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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 12:23 am 
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Brooklyn_teacher wrote:
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I find the first part of this to be a judgement call on your part. There is a difference between the rightness of a law and the rightness of the practical execution of that law. That the law has been used "numerous time" to let people get off "scot free" when they had committed unjustifiable murder is not something I could agree with without looking at the cases. Again, it's a judgement call and you and I will probably judge it differently in some cases.


You're right, it is a judgement call. Let's game some scenarios:

If you're a gangbanger and you are involved in a turf war, do you have the right to defend your ability to sell drugs on your corner by shooting a 15 year old kid with an illegal AK 47?

If you catch a guy stealing the radio from your truck do you have the right to chase him down the street and stab him in the back with a Bowie knife?

If you are involved in a drug deal which goes awry do you have the right to initiate a car chase with the guy who ripped you off, a chase which hits several other vehicles, firing at the other car until you put a bullet through his eye and he crashes it into a bush?

If you encounter an aggressive panhandler in the street who won't take no for an answer should you remove yourself from the situation or do you have the right to put three bullets in his chest?

If Florida Power and Light workers come to your house to cut off your electricity do you have the right to storm out of the house armed with a rifle, beat one of them in the face with the butt and fire shots over their heads as they run away?

If you fear burglary to your business, do you have the right to set a lethal booby trap that will one day electrocute a burglar?


I wouldn't agree with anyone not being prosecuted in these cases as you presented them assuming there is not more to each case.

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You are a smart guy and you know that the initializing of stranger rapes and kidnappings generally take one of two forms: either a blitz style assault from hiding i.e. leaping out of an alley, hiding in the back seat of a car etc.... in which case deadly force is obviously and instantly justified... OR.... some form of coercive bargaining, lying and subterfuge for example the classic 'Come with me to the woods, I want to show you something cool' in which case you're dumb as shit if you allow yourself to be manipulated but you plainly DON'T have legal justification for use of deadly force at that point. That's where threat assessments, situational awareness and soft skills come to the fore.


Take a look at Geoff Thompson's "3 Second Fight" and Nick Hughes "Be Your Own Bodyguard". The "interview" stage of an assault usually plays out in sort of a middle ground and is much more commonly seen. There are various verbal distraction tactics allowing the attacker to close the distance and then use a blitz style assault from plain view. There are specific cues that you can train to recognize. There are specific tactics that you can train in using (verbal and physical) that will allow you to effect the "interview" stage to the point you can tell what the attacker is wanting to do. Personally I think studying that would be extremely valuable for anyone since it's not just one of the main tactics leading to a rape, but also to a mugging, purse snatching, or sometimes murder. That's where the threat assessments you mentioned really come into play. The goal for the criminal is that you never have a chance to respond. Ideally for them you do not recognize that violence is coming until you are incapable of responding. They're putting you into the ambush "kill zone". One of the strengths of gaining this kind of training to recognize the cues is that you can then tell Law Enforcement that you reacted based on the same cues that they are trained to look for.


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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:56 am 
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I am a big fan of Geoff Thompson. I used to read his column in Martial Arts Illustrated back in the late 90's and I had his books 'Real Punching' and "Real Kicking" back when I was a spotty adolescent who wanted to translate my ability to score a flashy point in a semi contact sparring session into some decent self defence. So thanks for the tip, I can well imagine his books are good. I'm trying to get that book the Gift of Fear too.

The situations I describe above all took place in Florida since 2005 and none of the killers were charged. Oh, one of them took place in '86. It was the guy who set the booby trap. His name was Prentice Rasheed and he got off at the grand jury and that was BEFORE the stand your ground law.

http://articles.latimes.com/1986-10-29/ ... booby-trap

MIAMI — A grand jury refused Tuesday to indict Prentice Rasheed, a Liberty City merchant who set a booby trap that electrocuted a man who broke into his store.

The Dade County Grand Jury returned a "no true bill" in Rasheed's case, but issued a statement saying citizens should not interpret the ruling as a signal that it is acceptable to use deadly force to protect their property.

Odell Hicks, 20, was electrocuted on Sept. 30 in Rasheed's store. Police had charged Rasheed with using an electrical device during a felony and manslaughter, which carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison.

