Cole Burns wrote:
Point of fact: The 911 operator never instructed him to NOT confront Trayvon. She kept saying "You don't have to do that," which could actually be perceived as permissive. In fact, had Trayvon been an actual burglar, the stand your ground law works, regardless of the operator's instructions.
Actually, that sounds like a very polite "stop". But fair enough.
I'm also extremely confused where you get the SYG perspective on that? I have only heard that stand your ground only means if you feel threatened you do not have to retreat before using force to protect yourself. No where does it say "It's ok to confront and shoot a person cause he's a burglar." Can you source that?
What I think happened was Zimmerman saw who he thought was a burglar, decided to confront him since the police would likely arrive too late. Upon confronting Trayvon a scuffle ensued (instigated by whom, we'll never truly know - Zimmerman because he followed him? Or Trayvon because of a perceived threat).
This is what I was talking about earlier. In either of these cases, Zimmerman is at fault. If Zimmerman instigated, he has committed manslaughter, because no scuffle would have ensued had he remained in the safe harbor of his vehicle. Hell, if Trayvon had confronted him while he was still in his vehicle and shot him in cold blood he'd have a better case.
But if Trayvon instigated contact because he felt threatened, then Zimmerman is still at fault via Stand Your Ground. If Martin felt threatened by a man who was following him in his truck, who got out of a vehicle, after following, he could feel threatened enough to use force to defend himself. So if Zimmerman then shot him, after Trayvon was defending himself, he's again guilty of manslaughter (on my elementary knowledge of law).
I think that what happened was an accidental shooting. Zimmerman had the safety off, there's a scuffle and Trayvon doesn't see the gun, and the gun fires and hits Trayvon. Of course many would disagree with that.
Again, if he approached Trayvon with a gun drawn, he was looking for a conflict and not attacked. If the gun goes off because of said conflict, I again, think he's guilty of manslaughter and not 100% innocent.
Also, Martin's mother and most agree, Zimmerman did not set out to shoot Martin and it was an accidental shooting. However accidental, though, that still makes Zimmerman guilty of manslaughter.
I also don't think that Zimmerman was a racist - garbled audio on 911 tape to the contrary - but was looking for anyone who fit the physical/attired description of a burglar. Race plaid a part in this only after the fact, really, and is more about the police's lack of response to the situation.
In the end, I think manslaughter would be easier to prosecute (which made me wonder why they're going murder 2 - can they go lower in Florida once the trial starts?), and would actually lead to a plea deal on this one.
Ultimately, I don't think the prosecution can prove murder 2 - see, OJ - and I think he'll walk.
I'll make no comment to whether or not Zimmerman is a racist. I don't think he set out to shoot Martin simply because he was black, but I think to suggest his concern over Martin wasn't rooted in the fact he was black is naive. Had he been white and acting exactly the same, I sincerely doubt that boy is shot. If he's in a suit and not a hoody, I sincerely doubt he'd been shot. Had Zimmerman been black, I sincerely doubt Martin is shot. That doesn't make him racist, but it does raise some questions about societal projections of race, behavior and prejudices.
To the charges and and conviction, he has been charged with manslaughter as well as Murder 2. He can be convicted of manslaughter and not murder 2. However, we don't have all the facts and I believe that if Zimmerman set out to instigate an confrontation and ended up shooting Martin, intentionally or no, he could still be found guilty of murder 2.
This only compares to OJ because it's a matter that many in the black community have felt outrage over. Martin isn't on trial. OJ never admitted to actually killing someone. Zimmerman has freely, openly and repeatedly admitted that he shot Trayvon. This is not a doubt. How Martin was killed is the question.
The only single scenario I can come up with that exonerates Zimmerman is that he got out of his truck to knock on a neighbors door to make sure Martin didn't burglarize them. On his way back to his truck, Martin, who was hiding in bushes, sucker punches an unarmed Zimmerman from behind. Zimmerman, fearing this man will kill him, draws his gun and fires. The evidence, however, suggests at the very least Zimmerman was facing Martin (being on top of him slamming the back of his head to the concrete, per Zimmerman's statement) and was already concerned about Martin was dangerous - so why confront him? Especially close enough for Martin to enter an altercation? If you have a gun and fear someone is dangerous why aren't you 10-20+ yards away, gun drawn?
Again, manslaughter is on the table. If the court can raise reasonable doubt on Zimmerman's claim that he was attacked unprovoked and that ultimately Zimmerman initiated contact and a scuffle ensued he will be convicted of manslaughter, short of a racist jury member.
Hungary Jack wrote:
I'm so glad we have you here to point out every time someone you disagree with messes up. I mean, Zimmerman must be innocent because Jesse/Sharpton/Spike are ass hats and liberal commies amirite?
Tambourine Man wrote:
Mitt's a tool used for scooping white balls out of the dirt. A catcher, if you will.