Home Crime and Punishment Question of the Day: Do You Think Trayvon Martin Really Said That... Crime and PunishmentQuestion of the Day Question of the Day: Do You Think Trayvon Martin Really Said That to George Zimmerman? By Robert Farago - June 21, 2012 180 Facebook Twitter Pinterest WhatsApp Email “I feel like [Trayvon Martin] saw [my Kel Tec PF9]. He looked at it and he said ‘You’re going to die tonight mother f–ker and he reached for it.” George Zimmerman [via nypost.com] RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Colorado Bill Would Mandate Disclosure of Firearms Ownership by Those Accused of Domestic Abuse New York Prosecutors Propose Reducing Jail Time for Gun Crimes While Gun Crime Soars New York’s Mayor de Blasio Fights Crime By Aiming at Law-Abiding Citizens…Again…Still 180 COMMENTS Yes If I was as used to fighting, young, tall and strong as TM and facing someone as small as GZ those words or something similar could come out of my mouth. Reply i say that to my kids every night when they won’t go to sleep and i have to get up at 5am. Reply I think it certainly sounds plausible. I think it sounds like the thing a young punk (regardless of race) would say in that situation. I think I’m in no position to call him a liar. He didn’t sound like he was making it up off the cuff. That interview was 20 minutes short of 24 hours after GZ’s first call to police. If you disbelieve him, the question is this: Is 24 hours enough time to come up with a plausible blow-by-blow? To come up with the story, learn it so well that you believe it yourself, and never deviate from it in your subsequent retellings? Reply Of course it is. Zimmerman OBVIOUSLY has had this planned for a long time. How else could a racist like him have spent years mentoring black youths just to counter the accusation of racism after he killed the angelic little Trayvon Martin. ? Reply Remember LEOs involved in a shooting get at least 24 hours before being questioned. They get a trip to the hospital, a chance to talk to the union and/or a lawyer before being questioned. Reply Yeah, it’s a professional curtsey. If you’re involved in a shooting, they dont give you that. Reply professional courtesy Professional curtsey — when a handshake just isn’t enough. Just an aside. The worst thing Z did was to be interviewed on tape and video WITHOUT the advice of an attorney. This is 100% always the wrong thing to do in every case when you are a suspect or even if you may be considered a suspect. It is your right…dont give it away even if you are telling the whole truth…it will come back to bite you. LAPD retired Reply trayvon martin is in no position to call him a liar either. Reply Don’t know… Don’t think we will ever know what really happened which is a shame. Reply i have to agree Reply Fo some reason, I doubt it…just feels like stuff GZ is piling on top to get his arse out of trouble. I’m no Trayvon supporter, so it’s said. Reply Moto, read up on that quote – it was taken the day after the shooting. It was not a “recent development”. And your automatic assumption that he’s lying and that these things weren’t all said on the police record months ago is exactly why I say George Zimmerman is going to jail. Not to mention our courts being a total joke. I saw in a local municipal court for an afternoon this week to observe. One of the cases regarded a stolen purse and the only evidence was that the purse was found in a trash can, so they’re claiming a girl who lived there and knew the alleged victim stole it. Not only is that the ONLY evidence that they had, but the garbage man who supposedly found it clearly stated three times in court that he found it at house A, yet the owner of the purse (the only person the police ever talked to) told the police (and is the only person listed on the police report) that it was found at house B, which just happens to be the house of a coworker that she doesn’t like. It was shown that the purse was left in a public area in a restaurant that hundreds of employees and customers had access to and that the defendants purse was stolen from the same area as well (with her drivers license in it), yet the judge ignored the fact that there was no actual evidence and after a 5 second “contemplation” declared her guilty. He actually used the line “If it had been found in [the defendants] locked car, that would be evidence of her being set up. Being found in her garbage can (which the end of her driveway is 300 yards from her home in the country and anyone has access to) was clear evidence that she was trying to dispose of it”. Never, ever have faith in our courts is what I learned this week. Reply WHAT’S said? I’ve made that typo myself. Reply GZ a liar? Maybe, maybe not. His credibility is subject to question now that the judge has revoked his bail over incorrect statements made about his cash on hand. If you were engaged in a fistfight with someone and spotted a gun on his person, wouldn’t you grab for it ? I would, so I imagine that Martin would have done the same. I also imagine that if GZ had pointed his gun at Martin at close quarters, Martin would have made a grab for it. Did Martin really say what GZ claims he said? Maybe. It seems a little too pat, but in an era when guys play CoD for hours on end and become true keyboard commandos, it’s certainly possible. At this point, a lot of facts about this case remain unknown, and maybe unknowable. All I can say with regard to Martin and Zimmerman is, better them than me. Reply For the record I play CoD on xbox. No keyboard, so you could call me a console commando. Plus now there’s alliteration, so it sounds better. Reply Console commando. I like it! Reply “His credibility is subject to question now that the judge has revoked his bail over incorrect statements made about his cash on hand.” How is his credibility suspect for that? Those were statements his wife made. Reply While I’m no fan of the hatchet job the media has done on this guy, I also can’t just take everything he says about the incident as Gospel. Its for a judge/jury to determine. it does sound just a little tooo perfectly damning a statement to me…but I didn’t know the kid and I wasn’t there. Reply GZ is an idiot. He missed lesson #1, which is keeping your mouth shut until you’re on the stand and your lawyers have examined all the factual evidence against you. All he does is dig his own grave, because at some stage he will spurt something into a camera that he can’t take back. Reply “which is keeping your mouth shut until you’re on the stand” Why even go on the stand, nothing you say can possibly help you, your words will be twisted by the prosecutor (or is persecutor?) to damn you no matter what the reality was. Reply The answer to your original question depends on the complete toxicology report on TM. Reply Didn’t they find weed in his system? If anything you’d think that’d make him less aggressive lol. Reply Trace amounts of THC, metabolized THC, they estimate that he had smoked weed within the last 24hrs. Weed, regardless of when doesn’t make you want to flip out and kill people. It’s a harmless plant. Now if alcohol was found in his system, I would believe that it had more to do with his behavior than weed ever could. Reply http://theconservativetreehouse.com/2012/05/24/update-26-part-2-trayvon-martin-shooting-a-year-of-drug-use-culminates-in-predictable-violence/ Go to this link. Martin was a habitual “robo-tripper” and had been for at least a year, which causes irrational violent behavior. His parents were aware of his behavior, but couldn’t begin to explain it, so they were in denial about it. Unfortunately for Martin, he met a conscientious neighborhood watch-man, at a time when he was in no mood to be F’ed with and his violent disposition resulted in him trying to kill someone who had the tools to defend himself. Actually, it is very fortunate that Martin encountered GZ, because he probably would have killed or severely injured an unarmed victim. I looked at all of that stuff…very, very interesting, to say the least. MotoJB, The info on that website gives you a very different picture of Trayvon Martin, versus the one the press has been telling us, doesn’t it? Please everyone take the time to digest this information, then tell me who you think started the fight that night. http://theconservativetreehouse.com/2012/05/24/update-26-part-2-trayvon-martin-shooting-a-year-of-drug-use-culminates-in-predictable-violence/ The Conservative Treehouse is not a reliable source. Even if what they said is completely true, and even if Trayvon was using drugs at that moment. you are still not allowed to chase him down and shoot him. There are about a hundred reasons why, but the most obvious was that Zimmerman was acting as part of a Neighborhood Watch program, and under the rules of that program, was not supposed to be armed. Low Budget Dave, There is absolutely NO evidence that GZ chased down and shot Martin. The evidence that has been released shows just the opposite. The Conservative Treehouse is a reliable source for the truth. You, however, are not! If Zimmerman did not chase TM down, then why did he get out of the car? To watch the kid walk away? I realize that is his story, but