Trayvon Martin's body (courtesy huffingtonpost.com)

I think we can all agree that this photo of Trayvon Martin’s body—introduced as evidence in the trial of George Zimmerman—is incendiary. But what up with all the various websites (e.g., huffingtonpost.com) putting the image behind click-though and labeling it  “graphic”? Have any of these editors seen the photos and videos of the carnage coming from south of our border? Syria? Anywhere? Are we really that wimpy a society, that divorced from the reality of death, that we can’t face a photo of a dead body?

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54 Responses to Incendiary Image of the Day: This a Graphic Image? Edition

        • @Haryab, to be perfectly blunt, I don’t care whether GZ is acquitted or goes to prison for life. What I do find interesting is the legal process and the racial divide.

        • Yes, but constantly declaring that Zimmerman actions were “stupid” or making assumptions of the potential extent of injuries makes it difficult to claim a position of non-bias. Further, there is no convincing evidence of any racial divide that has been provided outside of media conflations. If anything, Zimmerman, who is considered partially African-American himself, has a relatively strong reputation on inter-race relations.

        • Facts don’t matter. As soon as someone named Zimmerman popped a black teenager the media assumed he was a nazi skinhead out for blood and framed it that way.
          That can’t be walked back so they have to stick to the original assumptions.

  1. “Are we really that wimpy a society, that divorced from the reality of death, that we can’t face a photo of a dead body?”

    Yes. It happened somewhere along about 15-20 years ago. Not sure exactly when, but it was definitely during my lifetime. At that point, people started complaining, “But I didn’t want to see that! You should have warned me!”

    They say it’s graphic because it’s of an actual formerly breathing person, not an actor. They’d make the same announcement about “graphic images” before they’d show you a similar image from Syria.

    Some will cynically say (Who, me?) that they say it to draw market share and make sure you sit up and pay attention, because the good stuff is coming. You can tell when that happens because they don’t just say “Warning: graphic images ahead,” but when they say “Up next, exclusively on Fox25, see what really happened that rainy February night. We warn you, some images may be shocking.”

  2. Yes, yes we are. Some of us, anyhow. I remember a friend of mine, decades ago, had a neighbor who was a medical doctor. The little girl was forbidden to say, “booger”, and had to say “nose crumbs”, instead.

    That little girl is a middle-aged woman now.

  3. Yes, lets all show pictures of dead bodies to our children so that they don’t turn out so wimpy[!].

  4. I saw the live feed of his actual body uncovered. They showed close ups of his face, hands, entrance wound on his sweater, everything. I think they accidentally left the feed open because there was no warning and you could hear the camera talking to someone behind him.

    • The live TV feed got a delay and a bleep today, because of the often and frequently repeated language in today’s testimony. The live internet stream feed is still live and uncensored.

      Sidenote: It was amusing to see all the reporters tapdance around “the n-word” in their stories and tweets about the proceedings today.

  5. I have also seen a man carrying his dead son through some rubble in some sand country but yet they blurred out some guy’s butt crack. I don’t see the logic in their definition of graphic.

  6. I disagree. I think the press did it to illicit a larger, negative reaction from their audience/readers. The press has strongly supported gun control for decades. This case is about gun control, and the press is doing everything they can to try the case in the media. They believe Zimmerman is a monster, because he was carrying a gun that evening.

    • No, they believe he’s (possibly) a monster because – possibly – he shot an unarmed person who’d every right to be where they were because that individual stood his ground.

      He had along history of harassment, lied in the beginning and the police didn’t bother to investigate at all – bad looking, that – until forced into the limelight weeks later.

      I don’t know how it went down, but:

      “Get out of here, punk!”
      “Who you calling punk, [expletive]?!?”
      “You” [shove]
      “Fu<k you, man!" [shove]
      Boom.

      is at least possible. After all, OGU does happen, and the perpetrators are monsters.

      • He shot someone who was beating his head against the concrete sidewalk.

        Or do you think Zimmerman was beaten after Trayvon took a bullet to the heart?

  7. Incendiary, possibly. After all, we already know that he’s dead, so the photo doesn’t mean much – apart from “see, he’s dead.” Hardly a noble purpose. Now for really incendiary, how about a baby picture and a circle-slash…?

    Graphic? Hardly. That’s just plain stupidious.

  8. off topic, whats up with the MAIG hunter unmasked post vanishing. it shows up on the search, but “page not found”? tin foil time.

    • Mr. Nida called TTAG and denied it was him (after using an alias at the start of the conversation). We had two reliable sources for this information. We emailed and called Mr. Nida before posting (voice mail). Post removed pending further investigation.

  9. Some of my earliest memories are of helping to kill chickens for dinner. I started on a farm and yes we modern Americans are squeemish about “graphic” pictures. We live in city hives and everything is clean and sanitized, even death.

    Is this a bad thing? No. It’s nice to live in a country that’s so soft that death is an abstract to us. Beats the hell out of places like Syria or most of Africa.

