Had the color photo been available in the days after Martin’s unfortunate death, there might never have been a backlash against the Sanford police. There might never have been a national movement to arrest and prosecute Zimmerman. President Obama might never have taken sides with the New Black Panthers, who put a bounty on Zimmerman’s head, and with the usual tragedy trolls who always seek to convert corpses into political talking points. The NBC News edit that made Zimmerman sound racist could have been countered with a color photo showing Zimmerman’s wounds, corroborating his explanation of what happened that night. But someone chose to hide the color photo and manufacture the black and white, so that that photo would tell a different story.

I keep using that word — manufacture — deliberately, because that is what was done here. Someone took the high-resolution digital original and printed it out, then ran it through a copy machine several times to introduce noise, and remove the color and reduce the quality. They may have also taken it into Photoshop to manipulate its contrast and add additional noise. That is manufacturing.

In doing all of this, they deliberately stripped George Zimmerman of his humanity.

Who did this? For what purpose?

Did someone in a position of authority take a look at George Zimmerman’s name, which suggests an older white male rather than a younger Hispanic, then take a look at this young, black victim, and decide to scapegoat Zimmerman deliberately because of the narrative that his name and Trayvon Martin’s racial background provided?