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So what do these people know that the jury did not know?

In the USA there as been a high profile case involving a neighbourhood watch person by the name of George Zimmerman, a half-Hispanic, half-White man who killed a young black man called Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman was acquitted of murder and indeed the jury also declined to find him guilty of the lesser charge of manslaughter as well.

This seems to have sparked gasps of disbelief and protests from left-of-centre commentators and the racial identity industry.

I only know what I read in the mainstream media, and previously felt no need to comment on a foreign murder trial as I had no opinion on the subject of the guilt or innocence of George Zimmerman. I was not privy to anything beyond the usual reportage and concluded that case would all come down the the minutia of corroborating evidence that you really needed to be the courtroom to see and hear.

So my question is… so what do these people know that the jury did not know? Why exactly are they protesting the verdict? I have not read any coherent arguments as to why the jury in this case got it wrong.

102 comments to So what do these people know that the jury did not know?

  • Steven R

    So my question is… so what do these people know that the jury did not know? Why exactly are they protesting the verdict? I have not read any coherent arguments as to why the jury in this case got it wrong.

    The people upset that Zimmerman walked belong to one of three categories.

    1) Those with an anti-gun agenda.
    2) Those with an anti-white/pro-minority/perpetual victim mindset.
    3) Useful idiots who just buy the narrative that was spun by the media.

    Note, the above categories are not exclusive. It’s like a Venn Diagram of misguided rage.

  • Stephen Willmer

    Indeed. And yet: Tony Martin.

  • Eric Gisin

    Look at the prosecutions closing arguments. They are not rational people. The left is now a hate group based on Marxist obsessions with exploitation and equality.

  • [...] ___________ I do not want to equate Zimmerman with Peter. However, the reaction of those who were wanting him convicted is interesting. From Samizdata: [...]

  • Midwesterner

    Glenn Reynolds has a lot of links that fill in the background on the protests.

    http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/172171/
    http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/172183/
    http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/172328/

  • The jury didn’t get it wrong. It’s not inconceivable that the prosecution could have gotten a manslaughter conviction if they’d actually tried to make that case, but instead they made a (ridiculously bad) murder case.

    The mainstream media has been lying completely about the case from the beginning, using it as a platform to attack a fairly recent change in Florida’s self-defense laws that actually had nothing whatsoever to do with this case.

  • BigFire

    This is a case of a White President condemning a man of quarter Black to mob violence. The president is 1/2 black, and George Zimmerman is 1/4 black. So the 1/4 Black ‘White Hispanic’ is not black enough.

  • a_random_guy

    What Steven said. Really, almost any place I’ve looked agrees that the prosecution had no case. Only the most left-wing of news sites are trying to make an issue of things. Steven summed up the protesters already.

    The police knew there was no case – that’s why they didn’t arrest Zimmermann in the first place, and why the normal prosecutor didn’t file any charges.

    The first time the “race card” was played was by claiming that the lack of prosecution was because the victim was black. We were treated to the bizarre spectacle of the President of the country showing a years-old photograph of the victim (taken when he truly was an innocent-looking child), and saying “that could have been my son”.

    What is the leader of the country doing, getting involved in a local shooting, without knowing the facts, just because the victim is the same race as the President? “Embarrassing” doesn’t even begin to cover this entire, awful episode.

    I have to congratulate the jury on not giving in to the societal pressure.

  • PersonFromPorlock

    Looking on the bright side, our lynch mobs now have much better manners than they used to.

  • Joe Miller

    He was being tried because of his name. If it were “Hector Gonzalez,” we’d never have heard of him.

  • pleb who can't even afford a bicycle

    2012 was a presidential election year, and the Left has historically used whatever means necessary to inflame the black vote, and get them to the polls. In the 90′s, they used the lefty media to fabricate a bunch of alleged black church burnings, which months later were all proven false. Then George W. Bush was somehow made responsible for the death of some black guy, in the 2000 election, which was turned into a series of campaign commercials.

    So Trayvon Martin’s death was at least partially a vote gathering exercise. As well, Zimmerman was associated with a neighborhood watch group, and they had deep pockets insurance-wise, so that would attract the race baiting jackals as well. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton have long been shaking down such targets, using black rage as their tool. They’re rich now.

  • Dom

    What do they know that the Jury didn’t? This is what the left thought, although I think they thought this vile crap even before the trial:

    http://www.thenation.com/blog/175260/white-supremacy-acquits-george-zimmerman#axzz2Z3M2uioM

  • Chris

    The leftists are not protesting anything about the facts of the trial itself. It is that they wanted to politicize the trial to achieve political goals. To them, the facts of the case is irrelevant. The trial’s importance was in its ability to achieve certain goals. This is why the media initially wrongly reported that Zimmerman was white, and when his hispanic ethnicity became apparent tried to confuse the matter by calling him a “white hispanic” and then attempting to insert race in their analysis of the trial. It also explains why people are using the trial to overturn Stand Your Ground laws despite this law not actually being used or involved in the trial at all.

    So the facts are irrelevant. It’s how the case can be twisted to advance a certain agenda. They’ve established a narrative of “anyone can kill a black man at any time and get away with it” and then wanting to render a verdict on that narrative alone irrespective of the evidence. Like the Drefus Affair had nothing to do with the evidence of the trial, but was a pretext to push a specific political agenda, so too is the Zimmerman Affair.

  • So my question is… so what do these people know that the jury did not know? Why exactly are they protesting the verdict? I have not read any coherent arguments as to why the jury in this case got it wrong.

    A verdict can be unjust as a consequence of the law being wrong, not just the jury being wrong.

  • William Newman

    Ken Hagler wrote “It’s not inconceivable that the prosecution could have gotten a manslaughter conviction if they’d actually tried to make that case, but instead they made a (ridiculously bad) murder case.”

    Well, one never quite knows what a jury will do. However, AFAICS it’s impossible to make a case for manslaughter beyond a reasonable doubt with the evidence the prosecution had. Under FL law avoiding a serious beating is perfectly good cause for lethal force in self-defense. Under FL law self defense is a defense against the manslaughter charge. And although historically there were jurisdictions where the defendant had the burden of proof for self defense claims, that rule is very uncommon in the US today, and not found in FL. (See http://www.volokh.com/2013/07/14/burden-and-quantum-of-proof-on-self-defense/) So the prosecution must prove that Zimmerman wasn’t acting in self-defense. The evidence they have actually tends to support the idea that Z was acting legally in self-defense, not cast doubt on it, and even casting doubt wouldn’t be enough, legally they need to disprove it. The manslaughter charge isn’t as ridiculous as the murder charge, but the self-defense aspect makes it plenty ridiculous nonetheless. If you don’t want to risk getting legally shot in FL, don’t beat someone as badly as Martin beat Z unless you have some very special kind of justification (e.g., intervening to stop a violent felony).

  • Actually Chris in some parts of the medja he has become a ‘self-proclaimed hispanic’ – whatever the fuck that means.

    Does this mean that as a White Anglo-Saxon Protestant male (or a racist / the accused as the left medja has it, can I then self-identify as a ‘smurf’?

    This is yet another outing of identity politics by the lefty medja. The fact that Trayvon Martin was a strapping six footer in the usual attire of street thugs, vandals and rap-star wanabees all over the western world is never mentioned as it distracts from the message of some innocent cherubic black kid with a pocket full of sweets being shot by a racist white guy.

