Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Not Guilty!

I promise- this will be the only thing I write about George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin. If you don't want to read EVEN MORE about it, I won't be offended, promise.



For those of you who are still reading, I present an excerpt from Florida law:
A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he or ...she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.
A person who uses force as permitted in s. 776.012, s. 776.013, or s. 776.031 is justified in using such force and is immune from criminal prosecution and civil action for the use of such force
A law enforcement agency may use standard procedures for investigating the use of force as described in subsection (1), but the agency may not arrest the person for using force unless it determines that there is probable cause that the force that was used was unlawful.

... And a translation:
George Zimmerman was doing nothing illegal when he originally saw a person acting suspiciously in his neighborhood. He'd had previous circumstances where he had called the police and they hadn't responded in time to apprehend, so he followed. Once he confronted the suspicious individual, he had no obligation to leave the area, but rather had every right to investigate (especially considering that he was entrusted with that very task by the neighborhood watch.. which had been surprisingly active) and defend himself against any threat of bodily injury.

Trayvon was first acting suspicious (because he was paranoid?.. hm.. maybe it was the pot the coroner found in his system, or maybe it was that drink in his pocket, often used to make lean (see definition #5), later acting antagonistic, threatening both physical harm and death.

George Zimmerman had every legal right to use whatever force he felt necessary to protect himself from that assault. As the police agreed when they released George after five hours of questioning- it was inappropriate to arrest him. During that five hours of questioning, Mr Zimmerman didn't ask to be drug tested and law enforcement didn't see any indication that a drug test was needed, so none was done.

And that's where things should have ended- a tragic incident and a funeral. Lesson learned- don't act suspicious, don't do stupid things to feel anxiety, and bad stuff won't happen.

Instead, various national personalities called it a hate crime, claimed that because George Zimmerman was a race different from his assailant that it was simply a foregone conclusion that Zimm MUST hate blacks (completely ignoring his heritage, business associations, and other community volunteer activities), and declared that justice had not been done.

George Zimmerman was then wrongfully arrested, wrongfully tried, and still acquitted. Justice was served AGAIN.

I agree that it is tragic that the boy had to die, but just like those who foolishly choose to go hiking alone, indulge in unprotected sex, and other foolhardy actions, an unwillingness to acknowledge his own foolishness is a deliberate act of ignorance. The greatest tragedy was that a kid that was already troubled, already in the process of ruining his life, will never have a chance to fix it.

Rather than "honor" him by enacting more-restricting firearm laws (which would be contrary to the Second Amendment), let us begin again to teach our children and youth the dangers of drugs and the wisdom of staying in school. Teach youth the art of courtesy and respect. Teach children to be obedient to parents and teachers. Teach youth to address their elders with honor and deference. Let us be their models and be examples of manners and politeness.


  1. I could just say "amen" and leave it at that, but I want to say "thank you" for your insightful blog. I am surprised at myself for reading this, as I am totally sickened and fed up hearing about the furor and the media hype around this issue. After an unlawful trial by a jury of his peers, Zimmerman was found not guilty. That should end the issue.

    1. Aw, thanks Mike- you're actually the reason I put that preface on here. I know you, like a lot of people, have heard more than enough about what happened that night.

      Btw- I think Mr Zimmerman should move to .. Idaho- nothing ever happens in Idaho!

  2. Ugh, you think that's bad - try getting bombarded with it like everyone else then having a graduate level psychology class on racism and have that be the focus of your weekly papers and finally an entire class devoted to it with a professor who knows nothing about the law, law enforcement, guns, who openly proclaims FOX NEWS to be evil and who gives you a grade based on whether you participate in class, and then you also are ending up in the line of fire and attacked in class by her, meanwhile you are to demonstrate clinical skills of responding to criticism in a clinically professional manner and you're paying to be there - the real world application might be akin to dealing with the insane customer berates you up and down publicly while you're working at a restaurant but to keep your job you have to take it.

    My comfort mostly is that a) I was trained by Uncle Sam to stay out of trouble b) I know how law enforcement works c) I am comfortable handling myself - but above all d) We have a living prophet and I have a patriarchal blessing and the scriptures to guide me through these times and I know events like these are not only signs of the times, but the people who do such things as were done with this case will not be remembered. Even the media whose never ending quest to find the next story who finds themselves obsolete every hour unless they find the next sensation will not be remembered except to pass judgement and those who do such things will be accountable before God.