At 5/18/12 06:56 PM, adrshepard wrote:
No, he didn't. There were a hundred different ways that confrontation could have ended that wouldn't involve violence. Martin was a human being, not some mindless wild animal. You're ignoring the fact that one of them chose to engage in violence.
And? That doesn't change that Zimmerman recklessly engaged in a very dangerous confrontation while armed.
Being stupid is not illegal.
It can be, especially if it results in someone's death.
What, protecting yourself in case something goes wrong is stupid? Counting on the potential criminal not to seriously hurt you is smart?
There are two things here. Either Zimmerman brought a gun to a confrontation that very did not deserve one, thus upping the ante when the ante needed not be upped. Or Zimmerman actively knew how dangerous this could be and actively ignored it by engaging.
According to who? The neighborhood watch committee? Those regulations discourage confrontation because they are potentially dangerous, not because they are inherently illegal.
Um any sane person?
They said that to make things easier for themselves. Cops don't want civilians getting in the way. If there's a crime in progress, police always recommend calling for help. But they don't forbid anyone from trying to put a stop to it because no authority states a person can't.
That's more of a stretch than the other explanation, which is trying to keep civilians from unecessarily getting into dangerous situations (which is exactly what Zimmerman ended up doing). You can pretzel it all you want, but that dispatcher told him in a manner clear enough for the reasonable law abiding citizen to back the fuck off.
And what if Martin had been a burgular or criminal with a violent history and things turned out the same, would you still demand Zimmerman be charged with murder?
Yes. Zimmerman turned a harmless night into a killing. Plain and simple. I don't care who he was dealing with, because the view from Zimmerman's point of view would be exactly the same. The only thing that would change this is if Zimmerman somehow knew exactly who it was and their criminal history. Also, nowhere it is legal to kill in the defense of property (this does not include the castle exception, even though that technically isn't meant to protect the property).
What if Martin were in the process of breaking into a house?
That would change the circumstances greatly. Still, what a person has leeway to do in the protection of property is very different than in the protection of people. Though a good defense attorney would argue in that situation he believed the safety of the occupants to be in danger, even though that still requires something more.
:Would you identify the burgular as the victim and the courageous citizen the aggressor and charge him with murder?
Zimmerman was not courageous. Zimmerman was stupid. Zimmerman's overzealous impatience directly led to the death of someone else, when had he not acted, no one would have been hurt at all.
This is exactly the sentiment "Stand Your Ground" laws were meant to combat.
No this isn't. The one lady who shot her boyfriend in her home, and the guy who shoots his mugger are examples of what stand your ground was meant to protect. Stand Your Ground was not meant by anyone (outside of the nuts in the NRA) to be a free ticket to vigilantism. It also was not meant to protect a person who starts the dangerous confrontation only to find they bit off more than they could chew. If that were the case, there would be quite a few gang members in Dade County who would be glad to exercise this law.