that is absurd. No one gets out of the car unless they are trying to catch someone. You don’t get out of the car thinking: “I am going to look for a burgler, and then if I see him walking away, I am going to do nothing.” He had already called the cops. He had already completed everything that Neighborhood Watch is supposed to do. The only other thing he could think of to do was to confront the potential burgler, apprehend him, and hold him for the police. He only reason he felt safe doing this, most likely, is that he already had his gun drawn. I don’t have any proof of that, but it certainly seems a lot more likely than: “I was headed back to my car peacefully, and the guy who was running away from me suddenly attacked me.” That reminds me of the guy who was attacked by a deer two days before deer season, and had to shoot the animal in self defense. Only that instead of killing a deer, he killed a kid. What if a deer suddenly burst from behind a house and threatened to kill him? Would we ask if the deer was high on cough syrup? Or would we just tell Zimmerman that his side of the story smells funny? It might be true, of course, I wasn’t there. But his story smells bad. Go to Englewood in Chicago on a Friday night in the summer, if you manage to walk out (i’m presuming your a OFWG), see if you still hold that belief. Reply Chicago is different from a gated community in Sanford, FL Yes, Sanford is different than Chicago. In Chicago black “youths” have been assaulting people with impunity cuz they know they won’t take a 9mm hollow-point to the chest. No handguns or concealed carry allowed in Chicago. So if concealed carry was allowed in Chicago, you think only the victims would be carrying guns? You don’t think any of the criminals would be carrying? If victims were carrying they would no longer be victims since the playing field would now be leveled. Isn’t leveling the playing field what liberals are all about? If it went down as GZ describes then he may be innocent of any legal wrongdoing but is still an idiot for not minding his own business, which would have avoided the death of a non-criminal person, and his own ruined life. Question is if it went down as GZ said it did? Is GZ a liar? Also, isn’t it easily possible that TM saw a big latino dude following him and feared for his life due to racial bias too? Could that have informed TM’s decision to preemptively defend himself if that’s what happened, or fight back if it was GZ who started with the rough stuff? -D Reply I don’t see this “reenactment” being made to help him, he was unwise to participate in it without an attorney present. If I were on the jury and he told the court this story I would be inclined to believe him despite the flap over his bail and assets. It’s a stretch to tie one to the other, an ad hominem attack it is. Review (if you still can) the postings and musings of little Trayvon and ask yourself would you believe he said and did what GZ claims? If the prosecutors and judge are going to attack GZ and his wife over the bail issue in an attempt to sway the jury and convict him, then it’s OK to look at the life of TM and bring that into court. Naturally the prosecutor will object to any and all references to TM as anything other than a 17 year old dead boy but it’s relevant to determine who was the aggressor. And the elephant in the room is TM was on GZ kicking his ass, according to a WITNESS, and he fvcked with the wrong dude that night. If GZ pulled his pistol out when TM started with his “got a problem?” spiel this might have ended differently with TM backing off. Corey better have more than “convict GZ because he didn’t tell us he had 135K in a public donation basket just so we didn’t ask for 500K and keep him in jail with the rest of the scum”. Arresting his wife reeks of desperation on their part to get in front of this thing and paint them both as criminals. Reply “Arresting his wife reeks of desperation on their part to get in front of this thing and paint them both as criminals.” Umm, excuse me! …what she did was completely ILLEGAL. That does make her a criminal. You lie to the court on specific things, you’re guaranteed to get prosecuted. Doesn’t matter who you are or how high-profile the case is. They took peoples money and then lied about it to the court. She deserved to get arrested IMO. Reply I don’t blame him for trying. When the judge asks him how much money he has in is bank account it’s clear that how much money he has will impact the amount of the bail, which I think is bogus. Is that not confidential information, an individual is required to disclose their financial information before a bail is set? Reply Financial disclosure is critical in a bail proceeding. Having a lot of money can enable people to run away. Ralph, thats absurd. Anyone with a car and a few hundred dollars can leave the country. Yes, matt, but if you have a hundred grand in your backpack you can go a long way in luxury, instead of a shot way living on garbage. Wake up. Who cares if it is luxurious or not, eating shitty food as a freeman is still better than eating shitty food in jail. And if you were to live a luxurious life, you’d blow thru that 100k in a year or less. In this case the attention paid to her financial statements was not only unique but it could be argued that she was unsure of the ownership of those funds, or of the status they held. As for “running” GZ had 2 months to do that while this hapless prosecutor goofed around with the case. Reply we didn’t ask for 500K and keep him in jail with the rest of the scum That’s not the way it usually works. The purpose of bail isn’t to keep someone in jail, it’s to keep him from fleeing the jurisdiction. The theory is that if someone has to put up a substantial amount as security for their appearance at trial, they won’t skip out. Most of the time, the defendant posts 10% cash and addiitional security; the bonding company takes the responsibility for 100% of the amount. So if the court required $500 thousand surety, GZ might have to produce $50 thousand cash, which he could. The bail bondsman would guaranty the rest and take a secured position in GZ’s father’s real estate and other valuables, which I think is what happened. I don’t know what the financial arrangements were for GZ’s original bond, but they were based upon his statements to the court about his financial position. Those statements were clearly wrong and perhaps perjured. Not smart on GZ’s part, but then again, he hasn’t been smart about any of this. Reply @Ralph Wasen’t it his wife who made the misleading statements about the money and not Zimmerman himself? Reply It was his wife. I think it was his wife, and she spoke for GZ. Not smart on GZ’s part, but then again, he hasn’t been smart about any of this. Yea, I know. Why couldn’t he have been a good slave citizen and let Trayvon kill him? Reply If you lie to a judge, you go to jail. It doesn’t matter what color you are. Reply Your profession does matter, if your a prosecutor, you get to lie all you want. Reply No, there are limits. You don’t see many prosecutors go to jail, but honestly, you don’t see many wives-of-defendant go to jail either. That’s funny, I don’t remember Slick Willy being sent to jail for perjury. Reply Lying to Congress is not the same as lying to a judge. BC could have simply refused to answer any questions. (Try that with a judge.) But they did prosecute him, and they did take away his law license. Also, you get certain extra rights when you get elected President of the United States. Just ask Bush and Obama, who learned from Clinton’s lesson, and simply refuse to even show up. Doubtful, and even if he did, it never should have become an issue because GZ had no business hassling TM in the first place, especially after the dispatcher specifically told him not to. I don’t get why so many people supporting GZ seem to gloss over the fact that the confrontation that led to GZ getting his ass kicked so thoroughly that he feared for his life should have never happened in the first place. Reply Agreed it shouldn’t have happened. It was stupid to get out of the vehicle and not sit there for a few more minutes waiting for police. The dispatcher didn’t tell him not to by the way, it was “we don’t need you to do that.” Plus dispatchers have no actual authority and you are not required to follow any direction they give. Was it stupid and he should have done something else? Absolutely. Was it illegal for him to get out of his car and follow the kid? Absolutely not. Was he in a place he is legally allowed to be? Yes. Then if he indeed was attacked and the fight was initiated with TM, he is right to claim self defense. It comes down to who attacked who first. It was not illegal for him to get out of the car and he was not disobeying any orders by police. Reply Doing something stupid doesn’t mean it’s illegal. Reply There is this continuing theme of Zimmerman harassing Martin and yet there is as yet no publicly available evidence to show that Zimmerman was in fact harassing anyone. The 911 tapes and the accounts even from the Martin side do not indicate that Zimmerman approached or otherwise made contact with Martin. As far as we know right