Video: Obama weighs in on Trayvon Martin case; Update: Romney, Gingrich comment

posted at 12:45 pm on March 23, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

As one White House correspondent noted on Twitter, President Obama’s response to a question about the Trayvon Martin shooting was unusual in that he doesn’t usually respond to shouted questions from the press corps. Clearly, Obama wanted to talk about the incident after several days of debate over the killing of an unarmed teenager in Florida, and the lack of charges from local law enforcement:

I suspect that this part of Obama’s statement will rankle some:

Obama said Trayvon Martin’s death particularly resonated with him as an African-American parent.

“If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon,” Obama said in brief remarks outside the White House.

I’ve already gotten e-mails claiming that Obama played the race card, but that’s been an important part of the context of this case all along.  All things considered, Obama’s statement was rather restrained.  He seems to have learned a lesson from the Henry Gates incident in 2009, to which Obama reacted by claiming that law enforcement officers “acted stupidly” in the same breath in which he said that he didn’t have all of the facts of the case.  Instead, this time Obama restricted his commentary to noting how any American parent would want a full investigation of the incident, and praising Florida Governor Rick Scott for launching a task-force investigation of the incident.

The DoJ will probe the shooting, too, which Obama noted but which had already been announced.  However, there is almost no chance that the federal government will have any opening, since George Zimmerman wasn’t an agent of the state or local government.  That makes prosecuting Zimmerman under civil-rights legislation almost impossible, especially given the circumstances of the initial assault.  Be sure to see the lengthy explanation of Florida’s self-defense laws in my earlier post to see why Zimmerman will probably face some sort of prosecution if the stated facts of the case are borne out, but that will come from the county or state level, not federal.

Meanwhile, the media leaped at the chance to compare Obama’s statement to the silence from Republican presidential candidates on the shooting.  That’s a bit silly; even Obama took quite a while to comment on the case, and as Earl Ofari Hutchinson writes at Electronic Urban Report, for the same reasons:

Obama, as all sitting presidents, doesn’t take positions on controversial state issues, and that’s the key. They are state issues, and to interfere is to step into a political minefield that would do far more harm than good. It would violate the rigid separation of federal and state powers. It would open the floodgate for any and every individual and group that has a legal wrong, grievance, or injustice to expect, even demand, that the president speak out on their cause. While tens of thousands nationally and globally are rallying behind the demand for arrest and prosecution of Zimmerman, there are millions more that quietly and openly demand that Florida officials resists any rush to judgment about the Martin killing.

Presidential statements on a controversial issue will polarize, and fuel political backlash. This would certainly be the case if Obama utters a word about Martin. In fact, the Martin slaying is a near textbook example of the fury and passion that racial leaden cases and issues always stir. Martin is African-American, and his self-admitted killer is non-black. Obama is African-American and there’s rarely been a moment during his tenure in the White House that he hasn’t been relentlessly reminded of that. The one time that he gingerly ventured into the minefield on a racially charged local issue was his mild rebuke of the white officer that cuffed Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates in 2009. The reaction was instant and rabid. Polls after his mild rebuke showed that a majority of whites condemned Obama for backing Gates and, even more ominously, expressed big doubts about his policies.

The president relearned a bitter lesson. If you speak out on an issue that involves race, police authority, and local law and local matters you will pay a heavy political price for it. While presidents have routinely spoken out on the deaths of police officers, political initiatives in states, and other local issues, there is no implication or inference of political partisanship or interference in a state matter. Speaking out on a controversial racial issue, as Martin is, would have a direct political inference, namely that the president is taking sides. In an election year, this would have be even more problematic. The GOP presidential contenders would be quick to pounce and would lambaste Obama as playing the race card and inflaming passions. Or, more charitably, that he was butting into an issue that he has no authority over, and that this is yet another example of the White House’s over reach on local matters.

The Trayvon Martin shooting does raise questions about self-defense laws and carry permit legislation only if Zimmerman didn’t violate either of them in the shooting, which seems unlikely under the circumstances.  Those, however, are state-level issues, not federal, so presidential candidates (and Presidents) aren’t under any requirement to share their thoughts.

Update: Rep. Allen West has called the lack of action against Zimmerman “an outrage,” through his Facebook page:

Noting that he had taken some time to “assess the current episode,” West wrote: “The US Navy SEALS identified Osama Bin Laden within hours, while this young man laid on a morgue slab for three days. The shooter, Mr Zimmerman, should have been held in custody and certainly should not be walking free, still having a concealed weapons carry permit. From my reading, it seems this young man was pursued and there was no probable cause to engage him, certainly not pursue and shoot him….against the direction of the 911 responder.”

The congressman added: “Let’s all be appalled at this instance not because of race, but because a young American man has lost his life, seemingly, for no reason.”

