My husband’s biological mother – psycho as she is – was absolutely right about at least one thing: “There’s three sides to every story.” The truth always lies somewhere on the continuum in between the two sides. I am now going to jump in and apply this analogy to the current Martin/Zimmerman tragedy. But with this caveat: We may never know exactly what occurred between these two people. So, what if – feeling threatened by someone following him – Trayvon was standing HIS ground? Eyewitness accounts differ -and the 911 tapes are unclear about who exactly was yelling for help.
Mistakes were made by Zimmerman – HUGE mistakes. Mistakes that Trayvon Martin paid for with his life. Neighborhood watch personnel are NOT supposed to be armed. The key word there, my friends is “watch”. Neighborhood Watches are supposed to be trained to observe and report – nothing more. They are civilians who do not have the expertise to handle potentially violent or criminal events. Emergency Response Personnel (ie the Police) are trained to use their weapons, and only as a last resort. And as we have so sadly seen – someone is dead now because a trigger happy cop wannabe used a gun he should not have been carrying whilst “on duty”. What kind of training and oversight was provided to Zimmerman – and the Neighborhood Watch organization in general? WHO WATCHES THE WATCHMEN???? These are questions that absolutely need to be answered – and soon.
Zimmerman outweighed Martin by at least 70 pounds if not more -so I find it hard to reconcile that he did not fight back with his fists instead of shooting – IF in fact Martin attacked him as he is alleging. Although Zimmerman did show signs of being involved in a physical struggle (bruises, contusions, and grass stains). I work in human services -where it sometimes becomes necessary to “restrain” or subdue folks who are in danger of doing harm to themselves or someone else. In those cases, we are obligated to only use the amount of force necessary to overcome active resistance, nothing more. Its apples to apples. How can a grown adult justify shooting an UNARMED teenager who isn’t even in his weight class? (OK Trayvon was 6’2″ but certainly not filled out at 140 pounds) To my way of thinking, standing your ground should mean using equal force to repel an attack. Clearly, a bullet is a disproportional to a fist . I could see an unequal response (perhaps) if the “Watchman” was in fact a lady. (ok yes, I have a gender bias here) I’m sure we all can agree a young adult male could definitely present a threat to any woman, armed or not. But this was not the case.
And lets look at the race card here for a moment – Zimmerman is not a “white supremacist” by any stretch of the imagination. He’s got a Caucasian father and a Hispanic mother. NO white supremacist “organization” would touch him with a ten foot pole. They would consider him Latino – period. So those people who are draping him with the proverbial white sheet are WAAYYY off the mark.
Let’s lose the Rhetoric and put this simply- What we have here folks is a person who used extremely poor judgement & inserted himself into a situation that should best have been left to the police to handle. He aggressively pursued Martin after the police specifically told him NOT to. Then instead of defending himself man to man when allegedly attacked-took the cowards way out and shot his alleged attacker. And then, invoked the “stand your ground” defense to deflect the blame from himself. Typical of this society today. Let’s blame everybody else for our own lack of judgement….
And the kicker for me is that if anyone had a “stand your ground”defense it was Trayvon Martin. Being chased/threatened by an armed man for no apparent reason?? Yeahhhh….If Zimmerman had done as he was supposed to and stayed within the scope of his watch responsibilities then Trayvon would still be alive, mad and bewildered at the cops perhaps, but breathing nonetheless. What happened is not a hate crime, but it most certainly is a crime. And an arrogant one.
But it’s not about race- its about an inflated sense of self importance and paranoia (Zimmerman’s ego, and alleged tendency to cry wolf and label just about anyone “suspicious”). Crime Watch organizations really need to start scrutinizing and screening their volunteers carefully, thoroughly, & thoughtfully. Are CORI checks done? I would think so, but that’s not enough. What type of training is provided? Recertifications? Psych Evals? Oversight? I say again – Who watches the Watchmen? – because they clearly need an increased level of supervison if tragedies like this are to be prevented in the future.
- Claims cast Trayvon Martin as aggressor in shooting (foxnews.com)
- BREAKING: Witness Says Trayvon Martin ATTACKED George Zimmerman (VIDEO) (blippitt.com)
- Stand, Not Apprehend (obpopulus.wordpress.com)
- Zimmerman’s Account Questioned (thedailybeast.com)