now all Zimmerman was doing was following Martin. Following someone is not necessarily a crime, nor is it necessarily harassment. I sometimes take walks on my lunch break and often there are other people that I come up behind on the sidewalk. To someone looking from the “outside in” it may look like I’m following the person in front of me but really I just happen to be walking in the same direction. Is this harassment? No it is not. Now if I started verbally attacking or invaded the person’s personal space you could call that harassment. But just walking in the same direction as another person – even if you are following them is not harassment. (note that’s not to say that following someone cannot become harassment if it’s excessive.) Or take for example that today I saw an unfamiliar car when I arrived at work. I did not recognize the car or occupant and the plates were out of state. Having had my car broken into twice (not while I was at work mind you) I’m quite paranoid about things that seem out of place when I leave my car. In any case I took a few moments to write down the plate number, a description of the car, and waited to see where the occupant walked into. Is what I did harassment? No it’s not. Maybe it’s a bit paranoid but it’s also being vigilant and aware of what’s going on around you. My point is that we have no evidence that any harassment was going on. Reply That is not the whole story. The whole story starts with the fact that he chased a kid down, to accuse him of a crime, with no evidence. No responsible gun owner goes around looking for a fight. If the roles had been reversed, and some inner-city kid chased you down in your neighborhood,, what would you do? My guess is that you would shoot him before he got close enough for a fistfight. What if Trayvon had shot Zimmerman? Wouldn’t he get the benefit of “stand your ground”? If not, why not? And if so, why do we have a law that says any disagreement can be settled by gunfire? Reply @Low Budget Dave: Oh, he chased him down? Well, shit, fry him then. I’m glad there’s finally a witness to what happened, even if it did take you four months to come forward. Make sure you get in touch with the DA to let him know what you saw. Following someone != looking for a fight. My apartment complex is on a slow downhill slide, and as such, I’m much more aware of the people walking around than I was a couple years ago. You know, much like George Zimmerman. I don’t leave the house unarmed, and if I thought someone was suspicious enough for me to call the cops, I wouldn’t hesitate to follow him, at a distance, to keep him in sight, so I could tell the cops where he was/where he went when they finally showed up. Assuming, that is, that he was anywhere near my home by the time they did show up. I called the cops about a screaming domestic about three weeks ago, and it took them 40 minutes to get here. Wow Dave, you lost everyone at “chased a kid down”. Are you kidding me? …you’re logic and “facts” are well…low budget for sure. The reason I said he “chased the kid down” is because he told the police that was the reason he got out of his car. there’s very little evidence of either perspective, there’s no “evidence” that TM walked up to Zimmerman and instigated the altercation (which was really started by GZ not staying in his vehicle). For some reason people assume the only living participant, who has already proven he is a liar, is being honest. So what if the kid had weed in his system, liked to fight, had a grill, was having trouble in school, he was walking down the street minding his business, and he was being “profiled”. You should have it done to you when you’re just minding your business, not doing anything. You’d see it a little differently. Reply the dispatcher did not specifically tell him not to. Reply The rules of Neighborhood Watch told him not to. Reply That doesn’t make it illegal, though. It does not make it illegal unless your intent is to shoot someone you suspect of robbing houses. Unfortunately, juries have to figure out motives. ‘You’re going to die tonight mother f–ker…’ It’s possible Martin saw the gun and his own reflection in GZ’s eyes, and was talking to himself. Reply Who has time for stupid one liners. So, if Martin saw the PF9 than GZ had the gun out before he was attacked. Wouldn’t that mean he used his firearm as a means of intimidation, assault, and threat of great bodily injury?? Reply That’s what I would think. Your life needs to be in danger before you draw your weapon and present deadly force. Reply Listen to the video again, especially the one where he is revisiting the scene of the attack and recounting what he remembers. He said that somehow in the scuffling with TM on top of him, that his firearm became exposed, TM saw it and tried to take it from him. Now GZ is in immediate and imminent fear for his life, so he drew his gun and shot TM once. I can’t imagine a better example of a “reasonable fear” justifiable self-defense case. Except that he wasn’t supposed to be there, and he wasn’t supposed to be armed. Neighborhood watch volunteers are not supposed to be police, and are not supposed to be judge-and-jury. If Zimmerman had been a cop, then the shooting would be justified, because a cop would have a reason for being there, and a reason for being armed. No matter how many times you say it, Dave, it’s not illegal to follow someone, and it’s not illegal to be armed while doing so. I didn’t say it was illegal, I said he wasn’t supposed to be there. It is only illegal if he intended to kill someone. Considering that he ended up killing someone, I could make a pretty good argument that what he did actually was illegal. I suspect the District Attorney will explain the technicalities roughly the same way. Dave, your logic train has jumped the tracks. You’re implying that GZ followed TM with the intent of killing him. There’s no way you could know that, and it runs counter what the rest of his statements say about his state of mind before/during/after the incident. So, if Martin saw the PF9 than GZ had the gun out You know how I can tell you didn’t watch the video? His statement was that during the struggle, his jacket and shirt rode up such that his firearm was visible, still in its holster (I believe he was carrying AIWB). He stated that when it became visible and TM saw it, he sat back for a moment staring at it, then said the “You’re gonna die tonight” line and started to reach for it. I’m not commenting on the truthiness of his statement; I’m just questioning your conclusion. Reply But the point remains that at the point Martin indicated to Zimmerman that he was going to kill him (one way or another) Zimmerman had the right to defend his life. Let’s see, TM was known drug user and perhaps small time retail dealer, He was caught with likely stolen property in his backback, he claimed to his cousin on twitter that he popped a school bus driver, participated in underground MMA activities, looked and acted like gang banger so nah he would never use language like that and if he did it was only jive talking. And if you believe that every resident of the inner city whether an upstanding citizen or gangsta will laugh in your face. Reply and darn it I need the comments editor back! Reply Completely off topic, but from the prior Chicago thread. How am I a felon? Reply I think he meant melon. Hey Ralph. Write the review of the Shield already. time served in Juvi hall? How does serving time in juvie make you a felon? Do you know what a felon or felony is? Juvi is for tikes who commit crimes. Crimes are often felonies which are committed by felons. So Matt are you merely a truant which I guess is a misdemeanor. I suppose that would make you Miss Demeanor herself. “Crimes are often felonies which are committed by felons.” lol, you have no clue what youre talking about, and obviously have no experience with the american justice system. Matt: You are right, I have never been in the system. I make it a personal policy not to get involved in the criminal justice system. I have never met anybody who did enter the system and not claim that it was all a mistake. I am sure what ever landed you in detention was just a frame up job or mistaken identity. However, I am willing to give you the benefit of the doubt since you appear to talk the talk but not walk the walk. I just love all the armchair psychology going on and how a lot of people just know that Zimmerman is lying because he didn’t wave his arms the way you think he should be. They say that the proof is in the pudding – in this case the pudding will be other statements that Zimmerman makes about what happened that night. If he deviates from his original statement then we will not have proof that he’s lying but it certainly will raise doubts as to the authenticity of Zimmerman’s account of the events. Reply I just love all the armchair psychology going on and how a lot of people just know that Zimmerman is lying because he didn’t wave his arms the way you think he should be. I agree with you, but fair warning — that’s exactly how juries look at testimony. If the witness shifts around in the chair too much, he’s lying — when actually, he has piles. Does he look