07.13.2013 10:15 PM

A jury

…is a group of people of average ignorance.

23 Comments


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    robin says:

    Apparently in Florida, it is legal to stalk, confront, and kill an unaware teenager who “stands his ground” against a stranger who is concealing a handgun and has pursued him to the point of confrontation. In short, one can create a conflict and kill in “self-defence” even if you are the instigator and have a concealed weapon while the victim is innocent and unarmed. According to the “Jury”, in Florida, this is the law. Very sad, pathetic. RIP Trayvon Martin.


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      Warren says:

      Obama notwithstanding, the US remains about as a racist as it always was.


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        dillon says:

        Race is obviously not a factor here. Omara made it perfectly clear. No facts to even charge Zimmerman. Obama created the uproar by funding the demonstrations and talking about this son Trayvon.


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          Jen says:

          Dude, were you ON that jury?

          The only folks who seem to think race was “obviously not a factor” are folks who identify with the notion that a 17 year old unarmed black kid walking slowly with a pack of skittles is life threatening and deserves to be shot.


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          smelter rat says:

          Get a grip.


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      Joe says:

      Amen.


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    Chris P says:

    A stunningly bad decision by the jury – what a horrible precedent they’ve sent.


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    Curt says:

    Jury of peers. Prosecution and defence teams. Your bias is showing without attending the trial and not knowing how the “facts” were presented. Warren as a man of letters you know how it works. Just saying.


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      smelter rat says:

      Peers? 6 women, 5 of whom are white? Not guilty was a foregone conclusion.


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        po'd says:

        From the Globe

        “The court did not release the racial and ethnic makeup of the jury, but the panel appeared to reporters covering selection to be made up of five white women and a sixth who may be Hispanic.”


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        Anne says:

        What the? Are you saying women are obviously racist? That s every bit as screwed up as the jury s decision.


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        Ottawa Civil Servant says:

        You are a racist: 5 white women cannot be trusted? Remember, IT HAD TO BE UNANIMOUS decision. Facts were inconclusive, sort of like another trial you may have heard of: OJ.


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    GPAlta says:

    Every expert observer has claimed that the prosecution did a horrible job. The question is ‘why?’

    I believe they went easy on Zimmerman in order to try to strike a political balance. They never wanted Zimmerman convicted because would hurt the re-election prospects of Republican State Attorney Angela Corey, so she charged him with an unprovable offence and directed a bizzare prosecution. It looks like she did her duty and stood up for Trayvon, but there is no conviction for racist voters to hold against her.
    She is also the one who charged Marissa Alexander and Ronald Thompson and made sure that they each got 20 years in prison even though neither of them hurt anyone. But she is tough on crime.
    Everything in the US justice system is about campaigning and pleasing the mob.


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    smelter rat says:

    “Trayvon Martin Found Guilty!”


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    Steve T says:

    So, just to be clear, if a white person is charged with killing a black person, we should just dispense with trial by jury and go straight to jail or execution? Who cares about the facts or evidence, right?

    I find the reaction to this jury decision very disturbing. This affair was a media circus from the beginning, with a great enthusiasm for showing Trayvon Martin in the most favorable light, and Zimmerman in the most negative light. Neither Martin nor Zimmerman was squeaky clean, which drove the media nuts as they tried to keep to their black-and-white (pun intended) easy-to-digest script on track for the short-attention-span public.

    For those who call this decision “racist” – are you suggesting that you know more, simply from what you have seen in the news, than a jury of people (approved by the defense, by the way) who saw all the evidence? What are your thoughts on the whole “innocent until proven guilty” and “beyond a reasonable doubt” concepts? Old-fashioned and outdated notions, when the trial involves a politically sensitive matter?

    Of course, even questioning the criticism of the decision probably makes me a racist by today’s political correctness standards, right?


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    po'd says:

    In the land where school children and teachers are murdered and the NRA wins the day with it’s usual position, more guns are the answer.

