Was Trayvon Martin Standing HIS Ground?

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There seems to be an unfounded presumption in the media that only Zimmerman can claim as a defense the Florida Stand Your Ground statute. But why can't it apply to Trayvon?

We still don't know all that happened but why doesn't that law work in Trayvon's favor? He's being followed by a stranger and according to his girlfriend is clearly concerned about his safety. So if there's a confrontation, when Trayvon believes he's being threatened, does that law give him the right to use the same deadly force as Zimmerman now claims? Of course Zimmerman didn't have to pursue Trayvon. If he listened to the police who told him not to pursue Trayvon, they'd both be alive today.

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A very good point,the facts are clear who the aggressor is.That law wasn`t for aggressors.If Mr.Zimmerman isn`t charge with murder,not only is stealing elections legal in Florida,murder will be too.Why is all this possible? Ask the 1% if Mr.Zimmerman got kill,how the law will work? The 99% need a law to protect from the 1%.

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tayl44
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I suspect the Right gives Zimmerman the benefit of the doubt is because they see any criticism of him as just anti-gun hysteria... so they circle the wagons without considering the possibility than a NON-gun holder also has the legal right to stand their ground when facing certain threats.

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Quote tayl44:

A very good point,the facts are clear who the aggressor is.That law wasn`t for aggressors.If Mr.Zimmerman isn`t charge with murder,not only is stealing elections legal in Florida,murder will be too.Why is all this possible? Ask the 1% if Mr.Zimmerman got kill,how the law will work? The 99% need a law to protect from the 1%.

You're right. Where is the political "stand your ground" law that allows for the dissolution of any party or organization that actively seeks to destroy the country? Are we, as Americans, not allowed to defend ourselves from the perpetual assault by the 1%, who control the money? Are we only legally obligated to defend ourselves from natural people?

The facts in the case of the greater political assault on the poor is clear as well. There is a party and a group of business friendly organizations, like the US chamber of commerce, that have the middle class and the poor in their sights. They actively seek to destroy the life-giving programs that progressives have established through time. They feed their fascism with the very flesh of the American underclasses in terms of nutritional, educational and healthcare deficits.

It's high time we stood our ground and took back our country from these thugs.

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D_NATURED
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Quote D_NATURED:It's high time we stood our ground and took back our country from these thugs.

We're getting off topic, but one quick thought.. it's that in an nation with an antidemocratic government... the Right yields more power than they deserve in a democratic nation. Just look how the EC changed US and world history for the worst by installing Bush2 as president against the will of the People! In the Senate small states with a mere 18% of the population get a majority of the seats. Those small states have equal votes with larger states on ALL matters that comes before the Senate. The 12 smallest states that can block any amendment contain less than 5% of the population. We need to reform all such state based formulas with population based formulas. But we can't. The small states have a stranglehold on the nation.

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Another part of the story lost is just what having a gun contributed to Zimmerman's actions? Would he have been so confident to play cop and to follow and confront Trayvon without it?

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The attempts to defend stalking an unarmed kid without a gun, by a man who ought to be able to take him in any fair fight but who also has a gun, as if the shooting were "self-defense" is all the greater indictment of the idiot "stand your ground" law. And of the racists and fear-mongers who defend Zimmerman.

Were this an isolated incident of exceptional nature rather than a pattern of abuse, we might be able to forgive some of the shock and awe from those who think Georgie might have had reason to fear a colored kid in a hoodie. Sorry, this just gets uglier and less defensible. Maybe White people will learn how life is in America if you are not White.

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Pierpont,don`t get caught in the divide & conquer,D_Nature is right on topic,we don`t stand our ground with the divide & conquer to keep them the 1%,we will end like "Trayvon".(or being alive but dead in freedom/spirit)

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Quote tayl44:Pierpont, don`t get caught in the divide & conquer, D_Nature is right on topic, we don`t stand our ground with the divide & conquer to keep them the 1%,we will end like "Trayvon".(or being alive but dead in freedom/spirit)

I thought the topic was a tragic event in Florida not our defective and dysfunctional antidemocratic political system or the inequality and apathy it breeds. People looking to discuss that topic probably are not likely to look in a thread named Trayvon.

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Quote DRC:The attempts to defend stalking an unarmed kid without a gun, by a man who ought to be able to take him in any fair fight but who also has a gun, as if the shooting were "self-defense" is all the greater indictment of the idiot "stand your ground" law. And of the racists and fear-mongers who defend Zimmerman.
I don't know if in principle all "stand your ground laws" are idiotic, though Florida's seems to be. We'll see how it deals with Zimmerman.