Rasheed had bolted a metal grate above the front door of his store. The grate was wired with an extension cord to a 110-volt outlet.

Police said Hicks, a drug addict with a long criminal record, broke a hole in the ceiling and entered the store. His rubber-soled sneakers protected him when he went inside, but he was killed when he touched the metal grate on his way out.

Rasheed, who had been burglarized seven times in recent years, said he installed the charged grate to scare intruders, not kill them.

"We return a no true bill," the grand jury said. "We want to explain our reasons to put this community on notice as to when citizens can use deadly force. We think it is clear under Florida law that citizens cannot use deadly force solely to protect property.

"Prentice Rasheed used deadly force when he wired the grills in his place of business to protect his property. He was not justified in doing so.

"However, we find no evidence that Prentice Rasheed intended to use deadly force to protect his property. We find no evidence that he intended to kill or to cause great bodily harm when he wired the grills in his place of business," the jury said.


I dunno if I misrepresented the rest, check 'em out and see for yourself. No one got convicted of a crime in any of the cases and all of them used the stand your ground law as a defence:

Quote:
If you're a gangbanger and you are involved in a turf war, do you have the right to defend your ability to sell drugs on your corner by shooting a 15 year old kid with an illegal AK 47?


The Tallahassee Democrat is reporting that Circuit Court Judge Terry Lewis has determined that Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law protected two of the three men charged in the killing of 15yr old Michael Jackson.

Both sets of men were affiliated with gangs. Just a few minutes earlier, Jackson's gang had been the target of a shooting at another location. The men claimed that they were driving along in the early morning hours when Jackson shot at them and they returned over 30 rounds from an AK47, killing Jackson ( http://www.tallahassee.com/article/2010 ... f-teenager ). Jackson was found to have gunshot residue on his hands at the hospital.


Judge Terry Lewis, apparently unable to find any facts or any one of the legal doctrines that would negate a justification of self-defense in this case, wrote in his opinion:

"What this means, as illustrated by this case, is that two individuals, or even groups, can square off in a middle of a public street, exchange gunfire, and both be absolved from criminal liability if they were reasonably acting in self defense," Lewis wrote. "… it is very much like the Wild West. Maybe that is not what was intended, but that seems to be the effect of the language."

State Attorney Willie Meggs agreed with Lewis and has called on Governor Charlie Crist to call a special session of the legislature to overturn the law.


http://thefiringline.com/forums/archive ... 10402.html

Quote:
If you catch a guy stealing the radio from your truck do you have the right to chase him down the street and stab him in the back with a Bowie knife?


A judge yesterday threw out the murder charge against Greyston Garcia, who chased down a would-be burglar and stabbed him to death, because she determined Garcia was defending himself. She cited "Stand Your Ground" in her decision to declare Garcia immune from prosecution; the 2005 law says citizens no longer have a duty to retreat when faced with danger. Police have also cited it in their decision not to arrest George Zimmerman, who shot Martin.

In this case, Garcia, 25, was alerted by a roommate that Pedro Roteta, 26, was behind his apartment with another person attempting to steal the radio in Garcia's truck. Garcia grabbed a knife and chased Roteta more than a block before killing him, the Miami Herald reports. Roteta was unarmed other than an unopened pocketknife that never left his pocket, and Garcia admitted that though he "never saw a weapon," he thought Roteta was about to stab him so he struck first. The police sergeant who supervised the case calls the judge's decision a "travesty of justice," and prosecutors argued that once Roteta ran away from the truck, Garcia no longer had justification to use deadly force.


http://www.newser.com/story/142414/fla- ... fense.html

Quote:
If you are involved in a drug deal which goes awry do you have the right to initiate a car chase with the guy who ripped you off, a chase which hits several other vehicles, firing at the other car until you put a bullet through his eye and he crashes it into a bush?


At mid-afternoon on Aug. 11, 2009, a black Maxima chased a beige Infiniti at harrowing speeds down Old Cutler Road. Other cars veered off the road. One innocent motorist was sideswiped before the Infiniti crashed into a clump of bushes, the rear window blasted out, bullet holes in the trunk, spent cartridges littering the interior.

