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roaring sequoia

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I am just so sick to my stomach today. I feel like Florida has openly endorsed gun violence. If you're the last one standing at the end of the fight, you're innocent.

As far as I'm concerned, the weight of the evidence suggests Zimmerman racially profiled a kid, cursed him out over the phone to police, chased him through the street, likely started that fight, was never in any real mortal danger (bloody nose and a couple lacerations? His victim was unarmed, and he never even sought medical attention!), and basically fucking executed him.

And that's IF there was a fight, because we have as much proof that there was a fight as that there never was. Nada.

Sure, the prosecution couldn't prove that it was impossible that there was a fight, but you never can unless you're on camera. At some point, after the prosecution proves that he killed the kid after calling him a fucking punk and a coon, the burden should shift to the defendant to prove that there was some likelihood of his story. Z provided zilch. He won because he could make up any story he wanted to, and the prosecution bore the burden to disprove beyond a reasonable doubt any fantasy he could concoct. It's a standard you can't win under. So be the last person standing, and the law is on your side.

Load up on guns, stand your ground, and start fucking killing strangers who make you nervous, because you don't want to be the first one shot.

Posts: 245 | From: Buffalo | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
Connor

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I don't think it's as simple as "he's guilty". The prosecution made a huge mistake trying to go for murder 2 instead of manslaughter in the beginning. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty, not the other way around. There was doubt, so he wasn't convicted. What angers me is that the same people saying "There was reasonable doubt, acquit him" were the same people saying Troy Davis was guilty and deserved everything he got.

While the whole situation sucks, and obviously Trayvon's death should be mourned, I don't think Zimmerman is a cold blooded killer. The only thing we should take away from this is that self defense is nothing to play around with.

"Many that live deserve death. And some die that deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then be not too eager to deal out death in the name of justice, fearing for your own safety. Even the wise cannot see all ends." - Gandalf

Posts: 1349 | From: charlotte nc | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged
SeñorLarkin

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He undoubtedly did things wrong. Racially profiling him, calling the police on him, etc. may not have been appropriate, but they also weren't against the law. Remember, the trial isn't about whether or not Zim is an asshole, it's about whether he committed murder. And it looks like there simply isn't enough evidence to prove that he did. Like Connor said, it's innocent until proven guilty, and if it can't be absolutely shown that he committed murder, then he shouldn't be charged for it. Maybe he did do it, I don't know, but unfortunately a lot of people's minds were already made up that he was guilty before his trial even began, which isn't right. Just try and consider the real possibility that he didn't commit murder; it's conceivable (remember, being a jerk doesn't mean he necessarily committed murder). Then the idea of convicting him is terrible. We've all advocated on the other side of wrongful murder convictions.
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roaring sequoia

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I just strongly disagree about the insufficiency of the evidence. If everything went as Z claims it did, that this random kids turns in his tracks and strats emphatically beating his head into the pavement, punches him "dozens of times" and is trying to get Z's gun while straddled on top of him, of course Z deserves the self-defense excuse, even if he is a jerk.

But the evidence just makes all of that seem so implausible that I would not consider there to be any reasonable doubt. Random strangers don't start attacking you unprovoked. If they do, and if they smother your bloody nose with their hands like he said, they would have some of your DNA on their hands. If they beat you like you described, you have some actual wounds, a concussion, at least something worth going to the doctor for, which he never did. At the very least, I thought he deserved manslaughter for reacting way over the top, because you don't get to shoot someone through the heart for giving you a bloody nose. That's what we let Z do here - he gets to shoot someone through the heart for giving him a bloody nose. Is that really self-defense???

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SeñorLarkin

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You know, I agree. I think I just try to play a little bit of devil's advocate and try to really see the other side, because I think there's a big problem with really public cases where everyone's mind is made up before the trial even begins and both sides are really given their fair chance to present their cases. So because of that, I try to consider the "what if we got it wrong" perspective.
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Connor

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All it takes is reasonable doubt.
Posts: 1349 | From: charlotte nc | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged
roaring sequoia

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I mean, the more I think about it, you get in a fight, you don't have a right to kill your opponent. Guys get into fights all the time. Usually a bloody nose, a concussion, maybe a broken bone.

All Zimmerman had to show for his trouble was the bloody nose. Do we really, REALLY want to set the legal standard that anytime someone gives you a bloody nose, you can claim reasonable fear for your life itself and shoot that person through the heart? I've gotten a bloody nose in a fight before. Are you seriously telling me I would be justified to literally murder someone?

And I know folks who have been in much worse than a bloody nose style scrap. I know folks who have been in worse situations than George Zimmerman was. It appalls me to think that the law would have said "okay" if all the people I've known who got into a fisticuff before were allowed to murder their opponent. Just fucking appalls me.

We have taken this self righteous gun culture far enough. How much lower can we go? Murder for insulting someone? Murder for making someone nervous? Murder for just looking funny?

George Zimmerman did not, could not have feared for his life seriously with the kinds of injuries he had. If he did, then we all have probably been in a fight at some point in our lives where we would have been authorized to murder.

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SeñorLarkin

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I agree, but that's the problem with Stand Your Ground. It makes that line very fuzzy, and often legalizes it.

But a note on terminology: shooting and killing someone as self-defense in a fight is not a murder, it's manslaughter. Murder is premeditated. None of the hypothetical situations you mentioned above would qualify as murder.

[ July 16, 2013, 09:51 PM: Message edited by: SeñorLarkin ]

Posts: 240 | From: Earth | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged
roaring sequoia

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quote:
Originally posted by SeñorLarkin:
I agree, but that's the problem with Stand Your Ground. It makes that line very fuzzy, and often legalizes it.

But a note on terminology: shooting and killing someone as self-defense in a fight is not a murder, it's manslaughter. Murder is premeditated. None of the hypothetical situations you mentioned above would qualify as murder.

Actually, it depends on the state, as there are many different definitions of murder, many do not require premeditation, and even among those that do, premeditation does not really mean lying up at night planning - it can be as simple as deciding what you want to do a few seconds before you pull the trigger.

But I'm using the term murder in its colloquial sense, anyways.

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