Here in Mass I believe the law was that if someone broke in and threatened you in your own home... one's legal obligation was to try and flee first. I assume the fear was minors who lacked the competence to fully understand the consequences of a break-in, might be killed or wounded. That was changed with a Castle Law. This gives the property owner the right to use deadly force and get protection against criminal law... but not civil law. So in theory a wounded robber could still bring charges in civil court.

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Self defense laws all across the US share a few items, because of the federal Cons. and the SCOTUS.

You have the right to defend yourself, and anyone else, from assault.

You have the right to use deadly force if you or another is facing what you believe to be a fatal attack, or to stop arson.

So, within your own home, anywhere if someone is attacking you or another person you can defend yourself, and if you believe that yourself or others are being attacked with what could be a fatal attack you can use deadly force to preserve your life or the life of others.

What you don't have is the right to stalk a teenager, create a confrontation, and then beat the teen down into the ground, and then execute them.

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If that point had only been clear earlier! Don't read so good, thought it stand "Right to stalk your grounds." Sorry.

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Pierpont,you prevent tragic events by connecting the "dots" of inequality & apathy & etc... Looking at the big picture,a stand your ground law make everybody a cop with the right to kill,only the 1% will create confusion like that to distract from their corruption of the system.Imagine with austerity( taking from the poor to make the rich richer) the police is lay-off and crime going up,we have mob rule.Like i say "divide & conquer",anybody cannot deal with the roots of problems,have their head in the sand with a truck headed for them.

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tayl44
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Quote tayl44:Pierpont,you prevent tragic events by connecting the "dots" of inequality & apathy & etc... Looking at the big picture,a stand your ground law make everybody a cop with the right to kill,only the 1% will create confusion like that to distract from their corruption of the system.Imagine with austerity( taking from the poor to make the rich richer) the police is lay-off and crime going up,we have mob rule.Like i say "divide & conquer",anybody cannot deal with the roots of problems,have their head in the sand with a truck headed for them.
Look, I was raising a simple question whether Trayvon was the one who rightly could claim the Stand Your Ground law. If I was asking any "big picture" questions it was about media bias. I guess you have nothing to add on these topics. If you wish to start a thread on the topic you seem to be interested in... it's not that difficult. I don't see why you feel it belongs here given the title of the thread.

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Quote Pierpont:
Quote tayl44:Pierpont,you prevent tragic events by connecting the "dots" of inequality & apathy & etc... Looking at the big picture,a stand your ground law make everybody a cop with the right to kill,only the 1% will create confusion like that to distract from their corruption of the system.Imagine with austerity( taking from the poor to make the rich richer) the police is lay-off and crime going up,we have mob rule.Like i say "divide & conquer",anybody cannot deal with the roots of problems,have their head in the sand with a truck headed for them.
Look, I was raising a simple question whether Trayvon was the one who rightly could claim the Stand Your Ground law. If I was asking any "big picture" questions it was about media bias. I guess you have nothing to add on these topics. If you wish to start a thread on the topic you seem to be interested in... it's not that difficult. I don't see why you feel it belongs here given the title of the thread.

I think Tal was merely trying to point out the absurdity of people protecting their homes in which they dwell but not the society that is the REAL determining factor in how safe that home is. If there is a culture of might makes right, you could have a freakin' fortress and someone stronger or more ruthless will still take it from you. If you have a culture of community and sharing, you could live in a tent and not have to worry about the presence of or intentions of intruders.

There IS a big picture and it's made up of little pictures. Stand your ground laws are part of the culture of might makes right. It is the ultimate manifestation of societal greed to say that you can kill someone because of a feeling. Feelings are often irrational. The job of the law is not to make us feel secure, it is to establish justice. People have fears for many reasons that are not real and reactions to fear are rarely just.

So, we SHOULD have every right to protect ourselves from the real, demonstratable, threat of fascism as much as the imagined threat of the hypothetical "intruder".

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Quote D_NATURED:So, we SHOULD have every right to protect ourselves from the real, demonstratable, threat of fascism as much as the imagined threat of the hypothetical "intruder".

Sure, though I'd argue our antidemocratic federal system of representation and its defective method of holding elections places the Right at an unfair advantage. Either way, that's NOT going to be an issue in court if Zimmerman ever goes to trial.

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PierPont,Rome is burning,enjoy your tree in the burning city.I apologize for being off topic with the big picture,it will never happen again with you ,i learn something. Thanks D_Nature,we try,but as always, people will learn the easy way or the hard way,but they will learn! We cannot lose no sleep when we try.I did run a thread on the big picture of "stand your ground",nobody touch it,i wonder if most people are afraid??

