The Times Keeps Shouting 'Stand Your Ground,' While Reporting That the Real Issue Was Probable Cause

A long story about the Trayvon Martin case in today's New York Times clarifies two points that have been cited by people who doubt George Zimmerman's explanation of why he shot the unarmed teenager. While many critics who say Zimmerman should have been arrested claim he was about 100 pounds heavier than Martin, the Times says he is five feet, nine inches tall and weighs 170 pounds, while Martin was six feet, one inch tall and weighed 150 pounds. These measurements by no means confirm Zimmerman's claim that Martin had the upper hand in the fight, to the point that Zimmerman feared for his life, but they do make his account more plausible. The Times also reports that police photographed Zimmerman's injuries, which were treated by paramedics at the scene of the shooting. According to Zimmerman's father, the injuries included "a broken nose, a swollen and cut lower lip, and two cuts on the back of his head." As Mike Riggs noted this morning, enhanced security camera video from the Sanford police station shows what look like two gashes on the back of Zimmerman's head. This is the same footage that Benjamin Crump, a lawyer for Martin's family, said "dramatically contradicts [Zimmerman's] version of the events of February 26" because he "has no apparent injuries in this video." 

Zimmerman's injuries seem consistent with his claim that Martin punched him in the face, knocking him to the ground, and repeatedly banged his head against the pavement. But they do not demonstrate that he met the requirements for self-defense under Florida law. If Zimmerman started the fight, for example, he would have been justified in using lethal force only if he reasonably feared death or serious injury and there was no feasible way to escape. That is in fact the essence of Zimmerman's self-defense claim, although he says Martin started the fight. Either way, if Martin was on top of Zimmerman, smacking his head on the ground, and trying to grab his gun, it did not matter that Florida's law protects the right to "stand your ground"; the analysis would be the same under the old "duty to retreat" standard. Although the Times uses the phrase "stand your ground" or variations on it half a dozen times, it's clear from the article that the decision not to charge Zimmerman, which was made by State Attorney Norm Wolfinger after Sanford police requested an arrest warrant, had to do with another aspect of the law: its requirement of probable cause for arresting an individual who claims self-defense after killing someone. Here is how the Times puts it:

Sanford police have said that once Mr. Zimmerman declared that he had shot Trayvon in the chest in self-defense, they were barred from arresting him by the state's now-famous Stand Your Ground law, the broadest protection of self-defense in the country. It immediately requires law enforcement officials to prove that a suspect did not act in self-defense, and sets the case on a slow track.

Police don't have to "prove" that Zimmerman did not act in self-defense before arresting him, but they do need probable cause—a "reasonable belief," based on facts determined by investigation—to think the homicide was unlawful. That is the same as the general standard for arresting someone or obtaining a search warrant. Wolfinger evidently did not think this burden had been met.

Assuming that judgment was correct, the problem may have been an insufficiently thorough police investigation. As the Times notes, Crump and Natalie Jackson, another lawyer for Martin's family, fault police for not being aggressive enough in questioning Zimmerman and the other witnesses and for failing to collect all the relevant evidence. For instance, "the lawyers said that, as of late last week, no investigator had interviewed Trayvon's girlfriend," who was talking to him on his cellphone right before the shooting. Another example: Zimmerman and his relatives say the cries for help captured in the background of recorded 911 calls were his, an account confirmed by at least one witness. But Martin's relatives say they recognize his voice, and (as Mike Riggs noted) two audio experts consulted by The Orlando Sentinel say the voice is not Zimmerman's. Since this is a crucial point that could have tipped the balance in favor of arresting Zimmerman (as Sanford police wanted to do), why did it take a newspaper to see if there might be an objective way of addressing it?

Addendum: In the comments, David notes a Just One Minute post that delves into the question of how reliable these voice comparisons are—both in general and in a situation where the audio quality is poor and screams are compared to ordinary conversation. I am sure that, assuming Zimmerman is eventually tried, such evidence will be debated by dueling expert witnesses, and by itself it is surely not enough to prove his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. It nevertheless could help establish probable cause for arrest, assuming the government's experts reach similar conclusions. 

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  • Indict Corzine||

  • ||

    here is a question for Dunphy: how do you usually decide whether to charge someone with a crime right away, versus waiting until the investigation is further along or complete?

  • o3||

    depends on one's blackness

  • ||

    sad but true.... If I, a 45 yr old male, punched Trayvon in the face, and jumped on him, banging his head into the ground, and he then shot me.... He would be arrested 100 out of 100 times, I'd bet.
    sad but true.

  • JM||

    If you're in MD, they charge you, if not, they probably actually investigate.

  • CE||

    If the shooter/beater is a cop, you wait.

  • Kwanzaa Cake||

    Why assume the experts are objective? With the lynch mob watching every move and threatening violence, it is easy to imagine an expert being intimidated into going along with the mob here.

    And by the way is this sort of expert voice identificiation really reliable?

  • Mo||

    Because they used software that can be audited and used independently of the experts rather than just making shit up or relying on people's biased memories.

  • Kwanzaa Cake||

    The experts still have to render an opinion re: what the software results mean, don't they? See below from the news story. I am not taking a position on this, I just don't know that much about it. But note that the expert also said he "believed" the analysis "would stand up in court," which suggests to me that perhaps this sort of analysis does not have a long pedigree.

    The software, the Sentinel says, "returned a 48 percent match. Owen said to reach a positive match with audio of this quality, he'd expect higher than 90 percent. 'As a result of that, you can say with reasonable scientific certainty that it's not Zimmerman,' Owen says."

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    I wonder what percent match is in the area between "You can't say it's Zimmerman" and "You can say it's not Zimmerman." It seems like the expert jumped from the former to the latter pretty quickly.

  • Michael Caine||

    Well, guessing from the quote, I would say less than 90% match would indicate "not Zimmerman", and higher than 90% would indicate Zimmerman.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say that there's no realistic way in hell that that type of analysis can give a binary answer like that. Maybe over 90% can be "yeah, that's Zimmerman" but less than 90% almost certainly has to go through a continuum of "we can't definitely say it is, but we can't definitely say it's not" through "it's definitely not."

  • Mo||

    Well, he gives the percentage match at 48%, so he's not giving a binary answer.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    Michael Caine did.

    Apparently, 90% means definite match. Apparently, 48% means definite non-match. Somewhere between 48% and 90% is "I don't know." I was just wondering where the "I don't know" zone is.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Well, he gives the percentage match at 48%, so he's not giving a binary answer.

    I am sure he has a criterion for "match" based on that continuous outcome variable. His quote indicates that he would want it to exceed 90% for the binary choice to equal "match."

  • Ryan||

    They should at least conduct a test to determine whether the result can be reproduced in the scenario that opposes his conclusion.

    The fact that he apparently uses one data point and gives an absolute verdict makes him suspect of incompetence.

  • Neu Mejican||

    What is needed is evidence of the tool's sensitivity (true positive rate) and specificity (true negative rate) - at identifying individuals across such different voice contexts (assuming quality is sufficient for the analysis to take place) - before we can judge how valid the "it's not him" position is.

    Is it a true negative? Can't tell from the reporting. "Stand up in court" should mean that he has that evidence of validity.

  • ||

    I remember reading somewhere that you can't prove a negative. In this case I think the only credible statement would be "we have determined with > 99.99something% confidence that this is Martin".

