The real verdict is also in

Opinion: Ken Trainor

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By Ken Trainor

Staff writer

In the virtual reality of our court system, George Zimmerman is "not guilty." In the real world, however, he is guilty of many things.

Zimmerman is guilty of being an incompetent Neighborhood Watch volunteer. An effective Neighborhood Watch volunteer, if he sees something he considers suspicious, calls the police. He doesn't go out hunting for "bad guys" as he defines them. He partners with local law enforcement. He doesn't pre-empt them.

He is guilty of being an extraordinarily inept vigilante as well. Taking matters into his own clumsy hands, he managed to get so tangled up with a "suspect" that he felt his only recourse was to use lethal force. Having established his ineptitude, one can't help but question the quality of his judgment in deciding to pull the trigger.

He is guilty of stalking and perhaps entrapment. It's a free country, we're told. Free enough to allow goofs with delusions of grandeur to carry a loaded gun and freely decide when to discharge it if he feels threatened. Theoretically, it was a free country for Trayvon Martin, too, but George Zimmerman begged to differ.

He is guilty of being the "initial aggressor." He created the conflict. He started it, whatever "it" was. We have only Zimmerman's side of the story after all. Florida allowed him to "stand his ground," only he wasn't standing still. He was following an unarmed kid. Zimmerman was the instigator, the protagonist, the aggressor. He brought the fight to the kid. Florida law, I've heard, states that when someone is the initial aggressor, he or she must take any and every opportunity to withdraw. That didn't happen.

He is guilty of racial profiling. Young black male, wearing a hoodie, walking in a subdivision where he "doesn't belong." Must be a criminal. Is a racial profiler a racist? Yes. You're acting in a race-based or race-ist manner. Is Zimmerman a hate-filled, habitual, incorrigible racist? That's between him and every African American he meets for the rest of his life.

He is guilty of being a killer. Did he get away with "murder" or "manslaughter" like O.J. Simpson? Those are also technical designations from our obviously flawed system of "justice." But George Zimmerman is certainly a killer, self-admitted, having taken the life of an unarmed 17-year-old who had done nothing to him until he accosted Trayvon Martin and took his life in a violent manner.

Was that killing "justified"? The court ruled him "not guilty" of various levels of homicide. But justification is another matter. Killing an unarmed human being when you're armed and initiating the conflict is not justifiable. Was it justified for Trayvon Martin to "stand his ground" after Zimmerman confronted him? Clearly his life was threatened.

The verdict angered and depressed me, but it didn't surprise me. At the outset, acquittal seemed a foregone conclusion in this case. When you call a law "stand your ground," you've already established a bias in favor of the person doing the killing. George Zimmerman will now become a darling of the vigilante crowd and no doubt end up a wealthy man, which is galling, but I don't much care what happens to him as long as he stops playing vigilante and doesn't kill any more unarmed teenagers whenever he feels threatened. I sure don't think he should be allowed to carry a gun, but I know full well that won't happen.

This verdict has set us back, as did the concealed-carry legislation that cleared its final hurdle in Illinois last week — a very bad week indeed for those who oppose gun rights without responsibilities.

We're living through a time of national insanity and many who shouldn't be carrying loaded firearms will do so. This verdict gives them the confidence that if they shoot someone and declare self-defense, they will likely get away with it.

George Zimmerman got away with it. He has to live with his act, but that's the only price he has to pay. Some will turn him into a hero or a martyr. He may well consider himself the real victim in all this. Others will shun him and occasionally tell him what they think of what he did.

Or maybe he'll surprise us all and make amends, pay his debt to society even though society did not insist that he pay one. Instead of becoming a poster boy for our national gun cult, let's hope he feels some remorse, recognizes what he did wrong, and understands that we're all worse off for his actions.

He could serve his community in constructive ways — like warning other would-be vigilantes about the terrible responsibility of carrying a loaded gun while arrogantly assuming your own self-righteousness and the other person's wrongfulness. Some good could come of all this. He can either learn from his mistakes or he can retreat to his bunker and await imagined reprisals from those he so clearly fears.

In the eyes of our highly imperfect court system, George Zimmerman is "not guilty."

In the court of public opinion, however, a very different verdict has been reached.