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Quote tayl44:PierPont, Rome is burning, enjoy your tree in the burning city. I apologize for being off topic with the big picture, it will never happen again with you ,i learn something. Thanks D_Nature, we try, but as always, people will learn the easy way or the hard way, but they will learn! We cannot lose no sleep when we try. I did run a thread on the big picture of "stand your ground", nobody touch it, i wonder if most people are afraid??

Hey, I start threads here and in other forums that get no response. Oh well.

Look, I know I stray off topic often. I try to catch myself but sometimes those threads become totally divorced from the original topic. Does the person who started the thread have some moral authority to say, hey, please stop! Who knows. If they did, I'd comply out of respect. If you started your own thread http://www.thomhartmann.com/forum/2012/04/stand-your-ground-laws-form-self-genocide-99-and-who-would-benefit-if-99-go-war-itself on the issue you wanted to discuss, and no one joins... that doesn't mean it's not worth discussing. But reading it, it doesn't make much sense to me. I certainly don't believe there's some grand Right wing conspiracy behind these Stand Your Ground laws except to give the gun nuts some reason to stay in the GOP coalition. I simply dont believe they're intended to instigate "self-genocide". When you go off the deep end and suggest such wacky conspiracy stuff, expect to be ignored. You seem to expect the conspiracy angle can legitimately be raised wherever Trayvon is mentioned. I don't. As a gun owner, maybe my state's "Castle Law" might protect me someday should someone break into my home.

In the end the format of a forum is designed to facilitate efficient discussion of those interested in a topic. While we're all tempted to stray, we do so at the risk of undermining the forum format itself.

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Feb. 29, 2012 1:19 pm

PierPont,like i say,i learn some threads can be expanded and some cannot,i will not have that problem again.Going off the deep end with right wing conspiracy,with the 1%,anybody who don`t believe it,is way beyond the deep end.A person shouldn`t need a law to use basic common sense,and that sense should be realize by the bigger community.Yes,no respect for the forum,expect none in return.

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Quote tayl44:A person shouldn`t need a law to use basic common sense, and that sense should be realize by the bigger community.
I think we know the Florida law was pushed by, and was a juicy wet kiss from the state GOP to the gun nuts... not a sinister lobby hoping to promote self-genocide amongst the people. Whether any of these laws make sense depends. As I said in Mass, the law used to be that if one's home were invaded the owner had the duty to flee instead of use deadly force. It was passed in 05, before DC v Heller. In this case the law was needed to replace a law that did NOT seem to make much sense. But there's a comic side to this issue. I don't know if you've ever seen that All In The Family episode from 40 years ago where Archie Bunker goes on TV to respond to an editorial. Back then they had to give equal time for responses. Archie's "solution" to stop plane hijackings was to give guns to all the passengers. It was a laugh line because Archie, as an ignorant right winger, was proposing the absurd. Yet now the debate has shifted so far to the right, I almost expect to see such a suggestion from the gun nuts.

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Feb. 29, 2012 1:19 pm

I heard that "case" made after 911. Archie was just way ahead of his time. Common sense is way too rare, so we need laws to restrain the vigilante idiots. These stupid laws make "self-defense" a joke as fear rather than a reasonable threat becomes the right to use lethal force. We once had doubts about the right to kill a burglar who was not attacking anyone, just trying to get away. The death penalty continues to trouble our legal system; but we give fearful gun owners the "right" to use it in highly questionable situations.

Zimmerman had no grounds for self-defense when he initiated the contact. He caused the fear, and if it came back at him, he had already forfeited the right to use his gun to protect himself. This was classic Black Hat villain conduct in Western movies.

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Pierpont,have you heard of "divide & conquer" and can you connect "self genocide"? Like i say,"you don`t need no law for common sense". It was common sense for everybody to have guns in the "Wild West".But if it`s common sense for all to have guns in a system that is falling apart,that`s not common sense,it `s "insanity"! Guns won`t fix this fail system,but who would profit from selling all these guns and the self genocide of the "restless natives"?? Yes DRC,Mr. Archie was ahead of his time in letting fear drive him "insane"! Zimmerman bad use of stand your ground, should be an example of how we should use it in a positve civil action.Imminent domain would be a good example of standing our(99%) ground against "foreclosures". Getting off topic again?

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tayl44
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

As usual...everyone is trying this case without all the facts.

Trayvon could easily be found to have been "standing his ground", but it would be intelligent to make that decision once the facts are in.

