Jordan Davis – Law and Implicit Prejudice

While what would have been Trayvon Martin’s birthday recently passed, a similar trial was finished in court – the trial of the murder of Jordan Davis. On November 23, 2012, Michael Dunn pulled into a gas station in Jacksonville, Florida. He saw a red SUV full of black teenagers playing loud music and walked up to them to complain. He thought he saw a gun being taken out, so he shot at the teenagers, killing Jordan Davis. Recently, Dunn was convicted of attempted second-degree murder of the three other teenagers in the car. The jury was hung, however, on the … Read more

Jordan Davis and Michael Dunn

For our contemporary racism class, we read an essay by social psychologist Jennifer L. Eberhardt. The essay summarized her and her colleagues’ work on the cognitive associations we make about Black people and crime. For me, the findings were like a knife in the gut: we have unconscious prejudices that we often aren’t aware of, that can have dire consequences. In one study, participants were either unconsciously primed to think about crime or received no such prime. Then, two faces, a Black face and a White face, were flashed next to each other, at the same time, on the screen. … Read more