The Florida lawmaker said that he had signed a letter supporting the Justice Department’s investigation but that he did not plan to attend protests in Florida “to shout and scream, because we need the responsible entities and agencies to handle this situation from this point without media bias or undue political influences.”

That went much farther than Obama did, although as a Representative elected from Florida, West has more political connection to what happens in the state.

Update: Mediate notes that Mitt Romney has made a statement today about the case, and Newt Gingrich did last night:

Shortly after President Obama spoke out for the first time on the killing of 17 year-old Trayvon Martin, former Massachusetts Governor and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney followed suit, issuing a statement, through a spokesperson, which read “What happened to Trayvon Martin is a tragedy. There needs to be a thorough investigation that reassures the public that justice is carried out with impartiality and integrity.”

Romney’s statement was similar to comments made by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who told CNN’s Piers Morgan, last night, that “I think that Americans can recognize that while this is a tragedy, and it is a tragedy, that we’re going to relentlessly seek justice. And I think that’s the right thing to do.”

 


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When did Al Sharpton call for violence?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:17 PM

I guess Obama isn’t worried about the hispanic vote anymore.

ctmom on March 23, 2012 at 1:18 PM

Now from that we can ask our selves, 1000′s of questions. It’s hard for me to imagine a situation in which Mr. Martin was in the wrong.

Politricks on March 23, 2012 at 1:01 PM

From the Orlando Sentinal via Drudge:

Zimmerman told police he acted in self-defense. Police found blood on his face and the back of his head as well as grass on the back of his shirt.

That jibes with what Cheryl Brown’s teenage son witnessed while walking his dog that night. Thirteen-year-old Austin stepped out his front door and heard people fighting, he told the Orlando Sentinel on Thursday.

“I heard screaming and crying for help,” he said. “I heard, ‘Help me.’ ”

It was dark, and the boy did not see how the fight started, in fact, he only saw one person, a man in a red shirt — Zimmerman — who was on the ground.

You were saying…….

Frank Drebin on March 23, 2012 at 1:18 PM

Who ever even heard of that?

Ragspierre on March 23, 2012 at 1:11 PM

Homosexual black men (racist or not) don’t exist. To make this story news would be to change the laws of physics.

BobMbx on March 23, 2012 at 1:18 PM

“I guess it would get the scant coverage this story got

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2117695/Brutal-home-invasion-Oklahoma-couple-ends-65-year-romance-meeting-blind-date.html

esnap on March 23, 2012 at 1:06 PM”

:(

Seven Percent Solution on March 23, 2012 at 1:16 PM

Where is the outrage over the murders of James Cooper and James Kouzaris?

‘They begged for their lives with their trousers down’: Two lost drunk British holidaymakers ‘were gunned down after taking wrong turn on Florida street’
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2118785/Shawn-Tyson-said-murdered-James-Cooper-James-Kouzaris-Sarasota-Florida.html

Chip on March 23, 2012 at 1:19 PM

Admit it. You don’t know a single black person personally do you? If you did you would understand that black parents around this country have been expressing anxiety since this shooting because they have no idea if wearing a hoodie in a suburban, gated community could be a death sentence for their child. I grew up in suburban areas and my parents and I had a long sobering conversation this weekend. I could’ve been Trayvon. And I still can. I live in a very nice neighborhood, I go on evening jogs, sometimes I wear a hoodie. This scares the crap out of me. Its not narcissism.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:10 PM

Are you kidding me? First of all, not just kids of color wear hoodies. For crying out loud. Second, if you or your parents thinking that dressing Gangsta might get you killed, maybe you should change your clothing choices or they should kick your butt for wearing that crap.

Good God, you are as bad as the President.

Tenwheeler on March 23, 2012 at 1:19 PM

I noticed that too. Are there no current photos of him?

dmn1972 on March 23, 2012 at 1:17 PM

There are photos of him in a grey hoodie that seem fairly recent. Also, why does this matter?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:19 PM

So as Zimmerman was not arrested black people should’ve just sat down and kept quiet?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:16 PM

Why are you convinced that race is a major factor here? Is there some evidence pointing to that?

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Why hasn’t the 911 recording been released?

dmn1972 on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Well. Lib, they certainly haven’t done that have they? As usual, in my opinion, you are the most racist person here. Inciting people to riot isn’t exactly sitting back and saying nothing. It’s just making a bad situation worse…

sandee on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

MSNBC calling for a War on Latinos?

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Are you kidding me? First of all, not just kids of color wear hoodies.

Exactly, and non-kids of color in hoodies aren’t seen as “threatening” that’s the point.

For crying out loud. Second, if you or your parents thinking that dressing Gangsta might get you killed, maybe you should change your clothing choices or they should kick your butt for wearing that crap.

