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Membrain

Zimmerman cleared of all charges

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Vorpal said:
The protesters are basically shaming the jury's decision (no one in this country was more informed about the case than those 6 women).

You don't seem to understand that politics is above the law. Particularly in the sense that it's there to make it. Not only that but that many laws and parts of the constitution overlap each other and are subject to ideological interpretation, especially if this case gets elevated.

This case is saying that an armed civilian adult was deliberately following a teenager, with the incriminating assumption he was a burglar or thief (unknown) and drugged (bullshit) and that resulted in a confrontation and the death of the teen. If the laws are allowing something like that, and not doing anything about it once it happens, I fail to see how you won't end up with mass protests in the streets.

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But who confronted who, or who was dominating who in the actual fight? That was essentially what everyone was wondering, and a provable answer wasn't supplied AFAIK.

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Vorpal said:

But who confronted who, or who was dominating who in the actual fight? That was essentially what everyone was wondering, and a provable answer wasn't supplied AFAIK.


Why is it that this so important as to have the case hinge on it? We have four options in regard to this:

- Zimmerman initiated aggressions, was winning the fight, but was injured, and shot Martin
- Zimmerman initiated aggressions, was losing the fight and was injured, and shot Martin
- Martin initiated aggressions, was winning the fight and injured Zimmerman, but was then shot
- Martin initiated aggressions, was losing the fight, managed to injure Zimmerman, and was then shot

Have you noticed the similarity here? Every single case ends with Martin being shot by Zimmerman after having injured him. While I agree that the prosecution was terrible and far too ready to gain notoriety because of the way the case was made famous, I disagree that Zimmerman is innocent of wrongdoing. No matter what happened, he shot another man and killed him. Everything else is just as valid as the alternatives and thus is no more than speculation.

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Membrain said:
No matter what happened, he shot another man and killed him. Everything else is just as valid as the alternatives and thus is no more than speculation.

It's not just that he shot him because it could have occurred in other circumstances, such as Martin coming up completely unawares or in Zimmerman's actual home, but here he was actively hounding Martin, and there lies his responsibility in the resulting death. He led himself to believe without any evidence other than the kid looking around that a young person around the gated community (which was actually a visitor) was a criminal and this is what led to the confrontation, be it that he actually caught up to Martin actively or Martin turned around an went toward him upon noticing he was being followed. This resulted in the confrontation between a teenager (I insist on this fact) and an adult with a gun, acting like he was getting rid of vermin and not dealing with a person, proving his negative prejudice in his chat with the cops.

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I hope that this does not happen again, but the media and the president are doing a disservice to society by galvanizing the emotional reaction in regards to the verdict.

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Membrain said:

The problem is that Zimmerman says he was approached and accosted by Martin before leaving his vehicle. He said he'd rolled up his windows to avoid a confrontation.

Where does this idea come from? Did zimmerman claim this during his reenactment with the police? I've heard people say something to this effect now and again and I just don't get it.

He says nothing to allude to this during his phone call and if we give him the benefit of the doubt that he honestly thought martin was a bad guy up to no good, then I almost have to believe he would've you know, mentioned this fact to the dispatcher. He didn't mention that the guy he was watching actually turned around, walked towards the car then walked around it in a threatening or menacing manner while on the phone with the police? Yet he tried in earnest to subtlety imply to dispatch that martin may have been armed and was 'definitely' high on drugs (which post-mortem toxicology tests flatly refuted)? It doesn't add up.

Martin, an undisputed MMA champ street thug, excuse me nigger, out on the prowl for skittles, cracker blood and purple drank, walks back towards and circles zimmermans vehicle, possibly while pounding his fist into his palm and looking really mean... Why? Well, he wants to fight or at least be intimidating because that's what 'they' do. Then by our hero's own testimony, martin runs away from said vehicle around some buildings. Huh? Really? Oh, that's right martin was a psychic and knew that zimmerman was going to chase, follow or otherwise use his locomotive abilities to maneuver in the same general direction as him perhaps even for reasons that have nothing to do with the direction martin moved towards (which necessitated getting out of the vehicle and sprinting the moment he notices martin running away) and preemptively ran to hide and lay in wait for ambush.

