Zimmerman guilty regardless of verdict

By on July 25, 2013
ForumOpinion

When a six woman jury declared that George Zimmerman was not guilty in the murder of Trayvon Martin, people across the country rallied in protest. The case has drawn much debate over race in the country, even though Zimmerman claims to be part Hispanic and that his parents never taught him to be racist.

Protesters of the verdict have been gathering in a variety of ways, peaceful and non-peaceful. Some took to the streets with bags of Skittles – the very candy Marvin had bought before he was killed – while others have thrown items such as batteries, rocks and chunks of concrete at the police.

State Attorney Angela Corey reacted to Zimmerman’s verdict displeased, believing him to be a murderer despite his claims of self-defense. “We never said Trayvon didn’t do something to George Zimmerman. What we said is you can’t take a concealed weapon and encourage or incite a fistfight — which is what he did by stalking a teenager who didn’t know who he was — and then whip your gun out and shoot,” said Corely. And frankly, I agree with this statement.

It’s hard to know whether this case was really racial or not, but the fact of the matter is Zimmerman still killed Martin. Sure, he may have been doing his job on the neighborhood watch, and maybe Martin seemed suspicious. He did the right thing by calling the police to check on the matter; however, the police instructed Zimmerman not to follow Martin and he disobeyed them. He stalked Martin with a concealed gun.

If I found out someone was coming after me with a weapon that they were trying to hide I would react in one of two ways: run or fight. With something like a gun it would be difficult to run when one can simply point and shoot, so the option that many would find most logical is to fight for your life. Martin was scared he was going to be shot and may have fought back in self-defense.

Zimmerman might have believed Martin to truly be a threat at the time and fired in what he believed to be self-defense. Both parties may have both been fighting for survival, but neither of them would have had to do such a thing if Zimmerman listened to the police and not followed Martin.

We may not ever find out if this was a racially-motivated shooting, but we do know that he didn’t listen to the police and ended up killing an unarmed boy. This alone should have found him guilty of manslaughter. Zimmerman wasn’t listening to anyone’s orders but his own that tragic night. I pray for the family and friends of Trayvon Martin that they receive justice for this one day.

Eric Kaemmerer
Staff Writer
ekaem2@uab.edu

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