Devonte Keith | Staff Writer

In early February, George Zimmerman signed a contract with a celebrity-boxing promoter to appear in a televised fight. Zimmerman, who gained national attention during the Trayvon Martin murder case, signed the contract with fight promoter Damon Feldman agreeing to take on any contender who stepped up to the mat.

According to an article on Pitchfork, approximately 15,000 people submitted applications for the opportunity to square off with Zimmerman. Among them was rapper Game, who stated, “I would not be boxing for me… I’d be boxing for the legacy of Trayvon Martin and his family.” Despite the large number of applicants, a rather surprising choice was made: rapper DMX.

For many people, more surprising than the fact DMX had been selected to fight George Zimmerman, was the fact that George Zimmerman was being regarded as a celebrity and that people would actually pay money to watch him fight.

When word spread that Zimmerman was going to be in a celebrity-boxing match, social media users were quick to harp on the issue. Though DMX revealed in an interview with TMZ that he was fighting Zimmerman “for every Black person who has been done wrong in the system,” petitions were created to cancel the fight that many deemed inappropriate and distasteful, glorifying Zimmerman for all the wrong reasons.

Feldman, a former professional boxer, attempted to bring the boxing match into a more positive light by suggesting that the proceeds of the fight would go to the Trayvon Martin’s foundation. However Martin’s family firmly denied any of the funds.

The proceeds of the Zimmerman boxing match was slated to be donated to the Trayvon Martin fund.

The proceeds of the Zimmerman boxing match was slated to be donated to the Trayvon Martin fund.

Perhaps as the result of the petitions and public outrage at the so-called celebrity fight an article in the NY Daily News announced that the fight between DMX and Zimmerman was cancelled. Soon after, Feldman released a series of tweets stating that he would rather see people happy than make money. One tweet even read, “Done with George Zimmerman if you had a major payday sitting in front of you, I know no one else would walk away like I did ***Next!!”

Most ironic about this entire situation is that during his trial, Zimmerman who was enrolled in kickboxing classes prior to his altercation and fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin, was said by his trainer to be too “out of shape” to ever have fought anyone off of him, including a 17-year-old boy who weighed considerably less than him. This leaves one to wonder what changed over the course of two years, especially taking into consideration that Zimmerman has remained in the public eye recently for multiple domestic disputes as well as various other arrests.

The idea that Americans have been willing to condone the glorification of a young boy’s killer is sickening. George Zimmerman is not a celebrity and he is not newsworthy. George Zimmerman is a murderer.

This match signifies so much more than just a “run of the mill” brawl, but rather a new low for our society. George Zimmerman is now getting more media coverage and recognition than ever before, including when his initial rise to “fame” after ending the life of a minor. This boxing match and his interview with CNN trivializes the concept of justice.

The month of February is reserved for African Americans to empower each other and to celebrate the progress of a race. The idea of this boxing match is nothing more than a reminder of an attempt to tear Black Americans down. Where do we as Americans draw the line between entertainment and social injustice?