Good God, you are as bad as the President.

You’re right, black people don’t have the right to wear comfortable clothes. We should not leave the house outside of a suit and tie, if someone thinks we’re a gangsta for wearing a hoodie its our own fault for being born with dark skin. Oh well, sucks for us!

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

Funny Badger,
What does evidence have to do with anything.

Tenwheeler on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

When did Al Sharpton call for violence?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:17 PM

Maybe you would know if you spent less time feeling sorry for yourself and more time reading the news.

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

So as Zimmerman was not arrested black people should’ve just sat down and kept quiet?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:16 PM

They could protest, but inciting riots isn’t justified. Period.

Bitter Clinger on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

There are photos of him in a grey hoodie that seem fairly recent. Also, why does this matter?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:19 PM

I read that he was 19. All the photos look like he was just 12 or maybe 13. It’s manipulative. Unless he really looks much younger than he is.

dmn1972 on March 23, 2012 at 1:22 PM

Why hasn’t the 911 recording been released?

dmn1972 on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

They’ve been playing them for days on Fox.

JPeterman on March 23, 2012 at 1:22 PM

zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz……………..

Akzed on March 23, 2012 at 1:22 PM

You’re right, black people don’t have the right to wear comfortable clothes.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

Do you hate all Latinos? Or just some?

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:22 PM

I noticed that too. Are there no current photos of him?

dmn1972 on March 23, 2012 at 1:17 PM

Much like forcing the defendant to wear a suit during trial. Don’t want the jury to “get the wrong impression”. Speaking of which, if its okay to wear a hoodie at anytime, anywhere, why would the defense attorney feel it necessary to clean up (haircut, suit, shiny shoes, etc.)?

Unless the jury was just chock full of racists there should be no need to wear foreign clothing..isn’t that right?

BobMbx on March 23, 2012 at 1:22 PM

He is acting stupidly.

mouell on March 23, 2012 at 1:22 PM

My first thought when seeing the headline was the Harvard prof, but Obama handled this just fine. This case definitely looks like Zimmerman has some fantasy about being a cop, is prejudiced, and murdered a kid he had no business even confronting.

Southernblogger on March 23, 2012 at 1:23 PM

“If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon”

I do not get the logic of the statement.
Is Obama trying to remind us that he is part black and his wife is 100% black? It’s all about race?
What does it have to do with the incident?
If it was reversed and the black kid was the shooter, would he say the same thing?

And way to distance yourself from the Hispanic community…siding with your “son”.

I am foresee a White House backyard beer conference with Al Sharpton, Farrakhan and the rest of black activist ambulance chasers…and Joe “Sherrif” Biden, of course.

albill on March 23, 2012 at 1:23 PM

You’re right, black people don’t have the right to wear comfortable clothes. We should not leave the house outside of a suit and tie, if someone thinks we’re a gangsta for wearing a hoodie its our own fault for being born with dark skin. Oh well, sucks for us!

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

You are a text book case of paranoia and wallowing in self pity.

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:23 PM

Why are you convinced that race is a major factor here? Is there some evidence pointing to that?

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

It sounds like it has become a major factor even if it wasn’t when the crime was committed.

Bitter Clinger on March 23, 2012 at 1:23 PM

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:10 PM

Right, because one isolated incident in Florida (involving a bi-racial shooter) means that white people in gated communities all across the nation are loading their guns and going on the hunt for black kids in hoodies. Do you realize how ridiculous you sound?

Remember during the 2008 campaign when Michelle Obama was lamenting how she had to worry about Barry/Baraka getting shot in a gas station because he was a black man in America? What she failed to mention was that if her husband were shot, crime statistics show it was overwhelmingly likely that the shooter would be another black man, not a white person.

So while you’re out running around in your hoodie, keep that in mind.

AZCoyote on March 23, 2012 at 1:23 PM

When did Al Sharpton call for violence?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:17 PM

Al Sharpton has never specifically called for violence, but there is no doubt that his inflammatory race hate speech outside of Freddy’s Fashion Mart in 1995 at least partly contributed to the massacre inside in which 7 store employees were killed. Sharpton and others went into that situation knowing that racial tensions were high, and that there was always the possibility that they could turn violent. To then inflame an angry crowd with that kind of racially charged rhetoric, was thoroughly irresponsible.

Sharke on March 23, 2012 at 1:24 PM

Why hasn’t the 911 recording been released?

dmn1972 on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

That does seem like it would clear a lot of things up, doesn’t it?

Apart from the media drooling to make this a racial issue, I haven’t actually seen anything indicating that it is.