around the courtroom too much? He’s shifty — when actually he’s searching for his minister or priest. Does he rub his hands together? He’s greedy — or cold. Body language resonates with juries, and is often misinterpreted. Reply how do they interpret terrified Reply GZ has watched too much TV Reply And once again we are all trying this case on the internet. GZ is not going to get a fair trial with an unbiased jury. The racial makeup will determine the bets being placed. Best he can hope for is a hung jury and the prosecutor declining to try it again. I doubt he will be found not guilty if they actually send it to a jury. People see what they want to see, believe what they want to believe. Reply The race angle probably won’t play out with a minority jury. An all white jury could end up sending GZ over. Reply For me the bottom line is that George Zimmerman’s story (his recounting of the events that fateful night) completely agrees with every detail of all the evidence – witness reports, medical & post-mortem reports, and the forensic evidence gathered at the scene. When you include circumstantial evidence about the past few years for TM and for GZ (which may never be seen by a jury), there is only one story that fits the evidence, and it certainly is not the story we were getting from the press, the liberal left, and the politically-motivated prosecution team. You can’t make up a lie that fits the evidence that well, so I believe George Zimmerman is telling the truth. Reply I can think of at least one other story that fits the evidence. I suspect it is the one you will hear from the prosecution. Reply It’s cute how people are still pretending that truth, justice, law, and civility will play or ever have played a part in this farce. Reply This here is the gospel. Reply I called this from the get-go. Trayvon got sent to Sanford by Mama, cause he was thrown out of school and hanging with the wrong crowd. So off he goes to see Daddy and the GF (nice family unit role model) during spring break. Well, if you were 17 and couldn’t hang out with your friends, and see your girlfriend during a school vacation period, you’d be pretty PO’ed too. So the thug has an attitude from the start, and decides to go off on GZ. He got what he deserved. Reply Thank you, Kreskin. Reply Yep. Any time you see a kid with an attitude, it is your responsibility as a citizen to stalk him. If he runs, chase him. If he resists, shoot him. Because having an attitude in America is a death sentence. Have you ever had a bad day? If someone had shot you, would your friends say: “He got what he deserved.”? Reply Sigh. If you live in an area which has been repeatedly the victim of property crime committed by young men, and you spot a young man who fits the profile of the people who have been committing the crimes, keeping an eye on that person is common sense. If you go out of your way to fit the profile of a criminal, don’t be surprised if people view you as a criminal. Suckerpunching someone then beating them viciously is a good reason to get shot. Reply No it is not. If you are saying that Zimmerman had the right to defend himself, then why isn’t Trayvon allowed to defend himself? You can’t have a different set of laws for people who “fit the profile..” No way he didn’t say it. I don’t know why people are quick to believe GZ’s story. It just doesn’t make pyschological sense to me. Why would TM tell his GF that someone is following him, gets scared, and starts running. Only to all of the sudden muster up a backbone, do a full 180, turn into an alpha male with absolutely no fear, take the long breath to see GZ’s gun, say “you’re going to die tonight MF”, then reach for his gun and try to kill him. If you have any ounce of fear and see a gun on someone’s hip or hand. You are going to take the time to contemplate whether or not you have enough time to run and grab the gun before the person can draw and shoot. Only a psychotic rager high on meth would be so bold as GZ’s story flows. It makes GZ seem like he was cool, calm, collected, and acted in order of logic. We know that’s not true, he was angry and upset for no reason already. This kid was 17, like any 17 year old they run their mouth, their rebellious, but i don’t think he would have had the kind of backbone to act like the way GZ’s story describes. It doesn’t make sense, and the steps all lead in GZ’s favor What i think happened is TM finally confronted GZ and yelled “why are you following me”, then GZ said some words something to the context of what are you doing in my neighborhood, let me see some id, the police are coming. Then TM said “F that i didn’t do nothin, i’m leaving” and GZ tried to detain him for police and got in over his head. Reply Yeah, GZ detained him by holding him down on the ground on top of his chest. For his sake I hope you don’t live near Sanford Florida. Reply You’d be surprised how effective smashing your eye sockets in to a guy’s first can be. Reply If some guy chased you down in your neighborhood, what would you do to him? Buy him a coffee? It wasnt TM’s neighborhood. TM’s mother sent him to live with relatives for spring break because he was a robo-tripping gang banging piece of shit who she didnt want to deal with anymore. Oh good. So it is OK to shoot him. I will remember that. So if someone shooots you, all they have to do is to insult you, and that makes it OK? It’s even better if you give your head a healthy bounce against the ground with each rep. You know, to use the elasticity of your skull. Reply Like i said he got in over his head. You can easily start a fight, and then easily start losing the fight at any time. Reply Yes, but the evidence we have indicates that Trayvon started the fight. That is not true. Zimmerman started the fight when he got out of his car and approached someone to accuse him of a crime. I don’t know where you live, but if some guy gets out of his car, and comes up to me to accuse me of a crime, he is the one who started the fight. Objection: assumes facts not in evidence. There is no evidence, other than GZ’s statements, about who approached whom. You’re confusing your ideas about what happened with the truth. You don’t know the truth any more than I do at this point. If I’m wrong about that, I would direct you to the Sanford PD. I’m sure they’d love to hear from you. Zimmerman did get out of his car, and he did it with the intention of “finding” the guy he was following. What was he going to do when he “found” him? According to his statements, he was going to walk away and call the police again. What I am saying is that I don’t believe that particular statement. Since this is not a court, I am free to make up my own mind about the statements, and I am free to express my opinion. But even in court, if Zimmerman says something that does not appear to be true, the prosecution is going to ask the same question I am asking. Why did you get out of your car? To “find” someone who was not doing anything at the moment? What would be the point of that? Everyone on this board keeps telling me that Zimmerman had the right to stalk the kid, and the right to get out of his car, and the right to be armed. And I keep repeating, he only has those rights when they do not interfere with the rights of others. Once his actions interfere with the rights of others, he is no longer minding his own business, he is threatening someone, and therefore guilty of assault. At trial, the prosecution will point this out, and all the people on this board will howl their disapproval. If a neighborhood watch volunteer abused his authority, and misused a gun against an innocent white kid, this board would be full of condemnation. Even if the guy with the gun was a cop, he would get 100% of the blame. But when the victim is a black kid with a history of pot, all the sudden, the public opinion is on the other side. This is just wrong. The cop-wannabe’s from the neighborhood watch do not have the right to chase down my kid and accuse him of a crime. They do not have the right to create a situation where deadly force is necessary. And just because it is someone else’s kid, they don’t suddenly get more rights. But when a You keep using the word “accuse.” As in “chase down and accuse.” As in accost and confront. What about “observe and report?” It’s really friggin’ hard to observe someone if you can’t see them. You keep inserting your own fantasies about what happened into the story. You don’t know what happened. Stop making shit up. “Why did you get out of your car?” You seem to think that the only possible reason GZ would get out of the car was because of his desire to “chase down and accuse” this person. I, on the other hand, see it differently, because I’ve done very similar things, and I know for a fact I had no intention of directly interfacing with the other person. I did it because I had already notified the cops, and I was keeping him in sight so when the cops arrived, I could tell them where he’d gone, or in my specific case, I could verify and relay that he’d jumped the fence and left my complex. …he only has those rights when they do not interfere with the rights of others. How does following someone interfere with their rights? I