Contact:
Email: ktrainor@wjinc.com

Reader Comments

134 Comments - Add Your Comment

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sizemo from manhattan  

Posted: August 21st, 2013 9:04 PM

You all thing George gunned down martin, would you been under the same bias if martin sitting on top broke George's neck? If your so smart in your thinking, go to sleep tonight with your doors and windows closed, but unlocked!! Yes your right, every single black in Florida reads and preaches out of the Bible. I have a bridge I would like to sell you....... Liberalism is a mental disorder I agree from Micheal Savage

Kathleen Starzenski from San Leandro, California  

Posted: July 24th, 2013 7:06 PM

When I first heard Zimmerman's 911 call, I thought this guy does not know what suspicious is. One night as I was half asleep in bed I heard a car pull up, I thought the car engine did not sound like one of my neighbors' cars. I got out of bed and looked out the window. I saw two men walking across the street. I thought they were going to visit the Asian family. As I turned to go back to bed, I saw the clock; it was 2: 00 A.M. I turned to look out the window again, there were not any lights on in the houses across the street. All of a sudden the two men walked back across the street, to another neighbor's yard. I opened my front door to see where they were going; my porch light came on, the two men hid behind my neighbor's bushes. I went back inside quietly shutting the door and looked out the window. Now the two men were going down the street, crossing back and forth, squatting down by cars, it looked like they were hugging the wheels, looking for something or even like they were going to pull a wheel off. I walked outside and wrote down the license number of the car they came in and called 911 about their suspicious behavior. I watched out the window, lost sight of them, heard a dog barking, and then all of a sudden the two men came running on their toes, not running heavy flat footed which would have caused more noise. They got in the car and started to drive off. I thought they were going to get away. When they got to the corner, here came a police car, the officer made a u-turn and pulled them over. Now when I thought they were going to get away, it never occurred to me to run after them or follow them with a gun. For one thing I do not own a gun. My thought was should I call back to 911 and let them know which direction they had left in. In addition I did not know if they had down anything wrong but their behavior was suspicious.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 22nd, 2013 11:38 AM

@ OP Could it be that the blacks killing blacks is a societal problem that proves the failure of the "Great Society" and the liberal solution to the nations ills? Get us back to the solid family values where government is the least demanded service provider. Mom and dad make sure that juniors pants are above his butt, that he speaks an understandable version of english, that his homework gets done first and that he gets high praise for doing the right thing - always! Excuses for failure from the president down to the second grader is just not acceptable.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 22nd, 2013 10:53 AM

OP - I don't think anyone is suggesting that racism doesn't exist, or that you, or the president, haven't experienced it. It's just a misdirection to imply that vigilante killings by whites or Hispanics represent some major threat to the AA community. Why the silence when hundreds of young black men are killed by other young black men, but national demonstrations and presidential speeches when the shooter is Latino? Are these deaths less tragic if the shooter is also black?

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 22nd, 2013 9:42 AM

@OP Transplant: LOL!!!!!!

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 22nd, 2013 9:39 AM

@OP: First of all, own your BLACKNESS. You use AA alongside WHITE, as if BLACK is a dirty word! White is fine though, right? And why do you need a leader? Are you a child? Be your own leader! Carve your own path! I see the biggest problem here WAITING for someone to save the Black community. MLK existed becuz there was a need for profound change from Jim Crow. But I agree with Farrakhan now: DO. FOR. SELF. Stop looking outside to change the inner. Do what you can with what you have where you are

OP   

Posted: July 22nd, 2013 9:20 AM

As a Ivy League educated brother, I often have cabs lock doors or pass me up in NYC, Chicago etc. I recall growing up in OP being spit on and called the N word by kids in OP. The fallacy is just because we have an AA president, everything is great. The white middle class is under assuat due to macro issues - they have little empathy for AA's. Yes, for well educated AA, the world is fairer but for the average brother it is still tough. Our community needs leaders - to set a new vision,

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 22nd, 2013 9:00 AM

JC, every black man knows the feeling of being viewed with suspicion, no matter the income or education level. However, there cannot be an honest discussion of race until there is an honest asssessment of the cultural and political issues that have decimated a large portion of the black community over the past 50 years, much of it coming from the left. While racism exists, it is nothing but an excuse for personal failure. The only thing keeping black folks down is black folks.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 21st, 2013 8:02 PM