The driver of the Infiniti, Sujaye E. Henry, 26, was killed, slumped over the steering wheel, two bullet wounds in the shoulder, a third through his left eye socket. Here was a homicide brought on by reckless gunfire on a city street, spawned by a dispute over a drug deal. There was a time when Anthony Gonzalez Jr., 31, aka “White Boy,” a passenger in the pursing Maxima and the gunman who fired the fatal shot, might have faced harsh consequences. The case never went to trial.


http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/03/24/2 ... rylink=cpy

Quote:
If you encounter an aggressive panhandler in the street who won't take no for an answer should you remove yourself from the situation or do you have the right to put three bullets in his chest?


The most intriguing story of the weekend involves former BSO deputy Maury Hernandez, who shot a belligerent homeless man outside a Miami Lakes ice cream shop after a confrontation.

Shooting a vagrant four times after he hassles your family might seem like taking a sledgehammer to a fly, but this is what Florida legislators have wrought with the so-called "Stand Your Ground" law.

The law allows gun owners to shoot (and kill) in self-defense if they feel they are in imminent danger. Before the law, gun owners had to retreat in such situations, unless they were in their homes.

Hernandez, who miraculously survived a gunshout wound to the head in 2007, told the Miami Herald, "I feared for my life and that of my family."

Those are usually the magic words to absolve shooters under Stand Your Ground.

Sometimes it's left for juries to decide. And sometimes prosecutors don't even bother filing charges when force is deemed self-defense/justified.

It's going to be an interesting decision for the Miami-Dade State Attorney's office, especially given Hernandez's prominence.

This was a guy who almost made the ultimate sacrifice as a cop, and it's hard to see any jury in the world convicting him. Hernandez, 32, took early retirement/disability after he was deemed incapable of returning to active duty.

His actions this weekend still come off as questionable, although entirely understandable.

I can easily see how a father/family man could get wound up if someone hassled your mother and bothered a group with several young children.

But was the response justified, or disproportionate? Could it have been handled differently, and diffused without four shots being fired into the man?

Those should be questions for prosecutors to decide.

But under Stand Your Ground, it seems like the decision has already been made.


http://weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/news/co ... andez.html

Quote:
If Florida Power and Light workers come to your house to cut off your electricity do you have the right to storm out of the house armed with a rifle, beat one of them in the face with the butt and fire shots over their heads as they run away?


MIAMI — Citing Florida's controversial "Stand Your Ground" self-defense law, a Miami-Dade judge Tuesday ruled a homeowner was justified in pointing a rifle at two Florida Power & Light workers who entered his rural property to shut off his electricity.

The ruling drew immediate criticism from the utility company, which under state law has the legal right to enter a property to disconnect the power."We are disappointed in the ruling because we feel it has the potential to put our employees in the field at significant risk," FPL spokeswoman Jackie Anderson said.

Circuit Judge John W. Thornton Jr. granted immunity to Ernesto Che Vino, 42, clearing him of two felony counts of aggravated assault with a firearm and a misdemeanor count of improper exhibition of a firearm.

The judge left in place a misdemeanor count of unlawfully discharging a firearm in public — stemming from a shot Vino fired into the air as he hustled the terrified FPL workers away.

It is too early to tell what effect, if any, the immunity ruling would have on other workers such as repo men or legal process servers who enter private property.

The controversial 2005 Stand Your Ground law eliminated a citizen's duty to retreat from a deadly threat before using deadly force themselves.

In what has proved vexing for the courts, the vaguely worded law also bestowed "immunity" on people protecting themselves with lethal force. The Florida Supreme Court is considering how much legal leeway judges — instead of juries — have in declaring defendants immune from prosecution.

Vino "had to protect his family, his two minor daughters," defense attorney Alejandro De Varona said after Tuesday's ruling. "He didn't know who these people were."

Miami-Dade prosecutors — who argued the case should be decided by a jury, not a judge — are weighing whether to appeal the ruling.

In Vino's case, the incident happened on the morning of March 9, 2009, when FPL employees Bruno Berrio and Timothy Pyke traveled to Vino's trailer home at the Jones Fishing Camp, a rural trailer park at the edge of the Everglades in Northwest Miami-Dade.

