Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin spoke to CNN's Anderson Cooper Thursday night about the murder of their son, Trayvon Martin, and the acquittal of George Zimmerman.
Fulton expressed her bewilderment over what advice to offer her older son now when he's out with his friends. "I'm very afraid right now, because I have no clue what to tell him. I have no clue if I should tell him to run or walk, if I should tell him to defend himself or just lay there. I have to clue what to tell him."
The problem is not isolated. New York Times op-ed columnist Charles Blow recently wrote about the struggle he faces as a parent of black teenage boys:
We used to say not to run in public because that might be seen as suspicious, like they’d stolen something. But according to Zimmerman, Martin drew his suspicion at least in part because he was walking too slowly.
So what do I tell my boys now? At what precise pace should a black man walk to avoid suspicion?
Tracy said he raised their children focused on becoming "upstanding citizens" without advising them to fear other races. "But when you have a situation such as an unarmed teen gets shot in the heart for doing absolutely nothing, you have to say to yourself, 'What is it that I can tell my child now?'"