don’t want to hear more from you about “chasing” and “accusing,” because there is no evidence of that thus far. The only thing we know for sure that GZ did was follow TM. So I repeat, at what point does following someone interfere with their rights? It obviously interferes with their rights when you end up killing them. But let’s say we are on a jury. Are we supposed to believe that Zimmerman did absolutely nothing to interfere with Martin’s rights? Right up to the point where he killed Martin, and beyond? I don’t believe that. And since we live in a free country, I have the right to say so. If they choose to ban me from the board, then I will say so elsewhere. (So far, though, this board does not appear to ban people just for having opposing points of view. Which means that this board actually believes in several freedoms, and not just the 2nd Amendment.) Matt, I am interested in the fact that you have been in a similar situation. How is it that you managed not to kill the suspected burgler? Was it because the suspect chose to run instead of confront you? What if he had been innocent, and decided to confront you? What if he had gotten frightened at you following him, and decided to defend himself? would you have killed him? If so, then I think you are suggesting that in a similar situation, you would also murder someone for no other reason than they got angry at you for following him. It obviously interferes with their rights when you end up killing them. Correlation != causation, or something. I’m really trying hard to understand just what you mean. How does following someone equate to an infringement on their rights? Their rights to what, exactly? You’re not detaining them, you’re not assaulting them, you’re not threatening them. The right to not be followed? I must have missed that one in civics class. Are we supposed to believe that Zimmerman did absolutely nothing to interfere with Martin’s rights? That was his statement, I believe. Absent evidence to the contrary, there is nothing to disprove it. Your “feelings” are not evidence to the contrary. You are free to hold your opinion. I’m free to ask you to back it up. Nobody’s going to ban you. But there’s a difference between stating your opinion and making flat pronouncements like, “Zimmerman started the fight when he got out of his car and approached someone to accuse him of a crime.” If you put a period after the word “car” that would be an opinion. It’d still be just as wrong, but it would be an opinion, because the fact that he got out of his car is not in dispute, and that being the genesis of the fight is your interpretation. However, the rest of your sentence is a flat statement, and pure conjecture. Your sentence, as stated, is logical… he got out of the car, approached TM, accused him of (whatever), and they got into an altercation. Except, and this is important, we don’t know what happened after he got off the phone. So if you remove what we don’t know, you’re left with, “GZ started the fight when he got out of his car,” at which point you realize there’s something missing. There’s more to the story. You are introducing your own ideas about what happened in an effort to back up your position. I don’t object to your position, I object to you making things up. Someone definitely approached the other person, but there is no evidence that I’m aware of in either direction, other than GZ’s statement. As far as my situation, I “managed to not kill the suspected burglar” because I’m not sure he even knew I was watching him. What if he had gotten frightened at you following him, and decided to defend himself? would you have killed him? Defend himself from what, exactly? The average build, average looking white guy that was watching him? I’m quite threatening from 30-40 yards away, I know, but you’re starting to stretch the bounds of reality. There is a difference between correlation and causation, but it is the difference between first degree murder and third-degree murder. If you set out to commit a crime, even if you didn’t know it was a crime, and you end up killing someone, you are guilty of murder. If you set out to go get some skittles, and you end up killing someone, you might be guilty of manslaughter, but not murder. The point is that your actual intentions are what matter, not what you claim your intentions were. You seem to be willing to give Zimmerman the benefit of every doubt, and to take him at his word as to his intentions. I don’t think juries are required to do that. I think juries are allowed to judge his intentions based on related actions, such as getting out of the car in violation of Neighborhood Watch rules. You keep saying there is no evidence to the contrary, but that is flatly incorrect. I submit Item 1: The Neighborhood Watch manual, which clearly states that you are not allowed to carry a gun. By violating that policy, Zimmerman created evidence about his intent. Item 2 is that he got out of the car, in violation of the Neighborhood Watch Manual. Again, violation of that manual indicates intent, and is admissible as evidence. Item 3 is that he ended up killing the suspect. Your example proves why this is admissible as evidence of intent. You were able to observe someone from a safe distance and never do anything that indicated a threat, a confrontation, or an accusation. Zimmerman was in roughly the same situation that you were in, but he was not able to do any of these things. He claims the reason he failed three of the most basic standards of Neighborhood Watch is because he is amazingly incompetent. According to you, we are required to take him at his word. I believe you are incorrect. I believe we are allowed to speculate, and that the jury will be allowed to listen to speculation. In fact, I can almost guarantee that the jury will hear the exact same speculation that I have offered, and the question will be asked roughly the same way I have asked it: “Which is more likely: That Zimmerman was suddenly and viciously attacked without provocation by a guy who was protecting his skittles, or that Zimmerman decided to arm himself, jump out of his car, chase down a suspect, and play cop. Considering that we know he armed himself, we know he jumped out of his car, we know that he applied to be a cop (several times), the timeline certainly makes it appear that he chased down the suspect. ” Generally speaking, the jury is not going to convict Zimmerman unless someone finds a videotape of him stalking Trayvon. But that doesn’t make it right. I keep thinking of my son. My son is autistic, and behaves oddly. He does not always follow, or even understand, certain instructions. If a Neighborhood Watch volunteer observes, they might assume he is drunk. My worst nightmare is that he will start off to a neighbors house some day, and some Neighborhood Nitwit-with-a-gun is going to claim that my son beat him up. Then, when I point out that it seems unlikely, all the gun nuts across America will say that the only evidence I am allowed to believe are the statements of the survivor. As far as I know, that is not true. The police aren’t required to take every suspect at his word, and neither are we. You might say that I am making stuff up. I disagree. I believe that what I am doing is pointing out some of the inconsistencies in the arguments made by racists on the internet. The fact that you don’t fall into that category doesn’t mean that your arguments are any better. What if it were your son? Would you say: “Oh well, I guess we can’t say anything bad about the shooter unless we have a videotape.”? Really? Sure we are. We don’t need a videotape to call someone a liar, we can just say that he appears to be lying. Which is what I said. People gonna believe what they wanna believe. But there is not a shred of evidence to support any of that. If GZ tried to restrain TM there would be some marks on the TM body to indicate that. There isn’t anything except the scraped knuckles on his fists which correspond with the black eyes, broken nose and bruising on GZ’s face. There is no evidence to support your theory of events. The only argument you have is that you don’t believe it could have happened the way GZ says, even though the preponderance of evidence agrees with his statements. I don’t believe everything happened exactly the way GZ says, because I think there may have been a little time dilation due to extreme amounts of adrenalin. I also think there may be a little filling-in-the-blanks in GZ’s memory due to some PTSD after surviving the most traumatic event ever in GZ’s life. I do believe that GZ is telling the truth “to the best of his ability, so help him God”. And I believe that GZ was not the aggressor in this fight. He was the defender from the beginning when TM started the fight, through the middle as the fight got more and more vicious, until the end just after TM made it clear he was going to kill him. People just gonna believe what they wanna believe. Reply “People just gonna believe what they wanna believe.” That combined with racial animosity is why GZ is going to jail, and why our “justice” system is a farce. Reply I believe that at least one person on the jury will be smart enough and detached