The Sean Taylor story was a sad continuation of what seems like the new trend of black athletes becoming targets for robbery/murder (Darrent Williams, Damien Nash, Antoine Walker) by the same communities they are supposed to be heroes in.
A year and a half ago, when Ben Wallace left the Pistons to sign a four-year, $60-million contract with the Bulls, he said he almost immediately felt the target on his back grow larger, both on and off the court.
"If you sign a big contract, everybody knows," Wallace said. "They're going to print it in the paper. It's on ESPN. You can go online and check player salaries and all that. You're a target. We're all targets. You've just got to protect yourself the best way you can."
Even for the chiseled, 6-foot-9, 240-pound Wallace, a man who looks more like a bodyguard than someone who might need one, that could mean adding a security detail. Although Wallace said he doesn't currently have a bodyguard, he added that he "might have one tomorrow" after seeing what happened to Walker, Curry, Robinson and now Taylor over the course of the past six months.
"Professional athletes, most of us came from the streets. We feel like we know the streets and can pretty much protect ourselves," Wallace said. "But now we're in a position where we're being targeted, and the stakes are just too high. So, yeah, you might need that big guy standing next to you for a while."
During the initial confusion/reaction stage, Deion broke it down the best. Can Deion replace Sharpton? Please?
There were instances of people ready to blame him for his own death, fueled by some dumb situations he got into earlier in life.
Not to mention tall stories of dude's gunning for him in Miami. Luckily, we won't hear anything else demonizing Taylor because it seems that he was killed by some dumb jigs he let cut his lawn.
Peep their pics below.
- Eric Rivera, 17, Charles Wardlow, 18, Jason Mitchell, 19, and Venjah Hunte, 20, were charged with Taylor's slaying, home invasion with a firearm or another deadly weapon and armed burglary. Police said the suspects were looking for a simple burglary, but it turned bloody when they were startled to find Taylor home.
...The suspects all have prior arrests, according to Lee County Sheriff's Office records.
On Rivera's MySpace page, he posed for pictures lying in bed with $100 bills strewn atop him and fanning a wad of cash in front of his face. The page is wallpapered with images of money, the text atop it green. The 17-year-old sandwiches his alias, Mr. Florida, between dollar signs and lists counting money among his interests...
...Police remain tightlipped about how the suspects wound up at Taylor's home. The Miami Herald reported Mitchell cut the player's lawn and did other chores at the house and that Taylor's sister Sasha dates Wardlow's cousin. The Naples Daily News quoted a woman who identified herself as Jason Mitchell's mother as saying her son was at a birthday party at Taylor's home within the past two months.
Sharpstein said Taylor's sister had a 21st birthday party at her brother's home on Thanksgiving weekend.
This proves a gospel I have been preaching for a hot minute.
"When you have money, get the fuck out of the hood."
Start Snitching Bible 1:1
Not just in address, but in mentality and association. Don't let hood trash cut your lawn or in your house and put your machete away, this isn't the West Indies.
Machetes aren't defending shit, rent some Blackwater goons to watch over you, especially when the police report says you were robbed just a week ago.
Some Start Snitching research puts Sean Taylor's zip code as 33157 in Miami, Florida.
No need to put his address on blast.
Zipskinny.com, an awesome site, shows me that Taylor's Zip Code wasn't exactly balling.
Imagine what that drops to without his salary. I'm definitely not trying to blame the dude, it's a tragic situation, but hopefully it inspires some athletes to let go of these foolish notions of hood loyalty and upgrade that zip code.
Star and Bucwild always ended their shows with this refrain,
"May your children speak proper English and the gates that surround your property protect you from common ghetto trash."