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:24 PM

ButterflyDragon on March 23, 2012 at 1:03 PM

Admit it. You don’t know a single black person personally do you? If you did you would understand that black parents around this country have been expressing anxiety since this shooting

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:10 PM

But a lot of that “anxiety” across the country is being ginned up by race-baiters like Al Sharpton, and with the help of the dead kid’s own parents. Will you at least admit that? Or doesn’t it fit your agenda?

The Police Chief in the town where this took place has temporarily stepped down, which led to this report:

Trayvon’s parents held a brief press conference shortly after the news was announced saying that they were not satisfied.

‘The temporary step down of Bill Lee is nothing!’ Tracy Martin said after meeting with federal investigators to go over the details of the case.

‘We want an arrest! We want a conviction for the murder of my son!’ he said to crowds of supporters and fans while standing next to Reverend Al Sharpton.

And what about this? From the same article:

Others are taking more pointed action, and a black militia group have announced that they plan to attempt a citizen’s arrest on Mr Zimmerman.

The New Black Liberation Militia said that they hope to find him and bring him into the custody of federal authorities because they feel that the Sanford police have not been sufficient.

The latest finding about the involvement of Mr Raimondo in both the Collison incident and the latest shooting will not reassure them at all.

‘We’ll find him,’ militia leader Najee Muhammed told local WKFTV.

‘We have his mugshot and everything.’

Del Dolemonte on March 23, 2012 at 1:24 PM

You’re right, black people don’t have the right to wear comfortable clothes.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

You are a never ending pity party. You may not even be black.

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

if someone thinks we’re a gangsta for wearing a hoodie its our own fault for being born with dark skin. Oh well, sucks for us!

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:21 PM

There is Utopia, and then there is a place most people reside. Your statement is the truth outside of Utopia. It ain’t perfect, it ain’t nice, and it ain’t fair.

But its the rule.

BobMbx on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Someone ask Barry about Jonatha Carr’s racist tirade in an FAU classroom this week. Let’s see what he has to say about that little incident.

Dack Thrombosis on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

The killing of an unarmed kid and the bungled response is NOT merely a state or local matter. It is everyone’s business.

lexhamfox on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Why are you convinced that race is a major factor here? Is there some evidence pointing to that?

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

1. The lack of an arrest.

2. Sanford PD witness tampering and misconduct.

3. Sanford PD’s history of racism.

4. Zimmerman’s 911 call

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Missing the point.

Anyone, no matter what color has a real problem when the people they look up to have teardrops tatooed on their eyes, and walk like they’ve had their belts taken away and they are being perp-walked down the hall. Then, when someone shows up and robs a convenience store wearing that crap, and a half hour later someone walks by wearing the same crap….

That goes for anyone. Has nothing to do with color.

It is about personal responsibility, self esteem, and for crying out loud, nothing to do with color.

Oh, and by the way, the suspect is Hispanic, not white.

geez.

Tenwheeler on March 23, 2012 at 1:26 PM

okay how in the world was zimmerman acting in self-defense when he was the one who pursued trayvon, not the other way around?

Sachiko on March 23, 2012 at 1:26 PM

What I’m objecting to is the race baiters like Sharpton and Farrakhan trying to incite riots over this. Obamas’ remarks did not help in my opinion…

sandee on March 23, 2012 at 1:13 PM

So as Zimmerman was not arrested black people should’ve just sat down and kept quiet?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:16 PM

You’re not very good at this, are you?

Del Dolemonte on March 23, 2012 at 1:26 PM

You CAN NOT initiate confrontation then claim self defense. If Martin had walked up to Zimmerman and started a fight, then it would be self defense. Zimmerman is a punk who makes responsible gun carriers look bad.

rndmusrnm on March 23, 2012 at 1:27 PM

Four black thugs brutally beat white student almost to death

Akzed on March 23, 2012 at 1:23 PM

But that doesn’t matter as he evidently didn’t look like Obama’s son.

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:27 PM

“Yawn…”

Akzed on March 23, 2012 at 1:27 PM

Commenter on another site says dear leader needs a hoodie summit

cmsinaz on March 23, 2012 at 1:28 PM

They’ve been playing them for days on Fox.

JPeterman on March 23, 2012 at 1:22 PM

I don’t watch tv and haven’t seen it on the Fox News website.

dmn1972 on March 23, 2012 at 1:28 PM

“Never let a manufactured crisis go to waste.”

Bmore on March 23, 2012 at 1:09 PM

ShainS on March 23, 2012 at 1:28 PM

That does seem like it would clear a lot of things up, doesn’t it?

Apart from the media drooling to make this a racial issue, I haven’t actually seen anything indicating that it is.

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:24 PM

The 911 call has been released, all of them have been released. None of them confirm Zimmerman and the Sanford PD’s original story. Again, you’re slow to the party, but that doesn’t mean you get to rewrite history.