    Anything other than that is just giving reasonable doubt to the defense.

  • Neu Mejican||

    MVSh,

    I remember reading somewhere that you can't prove a negative.

    If you read this, you will know you can...

    http://departments.bloomu.edu/.....gative.pdf

  • Neu Mejican||

    The real question is how well this software works comparing spoken to "screamed" voice. It is not the audio quality that is necessarily at issue, but the sensitivity and specificity of the tool in this speech context. I don't know the specifics of this technology, but your fundamental frequency is one of the things used to make a match and that would shift in a scream.

    I like how both families identify their family member as the one screaming.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    I would imagine too it's reliability depends on the quality of the known samples it has of the voices in question. Most people's voices are rarely recorded. I mean what, a phone message? So without knowing the quality of the known samples, it is impossible to know the reliability of the conclusion.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Overall quality isn't so much the issue as long as it is good enough. It is really more knowing about the specifics of the two sources so that the differences in the channel can be analyzed. Things like cell-phone versus land line - or different brand of cell phone (different phones were used for the two recordings), type of recording device (same in both instances here). As long as those things are known, you can adjust the analysis in a fairly precise way.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    But we have no idea how well those things were known. Were the known samples "good enough"? I have no idea and can't see anything in the links that tells me that.

  • Neu Mejican||

    But we have no idea how well those things were known. Were the known samples "good enough"? I have no idea and can't see anything in the links that tells me that.

    I can't imagine they could even set up the analysis without knowing those details...but, yes, the reporting on this does not include a methods section. Reporters do a very bad job with science reporting, in general.

  • Neu Mejican||

    IOW, the challenge in this is the intra-individual variance in the voice, not the inter-recording variance.

  • shamalam||

    The recording the expert analyzed was from a 911 call placed over a cell phone. The caller was many feet away from the screams, and was not an eyewitness. I don't know about your experience with cell phones, but I talk to my quite regularly and I usually am able to understand about 80% of what he says and he is holding the phone right to his mouth.

    To me this "analysis" looks a whole lot like the global warming experts' analyses: "what answer do you want, boss? OK, I will get right on it".

  • cynical||

    The screams all sound the same.

    Shit, now I have that song stuck in my head.

  • ||

    Anybody check this "expert's" credentials?
    http://www.owlinvestigations.com/article1.html

    Isn't the American College of Forensic Examiners the same outfit that awarded a PH.D. to a housecat?

    It might matter.

  • ||

    Software they wrote and they're selling.

  • kinnath||

    Disinterested, third-parties with a product to sell interject themselves into a major political crises and "accidentally" get a boatload of free advertising.

    I'm sure they're totally trustworthy.

  • Mo||

    If they're disinterested and selling to law enforcement agencies, they don't care which side it comes out on. Think of it this way, if their outcome said it matches Zimmerman, would they have gotten any less free advertising?

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    No, but perhaps they would have had a problem trying to get business with police departments. Imagine the headlines in the Clambaks, Ala. Daily Herald* - "company which smeared angelic dead black kid gets govt. contract!"

    *Or, more realistically, some local blogger.

  • ||

    Judging from media coverage, yes.
    It's not like the reporter strolled down AudioForensicsExpert Lane and interviewed the first two people he came across. Most likely many of the other people were contacted and refused to render a decision due to uncertainty or intimidation.

  • ||

    it does not help when media outlets, including reason, keep running the outdated babyface photo of Mr. Martin

  • Angle Iron||

    ^^^^^^^^^

  • Michael Caine||

    Did you complain this much about the Natalie Holloway coverage? Why did the media keep showing those pictures of her looking so innocent. Why didn't they have pictures of her out at a club drunk and hooking up with random guys?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    It is less onerous to depict someone who is, by all measures of evidence, innocent of all wrongdoing that would have contributed to her death to depict her as, well, "innocent".

    That isn't the case here. There are, like it or not, "two sides" in the media narrative, so you have to present those two sides evenhandedly when the evidence goes both ways.

    It's just irresponsible to nakedly prefer one "side" to the other.

  • Kwanzaa Cake||

    Then why do you say "by all measures of evidence" when there is some evidence that he jumped Zimmerman from behind and bashed his head into the ground?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    I think the "jumped from behind" is not warranted by anything I have read.

  • Mo||

    Did you feel that way about OJ?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Too young. But that darkening by Time (Newsweek?) magazine was pretty gross.

    I think I have made it clear elsewhere I do not like media bias either way.

  • ||

    Are you attempting to argue that Holloway's appearance and behavior on the night of her disappearance was a contributing factor? One that might mitigate against the guilt of another?

    Hoodies, short skirts, whatever.

  • cynical||

    Would that have justified her death? Whether or not Martin is the type of person to initiate an assault against a stranger has some material bearing on Zimmerman's culpability.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Bingo!

    Given that Holloway, by any measure, was totally innocent of wrongdoing, it is at least more permissible to "gussy her up."

    When there are two sides with evidence for both, you have to present them evenhandedly. And putting Zimmerman's mugshot against Trayvon with a teddy bear ain't that.

  • ||

    A less flattering photo of Trayvon without the teddy bear:

    http://dailycaller.com/2012/03.....dentified/

  • Michael Caine||

    So what exactly is it in the other pictures of Martin that shows he is the type of person to initiate an assault anymore than the average person?

  • Jeffersonian||

    Not a thing. So why the use of oudated, Photoshopped pictures by the media?

  • Michael Caine||

    The photo was most likely supplied by the family when someone in the media asked for a picture they could run with a story, and then reused by other outlets. I hadn't heard that the photo was shopped. Do you have a link for that?

  • Jeffersonian||

    Original photo:

    http://www.miamiherald.com/201.....-teen.html

    You can see the photoshopped photo above.

  • Mo||

    That link may not have the original photo. It's attributed to Getty Images and described as being on banners and signs. So that may be a picture of a blown up print of the picture.

  • Jeffersonian||

    Ahhh..no.

    Look at them both.

  • horsewithnonick||

    For one thing, it shows that he wasn't a twelve-year-old.

  • junyo||

    And what objective data does his grooming or fashion choices give you regarding the type of person he is (was)?

  • ||

    "Did you complain this much about the Natalie Holloway coverage?"

    no, i complained more

  • Jeffersonian||

    Not just outdated, but Photoshopped.

  • Spencer||

    But.... RAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

  • HeroicMulatto||

    Eric Lichtblau and his ilk would dig up and skullfuck Trayvon Martin's corpse if it meant advancing their political agenda.

  • HeroicMulatto||

    Change that to Dan Barry, Serge F. Kovaleski, Campbell Robertson and Lizette Alvarez and their ilk.

  • STEVE SMITH||

    THIS SOUND INTERESTING. TELL STEVE SMITH MORE!

  • ||

    Here's a question I wouldn't mind being answered:

    Is it possible, under this law, for there to be two people standing their ground against the other?

  • sarcasmic||

    That would be the Mexican Standoff law.
    Since only one of the parties in this case is Hispanic, it doesn't apply.

  • Suki||

    Should't it apply to White Hispanics?

  • sarcasmic||

    Good point.
    Since skin color is all that matters in this post-racism society, I'd say yes.

  • Barack Obama||

    Let me be clear; I am a black skinned white man.