    I’m not saying Zimmerman was right to have even got out of his car to interfere, let alone shoot the kid, but if he’d left the matter to the police, whom he called, who instructed him to leave the kid to the police en route, then none of this would ever have happened.

    Equally, if George Zimmerman had been called Jose Gonzales or Jamal Adebajo then there would probably still be a dead kid, but no trial or lefty-outrage.

  • RRS

    May I take my fellow commentators out into a tour of the flooded swamp which the American legal system has become.

    The “Public” has come to expect certain things of the legal system and to consider that it exists in order to accomplish specific aims and objectives, which include social political, economic and retributive goals.

    In the reactions to the results of any particular trials, civil or criminal, there are always elements of disappointments and senses of “failures” in the way the system works. As a result the system has been slowly and steadily changing from its original aspects to one that matches more closely public expectations. If one operation of the system does not function as expected anticipations are that another will be tried.

    We have observed the evolution of Tort Law proceeding from concepts of negligence or violation of duty to absolute liability without fault. The general “Public” expectation of the system is that damage or harm done will be repaired or compensated or punished (people lost money Bankers should go to jail!), however occurring. The objective of the legal system now is to deal with any harm done.

    Thus we will see the continued rise of the status of “victim” which implies the incidence of harm, damage or loss.

    The American legal system is not immune from the changes in the various public and academic concepts of “Justice.” There is a rising concept that “Justice” is no longer derived from the rules of social order that constitute Law, but is rather some form of current public opinion that should shape the results of social order.

  • Mr Ed

    I heard on BBC radio 4 some hack accuse the acquited of racial profiling as he was suspicious of the (soon to be) deceased teenager wearing baggy clothing in a gated community. It wasn’t raised when I listened why the deceased was in a gated community nor mention made of the acquited’s injuries sustained in the encounter.

    As Chris says, facts don’t matter, only the narrative. The rule of law is hated by the Left.

  • PersonFromPorlock

    A verdict can be unjust as a consequence of the law being wrong, not just the jury being wrong.

    Paul Lockett
    July 15, 2013 at 9:08 pm

    So using lethal force to avoid being seriously injured – and at worst being killed – is morally wrong?

  • Paul Marks

    “The law being wrong” Paul Lockett – sorry but it is a media myth that the “Stand Your Ground” Florida defence was used, it was not used.

    Mr Zimmerman was set upon by Mr Martin (a six feet, two inch tall American football player – although you would not know that by the out-of-date photographs that the media pushed) who smashed his head against the concrete road (I have seen the evidence of the wounds). Someone Mr Zimmerman managed to reach his pistol and shoot dead the man who was on top of him (the man who was trying to KILL HIM).

    A more open and shut case of classic self defence would be difficult to find – which is why the police did not arrest Mr Zimmerman when they arrived (indeed it was he who had called them).

    But then all Hell broke loose – because of the colour of Mr Martin’s skin.

    That was of no importance to Mr Zimmerman (listen the ORIGINAL recordings of his conversation of the police theracist impression is given by media disinformation, cutting out bits of what was said and altering the order of words).

    A whole campaign was whipped up against Mr Zimmerman – as part of the general pro Barack campaign of 2012, before and after the election, (the same media who gave 67 seconds, 67 SECONDS, in the whole campaign to the threat that Obamacare poses to small business enterprises).

    Mr Zimmerman (an hispanic) was suddenly “white” – and guilty of a racist murder.

    Mr Zimmerman (a life long Democrat) was suddenly a right winger. Just like the person who shot Member of Congress “Gabby” Giffords (in reality the shooter was a confused Marxist) was suddenly a Tea Party person.

    And Mr Martin (a violent six feet, two inch thug) was suddenly a sweet little boy whose only crime was being black

    So Florida had to try and prosecute Mr Zimmerman – because protestors demanded it.

    Protests that were actually organised by employees of Mr Holder (and Mr Obama) at the “Justice” Department – “bottom up, top down, inside out” (learned that well did you not Mr Holder – when you were a follower of Malcolm X, or did you think that had been forgotten?).

    The first prosecutors of Mr Zimmerman refused to carry on – because he was obviously innocent.

    But a hatchet person was found – who was prepared to prosecute anyone.

    Alan Dershowitz (that rare thing – an academic and liberal who is also an honest man) went through the abuses (indeed crimes) of the prosecutor – and all that happened was that demands were made that Harvard attack Alan Dershowitz.

    Yes people should be prison over this case – but the people who should be in prison do not include Mr Zimmerman.

    The people who should be in prison are the media and prosecutor who tried to FRAME Mr Zimmerman and the people who are behind this campaign to Pervert the Course of Justice.

    Mr E. Holder and Mr B. Obama. For it is their “Justice” Department that sent paid agitators to whip up a hate “protest” campaign against Mr Zimmerman.

  • William Newman wrote: “However, AFAICS it’s impossible to make a case for manslaughter beyond a reasonable doubt with the evidence the prosecution had.”

    Quite possibly, and certainly with what they presented.

    When I took the class for a Florida concealed weapon permit back around 2000, the instructor made a point of saying that you can’t pick a fight with someone and then shoot them in self-defense. The question then is whether being a creepy stalker counts as picking a fight–and if so, what happens if the person picking the fight stops trying, backs off, and then the fight starts. I have no idea what Florida law says about this somewhat esoteric situation, and I don’t know if the prosecution didn’t bring this up because the law says this situation didn’t count as picking a fight, or because they were trying to make a murder charge stick for political reasons regardless of what the law said. That’s what I meant about the possibility that they might have gotten a manslaughter conviction.

  • ed in texas

    The ironic lateral view here is that the same people who are ranting about the jury’s verdict would likely kick and scream to avoid actually serving on a jury themselves.

  • KTWO

    I thought the state lacked sufficient evidence. That happens and favors the defense.

    Two men fought in the dark. One killed the other and claimed self defense. No witness saw all of the fight. The rest was interpretation; s string of maybe, maybe, maybe.

    Zimmerman had a great attorney.

    I accept that a murderer can go free when evidence is lacking. That is the justice system.

    In my opinion RRS is correct, “justice” can be redefined to whatever people say it is. Then “evidence” would also have to be redefined. It could no longer pretend to be connected to facts. or reasoning.

  • chuck

    The smart lefties are using it to achieve power. The dumb ones are just the usual a**h***s running in mobs. The smart lefties are a small minority, but tend to be at the top.

  • jdgalt

    In the mind of black racists like the Al Sharpton crowd, blacks can do no wrong.

    But the only injustice in this case is that Florida’s governor — who forced this case to be brought in the first place by appointing a special prosecutor (after the county’s regular prosecutor refused to do it) — is not yet on trial for perverting the course of justice. Nor is the prosecutor or the judge who allowed the case to go forward.

    As far as the threatened riots — they have turned out so lame it cracks me up. The only activity anywhere near me is in Oakland, California, and I have to say that the Oakland police and the thugs throwing the tantrum deserve each other. I hope both sides kick each others’ ass!

  • a_random_guy

    the threatened riots — they have turned out so lame it cracks me up

    That’s my impression as well. Certainly no rioting here. Maybe if I looked hard I’d find some misguided college kid with a placard on a corner somewhere. Wasn’t there some riot footage published that turned out to be Canadian sports fans upset over their team losing?

