Steve says that the trial isn't about race. Assess the validity of this idea.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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One of the strongest elements of Myers' work is the idea that nothing is clear.  Little emerges as absolute in the narrative.  The issue of guilt, perceptions, and beliefs are all challenged as a result of what happens.  The issue of race is one of the few elements that do emerge as an absolute social reality.  Yet, what one makes of it is challenging to accurately read.  On one hand, race is a part of Steve's narrative.  It does filter into the trial and the issue of whether or not Steve can be perceived as not guilty.  When Steve's lawyer suggests that "You're young, you're Black, and you're on trial. What else do they need to know," it is a reality that race does dictate how Steve is understood and how the trial proceeds.  The issue of a young male of color involved in criminal activity is a result of social construction and perception.   It is this realm that I think that Steve might be struggling to make sense of so much of what is happening that he is unable to fully grasp the implications of race in his trial and the perception of him.  It is here where I think that Myers is eloquent in making the case that race is a construction that surrounds us, and yet there is little sense that can be made of it.  

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