  • Suki||

  • Loyal HnRer||

    There are other Florida statutes that deal with this. It's been discussed here ad nauseam, and I'm too lazy to dig up links right now.

  • Repairman Jack||

    It's possible, even without the SYG law, for there to be a situation where whoever kills the other first could get off on self-defense.

  • Suki||

    Some report said hat Martin's father, on the night of the shooting, said the cries for help were not from his son. Also, this gem from the "highest journalistic standards" people at NBC:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?f.....Q3cnYkjKXc

  • shrike||

    I am sick of this fucking Zimmerman story.

    OT - some conservative terrorist bombed a Planned Parenthood clinic last night.

    http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpoi.....fpnewsfeed

    Eric Rudolf is in prison though - Hannity is jacking off somewhere on this news.

  • False Flag||

    Thanks!

  • Jeffersonian||

    So they've apprehended a suspect?

  • ||

    “It looks to be something more incendiary than something that was explosive,” Peace said. “It looks like it caused fire damage, so we’re trying to figure out exactly what was this device that was left there.”

    Maybe some leftist/progressive did it so that others might claim it was done by right.

    Wouldn't be the first time socialists resorted to blaming a fire on someone else...

  • Reichstag Fire||

    Huh, what?

  • entropy void||

    You know who else started a fi ...
    Oh, nevermind ...

  • Dan||

    What's your basis for claiming it was a "conservative terrorist"? I mean, other than the fact that doing so suits your preconceived notions.

  • o3||

    if jacob ever popped someone in the nose, or played baseball, he'd know that zimmerman either had a prior broken nose (which was well healed) or he's lying thru his nose.

  • ||

    Watching this fucking story devolve into a TEAM RED TEAM BLUE humpfest is almost amusing. Almost, except someone is dead and all the partisan shits care about is their pathetic little war.

    Have fun, scumbags.

  • shrike||

    We agree for once. Can I be an honorary misanthrope today?

  • Bee Tagger||

    This, except for one small caveat. I think there is some worth to those standing on the sidelines repeatedly pointing out the debacle that is the MSM's coverage of this. Grabbing a shovel to help them continue to dig their own relevancy grave isn't entirely without merit.

  • Reasonoid||

    Bee Tagger makes a good point.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    I think there is some worth to those standing on the sidelines repeatedly pointing out the debacle that is the MSM's coverage of this.

    Yes, exactly. I don't have a "side" on who did what, because no one should and no one, IMO, reasonably can. Where I do have an opinion is how much of a clusterfuck the Media have become in this.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    Which team is saying, "Zimmerman's story seems to make more sense as more facts come and, although it might turn out that he committed a crime, I'd rather the cops not throw people in jail on the basis of a lot of maybe or because of public pressure" so I can know which team to root for on this one?

  • Michael Caine||

    I don't think that is an option. You must choose between Zimmerman is a racist who hunted down Martin like The Most Dangerous Game or Martin was a wannabe thug who totally had it coming.

  • ||

    i start from the assumption that mr. Zimmerman is a grand imperial wizard of the klan and had been hunting mr. martin specifically for weeks

    still does not make this a national issue on which the president should be getting involved (and ginning up for political reasons), as compared to any one of ten thousand other murders

  • Obama||

    But the police acted stupidly toward someone who would've been the son I never had.

  • Shorter Barack Obama||

    Bitch just spews out wimmins!

  • Fluffy||

    In the incident in which Obama previously said the police acted stupidly, they DID act stupidly.

    They attempted to enforce an interpretation of the Disorderly Conduct statute that had been struck down by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.

    If you don't know the laws you are claiming the power to enforce, you are fucking stupid. And you should be called on it at every opportunity. I wish Obama had broken a beer bottle over that fucking pig's head.

  • MNG||

    It was amazing in those threads how many of our GOPers quickly turned to wide eyed, school-girl police love.

  • Jeffersonian||

    Says the guy who wants to kick in doors for the impardonable crime of not buying health insurance.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    And kill doctors with the Loving Agents of the HHS.

  • MNG||

    You still following me Mr. Zimmerman?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    I have no problem calling a Lying Troll and Lying Troll, early and often, no less.

  • MNG||

    Obsessives rarely have problems with their obsessions, yeah.

  • MNG||

    Kick in doors? Why not go full Rev retard Jeff and go with the "kill doctors" stuff?

    I am dissapoint.

  • Jeffersonian||

    "Kick in doors?"

    So when some scofflaw fails to purchase the federally-mandated minimal health insurance and he gets a visit from federal agents, he'll just speak through the mail slot to go away and they will?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Still not the President's business. And you know he got involved for the wrong reasons. I have little doubt that, on a Platonic level, the President has very little problem with flexible DC statutes.

  • MNG||

    "Of course, it is a rank and (dareIsay?) dishonest tactic, because it is nonfalsifiable. Any protest to Rev's armchair psychologizing is just further evidence, to him, of his baseless slander."

  • ||

    Wow, another exception to the NAP.

    You're becoming a veritable moderate, Fluffy.

  • shrike||

    The President is not involved, you dumbass.

    Some reporter hijacked a press conference on energy and asked him a question and he spent 15 seconds on an answer.

  • ||

    he is involved when he comments on a criminal matter that is still under investigation

    he is not required to answer every question at every press conference, and the correct response would have been "i'm not going to comment on a pending police investigation"

  • shrike||

    I agree with you on "no comment" as a more appropriate press response.

    When you say "involved" I think back to Congress and Terry Schiavo and the GOP's brazen attempt to meddle in Florida law.

  • Shorter shrike||

    I think back to Congress and Terry Schiavo and the GOP's brazen attempt to meddle in Florida law every time I masturbate.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    I have no doubt that Barack Obama calculated that this Circus would make an excellent distraction from his near-continual failures as President.

  • Michael||

    "No comment" is utterly impossible under any circumstance. Obama's love for the sound of his own voice triumphs over all.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    He refuses to answer questions all the time. It's not "no comment." He just pretends the question was never asked.

  • ||

    What police investigation?

    Barney Fife and the boys down at SPD were all done. No big, just a dead black boy.

  • Barry H O'Bummer||

    If I had a son he'd look like Treyvon.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    And the only answer should have been "I hope that the incident will be investigated fully. Now, this is a local matter, so let's move on."

    The "if I had a son" comment was way out of line.

  • sarcasmic||

    I think if Barry had a son he'd look like Shawn Tyson.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new.....orida.html

  • MNG||

    I'm pretty sure what he was speaking to there was the black communities frustration with people thinking if you're black you're up to something.

    But you don't see race so you were probably like "what do you mean he would look like you? Tall and skinny?" so I understand if it escaped you.

  • David Axelrod||

    I am pretty sure, he was very concerned about the softness of our internal poll numbers among black voters. And as a result he went back to form as the race bating demagogue he always has wanted to be.

  • MNG||

    "And as a result he went back to form as the race bating demagogue he always has wanted to be."

    The projection is strong in this one.

  • MNG Knows||

    Projection since he does it every day on nearly every issue.

  • Barack Obama||

    I am colored, hear me pander.

  • ||

    Bullshit.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    MNG accuses people of projection quite often. Of course, it is a rank and (dareIsay?) dishonest tactic, because it is nonfalsifiable. Any protest to MNG's armchair psychologizing is just further evidence, to him, of his baseless slander.

