Saturday, July 13, 2013

My 2 cents on the killing of a Florida teen

Z was driving in his car when he saw, M, a black teenager walking "suspiciously" in his neighborhood.

Z becomes convinced that M is responsible for a spree of burglaries that happened in the neighborhood.

Z calls 911 advising them of a presence of a young black male in the gated community, he voices his suspicion of M.

M has noticed a man following in the car, sees Z watching him from his car and starts to run away.

Z advises the dispatcher that M is running away. He says "these fucking punks always get away."

The dispatcher advises Z to not follow M and says the police are on the way. Z says "ok" and then follows M anyway.

An altercation happens and the the police arrive, Z is banged up and M is dead.

Z says that he left the car, lost track of M, as he turned around M came out of nowhere and attacked him. They wrestled, M beat him up, Z screamed "help!", they wrestled for the gun and Z shot M in self-defense.

I don't believe Zimmerman.

I wasn't there and I did not study this case like rabbis study the Torah, I am a liberal (even somewhat of an elitist) who -once granted the right to vote, voted the straight democratic ticket- you can accept my bias and reasoning or you can reject it.

If Martin was running away from Z, I don't see why he would come back around and assault him.

To me the key part is that when Z left the car he was convinced that M was a criminal running away. So if he left a car with that idea, the only rational reason for Z leaving the car would be try to detain M or prevent M from "getting away with it [the non-existing burglary M did not commit]."

I'm not aware of a Florida law that states that a random dude with a gun can police other people's movements on public streets. The again, I know the state of Florida to be a strange and enigmatic place.

If I put myself in the position of M, a man begins to follow me in his car, I run away from him, and he runs after me, convinced that I am a criminal. Am I allowed aggression as I turn around to face him?

What civilized thing could Zimmerman possibly tell Martin as he was chasing after him?

"Pardon me, young sir, I have been following you because of a nagging suspicion that you may be involved in a spree of burglaires in this gated community that I guard as a neighborhood watchman. Please be assured that this suspicion is not based on your racial background. In fact, some of my best friends are African-Americans. I myself am an ethnic minority and whats more I took a black girl to my high-school prom! Would you mind sticking around with me until a police officer arrives and we can all examine your behavior in a non-prejudicial way."

No, if one person is chasing another person and both runners are post-pubescent males who are not involved in an elaborate game of tag, the chase is not going to end up good. And since Zimmerman is responsible for initiating this run, by first stalking Martin and then pursuing after him after being told not to by a 911 operator, he is solely responsible for whatever happened next.

Maybe M did turn around and respond in an aggressive manner, I don't know. Does Florida's "stand your ground law" only apply to white NRA members? Or maybe Zimmerman's defenders would respond favorably to armed strangers running after them convinced that they are criminals?

M lived for 17 years. He got shot and killed by a man who was convinced that he was dealing with a "fucking punk" criminal although he never saw M commit any crime and did not know his name or age when he uttered those words during his 911 call.

Z had his defense paid for entirely by supporters convinced that he did the right thing. Z became a low-life trigger-happy racist in the eyes of millions.

M is dead. In the comment sections of the news sites reporting on the case, M was described as a thug, a drug dealer, a criminal, a violent animal. Pictures the teen took of himself, and his twitter posts were printed by tabloid to highlight his sinister nature.

When the millionaire pundit Ann Coulter heard the jury verdict absolving Z of second degree murder, her one-word reaction was "Hallelujah!"

I guess one can understand her sense of relief, for a moment there was a possibility that Trayvon Martin would be judged innocent in the case of his own death.

Nope, the dead black teen was clearly the aggressor, his killer said so.

Z was wrong after all. "Fucking punks" don't always get away.

Sometimes they just lay dead in suburban grass as American justice stumbles on.

Yeah, Ann... Hallelujah.

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