  10. Lost another comment, I really need to copy them before clicking Publish.

    Given my career, this to me is far from graphic. I have seen many bodies with much worse than a single gunshot wound. However, to quote Cheif Clancy Wiggum while chasing Bart nude through Springfeild, “Stop in the name of American sqeemishness!”

    I think that by lableing the image as graphic before being able to view it, it taps in to our curiosity. Thus it draws more views to their website, fulfilling their primary adgenda. Additionaly, it feeds to the emotions of its viewers. Someome who has never seen things like this may very well think it is graphic because the are told so.

    Anyways, my career aside, I have seen more graphic images in “The First 48.”

  11. What passes for “reality” in the media is very sad. I think a consequence of that is how we seem to go to war at the drop of a hat. I hate how sheltered we are as a society. Something’s in this world are truly horrible and ought to terrify people. War is one of them and “we the people” need to know what is means when politicians start beating that drum. That said, I’m really glad no one put photos of the Newtown victims on TV, I would have lost it.

  12. It’s all about sympathy for the victim. It’s GRAPHIC… meaning, something HORRIBLE happened to him… like MURDER… They’re using specific words to evoke specific responses. Leading the low information voter to the “correct” conlusion

  13. I’ve done prosecution and defense, “graphic” in this case is nothing. To quote the great Ernie Hudson: “I have seen shit that would turn you white!”

  14. “Are we really that wimpy a society, that divorced from the reality of death, that we can’t face a photo of a dead body?”

    i dont see a dead body, i see a dead leg and a yellow tarp.

  15. I am regularly reminded of the difference between American Broadcasting and that of other nations. I remember watching a man get hit by a speeding vehicle, turning somersaults in the air, on Italian television.

    I believe if media is going to attempt to shape public opinion, they need to provide as much detail as possible. This may include some pretty graphic content. I believe the networks and FCC are too lazy/scared of lawsuits or perpetrating yellow journalism to bring us the truth…

  16. At risk of coming off as some kind of misogynist, I think this trend can be laid squarely at the feet of women, who are, as every man can attest, uniquely gifted in terms of loquaciousness. Since gradually from 1870-1970 or thereabouts, we began to let them start exercising that particular talent in public, particularly in terms of public affairs, our society’s public views and attitudes have been shaped more and more by the proclivities of the fairer sex. Since said sex is instinctively nurturing, seeking after comfort, safety, and the like, this sort of thing shocks them a lot more than it tends to shock men. Hence, 30 years ago when women were only beginning to make major inroads into top positions in the media and government, things were still much as they’d always been. Nowadays, they’ve had plenty of time to shape attitudes, editorial policies, ideas, and all sorts of other things…. which, IMO, most satisfactorily explains this newfound squeamishness.

    Of course, add that to other contributing factors, like the fact that most Americans, as a previous commenter mentioned, are citified corporate drones who have so successfully achieved that whole “comfort and safety” thing, and have so shielded themselves from nature and the real facts of life that they think the world is ending when the air conditioner in their Prius gives out and causes them to break a sweat…..

    I predict, with sadness, that the squeamishness is here to stay, and that unless Mother Nature (asteroid?) or Human Nature (WWIII and subsequent nuclear winter?) gives a b!tch-slap to Western Civilization, this sort of thing will only increase, and every state will resemble California sooner or later.

    • Completely agreed, both with how this got started and where we are now.

      A lot of people are going to be in for a rude awakening come the next great disaster/conflict, whatever it may be.

    • I have to admit that every time I eat a Skittle, I think of Trey. But only for a fleeting moment 🙂

  17. I think we can all agree that this photo of Trayvon Martin’s (AKA ShitDoggyDead) body—introduced as evidence in the trial of George Zimmerman—is incendiary.

    Well, I guess I’m not part of “we all can agree” crowd. I DON’T agree that the picture is “incendiary.”

  18. Some woman for the prosecution testified that “she really couldn’t tell who was on top but Trayvon was on the ground after the shot” So, that would suggest that Zimmerman was “on top”? How so? I would suggest that if someone was on top of you bashing your head into the sidewalk and you shot him in the chest, he would be the one lying on the ground.

    My real question is “Can Zimmerman really get a fair trial?”. Even if the prosecution can play back a number of previous calls to 911, that isn’t relevant to what actually happened at the time of the shooting. It’s not really about justice, it’s more about the demonizing of George Zimmerman because he shot a Black kid who, of course, was a perfect angel…just look at the picture taken when he was 12.

  19. This trial was politicized to boost black turnout for the 2012 election — and Zimmerman’s (probable) aquittal will be used the same way for 2014.

    Nothing the Leftists do is by accident. Everything is agitation-propaganda, battlespace preparation, or general attitude maintenance for their troops.

    The one ray of light is that if they are trying so hard, they know that we are powerful.

  20. Has anyone noticed the films made today featuring more gore than a slaughterhouse?
    Graphic and disturbing? Not as much as the fact GZ is on trial.

  21. Field dressing/processing a deer is much more “graphic” than this picture. How many of our parents or grandparents(or us) killed live chickens or hogs for food? I don’t think ANY hunter or farmer ANYWHERE would call this pic graphic.

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