Unjustified Homicide of Trayvon Martin

Imagine your 17 year-old kid is at home watching college basketball, and during a break in the action he goes to the 7-11 to get some iced tea and Skittles. On his way back, as he’s walking through the apartment complex, he sees a hulking man in an SUV, talking on the phone and staring ominously at him. Your kid stops and checks the guy out. Something doesn’t fit here. It’s scary. In fact, your kid is on his own phone with his girlfriend. She tells him to run. He says no, he’s just going to walk fast. After all, while he’s scared of this weird guy in the truck, he’s not doing anything wrong.

The man gets out of his car and starts chasing your kid. Your kid runs too, but he’s no match for his larger predator. They end up wrestling on the ground. The whole neighborhood hears the tussle, and calls to 911 are made. On one of the calls, your kid’s voice is clear as a bell, screaming, pleading for help – for this unprovoked attack to stop. Suddenly, a shot rings out. The 911 caller gets away from the window. The screaming has ended abruptly. Your child is lying on the ground, wearing a hooded sweatshirt, bleeding from his chest.

He’s shot by a guy with a police record involving violence; a part-time rent-a-cop security guard. A guy who packs a 9mm while running a neighborhood watch in a gated apartment complex.

I mean, there had been 8 break-ins at the complex in recent months, all allegedly done by young black kids. Trayvon Martin was a young black kid. Ipso facto, right?

When the cops come and find the shooter and your dead kid, the shooter is taken into custody for an investigation to take place, but he’s quickly released. You see, you live in Florida, and the self-defense statute has been amended to take away any requirement that the person claiming self-defense first retreat before using deadly force; under this new rule, drafted and promoted by the powerful gun lobby, a gun owner can “stand his ground”.

Meanwhile, your kid is dead on the ground – armed only with an Arizona iced tea and Skittles – for the crime of, at worst, looking at someone funny.

Trayvon Martin wasn’t breaking any law when he was shot and killed. And when all the nonsense shakes out, we’ll quickly learn that this case doesn’t really invoke the much-criticized “stand your ground” law. Martin’s killer, George Zimmerman, didn’t “stand his ground”; he affirmatively chased Martin down before shooting him. He was a predator hunting what he called “f*cking coons” on his 911 call to Sanford Police – the same police department that instructed Zimmerman to not pursue Martin.

It’s not just the facile prejudice that Zimmerman had about a black kid wearing a hoodie that’s distressing here; Martin, after all, had every right to be in the complex – he was at his father’s apartment there.

There was no moral or legal justification for this homicide. In fact, the police department here appears to have interfered with its own investigation – to call it a cover-up isn’t out of line. As witnesses recounted their stories – some said the shooter yelled “help”, others said it was Martin, the police on the scene made sure to “correct” them and insist that it was Zimmerman who yelled for help.

Help from what – a kid who weighed 100 lbs less, who had tried to flee from him?

“Stand your ground” may indeed be a horribly misguided law that has led to terrific difficulty in prosecuting gun crimes in Florida, but this case doesn’t even invoke that statute.

I think it’s pretty clear that George Zimmerman committed a murder. He shot and killed a kid who was unarmed and unable to harm him. He had no reasonable fear of imminent death or severe bodily harm – he had subdued his victim to the point where Martin was screaming for help.

The shot to the chest shut him up, and now the only criminal running around that gated apartment community is its own self-appointed “neighborhood watch captain”.

12 comments

  • Looks like the ignorant hillbilly teabaggers have a different take

    http://mediamatters.org/blog/201203210006

  • The NRA has wrought more destruction and done more harm to our republic than a million ACORNs, Planned Parenthoods or copies of Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals could ever dream of.

    It’s bad enough this predator is still free, walking the streets….but he still has his gun permit? Florida is for maniacs, apparently. One can only hope that his online dating site matches him with Casey Anthony.

  • Handguns are designed for one thing only – to put holes in people. Assholes with handguns are an extremely bad mix.

    I find it unbelievable that no investigation was conducted; and no charges were made against Zimmerman.

    To quote Zimmerman… “these assholes always get away”. Hopefully this jerk won’t.

    My prediction: Zimmerman will either go to jail and be murdered for cause – or he will become the next , heroic “Joe the Plumber” for the asshole gun rights extremist crowd.

  • Black Rock Lifer

    Agree with Eric, the NRA is nothing more than a criminal lobby. They perpetuate a cycle of hate and violence with their refusal to accept any limitations on guns. We all suffer from the gun culture that the NRA celebrates, time for our timid politcians to confront this organization and demand a reasonable gun policy for this country.

  • “Guns don’t kill people: people kill people.” Okay. Yeah. But guns certainly help.

    This poor kid. My thoughts go out to his family.

  • Zimmerman was a proxy racial profiler for the Sanford P.D. The police can’t profile without drawing scrutiny and criticism, but this private citizen community watch wannabe can do it for them. They’re obligated to respond to his 911 calls. That’s why the cops protected him and tried to keep him around. Unfortunately, they were playing with fire in this case and this troubled guy killed someone.

  • The Blaze article referenced by Media Matters actually listed all 46 reasons from the school district why Trayvon Martin could been suspended from school for 10 days. MM simply chose to use a selective few that favored their bias.

    This paragraph is also from “The Blaze”; “The US Department of Justice’s Civil Rights unit has gotten involved at this point, as has the FBI. George Zimmerman also reportedly had a habit of “calling in everything.” In other words, this story looks increasingly like it may have been the work of an overzealous vigilante, though still probably not an illegal act. In this, it is similar to another racially charged case known as People v. Goetz, from the 1990′s. In it, a man who was approached by four black young people, one of whom demanded five dollars, and shot all of them with a revolver. Goetz was cleared of all charges (charges which included attempted murder) except for illegally carrying a firearm. Whether Zimmerman will be similarly cleared is another story.”

    What is the “ignorant hillbilly teabagger” take I should glean from this?

  • Except that this kid didn’t display any sort of weapon, didn’t approach Zimmerman and didn’t ask him for anything, except possibly to not kill him, the cases are exactly the same. If Bernhard Goetz had chased those kids through the subway, wrestled them down, then shot them, I’m pretty sure he’d still be in Attica.

    Flatly making the statement that what happened was ‘probably not an illegal act’ doesn’t make the Blaze writer an ‘ignorant hillbilly teabagger,’ it just makes him — and anyone who buys this bullshit — someone who thinks its OK to murder black kids in hoodies.

    And as an ignorant hillbilly by birth, please don’t associate us with those Tea Party people.

  • You’re absolutely right. Apologies to ignorant hillbillies for any implied connection to Glenn Beck or his teabaggers.

  • I think Zimmerman is a German name, but the picture of the guy online looks like he is hispanic, does this end the race issue?

  • Tragic? Absolutely. But if a cop had done this – and they do this stuff quite often, google it yourself, or check CopBlock, the Agitator, or Injustice Everywhere, I don’t have time to do it for you now – this story would have not even come close to landing on you gun-control-bedwetters media radar. It would have been a big fat non-story yawnner for you all.

    As far as the NRA-is-Hitler stuff, if you even had a clue as to how often that org rolls over on gun control legislation like a whore on a holiday, don’t make me laugh. Textbook loyal opposition. More destruction than Planned Parenthood? Not even a contest, PP wins by millions. Reasonable gun control? Ever try to buy – legally, mind you – a pistol in Erie County? Go ahead, give it a try. Check back with us in two years and let us know how it’s coming along. It’s not like getting an OWS permit, ladies, and if it was you’d all go ape$#!&.

  • I am totally disgusted about this entire story its hard to believe justice still exists in this world:(

Leave a Reply