Looking to collect past-due payments or shut off the power, Berrio and Pyke said they beeped their horn and had a neighbor try to call Vino. Finally, the pair used a ladder to scale the trailer home's fence and knocked on his door, they testified.Awakened by his barking dogs, Vino — who said he was a former Navy sniper — rushed out of the home, wielding a rifle.

Pyke and Berrio, both in FPL uniform, told police that Vino confronted them and they immediately identified themselves as FPL employees.

Then Vino — still pointing his gun — "marched them" off his property, slapping the helmet off Pyke before shooting the rifle in the air as the terrified men scrambled back over the fence, they testified.

But the judge discounted the FPL employees' version, instead siding with Vino, who in an Aug. 19 hearing testified that he had been the victim of a vicious beating-burglary in the past. So when two strange men appeared, he said, he wielded his rifle and confronted them.

"Mr. Vino, upon recognizing that Mr. Pyke and Mr. Berrio were FPL employees, lowered his weapon and asked [them] why didn't they call him before entering his property," Judge Thornton wrote in his ruling, adopting the defendant's more benign version of events.

Vino "escorted" them to the fence before he fired "one shot, not at Mr. Pyke or Mr. Berrio, but up in the air," Thornton wrote.

The judge ruled that Vino was immune from prosecution "up to the point where he realized the two reasonably believed burglars were in fact FPL workers," meaning the shot fired in the air could still be an unlawful discharge.

Prosecutors believed the entirety of Vino's conduct amounted to aggravated assault, a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

Tuesday's immunity ruling was not the first in Miami-Dade since the law passed.


http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2010-1 ... i-dade-man

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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 4:28 am 
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I haven't really been following the case itself too closely, but it seems to me that this law was written too broadly, because it's being used in situations that I do not think the legislature intended.

I think that this particular national case may be the end of the law, whether or not Zimmerman goes to jail or not. Honestly, it looks like, from court precedent and the elapse of time in what appears to be a very bungled initial investigation, there won't be enough in the law or evidence itself to convict him of anything.

These situations that you posted are very illuminating of the situation in Florida. I've long maintained that it's a sort of backwards place, legally speaking. Hopefully a national spotlight will help clear their legal mess up.

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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 1:00 pm 
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Very interesting article on stand your ground laws and the rise in justifiable homicides...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/ap ... ntrol-data

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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 5:34 am 

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This gun guy's perspective on the case: Zimmerman should face manslaughter charges.

The way I see it, a kid minding his own business is harassed and shot dead. I don't see how Zimmerman can apply "stand your ground" in his defense. It was Zimmerman doing the pursuing. If anyone, Trayvon Martin had the right to stand his ground. Had TM been licensed and armed, we might very well see stand your ground being applied to a shooting of Zimmerman. Instead TM chose to put some distance between himself and a stranger in the dark.

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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 5:20 am 
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That video sums up my opinion very well. It seems like a lot of people want to jump on one side or the other over race or in support of gun rights or to use it as an anti gun platform. The problem is they lose sight of the facts in doing so. The bottom line is Zimmerman was wrong and it cost someone their life and he should be charged and face the outcome. I fully support the 2nd amendment and a persons right to carry, but that doesn't mean I think everyone should carry. In fact I think the gun rights people should be distancing themselves from Zimmerman, as his actions make him the poster boy of what not to do. Zimmerman gave up his right to "stand his ground" when he became the aggresor. Put yourself in Martin's position. You've got some guy following you for a couple blocks, you make an attempt to remove yourself from the situation, and you get chased down and confronted. Now what does every self defense video, guru, and internet warrior dictate that you should do? Strike hard, strike fast, and don't stop until the threat is eliminated. It's too bad Martin was a better fighter than Zimmerman. Had Zimmerman been winning the fight Martin would probably still be alive.

Zimmerman had a responsibilty as a self appointed neighborhood watch to conduct himself in a profesional courteous manner. Just think how things might have gone had he pulled up, stepped out of the vehicle, and started the conversation with, "excuse me sir, I am officer Zimmerman with the local neighborhood watch. I don't mean to bother you but..."

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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 8:39 am 
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They can't distance themselves from him since his legal defence is going to rest on a law that has been stridently promoted by the NRA.

