Geraldo Rivera thinks Trayvon Martin should have examined his clothing choices before heading out for a bag of Skittles and an iced tea.
In an appearance on “Fox & Friends” on Friday, the Fox News contributor said that George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watchman who shot and killed the unarmed 17-year-old, was only partially to blame for the tragic incident.
"I believe that George Zimmerman, the overzealous neighborhood watch captain, should be investigated to the fullest extent of the law and if he is criminally liable, he should be prosecuted," he said. "But I am urging the parents of black and Latino youngsters particularly to not let their children go out wearing hoodies. I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin's death as George Zimmerman was."
The hoodies have become a symbol of protest in Trayvon's death, and was the inspiration for one in New York City, the One Million Hoodie March.
But Rivera said that the hoodies have become a symbol of crime and spark a reflexive action in people.
"When you see a black or Latino youngster, particularly on the street, you walk to the other side of the street. You try to avoid that confrontation. Trayvon Martin's, you know, God bless him, he's an innocent kid, a wonderful kid, a box of Skittles in his hand. He didn't deserve to die. But I'll bet you money, if he didn't have that hoodie on, that — that nutty neighborhood watch guy wouldn't have responded in that violent and aggressive way," he said.
Rivera's comments immediately sparked outrage on Twitter, as the protests over Trayvon's death continued.
"Um. Geraldo. Wait. What?! Nooo. Seriously?! Pump your breaks dude," New York Times columnist Charles Blow tweeted.
Russell Simmons immediately responded with a blog post, tweeting "Dear @GeraldoRivera — read this blog immediately. white people you will never look suspicious like Trayvon Martin.”
Saturday Night Live comedian Seth Meyers added, “Even Geraldo’s mustache is like, ‘dude what the f---?’”