enough to : a. understand the applicable laws and how the facts of the case apply to those laws. and b. can piece together the evidence and the statements by the witnesses and George Zimmerman. If the evidence does not contradict essential portions of GZ’z statements, then that person will vote for acquittal. If just one person is like this, then the worst GZ will get is a hung jury. I don’t expect all 12 jurors will be this astute, so I do expect a hung jury. Then the prosecution will not try for a second trial. Why wouldn’t they? At the same token, there is no real evidence to corroborate GZ’s story either. The only evidence there is corroborates that GZ was losing the fight towards the end. As far as PTSD???????? Wtf, i’ve been in far worse fights and left with much worse injuries. GZ and the defense is exagerating the extent of injuries, it’s very easy to get a bloody nose, scrapes and such in a fight. GZ got in way over his head, doesn’t know how to fight, panicked, and shot TM. That’s is for certain. As far as what led up to this event and what caused the escalation into fighting, no one will know. I don’t believe GZ is telling the truth, you can watch his microexpressions. After he tells his story of events, he opens his eyes and stares at the person as if he’s looking for approval. He also lied to the judge about his money. A huge lie, and not something he simply “overlooked”. He’s lost all credibility with me. Also, i believe many people are quick to rally behind him simply for the fact of gun rights. He’s a fellow gun owner, so we should be behind him???? I really don’t get that, just because he has a CCL and owns a gun doesn’t give him the right to be a vigilante and try to be a police officer without proper training, a badge, and a uniform. If he had on a uniform, a security t-shirt or jacket, i think events would have turned out much differently as TM would have been a little more submissive. So at the very least i believe he should get neglegent manslaughter. The truth is, had GZ not been stalking TM, TM would have gone home and nothing would have happened that day. TM was also scarred and acted out of fear, as per the phone call with his GF. He had a right to stand his ground the same as GZ. What’s unclear is how the physical confrontation actually started and is a matter of do you believe him. But regardless, GZ didn’t handle things properly, didn’t try to deescalate the situation according to his account of the story, and didn’t identify himself or represent himself properly. Reply Tyvon Martin….. “A thug by any other name, is STILL a thug” Abeit a “DEAD Thug”… Reply TM wasnt a thug, he was a no limit nigga, according to his twitter account anyway. Reply I once had an encounter with a person who described herself to me as a “24/7 bitch”. I relayed that description to my administrative superiors by cellphone, in her presence, as her self-appellation. Nobody has any justifiable complaint if anyone uses such a reference, if it is their own description of themselves. “No limit nigga” should be as proper a reference as “Barry Soreto”. Reply Are you all really trying to read into a professed admiration for music? Would you be judging a twitter proclamation of “Phish Phan Phorever” or “Country ’til I die”? Reply if you read the lyrics from Kane & Able, or take the literal translation from “ebonics”, TM was a self described nigger who would not be limited by societies laws and mores. GZIM should be charged with pointing/presenting as well. Brandishment is a felony charge. Reply While they were struggling with Martin on top of him, his jacket rode up and Martin saw his gun. That hardly qualifies as ‘brandishing a weapon’, now does it? Reply It appears to me that most “brandishment” charges are either : Accidental exposure of a (legally) concealed gun, or exhibiting a (legal) weapon to an agressor to warn them of how they were endangering themselves, to AVOID violence that might well result in the loss of that agressor’s life. It’s doing that potential criminal a favor. In other words, BS laws to provide more protection to criminals, and cause more trouble for the intended victim. Reply They don’t even protect criminals as they create a situation were anyone who draws their weapon MUST shoot unless the criminal turns tail before they can get a shot off. Reply I should clarify what I meant by “protection to criminals”. The laws against “brandishing” should only apply to a THREAT made against an innocent party. It should not apply to WARNING someone who has shown by his speech or behavior that he is an immediate threat to commit violence. The way it works out, the BG gets to claim he was unjustly threatened and frightened when his intended victim “brandished” a gun at him. In effect, the law protects a mugger from a form of non-violent resistance on the part of his intended victim, and punishes that intended victim for not allowing the situation to escalate to the level of justifiable use of deadly force. Yeah, I believe GZ, he sure hasn’t shown a propensity for lying has he?? ROLLEYES Reply His wife lied about their finances. Can you point out even one time when George Zimmerman has lied about this case? I’m not asking for an opinionated statement that you don’t believe something he said. Can you state one thing he has said which disagrees with the evidence about this case? Reply From the way kids talk these days… like they are all cold-blooded killers… yeah. I can see a kid saying that. Did he say it? Who knows? Reply George Zimmerman went looking for trouble that night and found it. Nobody but he knows what really was said/happened. But I do know this, if he gets off, it will provide fodder for every anti-gun advocate in this country. He may have had to defend himself that night, but he put himself in that position. Reply Yep. Anyone who leaves his house goes looking for trouble and should be prosecuted for defending himself when someone tries to beat him to death. Don’t even get me started on all those women out there asking to be raped. Reply Wow, you read much into little… Had I been in TM’s shoes, GZ would be dead and I would be using castle doctrine as a defense. “I was walking home from the store when this guy started following me. I started to run and he ran too. I was scared for my life.” When we concealed carry, we take on a responsibility. He made bad decisions, IMO. Reply Well, you’d be a murder then. You can’t shoot someone for running in public. Well, you’d be a murderer then. You can’t shoot someone for running in public. You also can’t use whatever you think “castle doctrine” is when you’re not in your house. Of course none of that is in any way applicable to the case at hand. You can’t shoot someone for chasing you? I think that is not what the law says. Well Dave, then you should probably go read it. Regardless, the point is inapplicable to the situation at hand, since there is no evidence that Zimmerman chased Trayvon. If not, then how did Zimmerman catch him? Because seriously, the whole Zimmerman story is that he stalked a guy in his car, and then got out of his car when the guy started to get away. On the 911 call, he was running. Do you think he was running away from Trayvon? Or the wind noise was from a sudden breeze? If Zimmerman got out of his car to find someone, why would he head back to the car without finding him? If he was headed back to the car, why would he not agree to meet the police at a specific location? If Trayvon was running away just seconds earlier, why would he suddenly decide to turn around, and hunt down the guy following him? What you are calling “evidence” is a pack of lies constructed by people seeking to blame the victim. The fact of the matter is that guns don’t make most people safe. Most people are small-minded halfwits, and guns only make them dangerous. So in your mind, a man carrying a gun and a woman minding her business are exactly the same to you? Carrying a gun with a permit may be legal, but it’s also not something that normal people do outside of the movies. Reply Sweet I’m in a movie! And as to the rest of your post. No. Your conclusion is gibberish and not even implied by my post. Clearly, the only thing the lad uttered that night as Zimmerman profiled and murdered him was, “Good evening good sir. Would you you like to share my iced tea and Skittles candy?” If you believe otherwise, you’re racist. Reply Does it really matter what he say? He was a kid minding his own business, walking home from the store in a rush to catch the second half, when an adult armed with a gun started following him and approached him. I’m an adult and if I ever met a private citizen carrying a weapon I’d probably be freaked out as well. Reply No he wasn’t. He was a teenaged beating a guy’s head against the ground and telling him he was going to die. Reply it is in Texas. My house, my possessions and my person. I’m an old white guy with no love for young punks. I also have no love for wannabe cops who threaten my rights with their stupid actions. IMO, GZ gives all responsible gun owners a black eye. Reply Why, because we should disregard the evidence and try him for murder based on what a bunch of racists insist happened? Assuming