds to hold them back.