“What It’s Like to be a Problem”


At The Nation, Melissa Harris-Perry breaks down the wider political context surrounding the Trayvon Martin killing, outlining the historical and contemporary reality in which it is “acceptable to presume the guilt” of black bodies.

“Liberal democracy—based on commitment to individual liberty and dignity—does not exist if the government legislates against particular bodies in public spaces, as it did during Jim Crow, or when it is complicit in the violent policing of those bodies by other citizens, as in the Trayvon Martin slaying.”

Lisa Dusenbery is the former managing editor of The Rumpus. More from this author →