Thursday, March 29, 2012

Lunacy and Endangerment in the Trayvon Martin Death Case: ABC News Endangers 13-Year Old Witness, More

Trayvon Martin's Twitter profile photo
under the screen name "T33ZY_TAUGHT_M3
March 29, 2012 - The Trayvon Martin case is getting uglier by the day, and a lot of irresponsible stupidity is adding heat to an already hot issue. One of the worst so far:

ABC News publicly named a 13-year old witness in the death of Trayvon Martin.

This, of course, not only puts the child and his entire family in serious danger, but it also violates a basic journalistic rule about naming minors in such circumstances. ABC News posted the child's name on their website on March 26.

Here is an excerpt, with emphasis added:
Zimmerman had claimed he had called police about Martin, whom he found suspicious, then went back to his car when Martin attacked him, punching him.
The new information is the most complete version yet of what Zimmerman claims happened on the night of Feb. 26 when he shot and killed the teenager.
In addition, an eyewitness, 13-year-old Austin Brown, told police he saw a man fitting Zimmerman's description lying on the grass moaning and crying for help just seconds before he heard the gunshot that killed Martin.
See that teen in a video below, in which he was interviewed by The Orlando Sentinel.

Many seem eager to call for "justice" in the case, yet many of those calls are really nothing more than pleas for vigilante action. In the video posted with the ABC News story, Trayvon Martin's now-omnipresent parents spoke at a rally in Sanford, Florida. Referring to George Zimmerman, who is accused of fatally shooting Trayvon, his father said this:

"He needs to be given a sentence by the jury of his peers," he said, "We're not aksin' for an eye for an eye, we're aksin' for justice, justice, justice."  That's an exact quote.

While Mr. Martin is not directly urging people to lynch George Zimmerman, I have not heard him or Trayvon's mother tell all the lunatics who are calling for vigilante violence to cool down. Have you? Nope, and so the hot rhetorical phrases like "we're aksin' for justice, justice, justice" will continue to excite the more ignorant and violence-prone among those who seek a resolution to the case. Problem is, the resolution called for my many is what Jesse Jackson would call "cowboy justice."

Meanwhile, there are lunatics who are outright calling for the death of George Zimmerman. One such example is a nutjob called "@KillZimmerman" on Twitter. "RiP This Page Is 4 Da Ppl Who Believe Zimmerman Should Be Shot Dead In The Street The Same Way TRAYVON Was. No Justice No Peace," says the profile description of that Twitter account.

Despite the obvious violation of Twitter's own terms of service, and many calls for Twitter to delete the account, @KillZimmerman was still up as of 7:00 p.m. CDT this evening.

The George Zimmerman case is sickeningly similar to the attempted group lynching of the Duke Lacrosse team a few years ago. In that case, a group of white college men were accused of raping a black woman. They were later found innocent, but the usual gang of race baiters and and leftists rushed to publicly convict the young men based on nothing more than racist assumptions. Today, while the leftists and race card playaz are busily assuming Zimmerman's guilt, those same people are not discussing the fact that Trayvon Martin was no angel. Angels, after all, do not carry burglary tools.

By the way, is it just me or do Trayvon's parents seem to be enjoying all of the sudden celebrity status and speaking engagement just a bit too much?  In all of the speechifying that I've seen them doing over the past week, I have not once seen a tear shed. In fact, in the video here, Mr. Martin seems to actually be smiling as he calls for "justice, justice, justice."

Meanwhile, professional race baiters like the Reviled Jesse Jackson, Sr. and the equally reviled Al Sharpton are lending their star power to the Martin case. In the same video, Sharpton stands behind Mrs. Martin as she said, "They've killed my son, and now they're trying to kill his reputation."

"They?" Who are "they" that she says killed her son? Nobody has accused anybody other than George Zimmerman of the killing. "They?"

See what she did there, probably with the expert coaching of Al Sharpton? Of course you do: "They" is The Man, of course. The Man killed Trayvon Martin. Why, it was all a big conspiracy by the White Establishment to knock off a fine, upstanding 17-year kid. And now that "They" have killed him, "They" want to "kill his reputation" just for good measure. Get it?

The entire thrust of what Trayvon's parents and their handlers are saying is based on the unproven assumption  of Trayvon's innocence and, equally, of Zimmerman's assumed guilt. They call for "justice," but they don't want to wait for facts to be carefully gathered.

When facts are revealed, such as the uncomfortable accusation by at least two witnesses that Trayvon forced Zimmerman to act in self defense, the Martins accuse "They" of trying to "kill" their son's reputation. This is not a campaign for justice, it's a propaganda push to rile up people. To what logical end, however, seems murky. A public vigilante hanging of Zimmerman? The speeding up of the official investigation?

These people need to calm down, step back, and let the system work. Sure, monitor the system and hold it accountable, but the public screaming is not helping anything. They need to ask fringe hate groups such as the New Black Panthers to stop calling for irresponsible, potentially dangerous and hate-driven vigilante action. The New Black Panthers offered a $10,000 "reward" for the "capture and citizens arrest" of George Zimmerman.

Nevermind, by the way, that a very White-sounding 911 operator told Zimmerman to stop following Trayvon Martin. "Are you following him?" the operator asked. "Yeah," said Zimmerman. "Okay, we don't need you to do that." I wonder if Mrs. Martin includes that 911 operator as part of the collective "They" that she inexplicably refers to lately.

Nevermind, by the way, that George Zimmerman is Hispanic. Whoa, that's a whole big can of worms that the likes of Jackson and Sharpton don't want to touch. Lucky for them that Zimmerman's name sounds White. The Washington Post, in a surprisingly honest op-ed piece, addressed the bizarre way in which George Zimmerman's ethnicity (the New York Times called him a "white Hispanic") has been treated by the media.

The lunacy is not limited to anonymous homicidal morons such as @KillZimmerman, of course. Film director Spike Lee tweeted what he thought was George Zimmerman's home address. But, oops, it turns out that it was actually the address of an elderly couple. Gosh, sorry, Lee later said to them publicly, I didn't mean to put you in mortal danger, no no no, I meant to put George Zimmerman in mortal danger. That's my paraphrasing, of course, but why else would Lee have sent that address out to his 240,000 Twitter followers?

Surely, Spike Lee is aware that the hate group known as the New Black Panthers has put out a $10,000 reward for the "the capture" of George Zimmerman. Surely, his intention was to give them - and crazies like @KillZimmerman - the whereabouts of Zimmerman. Or is Spike Lee dumb enough that maybe he just thought it would be a public service to tell everyone where an unconvicted homicide suspect lives?

Not to be outdone in the stupidly irresponsible category, Roseanne Barr last night put the home address of George Zimmerman’s parents on Twitter for her 110,000-plus Twitter followers. Again, what other motivation could she have had other than to endanger them?  She deleted that post because, notes uber-blogger Pat Dollard, she did “not fully understanding that it was private not public.” Dollard also noted that, "Barr’s posting of the correct Florida address of Robert and Gladys Zimmerman came at the same time Spike Lee was issuing an apology" for publicizing what he incorrectly assumed was Zimmerman's own address.

The stupidity will keep coming, rest assured. Let's just hope that the idiocy of Sharpton, Jackson, Barr, Lee and thousands of others doesn't get somebody else killed.

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