Reading Response On Trials Of Chelsea Manning And Trayvon Martin - Brown University HIST150 - Short Essay

682 words - 3 pages

Sloane Kratzman
Week 15 Reading Response
In this week’s reading response on the trials of our times, I kept considering the point brought up in last
week’s section about the relationship between trials and history and how the remembrance of trials
become distorted over time. While we specifically talked about the trials before our generation was alive,
this idea is also applicable to the trials that have occurred in the past fifteen years. These trials also
become biased and distortion naturally happens over the course of history. It is a complicated issue to
flush out because remembering history is a morally and ethically complicated dilemma. We tend to
choose, whether it is on purpose or by accident, what we remember of trials. Thus, even though I was
alive during Chelsea Manning’s trial and George Zimmerman’s trial, it is nearly impossible to approach
these recent trials without the influence of history, media, and bias. As Paul Beatty writes in The Sellout
(2015), “well, I’ve whispered ‘racism’ in a post-racial world,” (Beatty 262) further emphasizes the
aggressively changing social environment that modern trials occur within. In connection to another one of
my classes, Intro to American Political Process, we have been learning about influential Supreme Court
cases and decisions. When looking at these cases, it shows how the times have changed and the courts
tend to follow. In Jay Nordlinger’s Terror on Trial, he writes how “ever so often, the world relearns the
difficulty of trying a certain kind of monster in court. Nuremberg stands as the eternal
example.” (Nordlinger 37) Nordlinger demonstrates how specific trials are anchored within a historical
period and will always remain in people’s memory. By stating “relearns the difficulty” (37) shows how
trials are part of a generational timeline and that each generation witnesses specific “monsters” (37) on
To continue, President Obama’s remarks on Trayvon Martin amplify how although trials are
markers of historical progress, they also emphasize broken aspects of ...

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