  • Eric

    A verdict can be unjust as a consequence of the law being wrong, not just the jury being wrong.

    The law is not wrong. It’s perfectly reasonable to shoot someone who’s beating your head against the pavement.

  • Paul Lockett

    Person from Porlock, I was pointing out why someone might object to a verdict, not expressing an opinion on the validity of those objections in a specific case.

  • Lee Moore

    One good thing that has come out of all this is that we now have pretty much 100% of the usual lefty subjects on video / in print saying “being acquitted doesn’t mean you didn’t do it, it just means the jury wasn’t convinced of your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.” Since they are usually the first to deny this obvious point about the legal system (generally they are rather sympathetic to the accused) and claim that acquittal and vindication are coextensive, I do hope that their words about the Zimmerman acquittal are going to be shoved down their throats when they revert to their usual line.

    If I may add a slightly non PC sentiment. There is much chatter that, whatever the rights and wrongs of the verdict, the death of Trayvon Martin is a tragedy. President Obama, unsurprisingly, thinks it is a tragedy that should make us all want to ban guns. But as far as I’m concerned, while I understand that the death of Trayvon Martin is indeed a tragedy for his family and friends, whether it is a tragedy for society depends on facts that that remain unclear even after the verdict. If he was an innocent young fellow shot by either a racist thug, or an over eager vigilante, then society should properly agree with the sentiments of the family.

    But if he was himself a criminal thug, I don’t see why society should mourn his passing. That is not to say – of course – that it should be open season on criminal thugs, except when they are actively criminally thugging. Merely that if the world has one fewer, as a result of a justifiable homicide, or an accident, then that’s plus one not minus one for society. I suppose it is unwise of me to attach this thought to Trayvon Martin – because as I say we don’t know whether he was a criminal thug or not. I only raise it in his context because of the contrary view being expressed in his context. Perhaps I should rather disagree generally with John Donne. Not every man’s death diminishes me – some men’s deaths are a positive boon. I had better repeat that even so, accelerating such happy events should continue to be illegal, subject to the traditional defences.

  • Paul Marks

    Paul Lockett – this is not an isolated case.

    There have been leftist agitprop campaigns about legal cases (campaigns designed to pretend the innocent were guilty and the guilty innocent) since at least the 1920s.

    The only unusual feature of this smear campaign is that Federal government employees have been directly involved in organising it.

    It is nothing to with any legitimate concern with the truth – it never is.

    Perhaps you do not believe conservative writers such as Jack Cashill (“Hoodwinked”) about such things as the 1920 murder of Alessandro Berardelli and the 1981 murder of Danny Faulkner (in both cases juries reached the correct verdict – but the “great and the good” around the world rejected their verdict, for political reasons).

    But will you at least read Alan Dershowitz on the Zimmerman case?

    If people here prefer media reports to the truth (truth so obvious that even a liberal Harvard Law Prof accepts it) then I give up.

  • Paul Marks

    Eric nails it.

  • Paul Lockett

    Paul Marks, those comments are of no relevance to mine. If you want to pound a straw man, feel free, but I won’t be indulging you.

  • Paul Marks

    The Florida Governor has been a let down (giving in to demands to persecute Mr Zimmerman even after the first prosecutors withdrew in disgust) – too much a businessman (always trying to make a deal) and not enough of a warrior (understanding there are some people, indeed a lot of people, it is insane to try and make a deal with).

    I was wrong about Rick Scott (I understood that when he accepted the Federal tax money to enlarge government health care – the money is a con Governor Scott but you are too much of a businessman to understand that politics is about POWER).

    I was wrong about Governor Christie also (I ignored the warnings of his opponent in the Republican Primary – and I ignored the warning of Chris Christie’s failure to back the Right to Work laws in other States limiting union power).

    I understood how wrong I had been when the Republican Convention came along – and Chris Christie made a speech that was basically all about HIMSELF (not the Republican candidate for President).

    The love-in walk with Comrade Barack (and the denouncing of the Republicans in the House of Representatives for trying to get tens of billions of Dollars of PORK out of the Sandy relief Bill) was no shock at all (by then) – but he had me fooled at one time.

    There is no substitute for a record – just “this person looks strong on television – he is saying the right things” is no good.

    Check how someone has gone over time (on specific political matters) – everything else is unimportant. If a Congressman or Senator – their voting record. If a Governor where they have stood on specific matters – such as the Medicaid extenion and Right to Work laws limiting union power.

    “But a true libertarian would have opposed the Taft Act”.

    And a true libertarian would have opposed the 1935 Wagner Act and the 1931 Act also(both of these Acts might as well have been titled “Let Us Create Mass Unemployment Act” – the Taft Act (partly) counter balances these interventions.

    Without the counter balance of Right to Work laws under the Taft Act – unions can crush a city or State.

  • Paul Lockett

    Eric: “The law is not wrong. It’s perfectly reasonable to shoot someone who’s beating your head against the pavement.”

    That’s a fairly reasonable sentiment. Out of interest, would you apply the same principle in reverse; if as an unarmed individual you were to be chased by a pumped-up, tooled-up nutter, would it be reasonable to beat that person’s head on the pavement?

  • Paul Marks

    Paul Lockett – I notice you have not replied to what I have said.

    As for your implied claims that Mr Zimmerman was “pumped up” and a “nutter” who “chased” Mr Martin.

    You are a liar.

  • Paul Lockett

    Paul Marks, as I said, I’m not going to respond to straw man pounding.

    As for the description in my last comment, it is, I suspect, how a defence team would present it and from the evidence I’ve seen, it would be fairly accurate.

  • Tom

    I think there is understandably a degree of discomfort when an armed man follows an unarmed man, there is an altercation which no one witnesses and the unarmed man ends up dead with a bullet in him. In the UK people carrying handguns are treated by many with suspicion, in the US it is part of their constitutional rights and celebrated by the gun lobby.

    Tony Martin had a stronger defence and yet he was found guilty in the UK.

    So I can see why some concerns are raised.

  • Paul Marks

    Paul Lockett – you implied claims that were lies.

    You are now trying to backtrack – in a cowardly and dishonest way.

    Please do not hesitate in jumping off the nearest cliff.

  • Paul Marks

    For those who are actually interested in the case of Mr Zimmerman and Mr Martin, I again urge you to read Professor Alan Dershowitz’s account of it.

  • Paul Lockett

    Paul Marks, I’m not backtracking on anything; I stand by everything I’ve said. The problem you have is that you are arguing against things I’ve not said but which you are trying desperately to imply I have. Sorry, but I’m still not biting.

  • Paul Lockett

    Tom, I’m not as convinced about the relative merit of Tony Martin’s case. If you’re trying to argue self-defence, shooting somebody in the chest with a handgun must tend to put you in a stronger position than shooting somebody in the back with a shotgun.

  • Paul Marks

    Mr Martin had no wounds to show – although he seems to have been found guilty because he had a dirty house and an overgrown garden (ouch – I am in trouble then) rather than for any logical reason.

    A pistol is not a good hand-to-hand weapon.

    A man with a firearm shoots from range, he does not get the back of his head bashed repeatedly.

    Unless he is the victim.

    Mr Zimmerman allowed himself to be ambushed in the dark (rather than waiting for backup or calling out “stop or I shoot” at a safe distance) – and is very lucky to be alive.