Yep.

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Delusional badass with previous criminal charges can't mind own business, makes assumptions about a teen with obvious anger issues and things end with death. Stirs shit up for both gun owners and race relations.

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Some of the same people ranting endlessly about innocent until proven guilty in that other life sentence topic are the first to proclaim themselves judge, jury and executioner on a case they watched through the media.

Anyone surprised? Anybody at all?

Right. Morals and principles only apply if it benefits people you personally like and punishes people you personally hate.

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That's why I like to play devil's advocate with a lot of touchy issues, although I'm leaning toward supporting Martin. I suspect that he was being overly defensive with someone who shouldn't have approached him in the first place. Probably freaked out and thought his life was in danger.

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Phml said:

Some of the same people ranting endlessly about innocent until proven guilty in that other life sentence topic are the first to proclaim themselves judge, jury and executioner on a case they watched through the media.

Anyone surprised? Anybody at all?

Right. Morals and principles only apply if it benefits people you personally like and punishes people you personally hate.


Care to elaborate on that? I didn't realize that disagreeing with the proceedings of a court case is tantamount to a lynch mob. Maybe the general public is full of people calling for locking Zimmerman up forever, but the most I've seen here is a number of people saying that, regardless of circumstance, killing an unarmed teenager out on a walk is, y'know, not a good thing and should be discouraged.

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Even though I believe George Zimmerman was innocent, he's guilty of sticking his nose were it doesn't belong. Like the old saying goes, "Never trouble, trouble, unless trouble, troubles you". I'm sure he's learned his lesson by now. More people need to learn how to mind their own business, instead of provoking confrontation. But also, all of these idiots stopping traffic lines, for some kid they never even met, are only creating a liable situation for themselves to get arrested, or physically injured. It's sad that a kid died, but let's face it, Trayvon was a little punk-ass thug. He's hardly a person worth getting arrested for.

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To go on a slight tangent here, what implications does this have for being stalked in the middle of the night? I know I keep bringing this up, but it's a very real danger. What should you do if some stranger is following you in the dark and you can't shake them? I ask this because I've always believed that if you think someone is following you and you're alone, you need to make the first move so that you have the upper hand. I mean, as this case proved, the other person might have a weapon, and if you're unarmed, your best bet is to nail them before they have a chance to pull that weapon out. Sure, things might not work out in your favor, but you've got a better chance then than letting the other person make the first move.

Yeah sure, maybe they're just out to mug you, maybe you'd be better off just handing over your money and letting them go. But especially, and I realize now I'm bringing gender into this discussion, but if you're a woman, you REALLY can't take that risk. Compliance can easily lead to death in that situation.

So my question is, basically, the official ruling is that Trayvon Martin struck first, he instigated, and Zimmerman had every right to blow him away. Are we saying that it's always wrong to throw the first punch? What are people's thoughts on the matter? Yeah, I know throwing the first punch is often wrong, but I do believe there are situations in which it is warranted. I'd like to get other people's thoughts on the matter.

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geekmarine said:

So my question is, basically, the official ruling is that Trayvon Martin struck first, he instigated, and Zimmerman had every right to blow him away. Are we saying that it's always wrong to throw the first punch? What are people's thoughts on the matter? Yeah, I know throwing the first punch is often wrong, but I do believe there are situations in which it is warranted. I'd like to get other people's thoughts on the matter.

This is what I don't get, someone has been cleared of manslaughter based on self defence, which by default makes Trayvon guilty of committing assault, but surely if you are in a situation where you are being followed by someone who is not a cop and you can't shake them, then surely force can be used as a method of self defence.

