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Tavis Smiley: George Zimmerman Verdict Evidence Of Society's 'Contempt' For Black Men

07/14/2013 01:24 pm ET

Tavis Smiley expressed his outrage at the George Zimmerman verdict on Sunday's "This Week," calling it evidence of society's "contempt" for black men.

Zimmerman was found not guilty in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin on Saturday. The news dominated the Sunday morning talk shows and prompted outrage from numerous media personalities, including Smiley, Al Sharpton and Chris Hayes.

"I think this is for many Americans, George, just another piece of evidence of the incontrovertible contempt that this nation often shows and displays for black men," Smiley said on ABC News' "This Week."

"Something is wrong in this nation, 50 years after the March on Washington... when adults can racially profile children," he continued. "Trayvon Martin was a child racially profiled and gunned down." Smiley added that in his own experience, most black people he knew had predicted that the verdict would turn out exactly as it did.

Panelist Dan Abrams said that there were two issues at hand, and that the question of "what is wrong with our society" was separate from "what happened in that courtroom."

"But every time we get to that nexus," Smiley interjected, "we never seem to accept the fact that race in this country is real, that color will get you killed and every time you have one of these cases... someone can always explain away why this person got off, why this person was not found guilty and what we have is a bunch of dead black men."

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