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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 9:06 am 

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Sometimes the NRA is inexplicably silent on stand your ground. :confusion-scratchheadblue:

http://www.salon.com/2012/04/11/when_st ... und_fails/

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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 6:10 am 

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Perhaps an inauspicious way to make my intro by popping my cherry on what is a quite contentious topic, but I found the youtube vid above thought provoking, so what the heck.
On the vid posted (I watched all of it), I have to say that I found little in the way of cogent thought in the gentleman’s argument.
In chronological order the his main points as to why Zimmerman should be charged with manslaughter are as follows:

He obviously didn’t suffer a head wound, because a head wounds bleed a lot.

This presents as a fatuous statement. On the basis of grainy video footage, this gentleman is stating that Zimmerman was not assaulted in the manner in which he described. Were this true, it would mean that both the paramedics, plus the cops, both missed what would have been a patently obvious contradiction to the events as described by the only potential suspect in a killing. Granted, ineptitude on the part of LEO’s occurs, as it does for us all, but this argument strains credulity to its breaking point.
Further, cleared up video stills of this footage clearly show a gash to Zimmerman’s head, which a one point, is even quite obviously being inspected by a cop.
As to the claim that because there is not some sort of grand trauma visible, Zimmerman did not have his head slammed onto the sidewalk? Again, I disagree. Personally, I KO’d myself once (Sweat causing me to fall, after squatting and returning to rack the weight in bare feet upon a concrete floor in a heat box of garage). When I came to, I found I had gashed my head. Nothing savage, just a five or so stitches. But I seriously doubt that injury would have shown up on CCTV footage. And if it had, it certainly would not have presented as anything more serious than the wound suffered by Zimmerman.

There are no witnesses to an assault from Trayvon Martin on Zimmerman.

I am not surprised that this claim came immediately after all the nonsense about the complete absence of head wounds. http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/hannity/2 ... n-shooting The interview complete contradicts the gentleman’s assertion. Also, it gives audio of a calm, polite, concerned citizen contacting police. Not a rabid KKK member eager as all get out to shoot himself a black person.

We know Trayvon Martin was doing nothing wrong that night. We know he just happened to be there. Etc…

Yes, we know that now. And that’s the beauty of hindsight. At the time what was known? Zimmerman has stated that saw a man he did not know acting suspiciously. That’s it. There is no way he could have known anything else. And so to condemn him on that which it would have been impossible to know, indeed, to basically base your whole case around that, well…
Zimmerman was wrong in his assessment. Of that there is no doubt. But his mistake is repeated numerous times every day on both sides of the ledger, not only by those in LEO/Security roles, but also by citizens. Wholly innocent people are suspected, and those, who it later turns out were as guilty as sin, are initially let slide.

Additionally, anyone in a ‘street’ situation should assume the individual before them is armed, if not with a gun, then a knife at the very least. And that too, that that individual has friends out of sight who will be more than happy to assist in stomping your head in. Whether or not this is the case, you should be operating on this premise. This is self-protection 101 stuff. So the fact that it later turned out that Martin was not armed is again, an indictment dishonestly given with the 20/20 vision of hindsight that can only be afforded to armchair critics.

Getting out the car and following him, especially as Martin was doing nothing wrong, and he Zimmerman had a gun, that was his biggest mistake.

This position is again predicated on the omniscience of hindsight. What Zimmerman knew at the time was what he knew at other times when he had successfully alerted police to suspicious individuals, in one instance saving a neighbor’s property. From Zimmerman’s point of view a suspicious character was trying to avoid him. Maybe because he intended mischief. Maybe because he had just committed mischief. Whatever the case, he followed at a safe distance.

I might get into a fist fight if I am unarmed. If I am armed, then I ignore them.

First off, it bears repeating that in a street altercation you should always assume the other guy is armed. So this statement by this ‘expert’ betrays a naiveté that is comical. Second point, there is nothing wrong with a citizen arming themselves. If they do so, it does not mean that they are frothing at the mouth to cause someone else harm. That, is a contemptible slander. Let me put this scenario out there, had Zimmerman from a distance been able to loudly and clearly identify that he was armed, and would shoot if approached, Martin would not have gone anywhere near him. So in that instance, a firearm would have prevented violence. Real world accounts that resemble this hypothetical abound.