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Phml said:
Morals and principles only apply if it benefits people you personally like and punishes people you personally hate.

What makes you think anything I said in the other thread would make me blindly accept whatever the court in question here judged appropriate? Morality and laws aren't equivalent. I have certain morality which disagrees with the death penalty and also with legislation, or interpretations of it, used here that applied the principle of self-defense in what I consider a sloppy manner.

Self-defense tends to mitigate responsibility in killings, and I certainly see no contradiction in a relatively strict application of that principle combined with an opposition to the death penalty.

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Aliotroph? said:

Stand-your-ground laws (Morrowind-style justice) are an intriguing idea.

I used to hate stand-your-ground laws, but then I took an arrow in the knee...

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"M'aiq wonders why have a law to stand on the ground? Standing on water is very difficult, if not impossible."

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Kontra Kommando said:

Even though I believe George Zimmerman was innocent, he's guilty of sticking his nose were it doesn't belong. Like the old saying goes, "Never trouble, trouble, unless trouble, troubles you". I'm sure he's learned his lesson by now. More people need to learn how to mind their own business, instead of provoking confrontation. But also, all of these idiots stopping traffic lines, for some kid they never even met, are only creating a liable situation for themselves to get arrested, or physically injured. It's sad that a kid died, but let's face it, Trayvon was a little punk-ass thug. He's hardly a person worth getting arrested for.


This is almost as though you are saying something along the lines of:

"I completely agree that the united states should not have been involved in vietnam. They were sticking their nose in a conflict they ought not to. HOWEVER, all of the horrible things that happened after getting involved, includng My Lai are justified because our soldiers were getting shot at while in country. And why cry about it, they were all commies anyway."

That is a really odd train of thought.

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Quast said:

This is almost as though you are saying something along the lines of:

"I completely agree that the united states should not have been involved in vietnam. They were sticking their nose in a conflict they ought not to. HOWEVER, all of the horrible things that happened after getting involved, includng My Lai are justified because our soldiers were getting shot at while in country. And why cry about it, they were all commies anyway."

That is a really odd train of thought.


I'm not going to comment on the Vietnam war, but the priorities of nations and the priorities of individuals are very different. What I meant was, Zimmerman could have saved himself national ridicule and potential prison time, if he wasn't seeking to put himself in such a liable position. Moreover, all of these people causing these disruptions in the streets should consider what might happen to them as well.

I believe in the second amendment, I believe people have the right to defend themselves. But if a person leaves their home with their gun, and actively pursues potential confrontation, than that person is an idiot. But also, Trayvon was a trouble seeker as well. When the two met, their liable behavior resulted in one of them dying, and the other entering a world of persecution. I do think Zimmerman is innocent by the standards of the law, but he's still a moron.

I think people, especially in large groups, sometimes get bent out of shape. Usually, they cause more destruction, than they do good, especially to themselves.

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I'm glad you guys have a newfound respect for the justice system.

DeathevokatioN said:

But I'm glad that justice prevailed.



geekmarine said:

I don't support the people who reject the outcome of the trial - whatever he may or may not have done, the outcome was fairly determined by a jury of his peers, and I think it's dangerous thinking to want to demand a retrial or whatever.

Though yeah, personally, I think there were bad decisions made on the part of both parties in this case, and someone lost their life because of it.



Phml said:

Morals and principles only apply if it benefits people you personally like and punishes people you personally hate.


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Are you implying I rejected the OJ verdict? Not sure what you're getting at there. What does that even have to do with anything? I thought he was guilty, but I was fine with the verdict - there wasn't enough evidence to prove he committed the crime. I just... I don't get why you're bringing in OJ here. I said the jury's ruling is what matters in both cases. I'm not contradicting myself, as you seem to imply.

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How can you even compare this to the OJ trial? The evidence against OJ was overwhelming. The evidence against GZ was nonexistent.

