Wednesday, July 24, 2013

N is for NOT GUILTY!!?!!

Yesterday evening, a jury of all women found George Zimmerman not guilty of charges that he criminally took the life of Trayvon Martin just over a year ago. While I realize that it may have been a technicality they had to go with since they had requested additional information on what constituted manslaughter, I just find it hard to believe that nothing could be found to consider him legally guilty.

His initial 911 call showed that he had already determined that Trayvon was guilty of something. He stated that these "assholes" are always "getting away". He continued to follow Trayvon instead of waiting for police. Trayvon knew he was being followed and probably was apprehensive about why since he wasn't doing anything wrong except walking from the store to where he was staying in the same neighborhood. Any healthy full-grown male would stand up for themselves if someone was pursuing them for no good reason. It makes sense that Trayvon would turn to face Zimmerman to demand why he was being followed. Zimmerman got out of his car instead of merely "watching". He was carrying a gun (yes, legally) that was loaded, safety off, and a round in the chamber. In other words, it was ready to shoot. Zimmerman claimed to know nothing about the "stand your ground" law despite having studied it in a class he was taking. That lie alone makes him suspect. Just the fact that Zimmerman PURSUED Trayvon shows Zimmerman as the aggressor, not the other way around.

I was so hopeful that, when the jury requested that information on manslaughter, they had decided that Zimmerman was guilty of the lesser charge. Although I don't think there is enough here to believe that this was a racially motivated crime, I do believe there was enough evidence to point to a crime, nonetheless. It is troubling to me that someone who pursues someone else can claim self-defense when that person stands up for themselves. In many respects, it can be said that Trayvon was "standing his ground", not Zimmerman.

Maybe it's the mother in me. Maybe it's the fact that I once had a teenage son who was far from perfect, who wasn't always a fully law-abiding juvenile, but who has turned into a fantastic man, citizen, father. That couldn't have happened if someone had chosen to shoot him after pursuing him because he was walking through their neighborhood not committing any crime. It hurts to realize that this young man will never have the opportunity to show if he could also become a fantastic man, citizen, father, because one man, upon seeing him walking through his neighborhood, decided he was a punk, an "asshole" who wasn't going to get away with anything this time.

The only thing I can take comfort in with this situation is that George Zimmerman's life will never be normal from here on out. The majority of the public believed him to be guilty of a crime. No matter where he goes, this event will follow him. He will be imprisoned by the social stigma this has created. Maybe that's punishment enough.


Written originally on July 14 and posted to Bubblews.com.

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