It ain’t perfect, it ain’t nice, and it ain’t fair.

But its the rule.

BobMbx on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

In 1955, what happened to Emmett Till was the rule. But people stood up and dreamed of a better version of America. No doubt at the time you would’ve said “it ain’t nice, and it ain’t fair. But its the rule that black kids who whistle at white girls get killed.” And gone about your day, just as you are doing here. I don’t know why you think this argument is persuasive for conservatism.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:29 PM

It is everyone’s business.

lexhamfox on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Not being a member of a lynch mob it’s not my business.

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:29 PM

From my reading, it seems this young man was pursued and there was no probable cause to engage him, certainly not pursue and shoot him

But Congressman West, even you admit that from your reading “it seems” that way.
Sadly, there’s no way to prove Zimmerman murdered the poor kid.

itsnotaboutme on March 23, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Admit it. You don’t know a single black person personally do you? If you did you would understand that black parents around this country have been expressing anxiety since this shooting because they have no idea if wearing a hoodie in a suburban, gated community could be a death sentence for their child. I grew up in suburban areas and my parents and I had a long sobering conversation this weekend. I could’ve been Trayvon. And I still can. I live in a very nice neighborhood, I go on evening jogs, sometimes I wear a hoodie. This scares the crap out of me. Its not narcissism.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:10 PM

God you’re an idiot. If anything this episode makes people think twice ten times before shooting a black kid.

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:30 PM

Sadly, there’s no way to prove Zimmerman murdered the poor kid.

itsnotaboutme on March 23, 2012 at 1:29 PM

What if he didn’t murder him? Would it still be sad if it couldn’t be proved that he did murder him?

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:31 PM

But that doesn’t matter as he evidently didn’t look like Obama’s son.

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:27 PM

No. It is irrelevant to this case. An innocent kid got murdered and there needs to be justice. The thugs who beat the kid you are talking about should face justice too. This issue is not red v blue.

Southernblogger on March 23, 2012 at 1:31 PM

God you’re an idiot. If anything this episode makes people think twice ten times before shooting a black kid.

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:30 PM

They said that after Sean Bell, they said that after James Byrd, they keep saying that….

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:31 PM

The kid was 17 and 6’3″. The pictures shown so far are of a kid that around 12 years old. Is this the same guy?

Also, I just read where the 17 yo had been suspended from school (the reasons are being withheld), and he was 250 miles away from his high school.

This has no bearing on his involvement, but it seems the media is keeping things from the public for some reason. I can’t imagine why.

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:32 PM

We needs us same race riots this summer so, might as well start prepping the field now.

Akzed on March 23, 2012 at 1:32 PM

As I said elsewhere, I do think the victim was racially profiled, but I remain unconvinced that the police department’s actions were racist instead of bad and arrogant. Seriously, this wouldn’t be the first time that a PD bungled a case and then got its back up when people called it out.

McDuck on March 23, 2012 at 1:32 PM

But Congressman West, even you admit that from your reading “it seems” that way.
Sadly, there’s no way to prove Zimmerman murdered the poor kid.

itsnotaboutme on March 23, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Actually there is.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:33 PM

They said that after Sean Bell, they said that after James Byrd, they keep saying that….

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:31 PM

And if either of those were teenagers in a suburban gated community you’d have a point. They’re not, so like usual you don’t.

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:33 PM

The killing of an unarmed kid and the bungled response is NOT merely a state or local matter. It is everyone’s business.

lexhamfox on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

If that were the case, the federal government would be bogged down with investigations everywhere.

Just curious, do you believe that Obama should say something about the Oksana Makar case? Or do you hate women?

MeatHeadinCA on March 23, 2012 at 1:33 PM

One witness, who is refusing to show his face to the public, is claiming that Trayvon was the aggressor and that Zimmerman was being beaten and pleading for help at the time of the shooting.

teke184 on March 23, 2012 at 12:51 PM

That doesn’t matter at all. Since Zimmerman confronted Martin on the street, Zimmerman can’t claim self defense. If he was in his house or in his car and he got beat up, then he would be defending himself. Since he walked up to Martin, which we know because of the 911 call, he loses the right of self defense. This is not an opinion, this is the law. It doesn’t matter that Zimmerman was losing the fight, he can’t claim self defense because he started the fight. Even if he didn’t throw the first punch; he walked up to Martin who then had the right to defend himself.

Make sure you know the law, especially if you consider yourself a gun supporter. The left will use this to try to end castle laws. If we appear ignorant and start defending Zimmerman over this we will make their job easier.

rndmusrnm on March 23, 2012 at 1:33 PM

3. Sanford PD’s history of racism.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Some friendly advice, kid. Citing the Huffington Post as a credible source won’t help you. Especially citing a HuffPo story written by somebody from the NY Times.

