Back on April 2nd I wrote that the Trayvon Martin murder got so much press because it was so exceedingly rare. Indeed, people are almost never murdered in gated communities by Neighborhood Watch patrols. And blacks are rarely killed by whites in any communities. I don't mean to minimize Trayvon Martin's murder. Trayvon Martin deserves justice.
But, as I mentioned in that earlier article, similar murders in poor, urban communities are tragically common, so common almost no one outside of the affected families ever bothers to notice. Not the media, most certainly. But not even the black leaders like Jessie Jackson or Al Sharpton, who dominated the media during the Trayvon Martin investigation.
There are thousands of such murders every year, ignored and quickly forgotten. And one more occured two days ago. Like the Travon Martin murder this also involved and black teen in a hoodie and a 24 year old Latino male. But this one happened in the Watts area of Los Angeles.
But this time the victim was a tiny one year old baby boy, Angel Mauro Cortez-Nava, and the murderer was the black teenage boy in the hoodie. Today police are still searching for the murderer, who shot and killed the baby and wounded the father in their own front year. The teen shot the two as he rode by on his bicycle.
The murder was probably part of a wave of gang killings between the rival black gang, Fudgetown and the Latino gang, the Hispanic Barrio Grape Street Gang. Little Angels father was wearing a purple sweatshirt at the time of the shooting, but his friends and family claim he had no gang affiliation.
The police say this is just one of a half dozen killings in the neighborhood in the last year.
Maria Trujillo, a family friend and neighbor spoke for the entire community when she was interviewed by the media, "With these shootings going on, you don't feel safe in your own front yard,"
"I have seen plenty of people pass away here. For a child to go, this has to stop immediately," neighbor Marcus Williams said. "When a child, a child, a baby, this kid didn't have a chance at life. It really hurt. I'm afraid to let my kids play in the yard now. This is right across the street."
If only we could generate national press and outrage over this killing. If only community leaders and national leaders like Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton would get involved in these acts of violence, perhaps we could begin to put this epidemic of violence to an end.
What if President Obama stood at a press conference and said little Angel Cortez looked like one of his children?