    He is certainly guilty of one thing – incompetence (incompetence that almost got him killed).

    Not a good Watch captain – not skilled.

  • Paul Marks

    Paul Lockett – I am not interested in you “biting”, I just wish you would stop telling lies.

    Now go away.

  • Paul Lockett

    Paul Marks, as I haven’t told any lies, you’ve got your wish.

  • Paul Marks

    Paul Lockett – you have lied, repeatedly.

    And I repeat – go away.

  • Rosscoe

    I know nearly nothing about this case aside from what I’ve read in the media and on websites such as this and it sounds like the jury made the right decision. But I think Paul Lockets question “if as an unarmed individual you were to be chased by a pumped-up, tooled-up nutter, would it be reasonable to beat that person’s head on the pavement?” is a good one, who initiates the violence in a circumstance like this, if you are walking around a public area (no matter how intimidating you look) and you are followed by an armed man who seems to hold a grudge are you justified in taking some form of preemptive defensive measure?

    With regards to Martin, he shot the little scrote in the back when he was running away (with an illegal firearm, having already had his shotgun permit removed for shooting at people nicking apples from his orchard) and then left him to bleed to death in his overgrown garden without contacting the police or emergency services. Given the laws in this country regarding self defence and the evidence that cast severe doubt on his claims of where he was firing from etc he was probably lucky to only serve three years.

  • llamas

    From where I’m sitting – it appears that Mr Martin attempted to apply thug rules and thug logic to the situation he found himself in – being followed by an unknown man for unknown reasons.

    Despite having reached a place (the home where he was ‘staying’) where no mere stranger could follow him, and despite having the means (a cell-phone) to summon help if he felt he was under threat, Mr Martin chose instead to address the situation by leaving the safe place he was in, chasing down the person who had been following him (but was no longer following him), challenging him verbally and then instigating and continuing a physical altercation.

    (all of which is supported and/or not contradicted by the evidence at trial.)

    In other words, he chose the thug solution to his situation. And he suffered the consequences – he misjudged his adversary, who was both capable and willing to bring more violence to the fight than he was. He started the fight, and Zimmerman finished it. Once it goes past the ‘monkey dance’ phase – the posturing and the challenging – and comes to blows, if you start a fist-fight, you have no cause for complaint if you lose it, up to and including the loss of your life.

    A single blow can have fatal consequences. Just one. A person who is attacked with fists has every right to fear great bodily injury or death, and to respond accordingly.

    Zimmerman may have behaved unwisely, or in a provocative manner, but he did nothing to justify commencing a murderous attack – the all-purpose thug solution to any insult, provocation, or threat. And he had every right to defend himself with deadly force against a murderous attack.

    The Thug – Thugged. I’m sorry, I have no sympathy whatsoever for Mr Martin. Start a Fist Fight – Deal With the Consequences. I have sympathy for both families – both of them have effectively lost a child forever.

    llater,

    llamas

  • The Wobbly Guy

    I am chased by a man. I’m not sure he is armed. I think he is a ‘creepy ass cracker’. I am near the safety of my house. Do I:

    1. go inside my home and carefully observe the person trying to follow me from the safety of my home, where there are other people around, like my father and his girlfriend?

    OR

    2. Backtrack and confront the person following me, taking the opportunity to teach him a lesson and beat his brains out?

    Hmmm… choices, choices…

    Paul Lockett, FOAD.

  • pst314

    Paul Marks “Mr Martin had no wounds to show”

    I believe that he had minor injuries to his knuckles consistent with having been repeatedly punching someone.

  • Paul Marks

    “Rosscoe” – Mr Zimmerman was not a “nutter”, was not “pumped up” and did not “chase” Mr Martin. The “who seems to hold a grudge” appears to be a fresh falsehood (rather than one that Paul L. has already done).

    Nor is having your head smashed against the concrete starting a fight – it is actually being on the receiving end of an savage attack.

    Paul L. did not “ask a question”, he lied (and you have helpfully repeated some of his specific lies – for which I thank you).

    I asked him (several times) to go have a look a Professor Alan Dershowitz’s account of the case – and he did not even reply (not even “no I will not – because I do not want my view challenged”).

  • slowjoe

    Paul Marks’ first post is excellent, but ignores a major point:

    There was a conspiracy to represent Trayvon Martin as an innocent victim by the Black Florida bar. One of the lawyers for TM, Natalie Jackson, had worked with George Zimmerman on an assault case where the son of a senior cop had punched a homeless black man. The conspiracy trademarked TM’s name, sealed his school records, then drafted Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, then Eric Holder and finally Barack Obama. The motive was a wrongful death suit.

    Almost universally, the MSM are active co-conspirators in this railroading of George Zimmerman.

    An NBC affiliate edited a phone call to remove a police dispatcher’s question about the appearance of the “suspect”.

    MSNBC doctored video from the police station surveillance camera to reduce the quality in order to obscure injuries to GZ’s head. For the frames closest to the camera, this was insufficient, so they used a graphic to cover the injuries.

    Throughout the trial, all the networks (including Fox) predominantly used commentators who suggested that the prosecution was winning when every prosecution witness damaged the prosecution case in Monty-Python-esque fashion.

    What we’re seeing is a US-wide, MSM-led race riot.

  • slowjoe

    Oh, I forgot to mention: the family hired a PR firm who had worked on the Pigford case way back in March 2012, which might explain the complicity of the media.

  • [...] like the good folks over at Samizdata I had no interest in commenting on the recent trial of Mr George Zimmerman for the killing of Mr [...]

  • Paul Lockett

    Paul Marks, as you asked, I’ve looked at the Alan Dershowitz commentary. His fundamental argument seems to be that the case shouldn’t have been brought as there was no legitimate case to answer. That’s not something I’ve argued against in any way, so as I said before, you’re pounding a straw man.

    Rosscoe gets it spot on.

  • RRS

    Slowjoe touches on a key point of the issue raised by PdeH initially (remember?).

    For what the “public” had to know[?] (or think they knew) was that there was a “victim.”

    The existence of a “victim” creates a “need” for a certain concept of “Justice.”

    That concept of “Justice” requires that the social order produces certain results of retribution where there is (are)a victims(s).

  • Rosscoe

    “Paul Marks”, you seem to be getting confused between the details of this particular case and what I read, and repeated, as a more general question about the issues raised by it. To clarify I have no idea whether Mr Zimmerman was pumped up , a nutter or holding a grudge and from the little I know about the case it seems likley that the Jury came to the correct decision.

    I’m more interested in the general proposition put forward by Paul Locket, in essence IF someone is following another person- and IF that other person has reason to believe that the “stalker” means them harm, does that person have a right to defend themselves premptivly?

  • slowjoe

    Rosscoe

    IF we confine ourselves to Florida law, I believe that the test is that if a reasonable person would be in fear of grave injury or death, then lethal force can be used. In your case, the defence could be presented, and the jury would consider it.

    From the Zimmerman case, it would appear that Florida juries need considerable convincing about this fear.

  • Rosscoe asked, “IF someone is following another person- and IF that other person has reason to believe that the “stalker” means them harm, does that person have a right to defend themselves premptivly?”