  • MNG||

    Yes, and all the projection of bad motives on Obama's part here, well, that's on your TEAM RED side you just didn't see that, huh?

    Like race for you I guess..

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    What an easy game to play.

    "No, YOU'RE Projecting!"

    Wow, what an "argument".

    Just stop embarrassing yourself.

  • MNG||

    You're pretty bad at picking up arguments, huh?

    If you're going to get all butthurt over what people say maybe you should pay better attention to it.

    Here I'm noting that in your typical TEAM RED GO!!! fashion you try to call me out for "projection" when many comments here are projecting all kinds of malevolent motives into Obama. But, like race, you just don't see those, huh? You've gotta attack the TEAM BLUE guy!

    It's almost, dishonest?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    You have devolved into incoherency.

    Not surprising.

  • MNG||

    It's OK if your pussy hurts Rev, many whiny bitches experience that.

  • Jesse Jackson||

    There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery. Then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    It should be painful. You helped create the situation.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    I'm pretty sure what he was speaking to there was the black communities frustration with people thinking if you're black you're up to something.

    Ah, god, where would we be without our Daily Dose of Stupid from you?

    If you to "speak to that", you speak in generalities. You don't say "Trayvon coulda been my son". That's transparently "picking a side" without evidence to back it up. Irresponsible.

  • MNG||

    Yeah, you're going to give Obama eloquence lessons.

    "Anyone who comments on anything must do so in the most explicit and direct fashion, or !!!!"

    You're a riot. It was plain what he was saying, you're just reading your anti-Obama bias into it.

  • Isn't Obama ||

    One of the greatest orators of all time? So good that students will be reading his speeches hundreds of years from now?

    You mean he misspoke? Really?

  • MNG||

    You're hilarious, I was saying the exact opposite of that.

  • MNG||

    And is this John of all people? It was him that had that conversation with me (and in typical John fashion, gets it wrong).

  • MNG||

    "If you to "speak to that", you speak in generalities."

    See, Reagan did it all wrong when he said "Mr. Gorbachevm tear down this wall."

    He should have said "Mr. Gorbachev, begin political reforms which will ultimately lead to a more free society posthaste!"

    Not a trial lawyer I guess.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    See, Reagan did it all wrong when he said "Mr. Gorbachev tear down this wall."

    That would be speaking to a particular symbol of injustice.

    Of course, that is (yet again!) disanalagous to the case...so it surprises me not at all to see you try to stupidly smash them together.

  • MNG||

    No, no, you said he should speak in generalities, so saying "this wall", I mean, what was that goofy guy thinking?

    But I know Ronnie's a family hero for you...

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    I can only assume that you are once again deliberately ignoring the argument through your favorite fallacy: equivocation.

  • MNG||

    As I remember I had to teach you about equivocation....

    But hey, whatever makes you happy there.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    As I remember I had to teach you about equivocation....

    Wow, more lies.

  • MNG||

    Maybe you were gone from the board for so long because of some amnesia or something.

    Or maybe you're being....DISHONEST!

    OMG, I better
    1. Declare I'm done dealing with you loudly and am incifing you
    2. Proceed to follow you from post to post responding that people should not respond to you and then
    3. Eventually start responding to you directly again, and at near stalker levels.

    Wait a minute, but I'm sane and have a life! I'll leave that kind of reaction to you bro.

  • MNG||

    I'm going to go now Rev, you can rush in and puff your chest up now.

    Later hater!

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    I call spoof, MNG is way to smart to misspell words.

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    Just like sometimes I'm way too smart and have to correct myself.

  • MNG||

    Obama was dead on to say this.

    We don't know what happened down there, and so we can't say whether Zimmerman or Martin was the aggressor, we can't say whether the stand your ground law covered what happened. All the speculation on that is silly.

    What does seem clear though is that Zimmerman had a heightened sense of suspicion about someone walking through his neighborhood, something far too many blacks say is a real problem. Obama spoke directly and seeminly only to that.

  • So clearly Obama ||

    Needed to poison the jury pool and get involved in a local case for which there was no federal issue.

    His soft poll numbers in the black community demanded it.

    The first rule of MNG club is "Obama does no wrong". The second rule is "If you think Obama might be wrong, see rule number one."

    And of course, you don't talk about MNG club.

    What does seem clear though is that Zimmerman had a heightened sense of suspicion about someone walking through his neighborhood, something far too many blacks say is a real problem.

    Except for Jesse Jackson who admits he does it himself.

  • The upset of the year||

    MNG|4.2.12 @ 1:59PM|#

    Obama was dead on to say this.

    It is like Villanova over Georgetown all over again. It is March Madness in April. Who would have ever guess MNG would say such a thing?

  • Shorter MNG||

    I'M A MIND READING SYCOPHANT!

  • ||

    "Some reporter hijacked..."

    After conferring with a White House staffer a few minutes before?

  • Neu Mejican||

    Watching this fucking story devolve into a TEAM RED TEAM BLUE humpfest is almost amusing. Almost, except someone is dead and all the partisan shits care about is their pathetic little war.

    Based on the discussion over the Gifford's shooting, you don't give a shit about the dead kid any more than those you accuse. You just pulled that phrase out to make a political dig...kettle/pot, black, etc.

  • shrike||

    Misanthrope revealed.

    Good point.

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    I'll admit that I don't care about the dead kid except for the fact that he's being used as another weapon in the race war.

  • MNG||

    "I'll admit that I don't care about the dead kid"

    Yeah, we knew that already.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Sherlock: "Would caring about them help to save them?"
    John: "No."
    Sherlock: "Then I'll continue not to make that mistake."

  • MNG||

    Yes, the Rev is above all that silly caring and stuff, not for a fine objectivist like he.

    Get over yourself.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Ha ha! Your tears are delicious, MNG.

  • MNG||

    Ha ha? Watch that emotion Cap'n Objectivist!

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Even Ayn Rand herself would enjoy watching you half-blubber like a little girl.

  • MNG||

    Oh, old Annie was full of passion, as are you. Nursing butthurt this long is not the actions of someone who is so over emotions.

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    If it hadn't been for his death, I never would have heard of Trayvon Martin for the rest of my life. I didn't know him, why should I care about him?

  • T||

    Can I be the first here to openly admit my callousness? The wailing and gnashing of teeth over some kid most people wouldn't have given two shits about in any other context strikes me as deranged.

  • MNG||

    Of course its being overdone, that's what people do. But that doesn't mean one should go the other direction.

    It's a tragedy, not one I feel very personally not knowing the two guys involved, but a sad thing. One guy is dead and one guy's life is ruined, it's likely that at least one of them didn't deserve that.

  • Neu Mejican||

    it's likely that at least one of them didn't deserve that.

    It's possible they both acted badly in the situation and "deserved" what they got. Zimmerman certainly deserves some of what he got even if his story is completely true. Not all, for sure, but some.

  • Neu Mejican||

    IOW, if you shoot and kill someone in self-defense, you "deserve" to be questioned about it and should expect to have careful scrutiny of your story. When your story includes plenty of evidence that you were actively intruding on someone else whose behavior seemed "suspicious" to you, you deserve to have your actions (which resulted in someone's death) scrutinized and deemed "suspicious."

    But clearly...MANY people have gone WAY TOO FAR with this.

  • MNG||

    That's why I said "likely." What you say is possible.