Zimmerman’s account is accurate, the shooting was justified. Castle doctrine, by definition, refers to the presumption that force is justified within a dwelling. It’s not a blanket term that describes any situation in which deadly force is justified. Reply What right of Trayvon’s do you think Zimmerman was threatening? What justification do you think Trayvon had for trying to kill Zimmerman? What evidence do you have to support your answer to either of those questions? Reply “Castle laws” remove the duty to retreat before using deadly force when you are in your home or in some states just simply where you can legally be. (wiki) http://www.cga.ct.gov/2007/rpt/2007-R-0052.htm (citation) Reply That’s a bad description of castle doctrine, and even it doesn’t apply to any of the sets of circumstances you’re talking about. In the CT version, the common castle doctrine is mixed in with the clause covered by stand your ground. In most states that have such laws, the castle doctrine is exclusively applied to your home and vehicle. The states that have no stand your ground clause in the definition have added the stand your ground law to protect citizens that are where they can legally be, outside of their home/vehicle. Reply I know of cases, where this has happened. So, I say it’s very plausible. If your taken to the ground and your gun is discovered by your attacker, it will be used against you. Fighting from the ground is never where you want to be, but in reality where you may end up. By the injuries to Zimmerman and information we have so far, Martin was on top of Zimmerman when he was shot. Stand your ground may not apply in this case, but self defense sure as hell, looks reasonable. This is going to be fascinating case to watch unfold. A case in Philadelphia a few years back, a jury acquitted a CCW holder for shooting an unarmed attacker. The jury found that the victim, only shot when he was taken to the ground. Fearing his gun would be discovered, the permit holder fired several shots, striking his attacker. The jury said, it was what any reasonable person would do, in lieu of having the gun taken from you and used against you. Reply How would self-defense enter into it? A child was minding his own business, walking from the store to the house he was visiting, when an armed stranger paranoid enough to call 911 followed and approached him. Zimmerman instigated the interaction. He was the aggressor. He walked around with a gun like he was Wyatt Earp or living in the Gaza Strip. If you pick a fight with an unarmed child while carrying a weapon it is IMPOSSIBLE to suddenly morph into self-defense. Reply If you have to lie to support your position, it’s probably not worth supporting. You’re wrong about the facts; you’re wrong about the law. Reply If GZ was the cold calculating racist/killer some still maintain he was, against all evidence, why apologize to the family against his attorney’s counsel? Its a wonder he has held up as well as he has considering the well-financed and politically powerful racist lynch mob arrayed against him, including even the President of the United States. I wish, for his sake, he had been more cool-headed and kept his mouth shut until consulting an attorney. His emotional apology shows he is no professional thug, racist or murderer. If only GZ had been black or ‘gay’ and TM had been white–the left would be digging TM up to kill him all over again. It is also interesting to see all the Monday morning quarterbacks who pretend to know exactly how to react if they are ever in a similar situation. May they be in one soon, so we can marvel as they not only tell us, but show us, exactly ‘how its done.’ Reply A whole paragraph of political and racial ideology that never addressed the question….Tea anyone? Reply I’m sure all the Monday Morning Quarterbacks wouldn’t think twice about a child walking on the street. Living less than two miles from school, I had to walk to middle school and high school rather than receive bus service. I always too different routes to change things up, I cut through strangers yards and my destination was never questioned. To see a teenager walking down the street, or through a yard, and question their destination and motive is so deeply paranoid and irrational as to question the adult’s mental stability. To call 911 in such a situation, or even jump to the conclusion that a kid may be up to no good… Well, the Monday Morning QBs feel okay about judging these actions because we would NEVER, EVER instigate them. Reply If your neighborhood had been repeatedly victimized by “children”, and a “child” was walking down the street, viewing that “child” with suspicion is common sense. Reply To my knowledge petty crimes were committed in the area and there was no description of a suspect on file so it’s not as if the high schooler minding his own business in question was a dead ringer for the culprit. And regarding anyone with apprehension without them giving you reason to is a bizarre world view. I will be charitable and assume you are a nice middle class suburbanite. There are neighborhoods where 17 year old “children” commit horrible crimes and are oftne the preferred individual for killing someone. Trayvon Martin was no child. He was close enough to being an adult to steal, deal drugs and participate in gang related activities. Reply Who cares whether he said it or not? I’m still trying to figure out how GZ could scream for help if his mouth was covered? And how could TM “ground-and-pound” him if he was covering his mouth? This kid must have had four arms. I’ve never seen so much dialogue in a fist fight…it sounds like a B movie…”You got a problem? You do now MF!…biff-bang-boom-pow….”Shut up”…oomph-bang-crunch “You’re gonna die MF!…”splat-bam-crunch….”HELP….HELP…HELP” BANG! “You got me!” GZ pushes TM off of him… Fade to black…. Reply Given the site’s domain name I have no doubt this will be an unpopular view, but I have a difficult time believing or relating to anyone having a pistol on them who’s not required by their job to carry a gun. As someone who’s spent the vast majority of his time on Warth in major metropolitan areas — Los Angeles, New York City (including a year spent as a white man walking through a housing project twice a day), Atlanta and even Orlando — without ever seeing a handgun drawn or in the possession of someone not in law enforcement, the level of paranoia that would lead one to purchase and carry a gun baffles me and calls into question a person’s ability to perceive reality and humanity around them. I realize that violent crime is a reality. I see the statistics and the overhyped local news, but as a loudly-opinionated man who’s spent 32 years on this planet without ever encountering crime or the threat of violence, it strikes me that one would have to live fairly well outside the bounds of accepted behavior to ever encounter such irrational behavior. Someone so deranged as to carry a gun around with them, not to mention brandish it in a dispute with a child, seems to be definitionally mentally unstable and to so lack a grasp on how people interact with strangers (you treat them as you’d wish your parents to be treated and respectfully remind people who lose themselves in the heat of the moment of that golden rule)… Well, they clearly don’t exist in the reality of 99.9% of humanity and thus their words and behaviors should be viewed with a suspicion that we would not cast on those who would never bring weapons into polite society. Reply I don’t think you understand the meaning of the word “brandishing”. There is no proof GZ brandished his firearm AT ALL. As a matter of fact, if he DID brandish his firearm, there would have been no fight. Unless, of course, you thing Trayvon Martin was such a badass that he attacked someone who WAS HOLDING A FIREARM. Nice of you to say that everyone who has a CCW permit is deranged. Wow. What are you doing here? Are you a spy from the Brady Campaign? Reply I was directed here from a google search for reviews for a Stephen Hunter novel. I found the writing unusually thoughtful for a site that wasn’t literary by nature so I took a look around. I’m not disputing Zimmerman’s legal right to carry the firearm, or whether he was brandishing it or not, I’m just pointing out that most adults living in modern day America go a lifetime without encountering violence of any kind. Zimmerman, who lives in a much safer environment than many I have inhabited, felt the need to not only get a permit and purchase a firearm, but to carry it on his body. While I think there should be stricter gun laws in America, I certainly don’t think that handguns should be restricted further. I believe there are many legitimate reasons one might need to keep one in the house or even extreme circumstances in which they may need to carry it on their person (and I’m not in favor of denying the right to own and carry guns for those who have no reason), but the choice to carry a weapon of any kind when not under some sort of extraordinary threat points to a paranoid and violent mind the likes of which most of us never encounter. Reply To go a bit further into your question about the Brady campaign, I’ve never thought to look