    The same place where a woman is sentenced to 30 years for having sex with teenager, and another citizen walks free after killing a teenager as a result of his burning desire to protect other people’s property.

    Then there’s the Supreme Court in Iowa and it’s recent decision on what constitutes sexual discrimination in the work place.

    Humming a few bars of Dixie here…. old times there are not forgotten….look away… look away.. Dixie Land. And they think of themselves as the leader of the Free World too. Imagine.


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    Sean says:

    Didn’t follow the trial too closely, but my over all impression was that this wasn’t a racist verdict. This verdict was the result of a poor case which the State initially didn’t want to try because they thought they would lose. If you are mad about this case, you should be mad about the burden of proof, not about racism.

    Also disagree that America “is as racist as it ever was” because of this verdict.


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      The Doctor says:

      I largely agree with you. This was a difficult case on the facts. I believe the evidence showed that Zimmerman and Martin got into some sort of scuffle/fight/altercation, and once you’re into a situation like that, with no direct third-party eyewitness testimony, plus the reasonable doubt standard, a murder conviction can be extremely difficult to get. Having said that, there’s also no doubt that in that context (gated community in the US south), racial profiling played a role in what happened in the first place.


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        Sean says:

        Yeah, exactly. No doubts at all that racial profiling and a nut with a gun is what caused this terrible situation. However, the few snippets I’ve seen / read lead me to believe this is about the standard of proof. The State just couldn’t get the ball across the goal line for a murder conviction. People jump to the conclusion that an acquittal essentially means that nothing wrong happened. It only means that the evidence produced by the State didn’t meet the test for the specific crime / conviction they were seeking. Is that test wrong? Maybe. That’s a legitimate public policy issue and deserves discussion.


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          The Doctor says:

          Well, related to what you say there, I’m inclined to agree with the CNN legal analyst I saw this afternoon who said that the state aimed too high here in trying to secure a 2nd degree murder conviction, when this fact situation lent itself far better to a manslaughter or criminal negligence causing death conviction. I think the jury also acquitted on manslaughter here as a lesser included offence (though I didn’t check today), but I think the CNN analyst’s point was that strategically, the prosecutor shouldn’t have wasted time trying to make out a case for murder 2 when this was an extremely difficult set of facts to get a murder 2 conviction on. You can confuse juries that way, so that the jury intuits that if your murder case is weak, somehow your whole case (including lesser included offences) is weak as well.

          There may also have been politics involved here too — the prosecutor might have felt political pressure to press for a murder conviction, when in practical legal terms, shorn of political considerations, it would have been smarter to aim lower at manslaughter or criminal negligence causing death.


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    Cameron Prymak says:

    This travesty is what happens when states implement laws designed by the NRA and effectively allow almost anyone to own a lethal weapon.


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    deb s says:

    the comments here are baffling. so a guy, who was told to sit in his car and wait for police, approaches ( most likely aggressively) an unarmed teen and the end result is the death of the teen and this case lacks clarity…wtf? I would think in canada(if this happened) George Zimmerman would be in jail or at the very least in the insane asylum. This kid was killed twice, once by zimmerman and again by the media with their negative painting of what any teen in america might be dealing with, but because he was black and in a hoody he was a gangsta.
    jesus…how sad, I really wonder about humanity!
    The law, the lawyers, the judge and the jury are absolutely deplorable in Florida.
    Its really crazy…that zimmerman can be painted as a guy who needed to defend himself, anyway possible…and just happened to have a gun. But Trayvon couldnt…as he is black…and that is the truth, this jackass zimmerman wouldnt have approached a white guy in this fashion. Zimmerman had more illegal acts under his belt then this poor kid…its too bad that Trayvons record was used against him and zimmermans was inadmissable. This case is about racism which is alive and well in america and its about the gun obsession the states have. Freedom for middleaged white guys, hooray, but death to black teens who might have some lippy rejoinders when approached by a nutjob:P


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    bobsdf says:

    We should do away with trial by jury and have internet voting based on what interested people are able to absorb through popular media.

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