  • Neu Mejican||

    I know that.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    Is it more or less of a tragedy than the multiple black men who are killed on any given weekend by other black men?

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    No, but you can be the second.

  • MNG||

    I really like it when the Right-wingers start wishing death on people who say something they don't like. So charming, albeit predictable.

    Hi sarcy!

  • Good thing||

    No left wingers have called for the death of Zimmerman or tweeted out his address (erroneously) or anything.

    Third rule of MNG club, fellow travelers are never guilty of any wrong doing and if they are the other side did something worse.

  • MNG||

    Well, then those lefties, like sarcy, are sick. But I don't see any of them here, but the latter, well, yup!

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    Since you're responding to me, can you please show where I wished death on someone?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    He just lies. That isn't hard to see, is it?

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    No it isn't. I know he's a worthless piece of shit concern troll that gets all pissy when others aren't as sensitive as he is.

  • MNG||

    O'my lord, he's all upset!

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Generally people get upset when you accuse them without evidence of terrible things...that is, lying about them.

  • MNG||

    Nah, sarcy has quite explicitly called for liberals to be euthanized several times, and he clearly wishes either death or my life ruined above, because I disagreed with him or more likely won't play with him on this thread. And that's pretty nutty, but hey, in your current TEAM RED BROTHERHOOD mode you've gottat defend him. I get it.

    Tru dat, Randian playa.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Wow, sarcasmic isn't even in this subthread. Can you read the title of the commenter you're talking to? I mean, is that so far beyond you?

  • Socialistic Individual Sparky||

    If you're referring to me again, I'm not upset in the least. To be upset I'd have to care about your opinion. The best I can tell is that once again you've proven you're a liar when there are possible points to score for your team.

  • Alan Vanneman||

    Why does the headline of the article fault the Times, while the last para praises the Times for raising issues that should have been dealt with by the police?

    Re Wolfinger rather than Jake, how do you justify NOT charging an armed man who shot and killed an unarmed man, relying entirely on the killer's testimony?

  • mofo||

    How do you know that they relied "entirely on the killer's testimony"?

  • ||

    maybe they are trying to gather facts and figure out what actually happened before charging someone with a crime?

  • ||

    >How do you justify NOT charging...

    Because there is physical evidence that confirms the shooter's story. The police and prosecutors certainly know the results of the ballistic (and other forensic) tests--angle of entry, distance of the gun shot from the body, etc.--which, had it been in conflict with shooter's story, Zimmerman would've been charged already. There is very little direct witness evidence. Lots of narrative bias in story telling and media reporting, but physical evidence will likely be dispositive.

  • Suki||

    Don't forget Martin's father saying the screams for help on the 911 recording were not those of his son at first, then switching that up for the media narrative.

  • Kreel Sarloo||

    Actually, "[t]he police and prosecutors certainly" do not "know the results of the ballistic (and other forensic) tests--angle of entry, distance of the gun shot from the body, etc" in the first hours after a shooting. It can take days to arrive at these results.

    FWIW, based on my own speculations based on what has happened in othe cases involving shooters who claimed selfdefense in Florida, in the absence of blatant and obvious facts contradicting the shooters story no immediate arrest will be made.

    Prosecutors hate premature arrests. Arrestees can only be held so long without charge and prosecutors do not like to look unprepared at arraignments.

  • ||

    derp

  • ||

    Orlando Sentinel, not the NYT found the forensics experts to check the audio.

    Fortunately for reasonoids we have plenty of background on the (un)reliability and (un)scientific nature of forensics experts so that we can continue to play our game of "everybody is wrong".

  • MNG||

    "Why does the headline of the article fault the Times, while the last para praises the Times for raising issues that should have been dealt with by the police?"

    No alan, it only appears inconsistent, the consistency is THE TIMES IS LIBERAL AND WE HATE IT!

    See?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Nuance - how the fuck does it work?

  • we||

    It's been more than a month and we still have all these gaps in the public record. Jounalistically, it's been slow and elliptical like the Kitty Genovese case from 1964.

    The internet has greatly accelerated opinion formation, while not doing much on the fact side in cases like this.

  • mofo||

    " But Martin's relatives say they recognize his voice, and (as Mike Riggs noted) two audio experts consulted by The Orlando Sentinel say the voice is not Zimmerman's. Since this is a crucial point that could have tipped the balance in favor of arresting Zimmerman (as Sanford police wanted to do), why did it take a newspaper to see if there might be an objective way of addressing it?"

    Who's to say they didnt, and just havent released that information?

  • Charlotte Corday||

    I don't think Reason has covered this story enough.

  • Rev. Sharpton||

    RACIST!

  • sarcasmic||

    Why isn't Reason using the pictures of Treyvon from years past when he looked like a harmless little kid, not a potential punk?

    I call racism!

    Straight up!

  • Charlotte Corday||

    And they showed him in a hoodie. That is racist!!!

  • ||

    you should be happy they're not using toddler photos of him

  • Franklin Harris||

    For the most part, the media's use of audio and video recordings in this case is akin to the way "ghost hunters" take random noises to be ghosts speaking, and motes of dust or illuminated insects to be spectral orbs. The Orlando Sentinel may be the first news org not to embarrass itself with this stuff.

  • ||

    The only reliable recordings are record players playing records backwards, which invariably espouse satanic worship. As record players no longer exist, there is no longer any reliable audio evidence.

  • daoR yebbA||

    Paul is dead.

  • T||

    It's apparently too difiicult for anyone to say "the video is inconclusive". A conclusion must be drawn, no matter how thinly supported it may be.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Indeed.

  • T||

    This could be extended to make a general point about the case, but then we'd have no more bickering about it, and who wants that?

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    T wins the entire controversy.

  • Neu Mejican||

    This could be extended to make a general point about the case, but then we'd have no more bickering about it, and who wants that?

    The problem is that the system is forced to make a conclusion. The default, rightly imho, in an "inconclusive" situation is to use "innocent until proven guilty." BUT - in this case there may be enough to say that a more careful consideration of the available evidence is needed before determining that the evidence is "inconclusive."

    I am okay with people wanting a more careful look.

  • T||

    I have no problem with wanting a more careful look. But a lot of people have picked a side already, and are just looking for something to support the conclusion they've drawn.

    The entire event sucks for everyone involved, but I'm not sure how a media circus either helps anyone involved or helps arrive at a better understanding of what transpired.

  • ||

    Yes, but the system isn't forced to make an immediate conclusion.

    If only there was a profession whose job it was to research, verify, and then disseminate information for the public at large to consume and make judgements upon.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    If only there was a profession whose job it was to research, verify, and then disseminate information for the public at large to consume and make judgements upon.

    I know I declared a threadwinner once before, but this is pretty good too.

  • Angle Iron||

    I'm in your country illegally, raping your middle-school girls...

    A Cobb County man is accused of raping and impregnating an 11-year-old girl, according to Smyrna police.

    Martin Nolasco, 21, is being held without bond in the Cobb County jail since his arrest last week, booking records show. Nolasco, of Smyrna, has been charged with aggravated child molestation, two counts of felony child molestation and statutory rape for allegedly having sex with an 11-year-old, according to an arrest warrant obtained by the AJC.

    The alleged assaults happened between Jan. 1 and Feb. 14 at Nolasco's apartment, the warrant states.