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I'd like to point out that "Stand Your Ground" was NOT invoked at any point in this trial, this was "basic self-defense" which is pretty much established in centuries of common law (American common law is based on English common law), case law and legislation. Killing a person allegedly trying to kill you and claiming self-defense has not really changed much in several hundred years.

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AndrewB said:

How can you even compare this to the OJ trial? The evidence against OJ was overwhelming. The evidence against GZ was nonexistent.


All I need is:
A) Trayvon is dead
B) He disobeyed the dude on the phone

GZ could have avoided everything by pulling up to Trayvon, rolling his window down, and asking if he needed anything.

Naked Snake said:

I'd like to point out that "Stand Your Ground" was NOT invoked at any point in this trial, this was "basic self-defense" which is pretty much established in centuries of common law (American common law is based on English common law), case law and legislation. Killing a person allegedly trying to kill you and claiming self-defense has not really changed much in several hundred years.


Nope.

http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/07/15/stand-your-ground-and-the-zimmerman-defense/194870

In deciding whether George Zimmerman was justified in the use of deadly force, you must judge him by the circumstances by which he was surrounded at the time the force was used. The danger facing George Zimmerman need not have been actual; however, to justify the use of deadly force, the appearance of danger must have been so real that a reasonably cautious and prudent person under the same circumstances would have believed that the danger could be avoided only through the use of that force. Based upon appearances, George Zimmerman must have actually believed that the danger was real.

If George Zimmerman was not engaged in an unlawful activity and was attacked in anyplace where he had a right to be, he had no duty to retreat and had the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he reasonably believed that it was necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.


It was told to the jury specifically.

EDIT: If that isn't enough, from the AC360 Interview of the famed Juror "B-37" (link) :

COOPER: Because of the two options you had, second degree murder or manslaughter, you felt neither applied?

JUROR: Right. Because of the heat of the moment and the Stand Your Ground. He had a right to defend himself. If he felt threatened that his life was going to be taken away from him or he was going to have bodily harm, he had a right.

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Csonicgo said:

All I need is:
A) Trayvon is dead

He disobeyed the dude on the phone

Completely false, but if it were true...


GZ could have avoided everything by pulling up to Trayvon, rolling his window down, and asking if he needed anything.

Not necessarily. Trayvon could have jumped through the car window and strangled GZ with his seat belt.

So what you're saying is that GZ didn't have a single justification for what he did, he had two justifications.

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AndrewB said:

Not necessarily. Trayvon could have jumped through the car window and strangled GZ with his seat belt.

What's the worst that could happen? A family is emotionally destroyed? You can live with that.


Now that I know that you're trolling, I can safely ignore you now.

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Csonicgo said:

All I need is:
A) Trayvon is dead
B) He disobeyed the dude on the phone

GZ could have avoided everything by pulling up to Trayvon, rolling his window down, and asking if he needed anything.


Trayvon is dead, but that is typically what happens when lethal force is used in self-defense.

Emergency / non-emergency operators cannot legally give you any order, either way, the operator said specifically "we don't need you to do that". This is not an order, it is a liability statement. It is entirely irrelevant to the situation. You could call up and say "I see a house fire and I hear a baby crying, get here quick, I'm gonna go rescue the baby" they will say "we don't need you to do that." If you actually do or not is up to you, but it's not an order, it's simply a way for them to absolve themselves personally and as whole (IE : their employers) of responsibility for the aftermath.

At one point in the timeline, Trayvon and George were in close enough proximity to speak to eachother. At this point in time, neither party was doing anything illegal.

What followed afterwards was laid out in a court of law, and a jury felt there was enough reasonable doubt.

Also, invoking the law as your defense is not the same thing as the law being read in jury instructions. Regardless, I'd say that when you are pinned to the ground, which is corroborated by physical evidence and a prosecution eye-witness, you don't have the ability to retreat, thus the case would more or less play the same in a Duty to Retreat state.

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