I do believe Trayvon Martin knocked him on his ass. I think he was probably justified.

Really, why? Because he was asked what he was doing in the neighborhood? Hardly a justification for a beat down in my book. Zimmerman had every right to ask the question politely. And criticism that he should have articulated himself better in this respect is valid. But even had he done so, Martin still had every right to tell him to go to hell.
This whole painting of Zimmerman as some racist with blood on his hands I have found disgusting. Prior to that night, from what it known of the man, no one could have made that call about him. He had black friends as neighbors, who have subsequently gone on camera to say that the man they knew was in no way racist at all. He was even a registered democrat. Which in the minds of some at least proves piety when it comes to issues of race. But now, with one terrible incident he is a card carrying member of the KKK?

If Trayvon Martin was atop Zimmerman beating him, then Zimmerman had every right to defend himself. To argue other, is to argue that Zimmerman should have relied up the mercy of a complete stranger, who may well have been armed, to stop an assault in a timely fashion before any lethal harm was done. Would you allow that to happen to yourself? Would anyone?

Martin’s death was a tragedy. And highlights just how quickly street encounters can go very, very bad, very, very quickly. It hasn’t been helped by a deliberate doctoring of audio to make Zimmerman appear racist. Nor by saturation coverage given to photos chosen to make the Zimmerman look as guilty as hell, and Martin an earth bound angel in whose mouth butter would not melt. It hasn’t been helped either by a presentation of facts that could have only been known in hindsight, as truths which anyone but a violent racist would have identified in the moment. And it certainly hasn’t been helped by a race baiting president. But on this matter, I suppose it is preferable to talking about fuel prices.
Final thought, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VqeXWPNOHvY Black man shoots white in stand your ground. So where’s the national outrage?


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 Post subject: Re: Trayvon Martin
 Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2012 7:20 pm 

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Alethology wrote:
I do believe Trayvon Martin knocked him on his ass. I think he was probably justified.

Really, why? Because he was asked what he was doing in the neighborhood? Hardly a justification for a beat down in my book. Zimmerman had every right to ask the question politely. And criticism that he should have articulated himself better in this respect is valid. But even had he done so, Martin still had every right to tell him to go to hell.
This whole painting of Zimmerman as some racist with blood on his hands I have found disgusting. Prior to that night, from what it known of the man, no one could have made that call about him. He had black friends as neighbors, who have subsequently gone on camera to say that the man they knew was in no way racist at all. He was even a registered democrat. Which in the minds of some at least proves piety when it comes to issues of race. But now, with one terrible incident he is a card carrying member of the KKK?

If Trayvon Martin was atop Zimmerman beating him, then Zimmerman had every right to defend himself. To argue other, is to argue that Zimmerman should have relied up the mercy of a complete stranger, who may well have been armed, to stop an assault in a timely fashion before any lethal harm was done. Would you allow that to happen to yourself? Would anyone?



Ok. Your entire post puts forth the "other side of the fence" view, with perfectly plausible arguements -- but this point I just disagree with.
You question why Martin had the right to issue a beatdown to Zimmerman? You're very quick to point out the whole Hindsight issue in defence of Zimmerman - but you fail to recognise it in Martin's defence?
As far as Martin was concerned, a guy in a truck stalked him for several blocks and when he tried to distance himself from him the guy chases and confronts him. As you say in Zimmerman's defence, he didn't know Martin had only gone to the shop and had good reason to be in the area. Likewise Martin didn't know Zimmerman was neighbourhood watch and had [wrongly] suspected Martin of wrongdoing. All Martin knew was a guy was stalking him and confronted him - Zimmerman was the aggressor and Martin DID have the right to defend himself.

Personally, I don't know whether Zimmerman should face manslaughter charges or not. Yes, he did things wrong which he should be held accountable for which LEAD to the death of an innocent citizen. But did he set out intending to kill Martin? No. Was he defending himself in fear for his own life? Could be - if the shooting was self defence, fair enough - but he should still face SOME punishment for creating the situation in the first place.

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