Rachel Jeantel, Trayvon Martin’s Friend Attacked and Ridiculed on Social Media

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By Malcolm Morrow

Rachel Jeantel, the last person to speak to Trayvon Martin before his passing, took the stand on Wednesday and Thursday to provide testimony in the trial of George Zimmerman. Jeantel’s testimony was rife with ebonics and many people are using it as an example of why education should be such a major focus for Black youth in America.

Several Twitter users posted their reactions to what they were seeing and #RachelJeantel has become a trending topic. Some offered support and defended Jeantel, while others ridiculed her and spoke of how she was reinforcing negative stereotypes of Black women.

People were not content with simply attacking her for her speech or her mannerisms but they also attacked her physical appearance. Many people compared her appearance to the character played by Gabourey Sidibe, Precious.

One twitter user said, “Let’s hope Rachel Jeantel doesn’t testify in the Aaron Hernandez trial also. #Precious #Ebonics and another said, #zimmerman #trayvon guess why all the black animals think Rachel Jeantel is a Rhodes scholar with veracity who offered credible testimony.” Both of these users utilize White supremacist screen names.

Other users commented on her educational level, “Rachel Jeantel aka Precious made me SO freakin HOT today!!!! She proves why education is NECESSARY for our youth! She was ridiculous!” and “Rachel Jeantel hurt more black folks today than 1,000,000 Paula Deens singing 10 lil niggas.”

Some didn’t personally attack her but still voiced their opinion about what they had seen during the broadcast. “Its no excuse to use age for Rachel Jeantel’s demeanor. Her attitude & grammar is playing right into stereotypes about black women.#Retweet and “Rachel Jeantel has absolutely no respect for this country’s judicial system. Humanity as a whole should be embarrassed.#TrayvonMartinTrial.”

It is sad that people are so quick to judge in these times. She’s a teenage girl going through a traumatic trial process to ensure that the man that murdered her boyfriend would spend time in prison. She was probably nervous and I’m sure that she wasn’t very pleased with having to relive those events. Maybe people should exercise a little empathy before making snap judgments.