Remember, that “newspaper” has a Far-Left pro-Democrat Party Agenda, and that Agenda is not concerned with the Truth, no matter what the story they cover is about.

Del Dolemonte on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

An innocent kid got murdered and there needs to be justice. The thugs who beat the kid you are talking about should face justice too. This issue is not red v blue.

Southernblogger on March 23, 2012 at 1:31 PM

So this Hispanic man has already been tried and convicted of murder? That was fast.

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

An innocent kid got murdered and there needs to be justice

Define “innocent” in this case.

If eyewitness accounts are correct, the “innocent kid” had Zimmerman on the ground and was whaling the crap out of him at the time of the shooting.

teke184 on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

You CAN NOT initiate confrontation then claim self defense. If Martin had walked up to Zimmerman and started a fight, then it would be self defense. Zimmerman is a punk who makes responsible gun carriers look bad.

rndmusrnm on March 23, 2012 at 1:27 PM

exactly. it’s hard for me the believe zimmerman was acting in self-defense when he defied orders and went out of his way to follow trayvon down the street.

allen west is right: this is an outrage.

Sachiko on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

This scares the crap out of me.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:10 PM

Wearing a hoodie scares the crap out of libfeeordie.

——

This statement of his/hers is the perfect portal into the addled brain of the typical liberal: no reason; no logic; no sanity; no common sense.

Feelings
Nothing more than feelings.

Rod on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

That went much farther than Obama did, although as a Representative elected from Florida, West has more political connection to what happens in the state.

Whatever you need to tell yourself, Ed…

peachaeo on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

I live in a very nice neighborhood, I go on evening jogs, sometimes I wear a hoodie. This scares the crap out of me. Its not narcissism.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:10 PM

So, now you want to start a riot and burn down all the Latino houses? Or… what?

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

I don’t know which “gated community” in Sanford this happened in, but such a description plants an image in one’s mind of a quiet, pastoral setting of nice suburban homes with neatly manicured lawns. That doesn’t exist in Sanford.

Sanford is the poorer section of town bordering Lake Mary to the north and Heathrow to the east, both of which are relatively affluent. The gated communities in Sanford are generally rent-controlled apartment complexes. It is a relatively high-crime area, which perhaps puts the police attitude into context.

I don’t know how that shades any of this for or against Zimmerman. I just want to share what I know of the area.

Personally, I think Zimmerman’s actions should be closely scrutinized by the authorities and that they should act as the law requires. I’m in favor of muscular self-defense laws but would never want to see someone killed unnecessarily.

Immolate on March 23, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Commenter on another site says dear leader needs a hoodie summit

cmsinaz on March 23, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Let’s be honest, though. Hoodie summit > usual day in the life of O’Barry – at least for us!

MeatHeadinCA on March 23, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Mitt and newt did not need to make a comment

It’s not a national issue

cmsinaz on March 23, 2012 at 1:35 PM

:) meathead

cmsinaz on March 23, 2012 at 1:37 PM

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Was that the only 911 call? I’m not hearing anything blatant there.

I’m not saying Zimmerman is in the right or shouldn’t be charged (if the available information ends up being accurate he should be); I’m just not seeing why this is a national race issue.

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Is anyone really surprised by Obama’s comments? Please, he has done more to destroy this country than any external enemy could have dreamed. All Hail the divider and chief, the gangsta thug occupying the Whitehouse. Sadly we ain’t seen nothing yet, as the election draws closer the chaos and violence orchestrated by the left will become a real national issue…just like they planned!

dmann on March 23, 2012 at 1:37 PM

The killing of an unarmed kid and the bungled response is NOT merely a state or local matter. It is everyone’s business.

lexhamfox on March 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Can you fathom that an unarmed kid can still be an aggressor and still be dangerous?

Chip on March 23, 2012 at 1:37 PM

It’s not a national issue

cmsinaz on March 23, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Agreed, but the Left and the Democrat Media have made it a national issue, with the enthusiastic support and willing participation of the victim’s parents.

Wonder why?

Del Dolemonte on March 23, 2012 at 1:38 PM

There goes the jury pool… tainted from sea to shining sea.

Good luck getting any kind of a fair trial, Zim.

mankai on March 23, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Martin is African-American, and his self-admitted killer is non-black.

“non-black” facepalm- they won’t say Hispanic. Their narrative is unraveling.

The congressman added: “Let’s all be appalled at this instance not because of race, but because a young American man has lost his life, seemingly, for no reason.”

West – absolutely right and succinct, again.

batterup on March 23, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Has Obama weighed in on the 40+ people shot in Chicago over St. Pattys weekend?

Or Jeremiah Wright?

Father Pflegler?