    This was actually presented as a hypothetical in the Texas CHL class I took a few months ago. About half the class said they would confront the stalker, which was a wrong answer. You can’t defend yourself preemptively unless there’s an immediate threat of death or grave bodily harm–for example, if the stalker produces a baseball (or cricket!) bat and runs towards you while screaming threats.

    It’s very unlikely that a 17 year old actually knew that, though. I certainly had no idea what the laws on self-defense were when I was 17.

  • As an additional note, it’s possible to go from shoot to no-shoot and back again in the same encounter. An example the instructor used repeatedly was a case where someone is standing 20 feet away threatening you with a knife. If you shoot him, it’s self-defense. However, something that much of the class had trouble understanding was that if you instead order him to drop the knife and he does, at that point it’s not self-defense–which means the guy can drop the knife and walk right up to you while saying innocuous things like “why are you pointing a gun at me, man?”, and then attack you hand to hand as soon as he’s close enough. At that point it would become self-defense to shoot him again, but the attacker has then had the opportunity to inflict permanent injury and/or disarm you. The lesson was that if someone is such a threat that you’re justified in using deadly force, use it.

  • RRS

    Rosscoe-

    Such questions have meaningful answers only in the context of the jurisdictions in which the events occur.

    If by “right” you mean a morally justifiable “reason,” then that can depend on the difference of locale of a particular district in Baltimore, MD. from, say, Malta, IL.

    If “right” refers to the application of Law (which describes or defines the social order) and the operation of a legal system, the results will vary jurisdictionally.

    In some states the burden of proof falls on a defendant claiming self-defense. In others (FL. e.g. ),the burden falls on the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt the act did not occur in self defense.

    If you shift from concepts of “rights” to those of “justice,” (for “public” opinion) the issue turns on whether or not there was (and who was) a “victim.”

  • llamas

    @ Rosscoe -

    ‘I’m more interested in the general proposition put forward by Paul Locket, in essence IF someone is following another person- and IF that other person has reason to believe that the “stalker” means them harm, does that person have a right to defend themselves premptivly?’

    Maybe. In US law enforcement, this is known as the ‘Ed Cantrell’ question, after the Wyoming LEO who was acquitted of murder after he shot a man (one of his own deputies) because he claimed he had reason to believe that the man was going to shoot him.

    You have the right to defend yourself with force, including deadly force, against real and present danger to the life or limb of yourself or another.
    As was touched on in the Zimmerman trial, you do not have to ‘take a beating’ or indeed suffer any actual injury at all to defend yourself with force – whatever the cause for your fear of death or injury, whether it be actual violence or the mere threat of it, it only needs to be ‘reasonable’.

    (Please don’t let’s get into angels-on-pinheads arguments about exactly what you can and can’t do in backwards nations like Texas. If you want that argument, I’ll happily oblige you at another time, it’s just not pertinent to this discussion.)

    So the question of the preemptive use of force hinges on your reasonable belief that the threat was real and present.

    So, for example, if a tattoo-covered ex-convict standing 6 feet away from you in a dark alley behind a biker bar raises his fist and says ‘You’re going to die tonight, motherf*cker!’ – that might very well be construed by a reasonable man as being a real and present threat to life and limb that justifies a force response – including, potentially, deadly force.

    If the same person utters the same threat, only now there’s an inch of Plexiglas between you, and a corrections officer at each of his shoulders – maybe not so much.

    It all depends on the totality of the circumstances.

    I really don’t see how this has anything more than the most tangential connection to the Zimmerman case. People are trying to construct a justification for the fact that Martin was obviously (witnesses, injuries, forensic evidence) putting a beating on Zimmerman at some point. But there is absolutely zero evidence that anything that Zimmerman said or did vis-a-vis Martin ever rose the the level that any reasonable person could consider it to be a real and present threat to life or limb. To say otherwise is nothing but Internet speculation, because if there were even the vaguest suggestion of evidence of anything like that, the prosecution would have trumpeted it to the heavens. Take, for exmaple, the suggestion that Martin might have feared that Zimmerman was some sort of predator – not a hint of evidence for the suggestion, but all of a sudden, everyones talking about it because it would be a way to make Martin’s murderous attack on Zimmerman somehow ‘justified’.

    llater,

    llamas

  • Rosscoe

    Cheers guys, I appreciate it was tangential to the case I just thought it was a good question that deserved a better answer than it got on it’s first outing! For what (little) it’s worth I agree that in this case it sounds contrived, I just thought it raised an interesting point.

  • Mr Ed

    @ Rosscoe, English law permits the use of reasonable force in self-defence, and a police officer shooting someone ‘armed’ with what turns out to be a piece of wood concealed in a bag might be acting in a manner lawful and ‘reasonable’ in the circumstances, if the shooter reasonably believed that innocent life was otherwise at risk.

    Misfortune does not murder make.

  • Gareth

    I followed the trial online in fits and starts. The prosecution brought very little by way of evidence into court and many of their witnesses went against them. The jury made the right decision based on what they were given.

    llamas said:

    Take, for exmaple, the suggestion that Martin might have feared that Zimmerman was some sort of predator – not a hint of evidence for the suggestion, but all of a sudden, everyones talking about it because it would be a way to make Martin’s murderous attack on Zimmerman somehow ‘justified’.

    Rachel Jeantel said this in her testimony during the trial but it passed largely unnoticed by Zimmerman’s defence and the media alike. Now she has repeated it perhaps it will get some traction. It looks like a gay bashing gone wrong to me which ought to put some of the more right-on Martin supporters in a bit of a pickle.

  • We can now look forward to the civil suit, brought about by the family with the backing of wealthy members of the race grievance industry, in an effort to bankrupt Zimmerman.

  • Eric

    We can now look forward to the civil suit, brought about by the family with the backing of wealthy members of the race grievance industry, in an effort to bankrupt Zimmerman.

    Maybe, but maybe not. Turns out in Florida if you bring a civil suit against someone who is found to be acting in self defense, you have to pay his legal bills. So if they sue him they could end up owing him money. Besides, it’s not like he’s some sort of deep-pocket international corporation that can settle out of court for twenty million dollars. Even if they win they’re not going to get any money.

    Zimmerman’s not out of the woods yet, but his big worry is DoJ. It’s likely he’ll face some kind of federal civil rights complaint. There’s no grounds for it, but this is about politics, not justice.

  • Phil B

    No – the jury got it right and saw through the whitewash that the MSM portrayed.

    For a forensically detailed review of Trayvon Martins behavoiur etc, try these two links :

    http://theconservativetreehouse.com/2012/05/23/update-26-part-1-trayvon-martin-what-were-the-last-18-months-like-for-him/

    http://theconservativetreehouse.com/2012/05/24/update-26-part-2-trayvon-martin-shooting-a-year-of-drug-use-culminates-in-predictable-violence/

    A long read but essential to counter the “innocent” picture so assiduously cultivated by the MSM.

  • The Wobbly Guy

    Gareth – not just any predator. Trayvon used the words ‘ creepy ass cracker’, which indicated that he believed that Zim was a HOMOSEXUAL predator. Trayvon was probably a homophobe.

    Why the LGBT lobby hasn’t jumped on Trayvon for having such a disgusting attitude puzzles me. [/sarc]

  • llamas

    For what it’s worth, I don’t believe that Martin’s ‘creepy-ass cracker’ comment – if he ever, in fact, said it – indicates either homophobia or a real fear that Zimmerman was some kind of gay predator.

