Friday, July 26, 2013

What I Learned from the Zimmerman Trial


Ever since the George Zimmerman trial ended, I've been trying to hear/read all sides of the arguments that have erupted.  I don't think there's a simple answer as to whether or not the verdict was correct, but here are a few things I've confirmed for myself.   

1.  Appearance - not just skin shade, but age, level of attractiveness, weight, disability, manner of dress/tattoos etc. - is not a reliable indicator of what guides a person's heart.  

2.  Anyone roaming around after dark risks being viewed as suspicious - this is not unreasonable.

3.  Gun ownership is generally supported - until somebody gets killed.

4.   If we call 911 for any reason, we need to follow the directions given.

5.  When confronted with an aggressor, it's best to WALK (or run) AWAY.   No fracas is worth dying for.

If only Zimmerman had let law enforcement handle his concerns....if he had not carried his gun into the street...if Trayvon had not been out late, looking in windows...if either one of these people had just walked away, not engaged with the stranger in the night - the outcome might have been different.

As it was, the teen and the man chose to fight.  Both felt justified  I assume both were equally scared and angry.  It's tragic that one of them - either one of them - didn't make a different choice.  Then, or earlier.

Over the course of the trial and afterwards, I kept reminding myself that our judicial system is based on facts (not necessarily truth) and governed by imperfect human beings.  Even at its best, it can still fail.  Every verdict has people simultaneously rejoicing and crying. 

Which brings me to my final reminder of the week, which is that only God knows the truth of every matter.  He knows Trayvon's heart.  He knows George Zimmerman's heart.   He alone is fully just and fully merciful.   We might argue the Zimmerman trial for years to come, as we did the O.J. trial, but in God's eyes, the matter is already settled.

I gain my peace from that.

What are your thoughts on the Zimmerman trial?


  1. Personally, I am just frustrated that the media turned it into a race issue. It was pretty clear to me that it was NOT a race issue, and I can’t believe how so many people seem determined to pit everyone against everyone else. How is that helpful, other than getting people to buy into the media madness?

    As for Zimmerman’s actions, initially I agreed- he should have just left well enough alone. However, we have been having issues in my neighborhood with crime (mostly theft, some break-ins) and just the other day my son’s scooter was stolen right out of the driveway of our neighbor’s house. This was in broad daylight, and the scooter was parked right in front of their garage. It was ridiculous! It made me angry that my kid couldn’t even just leave his scooter outside while he was visiting a friend.

    Later I saw a teenage boy riding around on the scooter, and so I went out my front door and I screamed, “HEY KID! NICE SCOOTER!” I didn’t know what would happen, but I just wanted the kid to know that I saw him and that people in this neighborhood are not just going to hide away in our houses and let people violate our personal space and property. I was MAD. This is a nice neighborhood and we should be safe here.

    Anyway, the kid ended up throwing the scooter into a ditch and taking off running. Some other neighbors saw what happened and they said they’d be willing to give their eyewitness accounts to the police. I did call the police and they were unable to locate the kid.

    Part of me is worried about retaliation because of the Trayvon Martin case (we have a very mixed race neighborhood) but there comes a point when you just have to take a stand. I am not one to “start something” but when I feel like my home and peace of mind is being threatened, my mama bear comes out and I got angry. I wouldn’t be surprised if Zimmerman was reacting on the same instinct.

    That’s my two cents. I think it was a tragedy on both sides, but I think it was very poorly reported and I think the backlash will affect everyone. As for us, I’d like to throw a block party just to get everyone out and give us a chance to get to know each other. That’s the better way to protect a community. You’re less likely to want to take advantage of someone if you’ve met them and talked with them face to face in a positive way.

    1. Whoa, that was really long. Sorry, didn’t mean to hijack your post!

    2. not at all! I agree w/ your points. We SHOULD be able to defend our property, our family. I don't think Zimmerman's intentions were malicious. And I do think the media loved making it a racial issue - which is was NOT. It's very frustrating.
      I'm sorry you've had an incident yourself. It's becoming more common that crime is affecting all of us, and it will probably get worse. The human heart is easily corrupted. Thanks for commenting. I appreciate your thoughts.

  2. I didn't view Zimmerman as a racist - which isn't to say that he should have walked away from the whole thing just as the 911 operator instructed him to do. I do like this post, and do not agree with the leftist tending media that is making the whole thing much more racist than I believe it really was. Good post. Thanks.

  3. First of all, let me say that you write really well about topics like this. You did another post about colors with the paint wheel that I just loved. I liked it so much that I linked it in one of my posts.

    I think this is probably one of those situations where everyone involved would do things very differently if life gave you do-overs. I can really see both sides - the belief that you can walk through your parent's neighborhood any time, deressed any way and the belief that you've had enough and aren't going to stand for anymore.

    None of us can know what the people involved that night were thinking. We also can't know what the jurors were thinking, so I don't think it's our place to criticize or second guess them either.

    I think you make a very valid point about following the instructions given if you call 911. Why call if you're not going to listen?

    I also agree with you about the media seeming to create a frenzy. I can't believe there weren't other teenagers shot and killed that day, but it was like the media fixated on this incident and tried to keep everyone stirred up.

    I feel deeply sorry for both families because their lives will never be the same due to circumstances beyond their control.

    Again, very good post.

  4. Thanks, Danielle. I agree with you on your points as well. Esp. not arguing about the jury's decision. I served on a jury this year, and it's hard work. People do the best they can. And you do have to follow the law, whether you like how it's worded or not. There are limits to what you can do. Thanks for your nice comments.



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