Thoughts on the Martin/Zimmerman Tragedy
I’m a gun collector and shooter, an advocate of Second Amendment rights, a Endowment Member of the National Rifle Association and a life member of Gun Owners of America. Therefore, most people assume I probably come down on the side of George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch guy who killed a 17 year old teenager, claiming self-defense. Actually, I do not. But I will say this, the rush to judgment by those looking to play the race card and make political hay of this situation, on either side of the “aisle” is deeply disgusting to me.
We do not know precisely what happened that night, but we do know that Zimmerman was a man who felt a responsibility to protect his gated community in light of burglaries and crime. A commendable position to take. No argument there. And he saw an unknown person walking around at night. And here is where it gets dice, because he was armed. When you armed your level of accountability and responsibility sky rockets. Zimmerman totally failed in this regard, and this is the reason why Martin is dead.
Zimmerman violated the key and most critical common sense rule armed citizens are taught: the use of a firearm in self-defense is only the truly last resort. Now, you may say, “But Zimmerman was being physically attacked by Martin, he had no choice.” Perhaps not, at that point, but…his, literally, fatal error was choosing to ignore the police department’s instruction to NOT pursue, to NOT follow, to let the police handle it. Zimmerman’s own duty was to observe and report, not follow, track down and stalk a person whom he had concerns about.
This was no emergency.
Nobody’s life was in danger. Martin was not physically attacking somebody. He was not committing a crime. His only “crime” was walking around at night in a hoodie, to get a bottle of tea and skittles during a baseketball game half-time break.
Zimmerman made the foolish and ultimately deadly decision to disregard police instructions and as a result, Martin is dead. Zimmerman had no reason to pursue and follow Martin, precipitating the events that led to Martin’s killing. Period. End of story.
The rest? I honestly at this point don’t think anyone should be trying to jump to conclusions beyond these facts. But, none of this would have happened had Zimmerman followed the police department’s instructions and simply leave well enough alone. He had no legitimate reason or just cause to do more than report and observe.