    What actually happened is now no longer important. What matters now to the people who are invested in this case is to create an internally-consistent narrative or narratives of what happened that they can sell to their target audience – an audience which they have already pre-disposed to see Martin as an innocent victim.

    Those narratives don’t have to match any facts or evidence – in fact, they really can’t, since all the evidence points the other way. What they have to do is match the pre-existing opinions of the target audience, which needs Martin to be the innocent victim. So all-of-a-sudden, we have the tale of Martin confronting the gay rapist – after, of course, heroically drawing him away from the home where his innocent little brother lay sleeping. It’s nonsense, of course, but it’s enough to provide a fig-leaf of credible explanation for why Martin would follow and murderously attack Zimmerman. This used to be known in the UK as the ‘Guardsman’s Defence’.

    It doesn’t matter how many of these narratives get created. The people they are being sold to aren’t doing a lot of in-depth analysis – in fact, they are crying out for some story, any story, which will allow them to extend the portrayal of Martin as the innocent victim in all of this. The ‘gay rapist’ is a pitch-perfect meme to pitch to the African-American community, which is generally more homophobic than the average. And so the maunderingsof a barely-comprehensible 19-year old who has already demonstrated a prejudice in defiance of the facts and whose testimony has been proven to be unreliable, are suddenly treated and broadcast as creditable analysis and a serious alternative theory of the crime.

    This is not about Zimmerman’s guilt or innocence anymore – it’s about keeping African-American voters on-side. Look for plenty more of the same – the orthodoxy must be maintained, and any dialectic will do. The race-hustlers and the Democratic party that depends on them need this orthodoxy to be maintained, and they have all the powers of the Federal government available to make it happen.

    llater,

    llamas

  • Paul Marks

    Paul Lockett the term “straw man” is yours, not mine, I have not used the term.

    However, I am glad that you agree with Professor Dershowitz that there was no real case to answer (not one worthy of a criminal trial).

    Do you also agree with his specific charges against the prosecutor who was brought in when the regular prosecutor refused to have anything further to do with this politically motivated farce?

    The charges of misconduct against the new prosecutor are actually quite serious.

  • Paul Marks

    By the way, there was a disinformation article about the case of Mr Martin and Mr Zimmerman yesterday in Britain – all the normal lies were there (Mr Martin an innocent little boy, Mr Zimmerman racially motivated, jury motivated by racist fear…. and on and on) and again as normal with modern agitprop, the lies were IMPLIED (rather than openly stated) so that if the author of the lies is challenged he can deny ever having said these things.

    The writer was some BBC swine (no surprise there), but the place of the lies was the Times (Times of London) newspaper.

    What is wrong with Mr Murdoch?

    Does he not understand that leftists will never buy a Murdoch owned newspaper – so what is the point of pandering to them?

    Pandering to the left just alienates those who might buy the Times – without winning over leftists (who will never buy it – regardless of what is in it).

    No wonder the Times newspaper loses money.

  • slowjoe

    Paul Marks, you fall for another Zimmerman myth. The local State Attorney had scheduled a grand jury in the case. One of the early acts of the special prosecutor was to cancel the grand jury.

  • Paul L

    Another straw man. The absence of disagreement does not automatically imply agreement.

    The returning of a not guilty verdict may be an indicator that there was never a case to answer, but I’m not about to say that there definitely wasn’t a case on the basis of one person’s opinion piece. That would be just as ludicrous as saying the jury got it wrong without having sat through the trial.

  • Plamus

    The Wobbly Guy:

    “Trayvon used the words ‘ creepy ass cracker’, which indicated that he believed that Zim was a HOMOSEXUAL predator. Trayvon was probably a homophobe.”

    No homosexual undertones in American usage. Cracker is a racial slur, creepy is just creepy, and ass is a colloquial addition to the adjective for added effect – e.g ugly-ass mother-f***er, or big-ass car. It’s properly hyphenated, but that teens cannot and/or cannot be bothered to spell and use proper punctuation probably surprises nobody.

  • The Wobbly Guy

    Plamus – I think it was pointed out elsewhere the difference between ‘creepy ass cracker’ and ‘crazy ass cracker’. The word ‘creepy’ denotes a certain sexual orientation.

    Of course, not being versed in african-amercian street vernacular, I can only go by whatever is said online. However, even Rachel Jeantel, who is probably a native expert on that same vernacular, suggested very strongly that it held a sexual undertone. She even said so in an interview with Piers Morgan.
    http://www.mediaite.com/tv/piers-morgan-conducts-riveting-interview-with-trayvon-martins-friend-witness-rachel-jeantel/

    Jeantel insisted that Martin was “creeped out” and believed Zimmerman was following him, even worrying that he might be a “rapist.” She asked, “For every boy or every man who’s not that kind of way, seeing a grown man following them, would they be creeped out?”

    Sorry Plamus, you failed.

    Ilamas – I don’t think it’s just about the race-hustlers and the Democratic party. Doesn’t the African American community share some of the culpability? For being so willingly gullible? For being blind to the facts? It takes two hands to clap, and if they had been fair-minded and rational in their assessment of the case, the media wouldn’t have had such a field day pitching the racial issue to them in the first place.

    If I might be allowed to make a racist remark: these people of African descent are generally fools. And whatever ends up in their hands tends to get destroyed in a matter of generations. Evidence: Zimbabwe, Detroit. Soon to follow: South Africa.

  • llamas

    Wobbly Guy – I don’t accept your assessment, at least as far as it relates to how Detrit was bugg*red up – a subject about which I know a bit.

    Detroit was screwed up by Democrats, many of whom who happened to be African-American, but many of whom weren’t. Some of the hardest-nosed and most-aggressive folks trying desperately to make Detroit takes its fiscal medicine today are/have been African-American – cf, Robert Bobb, Kevyn Orr, and All Like That.

    A large part of the blame for the demise of Detroit is fairly laid at the door of the auto-industry unions – whose leadership up until fairly recently was 100% lily-white – and the management of the Big 3, specifically GM, which still is even-more lily-white.

    Sure, Soul-Man Coleman Young was a race-hustling buffoon with a wide streak of graft, but he didn’t screw up Detroit single-handedly. There were plenty of Democrats of all races willing, nay eager, to help him along the way. The leadership of the party and more than one US president were content to enable his incompetence and corruption in return for a relaible voting bloc. As you say, it takes two hands to clap.

    llater,

    llamas

  • ‘African American community‘? Who exactly are they, WG, and what exactly do you know about them and their real views on the subject – as opposed to those spouted by a handful of professional race baiters such as Sharpton and Jackson?

  • Plamus

    Wobbly Guy, fair enough, I failed, you can believe your theory. If Jeantel says Treyvon thought GZ was a rapist, it must be true, after all – why would she lie, it’s not like she’s done it before, right? Also, I’d be curious about those homosexual orientation connotations of the word “creep” you talk about – care to provide a citation? I have lived in 2 Midwestern and 3 East Coast states, and never heard “creep out” used as anything other than “make feel uneasy, unsafe, scared, paranoid”.

  • The Wobbly Guy

    Plamus – When do people lie? To their advantage or disadvantage? It was okay to lie to try to get Zim convicted. About what Trayvon said about Zim?

