Themes of Tom Wolfe’s blockbuster 1987 novel, The Bonfire of the Vanities, are being  played out in real time in Sanford, Florida with the tragic death of Trayvon Martin serving as background and inspiration.  

In Bonfire, white bond-trading “Master of the Universe” Sherman McCoy is falsely confused of killing a poor, black Bronx youth in a hit-and-run accident. 

McCoy is arrested, hounded by the media, crooked politicians, and African-American activists into bankruptcy.  He loses his family and contemplates suicide, not because of  anything he actually did but because of what may best be described as a bizarre societal  frenzy.   

Henry Lamb, the dead victim in Bonfires, becomes the central character in a circus of political and racial dysfunction; Trayvon Martin has become the center of shameful exploitation of a young man’s unfortunate death.

Characterized by the MSM and his other supporters as an innocent, high school honors student who wouldn’t hurt a fly even though his death occurred late at night when he and a friend approached McCoy’s vehicle on a dark Bronx street in what most people would regard a threatening fashion, Lamb is all but canonized in the book as Martin has been in real life. 

Neither was a saint anymore than Sherman McCoy or George Zimmerman were saintly.     

Certainly, few comparisons can be drawn between the cocksure millionaire McCoy and Zimmerman, except for the comparably baseless campaign of villification by the media and professional black exploiters. 

Based on available evidence and eyewitnesses, twenty-eight year old, half-Latino,  Neighborhood Watch captain, George Zimmerman, is being unjustly crucified.

He has been painted as a murderer.  The New Black Panther Party has posted “Wanted Dead or Alive” signs in Sanford.  Spike Lee has tweeted his home address and he has been forced to go into hiding.  The usual provocateurs have descended on Sanford to instigate hatred and discord.

Adding a farcical note, the president of the United States leapt into the fray.  Barack Hussein Obama tends to do that when he scents a political advantage as he did in the Rush Limbaugh-Sandra Fluke matter.  Obama ostensibly wanted to insure a fair and just investigation into Martin’s death, implying that local and state authorities would have whitewashed the incident had he not intervened. 

Adding an almost comic touch to the month-old tragedy, Trayvon’s grieving mother laid out $650 to trademark “Digital materials, namely, CDs and DVDs featuring Trayvon Martin,” etc. not, mind you, so she could cash in on her son’s death.  (

Aside from turning a tragedy into a travesty, Trayvon Martin’s shooting has evolved into yet another example of African-Americans turning a regrettable incident into a world-class debacle.  

Much like Wolfe’s novel concerning Sherman McCoy and Henry Lamb, local and national media depicted Trayvon Martin as an innocent young man who was merely carrying a package of Skittles and a can of iced tea home to a younger sibling when he was senselessly accosted, followed, and shot by a trigger-happy Zimmerman.   

However, just as Lamb turned out to be anything but an innocent victim in Bonfires, apparently Martin was not exactly what the racially-conscious, politically correct media presented him to be. 

Innocent victim with shooter  At first, pictures of Trayvon as a cherubic child were splashed across television screens and front pages as contrasted with Zimmerman’s visage as an unshaven, sullen-looking adult.  

Subsequently, Trayvon was shown as a hoodied, young teen, a much more accurate representation of him at the time of his death. 

Ever since Geraldo Rivera ridiculously made an issue of the hoodie as a partial cause of Trayvon’s death, poor Geraldo has been justifiably pummeled in the MSM and by left wing commentators.  In point of fact, wearing a hoodie had nothing to do with Zimmerman  killing Martin in self-defense although other facets of Martin’s life and character may have been factors. 

More recent picture  A more recent Trayvon photo, sans hoodie, reveals a more realistic Trayvon, grinning arrogantly.  It meshes more with Zimmerman’s story as told to the police than with the media story. 

That picture is far more reflective of the six foot two, tatooed man, suspected gang-banger and drug dealer who, allegedly, attacked and beat Zimmerman, jumped on him, slammed his head into the sidewalk, and left Zimmerman bloodied and battered and with a broken nose. ( 

Since that account was based on Zimmerman’s recollections, it could be discounted.  

However, objective eyewitnesses who corroborate his story should be more reliable, no? 

Zimmerman’s black friends who have come forward to defend him should count for something, no? 

Trayvon’s personal history of school suspensions, possession of a burglar tool and a bag full of women’s jewelry, and tweets indicating that he assaulted a bus driver should be suggestive of his character, no? 

His gang associations, his Twitter screen name, “@NO_LIMIT_NIGGA,” and post-mortem tweets from his buddies, such as ”@NO_LIMIT_NIGGA IMA MISS YU TILL I DIE DOG I KNOW YU WHOOPED HIS ASS DOE..” mark Tray as anything but a young innocent. 

(See more Twitter comments at 

Trayvon Martin was no more a victim of white racism than was Henry Lamb in Bonfires but both Sherman McCoy and George Zimmerman are victims of black racist hatred of whites and of media political correctness. 

As the truth and facts emerge, Martin’s lawyer and family are saying Trayvon is being demonized when, in reality, the only demonization in progress is that of George Zimmerman.   

Bonfires of the Vanities is fictional.  The case of Trayvon Martin is real and ominous.  Should black racists and the MSM succeed in having Zimmerman arrested and convicted of murder, they will have succeeded in pounding yet another nail into the coffin of American justice.