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Afternoon Reading List 07.16.13.

Simon says Zimmerman trial is all about race — Since the jury’s verdict in the George Zimmerman trial was announced, many media figures, celebs and pols have made their opinions on the decision known, many dealing with race. Politico’s Roger Simon weighs in with a column in which he uses the trial to discuss what he calls “the most important undiscussed issue in America today.” Simon argues that the killing of Trayvon Martin and Zimmerman’s trial were both about race. He cited the 46 days it took for police to arrest Zimmerman, during which many public figures, including President Obama, called for further investigation into the shooting. The charge of second-degree murder that was brought against Zimmerman, Simon argues, is “a classic case of overcharging.” Race, Simon writes, should be discussed without agony, but “that day has not yet arrived.”

Why you should read it: There are a lot of columns and articles circulating after the jury announced their verdict, but few as well-constructed as Simon’s.

Black Americans ‘not allowed to be children’ — As we’ve said, many columnists have begun writing about the Zimmerman verdict. Eugene Robinson of WaPo puts his two cents in with a column in which he argues that Martin’s youth was taken from him because he was black. As Robinson writes, “black boys in this country are not allowed to be children. They are assumed to be men, and full of menace.” Black Americans, Robinson argues, feel such a close connection with this case because they have 17-year-old sons who they know are boys and who would have been frightened and not known what to do in Martin’s case. Martin, Robinson writes, wasn’t fighting against just Zimmerman on the night he was fatally shot, but also “against prejudices as old as American history, and he never had a chance.”

Why you should read it: As is the case with Simon’s column, Robinson uses the Zimmerman trial and verdict to discuss the broader issue of race and specifically the youth of black Americans in a thoughtful column.

Typical intern — San Francisco station KTVU-TV made national headlines after broadcasting the wrong names of the four pilots of the Asiana Airlines flight that crashed as it landed at the San Francisco airport. The names weren’t just wrong, but also made a joke out of the crash that killed three people. Confirmed by a summer intern with the National Transportation Safety Board, they included “Captain Sum Ting Wong,” “Wi Tu Lo,” “Ho Li Fuk” and “Band Ding Ow.” As TWT’s Ben Wolfgang reports, the federal government is describing that intern as a “very intelligent young man.” It’s unclear where the names originated, but NTSB spokeswoman Kelly Nantel said the the agency is taking “appropriate action.” Asiana is now taking legal action against KTVU-TV for defamation. The intern is reportedly, and not surprisingly, out of a job. It’s still unclear how no one at KTVU-TV realized that the names were all very obviously jokes. Mabe if they had included “Mi So Horny” they would have caught on.

Why you should read it: Everyone likes to give interns a hard time, but this time it’s deserved. Also, if you’re an intern this probably makes you feel a little better about yourself. You may have screwed up the coffee orders a few times, but at least you didn’t become national news.

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