    I find it simply too incredible in the first place that the prosecution would have allowed her to say ‘creepy ass cracker’ on the stand! So if they didn’t make her say it, then who did? If Trayvon didn’t say it, why would she embellish the account with that very explosive phrase? Ok, maybe she was stupid enough.

    Perhaps the simplest answer is the correct one – it was exactly what Trayvon said to her. And why he thought that way was interesting too. The popular perception of homosexual men is that they are effeminate pushovers. I know that’s not true, but did Trayvon know that? Fixing Zim as a gay => effeminate pushover => easy target. So it helped him make up his mind to go after Zim and get him into a fight which he thought he would easily win.

    Admittedly, that’s a long list of suppositions and outright guesses on my part.

    So while you have lived in many places, have you lived in a ghetto? In a community of people like Ms Jeantel? You asked for a link. Here it is.
    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ass+cracker

    Ass Cracker – One who engages in anal sex.

    Sure, it doesn’t necessarily mean a homosexual, but considering the context, there is no other possible interpretation. Also, I thought the term ‘cracker’ may have a double meaning – both as part of the above definition, and to denote a white guy. Jeantel thought it only meant the homophobe part, not a white guy.

    So here’s the citation. Proof enough for you?

    Alisa – 90% voted for Obama while knowing very little of his policies. Very little rational opinion on the Zimmerman trial online, even anonymously. Overwhelming support for Trayvon Martin even with all the evidence that has been presented. Little to no internal censure of their professional race baiters (contrast with say, David Duke).

    Any one of the above, taken in isolation, could be easily hand-waved off as mere aberrations, that their views are different from those espoused from the race baiters. Taken together? Hmmm…

    For the last 30 years, there hasn’t been much that suggests otherwise, so why persist in the delusion?

    The same actually goes for the Muslims and the Religion of Peace(TM).

    Ilamas – You have a point there. Yet, what was the enabling factor that gave the Dems and race hustlers like Coleman Young their ability to dominate the system, ignore the checks and balances of power, and run it to ruin? They were assured of popular support for their policies, so where did it come from?

    What about the unions? The leaders were white. Who chose those leaders? How much protest was there from the rank-and-file union members?

    Democrat Party rule – still okay (Portland). Black rule – Maybe ok (can somebody gin up a counterexample?). Dem party + black rule = disaster (Detroit).

    I wish there were more people like Thomas Sowell. Alas, he is one of the rare exceptions that prove the rule.

  • Paul Marks

    Paul L. – Either state your opinion plainly or leave (after all you said you were leaving).

    Alisa – yes.

    Why is not, for example, Colonel West not considered a member of the “African American Community”.

    After all he was a Congressman from Florida – and his skin is black (in fact rather more black than the skin of Barack Obama).

    So why is Colonel West not black?

    Could it be that being a member of the “African American Community” is more a matter of what opinions a person has, not what colour their skin is?

  • Plamus

    WG:

    “Sure, it doesn’t necessarily mean a homosexual, but considering the context, there is no other possible interpretation.”

    Well, I gave you the other possible interpretation in my first post – with “cracker” as a racial slur, “creepy” as, well, creepy, and “ass” as a an emphasis to “creepy”. Believe what you want, I am only saying your interpretation – that TM used cracker as a part of an obscure (possibly) homosexual term, and not as the most common racial slur for white person – sounds improbable. Also, “rapist” and “effeminate pushover” do not seem like consistent beliefs about the same person.

    While I have not lived in a pure black ghetto, I have lived in Queens in NYC, and in South Philadelphia (Philly is majority black), which are both, ummm… I think the PC term is “racially mixed”.

  • People seem confused. ‘Cracker’ used the way the loser in the fight in question used it, is a term very similar in meaning to ‘Chav’ or ‘Bogan’ or most accurately, ‘Poor White Trash’.

    It is analogous to calling a black person ‘nigger’ or ‘silver back’ or ‘wog’, except it is far more acceptable in Guardian reading circles.

    So it is not an anti-homosexual epithet, it is a racial epithet.

  • Sunfish

    Being completely unfamiliar with American ghetto slang, as I am, I have to go with Plamus. I’ve heard “creepy” used to mean threatening or perverse, but not necessarily in a sexual manner. And “ass” in context is very commonly used to emphasize “creepy” or another adjective. “Cracker” is indeed commonly a less-than-polite term for white people used by black people. However, I have been speaking American English for going on four decades and have never heard of an “ass cracker.”

    And now that we’ve given Jeantel’s abuse of the language of Shakespeare and Milton and Steinbeck far more discussion than it really deserves…

    What’s telling to me is that Zimmerman was not initially arrested.

    It’s very common practice, in the aftermath of a killing, to arrest (or at least book and release, pending charges) the killer. There are exceptions and nuances, but it’s a good bet that the killer will at least be booked and released pending charges.[1] This is so that, in the event that the investigation does reveal criminality by the shooter, we can find him again.

    That being said, a shooter who is well-known to police as a not-a-bad-guy[2] is less likely to be considered a flight risk, and less likely to be taken into custody. As is a shooter in an obvious self-defense.

    [1] “Why aren’t police officers booked pending?” Because my mugshot, fingerprints, DNA, passport, twenty closest relatives, most of my known associates, and every vehicle or bit of land I’ve ever owned is already on file with IA. A book and release pending will only collect the first two or three of those.

    [2] Zimmerman’s reputation was as pain-in-the-ass wannabe. Also, there were two people rolling in the grass that night, but only one of them had ever been convicted of a violent crime. This is why I don’t think he went home because he was a well-regarded pillar of the community.

  • Agreed. As far as I can see, not immediately arresting the guy who shot a young black man was the beginning and ending of any “system” racism in this case. That’s not to say that people complaining about racism in the US legal system don’t have a point (see the drug war, stop and frisk, etc.), it just didn’t have any further affect in this particular case.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Yes, Sunfish. People have been talking about “Georgia crackers,” meaning a certain type of Southern white person, at least since I went bipedal (mid-’40′s). It always seemed to me that a “cracker” (they weren’t actually all confined to Georgia, but they were all Southeastern) a certain type of Southerner, somewhere between a redneck and po’ white trash. I won’t vouch for the exact caste system nor differentia, but it wasn’t a “racial slur.” More of a social slur.

    Drum drum, bang bang. Agree with Plamus about the execrable lapse in the usage of the hyphen to indicate which words modify or otherwise are linked with which. The “creepy ass cracker” is the perfect example. Yes, in American English it should be written and understood to mean “creepy-ass cracker.”

    And apparently in British English, it should be written as “creepy ass-cracker,” where the second term is, I gather, a British street idiom.

  • Paul L

    Paul Marks, if something is unclear to you and it bothers you enough to post about it, then point out what it is and I’ll respond. Otherwise I’m struggling a bit. My overarching thoughts are:

    -I think it would be difficult to say that the jury made the wrong decision. Given the evidence as it has been presented, I don’t think you could say beyond reasonable doubt that Zimmerman was not acting in self-defence.

    -On the flip side, had Martin killed Zimmerman, I think the same would apply. If you are unarmed and an armed stranger follows you in the dark and you kill him in a physical confrontation, I think establishing beyond reasonable doubt that you weren’t acting in self-defence would be tough.

  • the other rob

    So it is not an anti-homosexual epithet, it is a racial epithet.

    Yes, that is also my understanding of the word.

