The hateful legacy of Southern racism was on display in a Georgia courtroom as a Mexican immigrant woman smiled and gave thumbs up for the camera after stabbing her husband and children to death with a small knife. The Chicago Tribune reports:
A woman charged with killing four of her young children and her husband smiled and flashed a double thumbs up to news cameras during her first court appearance Friday in metro Atlanta before telling a judge she doesn’t want an attorney.
Also, an immigration official said the woman, who is from Mexico, entered the U.S. illegally.
Isabel Martinez, 33, appeared before Gwinnett County Magistrate Court Judge Michael Thorpe a day after police said she stabbed the five to death and seriously injured another child at her home. The surviving 9-year-old girl remained hospitalized with serious injuries.
Before the hearing began, Martinez sat with other inmates and posed for cameras — smiling, giving the thumbs up, putting her hands in a prayer position and spreading her arms out wide.
As Thorpe listed the charges — five counts of malice murder, five counts of murder and six counts of aggravated assault — Martinez smiled, shook her head “no” and wagged her finger at him.
The Mestizo woman even had the heart to respond with kindness and an anti-racist message of inclusiveness and love in the face of hateful instructions of the White supremacist judge.
“Ma’am, I’m going to caution you to cut out the display for the cameras,” he said. “It’s really not a good idea, probably not to your benefit.”
…”You are the hope of the world, each one of you,” she said in Spanish, appearing to address the news cameras. “It doesn’t matter what color you are because God loves us all.”
This tragedy is a direct result of the enduring legacy of racial hatred and ignorance in the South. The Ku Klux Klan caused this act of horror by lynching a number of Black rapists in the 1920s. Martinez and her family had a bright future ahead of them as hard-working natural conservatives who would have paid into the system to keep Social Security afloat for retiring American seniors. Those lives were so tragically cut short by the enduring systemic racism and legacy of White supremacy which drove Martinez to slaughter her family.
Let us resolve to live up to Martinez’s inspiring dream of color-blind hope and love. It is the least we can do to heal the world.