Louis Farakhan?

Jesse Jackson?

Al sharpton?

BallisticBob on March 23, 2012 at 1:38 PM

They said that after Sean Bell, they said that after James Byrd, they keep saying that….

And this proves that you are the racist here.

The ONLY time a dead black victim gets you stirred up is when they are killed by someone of a different race.

Funny. The rest of us are stirred whenever any American is killed.

Puke.

Ragspierre on March 23, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Also, I just read where the 17 yo had been suspended from school (the reasons are being withheld), and he was 250 miles away from his high school.

This has no bearing on his involvement, but it seems the media is keeping things from the public for some reason. I can’t imagine why.

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:32 PM

Teacher’s from Trayvon school have confirmed he was suspended for tardiness.

From the Orland Sentinel:
http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2012-03-17/news/os-trayvon-martin-shooting-tension-20120317_1_shooting-death-english-teacher-uncle

After taking an airplane ride two years ago, Trayvon decided he wanted to learn to fly, his uncle Ronald Fulton said. The teen attended a Miami aviation school part time and was studying to be an engineer, a path to realizing his ambition, Fulton said.

Math was Trayvon’s favorite subject.He liked to tinker, and he was good with his hands. He once took apart and repaired a broken scooter, Fulton said, and he liked to construct model cars and airplanes and draw pictures of things he wanted to build.

“He was extremely creative,” said Michelle Kypriss, Trayvon’s English teacher at Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School in Miami. “He just loved building things. He really was intrigued by how things worked.”

She described Trayvon, a junior, as an A and B student who majored in cheerfulness.

His uncle said Trayvon was still a typical kid who loved sports, music and was just feeling the first flush of youth. “He was trying to start driving. He was just finding out about girls.”

rayvon was close to his 21-year-old brother Jahvaris, also of Miami, and assisted his uncle, a quadriplegic, on outings to University of Miami basketball games.

“He used to help me,” Fulton said, voice breaking.

Trayvon — who was known as “Tray” or “Slimm” — played youth football during his early teens and helped his father coach Little League baseball, said Fulton, whose sister, Sybrina Fulton, is Trayvon’s mother.

Trayvon was under a five-day suspension when he was shot that Sunday night, but Kypriss said it was due to tardiness and not misbehavior.

“Trayvon was not a violent or dangerous child. He was not known for misbehaving,” the teacher said. “He was suspended because he was late too many times.”

Clearly this history of teenage tardiness justifies his eventual murder.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:39 PM

cmsinaz on March 23, 2012 at 1:35 PM

LOL im sure they are eagerly waiting for advice from you on their next move…

peachaeo on March 23, 2012 at 1:39 PM

So as Zimmerman was not arrested black people should’ve just sat down and kept quiet?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:16 PM

Yes,they should have. Until a determination of facts was made.

Otherwise they are not for the rule of law, but for the rule of mob.

But wait, you are a Libbie…that wouldn’t make sense to you..that whole “rule of law” thing…

ProfShadow on March 23, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Del

I know i know

cmsinaz on March 23, 2012 at 1:40 PM

Ragspierre on March 23, 2012 at 1:39 PM

bingo

mankai on March 23, 2012 at 1:41 PM

That doesn’t matter at all. Since Zimmerman confronted Martin on the street, Zimmerman can’t claim self defense. If he was in his house or in his car and he got beat up, then he would be defending himself. Since he walked up to Martin, which we know because of the 911 call, he loses the right of self defense. This is not an opinion, this is the law. It doesn’t matter that Zimmerman was losing the fight, he can’t claim self defense because he started the fight. Even if he didn’t throw the first punch; he walked up to Martin who then had the right to defend himself.

Make sure you know the law, especially if you consider yourself a gun supporter. The left will use this to try to end castle laws. If we appear ignorant and start defending Zimmerman over this we will make their job easier.

rndmusrnm on March 23, 2012 at 1:33 PM

So I see someone on my property. I walk up to him and say what are you doing here. He start beating me up. You’re saying I can’t defend myself anymore because I walked up to him?

So what am I supposed to do then? If I talk to him I lose the right to defend my self. If I shoot him, without talking to him, I go to jail for shooting first and asking questions later.

Seems like no matter what, we don’t have the right to defend our property using your argument.

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:41 PM

Chip on March 23, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Not when they are walking away and screaming for help. They have these things called recorded phone calls ya know.

peachaeo on March 23, 2012 at 1:41 PM

Clearly this history of teenage tardiness justifies his eventual murder.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Yeah, because that kind of comment will bring him back to life.

MeatHeadinCA on March 23, 2012 at 1:42 PM

Was that the only 911 call? I’m not hearing anything blatant there.