    That said, I must confess to being somewhat puzzled by the evolving narrative. Apparently we’re now to believe that Martin tried to beat Zimmerman to death not for being white (or at least, not obviously black), but for being suspected of being gay. How is that any less despicable and why would anybody make that argument?

  • the other rob

    Or, for fans of the cartoon series Futurama, as Professor Farnsworth might put it:

    “Good news, everybody! Trayvon Martin was not a murderous racist. He was merely a lovable, murderous homophobe.

  • Paul Marks

    Paul L – you are now implying that I am a racist.

    In short that if Mr Zimmerman had been a 6 feet two inch American Football player smashing Mr Martin (in this example a near middle aged local Watch Captain – who happened to be black) head in against the concrete, I would have been complained if Mr Martin had shot Mr Zimmerman.

    You are mistaken – in such a situation I would have fully supported Mr Martin as soon as I heard his telephone calls to the police (the real telephone calls – not the disinformation edited versions, part of the media attempt to FRAME Mr Zimmerman in a Conspiracy to Pervert the Course of Justice) and seen his wounds.

    By the way – you still do not seem to have condemned the media effort to FRAME Mr Zimmerman in their(Federal government backed) Conspiracy to Pervert the Course of Justice.

  • Paul Marks

    By the way why sitting on a cracker barrel (perhaps eating an apple or smoking a pipe – or stroking one’s pet rifle) whilst putting the world to rights…. a bad thing?

    A know that “cracker” is a racial insult, just as “Redneck” is (full disclosure – my neck is red because I work outside and I am part Irish – and, yes, I have a short temper and my neck gets even redder then), but why did people think that “cracker” is a bad thing?

    Is it because sitting on a cracker barrel is a sign of poverty (you can not afford a chair) and laziness (one should be working – not sitting)?

  • Paul Marks

    Racism in the United States – sure there is plenty of it, but not exactly in the way the left suggest.

    For example, most black murder victims are killed by other blacks – the media do not tend to report this.

    As for interracial killings – vastly more white people are killed by blacks than blacks are by whites (the media do not tend to report that either).

    And would a white man by the name of Barry O’Bama who had not even served one term in the United States Senate (and had no experience of running anything) have been elected President of the United States?

    Of course not – such a candidate would have considered a joke. But because the man called himself Barack Obama and is black (well sort of black) his run for the Presidency was not treated as a joke – the media actually started to back him in 2004 (before he was even a U.S. Senator).

    This is INSTITUTIONAL racism.

  • John K

    I do not know if Trayvon Martin called George Zimmerman a “creepy-ass cracker” or a “creepy ass-cracker”. We will never know if he really said it, and if so, what he meant by it. What we do know is that GZ saw what he thought was a suspicious character, reported it to the police, and then observed the man until he left the vicinity. What then happened was that TM doubled back, attacked GZ, and was proceeding to pummel his head into the pavement when GZ shot him in self-defence. Whether TM thought GZ was a gay, or didn’t like the look of him, or just hated Hispanics, is surely immaterial. What is worrying is that if the race hustlers such as Sharpton, Jackson and Obama can turn this straightforward act of self-defence into a cause celebre, God help the next white-ish person who has to shoot a black assailant in more ambiguous circumstances.

  • Paul L

    Paul Marks:

    Paul L – you are now implying that I am a racist.

    That wasn’t my intention and nothing I’ve posted could reasonably be construed that way, not least because, in all of the comments I’ve made, I’ve not once mentioned or even alluded to the race of the people involved. You claimed that I hadn’t stated my viewpoint clearly, so I restated my viewpoint. I said nothing about your opinion, implied or otherwise.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Paul, from Wikipedia:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida_cracker

    Historical usage

    The term “cracker” was in use during the Elizabethan era to describe braggarts. The original root of this is the Middle English word crack meaning “entertaining conversation” (One may be said to “crack” a joke); this term and the Gaelicized spelling “craic” are still in use in Northern England, Ireland and Scotland. It is documented in William Shakespeare’s King John (1595): “What cracker is this … that deafes our ears / With this abundance of superfluous breath?”

    By the 1760s the English, both at home and in the American colonies, applied the term “cracker” to Scots-Irish [Link] and English American settlers [Link] of the remote southern back country, as noted in a passage from a letter to the Earl of Dartmouth: “I should explain to your Lordship what is meant by Crackers; a name they have got from being great boasters; they are a lawless set of rascalls on the frontiers of Virginia, Maryland, the Carolinas, and Georgia, who often change their places of abode.” The word was later associated with the cowboys of Georgia and Florida, many of them descendants of those early frontiersmen.

    On this page there are other links to be followed (for instance, the link to “Cracker, Pejorative”), not all of which are entirely in agreement with the above. The whole thing is interesting, but to know what’s really what I think requires diligent lifetime research. My stack of remaining lifetimes is unfortunately shorter than my stack of such research projects. :(

    For another usage referring to the Southern Cracker, go to the main “Cracker” page and look under the category “People”:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cracker

    As for black-against-white racial slurs in America, I’m still back in the Dark Ages I guess, when the “black” epithet for “whites” was “honkies.” Never had the slightest clue why.

    . . .

    John K, yes indeed. Those guys are all White Trash* regardless of presence or absence of some amount of Negroid DNA. This is straight out of the historical Marxist/New-Left/Later-Progressive playbook, stirring up racial trouble on purpose, and they do it all the time–not just the guys you mention but the on-the-make type of Lefty and amoralist generally.

    *The worst insult I know of is “Po’ white trash.” MomBamBa isn’t hurting for money, but she is P.W.T. on stilts in my book. Worse than him!

    “Worrying” isn’t the word. And this is the sort of stuff that gets presented as “news” by the MSM, world-wide, Der Spiegel, Le Monde, etc., so even some … well, certain persons … announce offhandedly that “America is a country of casual racists.” Pretty pathetic.

  • Paul Marks

    Paul L. – take a hike.

    Julie – I stand corrected.

  • Paul L

    How mature.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Paul, just to clarify — I didn’t mean anything snarky. I had written up a longish comment with lots of “I think’s” and “maybe’s” and so forth, because origins interest me. Then I thought, why not Look It Up. WikiFootia may not be the Last Word in scholarly research, but at least it’s a start. (Good thing, too, because my conjectures were all wrong, at least if the Foot of All Knowledge is correct.) Also, remember there’s that link to “Cracker, pejorative.” Sometimes the term is an insult, and maybe ethnic if not racial, and certainly social.

    I addressed it to you because I enjoyed your image of people “sitting on the cracker barrel,” and I thought you might be interested in the info. Also I wanted to clarify the meaning of the term for all of us. And also, part of the comment was prompted by Sunfish’s remarks. :>)

    As to your next comment: Quite so.

  • Paul Marks

    I am sadly past mature Paul L. – I am old. You just dance about, playing with words- and I am tired of you. If you can not tell that that is about the war (the political conflict in the world – in which both Mr Martin and Mr Zimmerman are, sadly, just pawns) then you are bone dumb.

    Julie – I never thought you were being snarky at all. I should have looked up the term myself – and I did not.

  • I actually am still giggling over ‘stroking one’s pet rifle’ part:-P

  • Julie near Chicago

    Alisa–LOLOLOL!!!! Thanks, I can’t believe I missed it!

    Paul — :>))) And Alisa’s right, I’m ROFLOL!!