“What is your reaction to the verdict in the George Zimmerman trail?”
That question has been put to us several times since the verdict was announced this past weekend.
We were not surprised by the verdict. Under the terms of Florida’s stand you r ground law, the jury had to answer a question that was impossible to answer…when George Zimmerman pulled that trigger was his mind filled with hate or fear. Only George Zimmerman knows the truth.
The stand your ground law is a terrible law. It allows those with hate in their hearts to shoot first and claim self defense or justifiable homicide later. Is George Zimmerman one of “those” people? We’ll never know.
More unsettling for us than the verdict was the post verdict vitriol and hate speech from both the right and the left that has saturated the internet. If anyone is naïve enough to think that racism in this country is dead, log on to virtually any blog, twitter feed or facebook posting on the verdict. The comments are sickening.
While most of the post trail discussion concerns race and racial profiling we think that there is another aspect of this trail that deserves a like amount of scrutiny…gun violence.
The NRA and the gun lobby likes to say that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people. Fair enough. But do guns embolden people to act in a way that they would not have otherwise acted were it not for the false sense of security of having a gun? Does George Zimmerman ignore a dispatcher’s direct order, leave the safety of his vehicle and follow a person that he has identified as someone of suspicious character…if he doesn’t have a gun in his waistband?
We think not.