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Claire Helene

This story is so horrifying. I was reading about that law this morning, thinking that it was one of the worst laws I've heard of in a while (and there have been some doozies in the news, as you know). It's really law in 29 states? That is so frightening.

Janelle Dvorak

Well said. I'd elaborate, but I'm too outraged to express myself.

Kevin Wolf

I'm trying to develop a coherent response to the gun law piece of this tragedy; still working on it. But, oh my, what a mess - a foreseeable mess.

tedra

The idiot doesn't have to be frightened. He just has to say he was.

Earl Bockenfeld

With respect to the so-called "Make-My-Day" law enacted in 2005, there have been 13 shooting incidents. Twelve of the victims were unarmed, and one of the victims was a young trick-or-treater shot dead on Halloween night.

In all cases, the shooters were exonerated. This is UNACCEPTABLE for any so-called civilized nation.

Chris the cop

The guy was certainly an idiot and it is certainly a tragedy. My only quibble with your rendition is that per NPR, the guy, even tho0ugh his last name is Zimmerman, is Hispanic. But changing "white guy" to "brown guy" obviously doesn't lessen the tragedy

These 'stand your ground' laws are the stupidest things I've heard of in years. NY State does NOT have such a kaw, meaning you are required to retreat if a confrontation is brewing, except when you're in your home.

Lance Mannion

Chris, actually, Zimmerman's closer to tan than brown, even bordering on beige. His background wasn't in the the initial stories I read. If it had been it would have complicated writing about things but wouldn't have changed my point. The facts on the scene were a dead black teenager in a hoodie armed with candy and iced tea and a cell phone (that's apparently disappeared) and a pale-skinned man with a German last name and no accent armed with a 9mm semi-automatic who'd told 9-1-1 he was following the kid and who'd been told to stay out of it. Under the circumstances Zimmerman would have appeared to be 1.)white and 2.) a dangerous idiot who'd shot and killed an unarmed boy. And on the spot they just accepted the dangerous idiot's word that he was the one whose life was threatened. Why would they do that? The answer is either because the cops were idiots or because Zimmerman was white (as far as they knew) and the dead kid was black.

No investigation followed and the police apparently didn't even try to identify the body and contact any next of kin. Just knocking on doors in the neighborhood would have brought them to the house where Trayvon had been staying. And where was that cell phone? They could have found Trayvon's girlfriend right away through that. Again, either the cops down there are idiots and lazy idiots to boot or they didn't care because to them Trayvon was just a thug who'd made the mistake of attacking the wrong upstanding citizen.

And what was it about Trayvon and Zimmerman that caused them to just accept Zimmerman's word that Trayvon was a thug and Zimmerman an upstanding citizen?

I attribute their not doing anything after they found out who Trayvon was and it became even more obvious that Zimmerman's a dangerous idiot who was out looking for trouble to a case of CYA.

The fact that Zimmerman could check multiple boxes under ethnic background on his census form just highlights how increasingly useless "race" is becoming as descriptor of Americans. But it doesn't change what happened. The cops let him walk away from the scene of a crime because the law privileges and protects idiots with guns and custom and prejudice increases that privilege and protection for "white" idiots with guns.

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