    Nolasco is also being held on an immigration violation, jail records show.

    http://www.ajc.com/news/cobb/c.....04781.html

  • shrike||

    Goddamn regulations!

  • Ex nihilo||

    I'm in your country illegally, raping your middle-school girls...

    BFD - the only relevant part is the violence he used, not his immigration status.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Yep - last I checked, citizens and legal residents have done these very things.

    Don't let that stop the ImmgrationRacists from shoe-horning their xenophobia into EveryThread.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    Of course Reason has on at least one occasion blamed some misfortune that befell someone after they were deported on immigration laws. So both sides love fallacy.

    The bottom line is, if we just locked everyone in prison none of this stuff would ever happen.

  • ||

    It's perfectly logical to say that Event B would not have occurred if Law A did not exist or was enforced. There's only a fallacy if one argues for Law A's enforcement/abolishen based on Event B.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    It is the same logic either way.

    If we enforced our immigration laws, this guy wouldn't have been in the country to commit this crime.

    If we didn't enforce our immigration laws, this guy wouldn't have been in Honduras when he was murdered.

    Both assume that direct causality is the same as proximate causality.

  • ||

    No they don't. Proximate causality is logically legitimate. It is simply an insufficient basis for a foundational argument, because as you state, such an argument requires direct causality.

  • Kreel Sarloo||

    If we enforced our immigration laws, this guy wouldn't have been in the country to commit this crime.

    Uhhh, "we" do enforce "our" immigration laws. The fact that thousands slip through "our" border controls does not mean we don't have them.

    The fact that there are several thousand murders in the USA each year is apparently proof that we don't enforce our murder laws.

    Quotation marks above are to indicate that these are not my immigration laws. If I were king there would still be immigration laws, but they would be different and enforced differently.

    I'm not sure how much more draconian and intrusive immigration hawks want enforcement to be.

  • ||

    I'm not sure how much more draconian and intrusive immigration hawks want enforcement to be.

    I think you are, and that it scares you.

  • Mr. Soul||

    point of order. when someone says "draconian" they lose me.

  • Kreel Sarloo||

    "when someone says "draconian" they lose me."

    Sounds to me like you're lost already.

    If you don't understand how intrusive and draconian the immigration laws of this country are now you clearly have no idea what's going on.

    Perhaps you've simply never travelled outside the USA and/or you've never met anyone who has gone through the byzantine maze of ICE.

  • Kreel Sarloo||

    My larger point is that Immigration laws are being enforced.

    Problem is, as currently written they are unenforceable.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    There's only a fallacy if one argues for Law A's enforcement/abolishen based on Event B.

    I am not going to give the Anti-Immigrationists the benefit of the doubt. Their choice to focus on certain crimes proves their own argument by implication.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Charlotte, I like to think I am consistent when reason (mostly Riggs, as of late) does the same thing.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    I am sure you are. And as I said, if we would just lock everyone in Super Max, we could stop all of this crime forever.

  • T||

    Prison crime statistics prove you wrong.

  • Ex nihilo||

    Solitary confinement for everyone!

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Boo!

  • ||

    If he weren't here, he wouldn't be committing his crimes here.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    And if Ted Kaczynski had never been allowed to grow up, he wouldn't have been the Unabomber.

    Should we go King Herod and terminate all male babies, just to be sure?

  • Ex nihilo||

    Rev. Blue Moon,

    You would have to teminate all babies, just to be sure we don't get any more women like Belle Sorenson Gunness.

  • Barack Obama||

    x

  • ||

  • Media||

    Let no junk science go unmarshaled in support of the narrative.

  • T||

    Is 'junk science' the discipline involved in examining people's junk?

  • sarcasmic||

    That's the TSA.

  • Reasonoid||

    +n

  • Upgrayyed||

    So assuming this was a criminal act, what's Zimmerman's motive? Racism? Robbery? You'd assume if Zimm was a straight up angry racist he would have emptied his pf9 into the dude and then stomped on his face- not one shot to the chest.

  • sarcasmic||

    Obviously it was racism.

    To suggest otherwise is racist.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    And there would be other evidence that he was a racist. Instead, we have all these people who know him saying just the opposite. If he was some crazy racist who was bent on shooting the first black person who confronted him, wouldn't there be someone out there who noticed this before now?

  • sarcasmic||

    And there would be other evidence that he was a racist.

    He's white and he shot a black person.
    Isn't that evidence by itself?

    You can't suggest that he was reacting in self defense, because that perpetuates the racist stereotype that young black males are violent thugs.

    So obviously Zimmerman is racist.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    I tried to substitute my bourgeois facts and truth for revolutionary truth there. My mistake.

  • ||

    The notion that only a racism-crazed Zimmerman would have killed Martin is the same load of crap as the innocent defender of his neighborhood from the teenage menace viewpoint.

    A soft racism, where the lone black kid is assumed to be a burglar or on drugs, is more likely. Racism isn't the reason Martin was shot, but it is the reason the situation that resulted in him being shot occurred.

    It's also the sort of racism that will never be fully stamped out because is is a great way to play out one of humankind's favorite pass-times: The assignment of collective guilt.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    You see an old woman walking by. Then you see a large, young white male, dressed poorly and covered with tattoos. Who is more likely to assault you?

    Collective guilt is one thing. Social cues are another. The fact is that some groups of people, young males in particular, really are more likely to be a direct threat than others.

  • sarcasmic||

    Who is more likely to assault you?

    I dunno. I hear Betty White is a real bad-ass.

  • Fluffy||

    It's really not a defense of racism to say, "Well, black people DO commit a lot of crime, so that makes it OK for me to treat any black kid I see as a potential criminal."

    Would the police have possessed probable cause to detain Martin if they had been driving by and saw him walking down the street? No? Then Zimmerman should have stayed in his truck and kept his fucking mouth shut.

  • sarcasmic||

    Would the police have possessed probable cause to detain Martin if they had been driving by and saw him walking down the street?

    Apparently he wasn't just walking down the street, he was cutting between houses.

    If that was indeed the case then I do believe cops would have had PC to harass him.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    You think Zimmerman, given his propensity for 911 calls, etc., would have ignored a white, Hispanic, or white Hispanic guy out in the rain behaving the same way as Martin?

    I think it's quite a stretch to blame even soft racism without showing some kind of pattern in Zimmerman's interventions.

  • ||

    Zimmerman had called four times in August to report suspicious behavior, all black males.

    "These assholes always get away."

    Not even now that part of the country is howling for his blood does Zimmerman claim that he witnessed Martin committing a crime. Martin was suspicious because he was black and appeared to be on drugs (whatever that means to someone observing someone walking in the rain while following him with a car.)

    Some people are obsessed with making this all about race, some are obsessed with denying race played any role whatsoever. Both sides are wrong, and for very self-serving reasons.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    What about all the other months he was doing his patrol thing?

    I don't know that race didn't have anything to do with it but, given what his friends have said, it's not my first guess.

    Why does "assholes" mean blacks and not just "these punks I see doing suspicious things?"

  • shamalam||

    "Martin was suspicious because he was black and..."

    If you listen to the 911 recording that point is not at all clear. When asked the ethnicity of the suspicious person, Zimmer replie, "he's black, I think". From that response it seems to me that Zimmer is not really certain of Trayvon's race, and if he is not certain it is difficult (or at least unconvincing) to ascribe anti-black bias to him.