Even if Zimmerman approached him, which seems to be the case, the FACTS we are awaiting are who initiated the physical confrontation and who was rightly defending themselves.

Approaching someone and asking them a question does not constitute an assualt.

If Zimmerman approached Martin AND started the physical confrontation, then "stand your ground" and "self defense" do not apply and he should be charged with murder.

However, if Zimmerman simply asked Martin what his business was there in the area and Martin started the confrontation, then Zimmerman has every right to defend himself.

But by all means, lets just continue the side show circus public trial without all the facts. Let's keep throwing out unsubstantiate claims of racism and acting like a bunch of morons.

DowntheMiddle
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Nov. 7, 2011 9:18 am

Maybe you are serious and not a troll or provocateur. Maybe you have not heard the 911 tapes and the "effin' coon" comment from the stalker. But let's presume you are just ignorant and "middle of the road" because you have not paid any attention to anything.

If Zimmerman approaches Trayvon and the kid fears that the strange guy who has been following him in a car is out to get him, being a Black kid who lives in Florida, after all, what if he tries to defend himself against a guy who is older and bigger than he is instead of waiting for a beating or worse. Where does that allow the guy with the gun to use it?

What would it have taken for Zimmerman "simply" to ask Trayvon what he was doing there? I think the "simply" implies non-threatening inquiry, not what the "effin' punks" remark is likely to produce. Or "they always get away." What if Trayvon challenges the question with who the eff are you to ask? Are we ready for the gun now? And what if Trayvon says that he is on the way to his father's pad or where his girlfriend lives?

The racism is in the 911 tapes, not in "our minds." It is in the suspicion of the black kid in the hoodie by mr. wannabe neighborhood watch cop who does not follow any official procedure. Ultimately, it is in the lack of investigation and prosecution for the unjustified use of a gun. And, it is in the fact that the family and friends of Trayvon have to call in national civil rights leaders to get this malpractice dealt with.

There is no question that Zimmerman initiated the confrontation against advice and procedural guildelines. He was packing and had exhibited hostility. He had the physical advantage without the gun. His story does not hold water. The cops failed to investigate his claims to demonstrate any veracity. All this resonates with a long history of prejudice and abuse by the cops.

So pardon us, mr. moron, for having reality based opinions and not believing in your tooth fairy spin. Black kids in America deserve to have a right to defend their grounds and even get angry when insulted by bullies. But, it will get them killed if we let idiots like you treat reality like a dream.

Trayvon told his girlfriend that he was being stalked by Zimmerman and he tried to get away from him. If he was cornered, does he have a right to try to hit Zimmerman before the bigger, stronger and older guy injures or kills him? Having your prey turn the tables does not make the prey into the attacker you can shoot. And kill.

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Quote DowntheMiddle:But by all means, lets just continue the side show circus public trial without all the facts. Let's keep throwing out unsubstantiate claims of racism and acting like a bunch of morons.

Was I being racist?

My point simply was that since we don't know the facts, why were the police or the media jumping to believe Zimmerman had the sole right to claim a "stand your ground" defense when there's enough reason to suspect it could just as well be Trayvon? Surely police and media bias or laziness is worth examining, don't you think? Or don't you?

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Quote Pierpont:

There seems to be an unfounded presumption in the media that only Zimmerman can claim as a defense the Florida Stand Your Ground statute. But why can't it apply to Trayvon?

Pierpont,

The law CAN apply to Trayvon. See my post here http://www.thomhartmann.com/forum/2012/03/florida-shooting-castle-doctrine

As I spoke about in this post, the roles of aggressor and defender can shif within a controntation. So, it will need to be shown who was the immediate aggressor at the time the gun went off.

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TChamp3121
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Nov. 16, 2010 4:20 pm

If you reallly can stalk a victim, provoke him into attacking you to defend himself and then shoot him, this law really is the license to kill. I think the right to pack a rod needs to include not being the provocateur, not just to kill in defense against a fight you picked unless your life is truly endangered, like because the other guy draws on you. Even then, it gets the Black Hat bad guy scene in the Western movie. Zimmerman was on top, according to witnesses. He was bigger and stronger, and he picked the fight. No self defense justification ought to be allowed here. The victim was unarmed and no threat to his life. Get real.

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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

It`s really show how crazy some people are(even if they`re pay) They say wait for the facts and than the facts they use are "he say,she say". You freaks of the 1% is the real stars and Zimmerman is a freak baby. We don`t need no law,for the 1% injustice,"just common sense"! Zimmerman and any other distraction won`t change "these facts".

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