The legal system in the United States is known as an adversary system. In this system, the parties to a controversy develop and present their arguments, gather and submit evidence, call and question witnesses, and, within the confines of certain rules, control the process. The fact finder, usually a judge or jury, is supposed to remain neutral and passive throughout the proceeding.
There is no doubt that this system is imperfect, but it’s the only one we have and it’s arguably the best one in the world.
There is no doubt that the George Zimmerman verdict is a polarizing one. One only has to look at my Facebook Timeline or Twitter feed to see that. I realize that the majority of the blogging world is fairly liberal. As such, it was no surprise to me that my timeline and twitter feed were filled with people upset at George Zimmerman’s not guilty verdict. I understand the outrage. A young man is dead. A mother and father’s hearts are broken. Nothing will bring back Treyvon Martin to his family. That is a tragedy.
Having said that, here are my thoughts on the entire situation. If it matters or not, I live in Central Florida. I know this case has gotten national attention, but that is nothing compared to what it’s like to live in the area in which such a huge trial is taking place. It wasn’t that long ago we were dealing with the Casey Anthony trial. To say we’ve had our fair share of national media attention over murder trials would be an understatement.
I watched this trial in its entirety. There were times during the State’s case that I had to double check to make sure the defense hadn’t started presenting their case yet. It seemed a good number of the State’s witnesses did more to help the defense than they did the state.
First, let’s review the law. Florida Justifiable Use of Force Laws
FL Statute 776.012(1) states the following:
Use of force in defense of person.—A person is justified in using force, except deadly force, against another when and to the extent that the person reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to defend himself or herself or another against the other’s imminent use of unlawful force. However, a person is justified in the use of deadly force and does not have a duty to retreat if:
FL Statute 776.13 (3) states the following:
“I’m sure there’s someone out there who will give up their freedom to right this wrong once Zimmerman’s released. And, I like that #trayvon”
- Yes, two wrongs make a right. I’m sure I read that somewhere.
“All I can hope is that Zimmerman’s fate will be even worse than prison.”
- See above.
“Every stalker in America with a gun knows they can follow me & if I confront them & we fight they can KILL ME and walk #Justice For Trayvon”
- First, he was never charged with stalking. Second, if you confront someone for whatever reason, and start a fight with them, you need to be prepared for any outcome.
Regardless of what the law says, one thing is true: If George Zimmerman had just stayed in his car, Trayvon Martin would be alive.
- If Trayvon had not started punching George, he might also still be alive.
I fully understand why we mad about the GZ verdict but I wish we had this kind of outrage towards black on black crime.
- I completely agree.
George Zimmerman gets his gun back. Let that sink in.
- He has not been convicted of any crime. He is legally allowed to own a firearm.
And there were many tweets about what parents should tell their kids about this verdict. You tell them that even though you may not agree with the verdict, our justice system did what it was supposed to do. Both sides argued their cases, and an impartial jury weighed the evidence and delivered a verdict. You tell them that if they don’t like the laws, work to change them. You tell them that violence doesn’t solve violence. You hug them tighter and you pray (if that’s your thing). You don’t advocate violence in retaliation to a verdict you don’t agree with.
There has been much ado about race in this trial. I”m not so naive as to believe there isn’t still racism in this country. Sadly, there probably always will be.
What really chaps my ass about all this is how many people who identify themselves as liberals and claim to want tolerance are some of the most intolerant people I’ve ever seen. It’s okay for people to disagree with my point of view. It’s okay for people to disagree with your point of view. If you truly want tolerance, you need to practice what you preach.