Then you don’t want to. Zimmerman claimed that Martin looked like he was “up to no good” and on drugs. His basis for being up to no good “looking and walking about.” Apparently these activities are suspicious and criminal when performed by young black men.

I’m not saying Zimmerman is in the right or shouldn’t be charged (if the available information ends up being accurate he should be); I’m just not seeing why this is a national race issue.

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:37 PM

That police on the scene did not arrest him (again, did you read those links?) Demonstrates the widespread inequity in the prosecution of crime in this country.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:42 PM

When did Al Sharpton call for violence?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:17 PM

I’m sure “Rev. Al” is backing up the racial injustice gasoline truck to this event even as we speak… Waiting to arrange the first class ticket or private jet, no doubt…

Maybe he’ll bring Tawana Bradley down there for “moral support”… /sarc tag FULLY on

Khun Joe on March 23, 2012 at 1:42 PM

What I find amazing in all this is that blacks murder/rape/rob whites at an outrageously disproportionate level based on population. Yet when one innocent black kid gets murdered there are marches in the streets and the entire US is Selma, AL again. Despite the fact the murder is Hispanic. It is almost as if it is just expected so like the weak cattle most of population accommodates it.

Fck this warped country and it population. It deserves to rot.

ClassicCon on March 23, 2012 at 1:42 PM

So as Zimmerman was not arrested black people should’ve just sat down and kept quiet?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:16 PM

How many white people did you see going on a rampage after Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman were killed?

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:42 PM

So as Zimmerman was not arrested black people should’ve just sat down and kept quiet?

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:16 PM

Zimmerman shot all black people?

So if some Italian guy is the victim of a crime… anywhere in America… I get a “Moral Superiority and Fellow Victim” card?

You leftists are the most patronizing, elitist racists in the country.

mankai on March 23, 2012 at 1:43 PM

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:41 PM

The kid was not on George Zimmerna’s property. If he was, why would Zimmerman have had to follow him in his car? The kid was walking back to his father’s fiancee’s house. NOT casing Zimmerman’s house. Again, the 911 calls confirm that.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:43 PM

Demonstrates the widespread inequity in the prosecution of crime in this country.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:42 PM

Once again, Inconvenient Truths from the Racists at the FBI:

And according to the latest annual report on murder by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, most inter-racial murders involve black assailants and white victims, with blacks murdering whites at 18 times the rate that whites murder blacks.

Del Dolemonte on March 23, 2012 at 1:44 PM

The 911 call has been released, all of them have been released. None of them confirm Zimmerman and the Sanford PD’s original story. Again, you’re slow to the party, but that doesn’t mean you get to rewrite history.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:29 PM

One of your own links says the police won’t release the neighbors 911 calls.

Not trying to re-write anything. Just trying to stay objective and not let you weave a racial component into the story without evidence.

You’re the one trying to re-write the narrative here.

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:45 PM

His father said he was suspended for 10 days based on something he did at his latest school.

Still, Trayvon had nonviolent behavioral issues in school, and on the day he was killed, he had been suspended for 10 days from Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School in North Miami-Dade.

“He was not suspended for something dealing with violence or anything like that. It wasn’t a crime he committed, but he was in an unauthorized area [on school property],” [his father] Martin said, declining to offer more details.

Before that, Trayvon attended Miami Carol City High School near his mother’s home in Miami Gardens.

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:45 PM

How many white people did you see going on a rampage after Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman were killed?

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:42 PM

Oh I get it. Having a peaceful protest march or speaking loudly in a megaphone = black people “going on a rampage.” So wearing a hoodie while black = a violent act that justifies lethal force in self defense. And black people collecting together and marching = going on a rampage. No wonder Zimmerman wasn’t arrested, there are two different sets of rules for black people and for everyone else in this country. My mistake, I won’t make it again.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:46 PM

angryed on March 23, 2012 at 1:41 PM

learn some facts.

peachaeo on March 23, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Was that the only 911 call? I’m not hearing anything blatant there.

I’m not saying Zimmerman is in the right or shouldn’t be charged (if the available information ends up being accurate he should be); I’m just not seeing why this is a national race issue.

BadgerHawk on March 23, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Because facts don’t stop Al Sharpton from finding something to become relevant again.

Bitter Clinger on March 23, 2012 at 1:46 PM

This has no bearing on his involvement,

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:32 PM

Clearly this history of teenage tardiness justifies his eventual murder.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Clearly, you have reading comprehension problems as well as problems hating Latinos.

faraway on March 23, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Del Dolemonte on March 23, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Look up the word “prosecution” and try again.

libfreeordie on March 23, 2012 at 1:46 PM

VorDaj on March 23, 2012 at 1:34 PM

He needs to have his day in court, but this is not that hard.

Southernblogger on March 23, 2012 at 1:46 PM

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