into it because like every adult I know guns simply aren’t a real concern in our daily lives. To my knowledge, no one that I know owns a gun and to my certitude no one I know has encountered an act of gun violence outside of military service. That some people want to twist the words of a bunch of 18th century slave owners escaping tyranny into a justification to own assault weapons is bizarre to most people, but we do not really care since it’s not something that ever effects our lives. I don’t mean to paint with a broad brush and come off as someone who things anyone that might keep guns on a shooting range or legally hunt believes in such far ranging gun ownership, but I’m saying I’m not terribly opposed to those extremists who do. Reply Why write an argument when you can regurgitate cliches, right? Your experiences in life have lead you to your judgments and conclusions. I think you can understand that others may not share your experiences, and may come to very different conclusions. For example, all of my family live in quiet, peaceful suburbs. Work and school have frequently required us to be in more dangerous urban areas, but we feel safe at home. Still, in a space of about two years, six members of my family were victims of violent crime, in two cases in that “safe” environment. In all cases except one (a woman victim and a perp armed with a knife) the criminals outnumbered the victims by at least 2-1, and as much as 6-1. In only one case was a gun “brandished” by a perp — the 6-1 incident, where the numerical superiority of the criminals made the gun a superfluous threat. All the victims were injured, but all survived. The worst case required a hospitalization of two weeks. That was the result of an unarmed assault of two victims by a gang of 7-8 hoods. My experiences have brought me to radically different views than those which you have expressed.; but then, they are radically different experiences. @Joe Gillis, you’re all over the place here, so if you don’t mind, I’m going to sum up my responses in one post. So in your mind, a man carrying a gun and a woman minding her business are exactly the same to you? Well, that depends. Is he carrying concealed, or openly holstered (where that’s legal)? If so, then yes, they are exactly the same thing. Because the man in your example can be carrying a gun and minding his business simultaneously, and that woman could have a gun in her purse than you never know about. Carrying a gun with a permit may be legal, but it’s also not something that normal people do outside of the movies. Ah, your first ad hominem attack. I’m abnormal, then. My father, who is one of the most normal, god-fearing, upstanding men I’ve ever met, recently at the age of 64 suddenly became abnormal in response to his concerns over several incidents near both his home and his condo (on both coasts of Florida). Does it really matter what he say? Yes. Intent, combined with the apparent ability to carry it out, constitutes a credible threat. …when an adult armed with a gun started following him and approached him AND …when an armed stranger paranoid enough to call 911 followed and approached him AND Zimmerman instigated the interaction. He was the aggressor. Objection, thrice. Assumes facts not in evidence. There is no evidence, aside from GZ’s statement, about who approached whom. Unless you know something the rest of us don’t, in which case I would direct you to the Sanford PD. I’m an adult and if I ever met a private citizen carrying a weapon I’d probably be freaked out as well. Well, it’s a good thing that most people who carry do so in a concealed manner, because how would you ever get anything done in this world if you were constantly clutching your pearls? If you pick a fight with an unarmed child while carrying a weapon it is IMPOSSIBLE to suddenly morph into self-defense. Wrong. Ignoring your purposeful use of the emotionally freighted words “unarmed child,” you’re flat wrong. Legally, it is possible for an aggressor to assert self-defense if the person “reasonably believes that he or she is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm and that he or she has exhausted every reasonable means to escape such danger other than the use of force which is likely to cause death or great bodily harm to the assailant; or In good faith, the person withdraws from physical contact with the assailant and indicates clearly to the assailant that he or she desires to withdraw and terminate the use of force, but the assailant continues or resumes the use of force.” See Fl. Stat. § 776.041. To my knowledge petty crimes were committed in the area and there was no description of a suspect on file so it’s not as if the high schooler minding his own business in question was a dead ringer for the culprit. Then your knowledge is flawed, and you should probably alleviate that situation before making broad statements like that above. Let me help you. — At least eight burglaries were reported within Twin Lakes in the 14 months prior to the Trayvon Martin shooting… Twin Lakes residents said dozens of reports of attempted break-ins and would-be burglars casing homes… In several of the incidents, witnesses identified the suspects to police as young black men. One morning in July 2011, a black teenager walked up to Zimmerman’s front porch and stole a bicycle. On August 3, [Olivia] Bertalan watched from a downstairs window as two black men repeatedly rang her doorbell and then entered through a sliding door at the back of the house. On February 2, 2012, Zimmerman placed a call to Sanford police after spotting a young black man he recognized peering into the windows of a neighbor’s empty home… On February 6, the home of another Twin Lakes resident, Tatiana Demeacis, was burglarized. Two roofers working directly across the street said they saw two African-American men lingering in the yard at the time of the break-in… One of the roofers called police the next day after spotting one of the suspects among a group of male teenagers… Police found Demeacis’s laptop in the backpack of 18-year-old Emmanuel Burgess… Burgess was the same man Zimmerman had spotted on February 2. Someone so deranged as to carry a gun around with them, not to mention brandish it in a dispute with a child, seems to be definitionally mentally unstable… So, two points here. First, I’m not sure if you are referring to GZ specifically or people who carry weapons in general as deranged and mentally unstable, but I’m gonna go ahead and assume the worst and count that as your second (and third?) ad hominem attack. Second point, about the brandishing… Objection. Assumes facts not in evidence. GZ’s statement was that during the altercation, his shirt rode up rendering the weapon visible, at which point TM made a grab for it. Zimmerman, who lives in a much safer environment than many I have inhabited… Well, clearly not, as GZ has been the victim of, and witness to, quite a few crimes, as well as being involved in a life-altering physical dispute. According to your statements, nothing like that has ever happened to you. …felt the need to not only get a permit and purchase a firearm, but to carry it on his body. Not to be pedantic, but in Florida, the order is purchase > permit > carry. You don’t need a permit to buy a gun here. While I think there should be stricter gun laws in America, I certainly don’t think that handguns should be restricted further. Uh, what? So where should the stricter gun laws be, if not handguns? Ooh, I bet it’s the dreaded assault weapons that you’re afraid of. …and I’m not in favor of denying the right to own and carry guns for those who have no reason… Perhaps not, but you will make disparaging comments about their mental health and worldview for wanting to do so. …the choice to carry a weapon of any kind when not under some sort of extraordinary threat points to a paranoid and violent mind… Who determines extraordinary threat? Is it like “may issue,” where I have to show good cause to an LEO? And we’ll wrap things up with one last ad hominem attack. In case you’ve lost track, since I carry a concealed weapon, I am now abnormal, deranged, mentally unstable, and possibly a possessor of a paranoid and violent mind. Damn, I really ought to talk to someone, I guess. Thanks for sticking with me, those of you that did. It was fun to pretend to be Bruce Krafft, although I could never really compare. Reply +1 I stuck with you, Matt. It was well worth it. Thank you. Reply As far as the detective that was skeptical of Zimmerman’s account, I think a great deal of that is the idea that mundanes are never justified in their actions. Reply The detective have to be skeptical in order to investigate.They can’t just accept every story they are given as truth.Prisons are full of people who didn’t do it just ask Reply According to our system of justice, I have a “reasonable belief” that Zimmerman told the truth unless anyone presents to me evidence to the contrary. Reply LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply Please enter your comment! Please enter your name here You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address here Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email.