  • Kreel Sarloo||

    AFAIK, motive only applies to premeditated murder. I don't believe anyone is claiming that Z is guilty of Murder 1.

    Sometimes things just get out of hand. No one planned it. No one had a motive.

  • Upgrayyed||

    Right- but it just keeps going in a circle. It it wasn't premeditated, then as you say- things got out of hand- whether that was Zimm getting his ass whooped or whatever- then he is either defending himself or he's a ruthless vato. It's a big psychological leap to shoot someone in cold blood.

  • T||

    It's a big psychological leap to shoot someone in cold blood.

    Most people in this day and age can't do it. The ones who can are the ones to watch out for, but alas, there's not really any obvious indicators.

  • ||

    Oh my... why assume ANYone is being accurate/responsible here? Lotsa inflammatory crap going on, right?
    "Facts" are so distracting...interfere with the narrative. The preferred story line. I weep.

  • Fluffy||

    Is it more or less of a tragedy than the multiple black men who are killed on any given weekend by other black men?

    More, actually.

    If someone like Zimmerman goes out there and appoints himself the marshal of who gets to be on the sidewalk, maybe some evening he'll run up and pull a gun on ME.

    The circumstances of Martin's death make ME less safe.

  • ||

    Hey, Fluffy, news flash! Zim is going to walk. The law thinks Martin got what he had coming and Zim won't even be tried. Best be careful out there if you think you could be the next Trayvon.

  • ||

    The guy got out of his suv to chase a 'suspect'.I don't think it had anything to do with race,but,everything to do with a cop wanna be.If you confront someone walking down the street minding their own business be prepared to get punched.

  • Jeffersonian||

    My understanding is that GZ got out of his vehicle because he had lost all orientation with the surrounding structures and was trying to find an address close to where TM waa last sighted. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought at that point, GZ believed he had lost sight of TM and was surprised when TM confronted him.

  • ||

    One more thing,this guy was walking down the street talking to his girfriend the records show.There was no reson fo a real cop to stop him either.If someone is doing no harm leave them alone.

  • sarcasmic||

    I read someplace that he was cutting between houses.

    If true doing so, especially at night, would likely grab the attention of a real cop. Or in this case a wannabe cop.

    Regardless of the race of the party involved.

  • Fluffy||

    Actually, that's not what Zimmerman reported to 911.

    He reported that Martin was LOOKING at houses.

    Which is kind of sad, because Zimmerman says that HE was "looking at houses" when Martin supposedly jumped him for no reason. So it was OK for Zimmerman to look at the houses, but not Martin, I guess.

    Unless that's not currently Zimmerman's tale. Maybe his brother's story is the current story. Or maybe he's made up another one since then.

  • Dan||

    If you confront someone walking down the street minding their own business be prepared to get punched.

    On a related note -- if you assault a stranger on the street because he had the temerity to ask you a question, hope he isn't carrying a gun. :)

  • Neu Mejican||

    You can't suggest that he was reacting in self defense, because that perpetuates the racist stereotype that young black males are violent thugs.

    You must have that saved on your clipboard for ready access when needed.

    Not all discourse about race in this case wilts to your magic incantation.

  • Fluffy||

    So assuming this was a criminal act, what's Zimmerman's motive? Racism? Robbery?

    Zimmerman did not realize he did not have the legal right to detain Martin. That to me is the ultimate cause of what happened here.

    It doesn't surprise me that he wasn't aware he didn't have that right, because a lot of people here seem to think he DID have that right.

    To me the most plausible series of events given everything we know is that Zimmerman, believing the police to be on their way, sincerely felt that he had the legal right to detain Martin for questioning until the police arrived. So Zimmerman confronted Martin, either physically or threateningly. Martin decided to fight him, and Zimmerman panicked and shot him.

  • sarcasmic||

    Ah yes. Fluffy's eye witness account of Zimmer detaining Martin.

    Please, recount the entire story.

    Starting with Zimmer yelling at Martin, then attempting to physically restrain him, followed by Martin justifiably pushing him off with Zimmer then gunning him down in cold blood.

    I'm sure investigators would be interested in your eye witness account as well.

    Do tell.

  • Fluffy||

    Well, Zimmerman appears to have backed off his story that Martin attacked him by surprise and from ambush.

    According to Zimmerman's brother, the NEW story is that they were arguing, and Zimmerman stepped back to draw his cell phone, and Martin jumped him.

    But we shouldn't gather from this story change that it was actually the gun that Zimmerman was drawing. No, not at all.

    And we shouldn't gather from the story change that Zimmerman suddenly realized he wouldn't be able to make his first story stick.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    Fluffy,

    If you want to hate Zimmerman, go ahead knock yourself out. But please stop assuming things are true just because they fit your narrative. And stop assuming that because you don't like Zimmerman that makes him guilty of murder.

    You really are no better than the racists on this. You think because Zimmerman was a neighborhood watch and did something you dislike, everything he says must be a lie and he must be guilty.

  • Fluffy||

    If he changed his story in the least little detail, I am entitled to conclude that his entire story is a lie he made up to try to wedge events into the safe harbor of the self-defense law.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    You can do that. But anyone else is entitled to think you are a nut for doing so. Just because he changed his story doesn't mean he is lying about everything. And it doesn't mean he is guilty of murder.

    You would never think so in any other context.

  • Fluffy||

    What if he was a cop?

    If he was a cop, and his statement neatly fit exactly into the statutory requirements to be a good shoot, and then we found out part of the story was false...

    Everybody here would assume the cop was testilying.

  • sarcasmic||

    If he was a cop I'd just figure he's lying because a cop's trade is in force and fraud.

  • Llama||

    Unless Z turned away to reach for his cell phone or head back to his car, and then Martin launched at him while he was turning away to pull out his cell phone. Then the story makes perfect sense and fits with Zimmerman's original story.

    There's as much evidence for that as there is for your "illegal detention" theory.

    You see where this is going? We can make up theories all day that spin the case in one direction or another to fit whatever narrative you favor, but the bottom line is, there wasn't enough evidence to put him away then, there isn't now, and making up bullshit theories isn't going to change that.

  • Fluffy||

    Except for Jesse Jackson who admits he does it himself.

    Hey, if you want to be AFRAID of black kids you see walking down the street, knock yourself out.

    Cross to the other side. Piss your pants. Lock your car door. Clutch your pearls. Whatever floats your boat.

    That is quite a different matter from deciding you're empowered to arm yourself and run up to them to demand that they account for their presence on the street.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    That is quite a different matter from deciding you're empowered to arm yourself and run up to them to demand that they account for their presence on the street.

    Let me type this slowly for you Fluffy. Asking someone who they are and where they are going in a public place is, for the last time

    NOT A CRIME AND NOT AN ASSAULT

    Can you please keep that straight for now on?

  • sarcasmic||

    According to Fluffy, Zimmer didn't just ask him what his business was, he attempted to unlawfully detained him.

    At that point Martin had every legal right to use deadly force against Zimmer under the Stand your Ground law.

    Unfortunately Martin left his piece at home, and now he's dead.

    But it was Zimmer who started it by shouting at Martin to stay where he was until police arrived.

    Fluffy said so.

    I assume Fluffy was there.

    How else would Fluffy know?

