The Conversation

The focus most certainly is race at the Zimmerman trial

In response to Martin Family Atty: 'We don't believe the focus was really race":

That's a remarkable statement to come from the Martin legal team, since race is the only reason we're having this trial at all.  Everyone from the Martin family's lawyers, to the professional grievance industry, to characters like the New Black Panther Party was busy whipping up riot conditions and treating Zimmerman as a fugitive from racial justice, which led to filmmaker Spike Lee endangering the lives of an innocent couple that just happened to be named "Zimmerman."  And there's a good reason the media referred to Zimmerman as "white" until photos of him finally leaked out, and they had to change it to "white Hispanic," a very special demographic of which George Zimmerman seems to remain the only high-profile member.

As the likelihood of a not-guilty verdict grows, the machinery of racial unrest is getting pumped up again.  Death threats against "creepy ass cracka" George Zimmerman are flying around Twitter.  An acquittal might be the best thing that could happen for certain political and cultural actors, as Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit suggested: "Obama and the Democrats would actually prefer an acquittal here.  That’s because the whole point of the ginned-up Zimmerman affair was to inflame racial sentiment to boost black turnout in 2012.  With any luck, they can turn an acquittal into another racial rallying cry, which will help in 2014. It’s not about Zimmerman; he’s just one of those eggs you have to break to make an Obama omelet."

I suspect one reason the lawyers are starting to back away from the racial claims is that nothing has appeared to support them in court.  There's very little left of the prosecution's case for second-degree murder; all but one of the prosecution witnesses has essentially supported Zimmerman's account of the incident, and the one dissenting witness merely said Zimmerman was on top during at least one point in his struggle with Martin.  

Lawyers and juries are a mystery beyond my ability to unravel, but I have to say it's hard to find any trace of Murder Two in the story of a neighborhood watch guy checking out a suspicious person, who took great offense (and sounded more contemptuous than fearful, judging by the testimony of the prosecution's train-wreck star witness, his gal pal Rachel Jeantel) and got into an altercation that turned first physical, then tragic.  I don't understand the line of thinking that Zimmerman is somehow responsible for the incident by doing what neighborhood watch people (or other nervous people who live in areas with a history of crime) do.  Walking around your own neighborhood and looking at someone is criminal provocation?  And while he was getting "grounded and pounded" in an MMA-style beatdown, Zimmerman was supposed to do some mental calculations, conclude he'd probably survive the beating, and let the hammer blows fall?


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