  • Charlotte Corday||

    Fluffy and RC Dean are both just being stupid about this. Neither one of them can over their hate of neighborhood watches to judge the case objectively. It does not matter why Zimmerman confronted Taylor. Zimmerman could have confronted him because he is a complete jerk and hates all black people and that fact still wouldn't matter.

    The only thing that matters is who started the fight and did Zimmerman reasonably feel his life was in danger when he shot Taylor. That is it.

    Both Fluffy RC Dean are so wrapped up in their own prejudices they cannot even understand the issue much less judge it objectively. It goes to show, everyone has a blind spot. Some have fewer than others. But everyone has one. And this issue is theirs.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    The only thing that matters is who started the fight and did Zimmerman reasonably feel his life was in danger when he shot Taylor. That is it.

    Exactly. And because it is highly likely no one will ever know how that shook out, any conjecture, wailing and gnashing of teeth, protests, etc. based on that lack of knowledge are irresponsible at best and reprehensible at worst.

  • Fluffy||

    No other explanation fits the facts we know as well.

    But actually, I am willing to admit that I hate Zimmerman MORE, the more you cunts irrationally defend him. I'm more pissed at HIM, the more nonsense you throw at me.

    You think you're defending guns here, so you are willing to believe absurdities. Or at least pretend you believe them. And that pisses me off. And it's comical, in a way, since I'm probably the most radically pro-gun person here.

    I'm making an effort at separating being pissed at your bullshit from the facts of the case, though. I think I can successfully parse those emotions out.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    No. We are saying we don't know what happened and never will. Thus, Zimmerman is legally innocent and the case ought to die.

    No one here but you is assuming things. You hate Zimmerman and that hate is causing you to assume things that are either unknown or just not true.

    I don't think I am defending guns at all. I am defending reasonable doubt and due process and rational thinking about events.

  • Fluffy||

    No other explanation fits the facts we know as well.

    But actually, I am willing to admit that I hate Zimmerman MORE, the more you cunts irrationally defend him. I'm more pissed at HIM, the more nonsense you throw at me.

    You think you're defending guns here, so you are willing to believe absurdities. Or at least pretend you believe them. And that pisses me off. And it's comical, in a way, since I'm probably the most radically pro-gun person here.

    I'm making an effort at separating being pissed at your bullshit from the facts of the case, though. I think I can successfully parse those emotions out.

  • Fluffy||

    That's just not true, whore.

    False Imprisonment involves both physical restraint and restraint by threat.

    So you can be guilty of the crime if the person you approach in a public place reasonably feels you are threatening them into staying put.

    If you walk up to someone on a dark street and say, "Stay where you are," the question of whether you are committing False Imprisonment depends on that person's reasonable belief about whether you are threatening them.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    Telling someone to stay where they are is neither an assault nor a crime. End of story. Unless you threaten someone with force, not I am calling the cops but real threat of physical force, you have not committed a crime.

    You are just wrong on this. You are normally so reasonable. And you have absolutely lost your mind.

  • Fluffy||

    If a reasonable person in the position of the person you're talking to would feel threatened, sure you have.

    If a bunch of bank robbers turn to bank customers and say, "NOBODY MOVE!", but make no explicit threat, they're still committing False Imprisonment. Because a reasonable person would believe they were being told "Don't move - or else."

  • Llama||

    They're committing false imprisonment because they most likely have guns, which they are most likely waving about in order to convince people that their order not to move should be obeyed.

    There's absolutely no evidence that Z showed Martin his gun. Not even the girlfriend mentioned that, and according to her, she was talking to him right up until "his voice changed" like he had been pushed.

    F-.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    You have talked yourself into such a corner on this. Just back off. You have reduced yourself to claiming that the mere act of asking someone what they are doing constitutes justification for that person to attack you.

    Where did the neighborhood watch person touch you?

  • Fluffy||

    That's not the issue I was responding to here.

    I have absolutely no doubt that Zimmerman attempted to restrain Martin, and I regard his testimony to the contrary as self-serving bullshit.

    But ABOVE AND BEYOND the Martin case, someone up thread said that it's reasonable to fear black people on the street, because Jesse Jackson said he fears them, too.

    And I wanted to say that I also think it's fine to be afraid. But if you step beyond just being afraid, and hassle people, you're a racist fuck.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    I have absolutely no doubt that Zimmerman attempted to restrain Martin

    There is not a shred of evidence that indicates that. You only think that because you hate Zimmerman. You can have no doubt if you like. But there is no rational case to support that.

  • Fluffy||

    Zimmerman's statements evincing anger that Martin might get away is certainly more than a shred of evidence.

    It might not convince you, but it convinces me.

  • Dan||

    Good luck reasoning Fluffy out of a belief he didn't reason himself into.

  • ||

    I'm not an MMA fighter, so I don't know much about this sort of stuff, but I'd have to think that unless he's really out of shape or simply doesn't know how to handle himself, that a 5'9" 170lb grown man would have little trouble subduing a 150lb. kid, even if the kid is a few inches taller. Being 6'1" might make him tall, but at a 150lbs., I cant imagine him being very strong.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    That would depend on who is more aggressive and who has the initiative. The fact that Zimmerman had 20 pounds on Taylor says little if anything about who won that fight. And the evidence seems to show that it was Taylor.

  • entropy void||

    ... um ... just who is this "Taylor" that you speak of?

  • Neu Mejican||

    Age is a big factor too.
    A typical 25 year old will be stronger than a typical 17 year old by quite a bit. BUT the variance is high and TM was a football player.

  • Llama||

    A punch in the nose can quickly eliminate any height or weight advantages in a fight. You really don't have to hit someone that hard in the nose to cause a lot of pain, make his eyes water and disorient him enough to jump on top of him and start beating his ass.

  • Upgrayyed||

    20lbs ain't shit. And at least from personal experience- I started fighting my old man around 16.

  • ||

    I scrolled all the way down to officially register my ennui with this topic.

    For me, it comes down to something we will never know (barring shocking new evidence): who escalated to a physical confrontation? If Trayvon, Zimmerman should walk. If Zimmerman, he shouldn't be able to claim self-defense, and should go down.

    That is all. Carry on.

  • Charlotte Corday||

    That is all there is to it. The case is over.

  • Fluffy||

    BTW, based on this thread it seems pretty obvious that Charlotte Corday is John.

    Just switch your name back, dude.

  • Neu Mejican||

    I am all for the new John.

    If he is attempting to disassociate himself from his former on-line personae...then maybe some of his more annoying Johnisms will stay gone as well.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Sadly for all of you, I haven't decided to disassociate from my handle.

  • ||

    Dude was a thug, yet folks gotta emerge from cracks in the floor and make a big ole "Black Thang" out of it lol. Get over it, move on already.

    www.Surf-Tools.tk

  • shrike||

    Black is beautiful

  • ||

    My questions is, if you shoot someone who is beating you on the ground, would they fall onto you or away from you. Also, if they were in close range, would they bleed all over you?

    I still wonder why he is not covered with Trayvon's blood.

  • sarcasmic||

    If someone is beating you on the ground and notices you have a gun, then loses the race to grab it, they won't be on top of you anymore.

    As far as splatter goes, depends on what they're wearing. If they're layered up then I'd think the clothes would prevent blood from spraying forward.

  • Agenda Based Photography||

    You're still using the old pictures, when newer and more accurate one have become available.

    Knock it the hell off.

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