Frustrating that the president feels the need to comment about one young black man killed by a Latino under questionable circumstances in Florida, but has nothing to say about the hundreds of young black men killed by other young black men in his own city. Why the selective outrage? Does even the president have to stick to the media narrative? I supported the president with my votes and my money, but I find this very disappointing.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 21st, 2013 12:53 PM

@ JBM - can you point to a single situation where a bomb was planted on a old white lady or a babe in arms or any other justification you find to avoid the reality that terrorists are almost exclusively young muslim men. I have no problem with profiling - it is just wise precaution. As for my mother - she goes along with whatever TSA Agents want and heaven help anyone who tried to get her to sneak anything onto a plane. She would not only turn them in she would have photos from her cell phone to hang the bastards.

John Butch Murtagh from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 21st, 2013 12:39 PM

Gee, Ray, Did you notice that children also get scanned by the TSA. It is not done to harass children, seniors, or super seniors. It is done to ensure that others, with less morals, do not plant dangerous materials on those in wheelchairs, using walkers, or in a baby carriage. So if your mother wants to avoid the search inconvenience the options are she should not fly or her son should launch a campaign against all searches..

WJ reader from Oak Park  

Posted: July 21st, 2013 11:49 AM

Ken Trainor ... please justify your accusation and judgment of being a racist in your above article (6th paragraph); "He is guilty of racial profiling. ... Is a racial profiler a racist? Yes."

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 21st, 2013 11:25 AM

If you are a member of a neighborhood watch group you profile everyone. We panic when the hucksters add the word "racial" to the action. Yes, race is one element as is behavior, attitude and that gut feeling. The FBI has a whole department that develops profiles to assist catching bad people. Our trips to the airport would be much easier if TSA could man up and admit who the terrorists really are. My 97 year old mother is not likely to explode a bomb. She still goes through the process - money foolish!

ridiculous from the country where our president speaks out against the justice system he leads  

Posted: July 21st, 2013 8:50 AM

None of us were there. None of us deserve the right to convict a man on evidence we have not proven or had the ability to fully explore. It seems to me that it is the popular belief that because a black man was shot the person of another color must then be raciest. Your statement that this is a case of racial profiling is as true as someone else saying that Zimmerman would have followed any young man in a hoody, regardless of race, that "did not belong" or live in the gated community.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 8:43 PM

Rham said it best" Never let a good crisis go to waste" Human lives be damned we can score some points here.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 7:00 PM

I suspect he won't be mentioning that at any of the Justice for Trayvon rallies. Apparently the hundreds of young African-American men who are murdered each year in Chicago alone, and whose murders are never cleared, are less deserving of justice. Justice appears to be much more important in cases when the shooter isn't black.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 5:21 PM

The reverend Jesse Jackson.

Uncommon sense   

Posted: July 20th, 2013 4:46 PM

Jesse Jackson.

realitysux  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 1:41 PM

POP QUIZ TIME FOR THE FORUM- "There is nothing more painful for me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery?"and then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved." GUESS WHO MADE THIS STATEMENT SEVERAL YEARS AGO?

realitysux  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 1:37 PM

@RAY- EXACTLY. Not only do stalking racist profilers NOT call 911, those who are concerned about being followed by " crazy a$$ crackers" should be smart enough to call 911 themselves. Also, I'm pretty sure racists DO NOT take a black date to their high school prom, as Zimmerman did.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 12:46 PM

@ We All - it is a part of evolution and survival. All beings do it in order to survive. Profiling is a buzz word for being cautious and smart - knowing when to let caution be your guide. Zimmerman was profiling a young man who didn't belong in that area - if he was intent on killing Martin, as accused by the race baiters, why would he call 911? That is an open invitation to have the police there post haste. The purpose of neighborhood watch groups is to spot people who don't belong - that is profiling in it's purest form.

Think about it  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 12:37 PM

We should all be aware of our surroundings as we go about our business because there is a lot of crime. What I find amazing is how many young white men and women act afraid of my conservatively dressed, gray haired 55-year-old black-skinned taxpaying husband when he gets out of his car and enters a local shop to get a cup of coffee at 7 am on his work. Can someone explain?

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 12:35 PM

I'm surprised to hear that young African-American men were involved in all of those incidents. From what I can tell from the media, the greatest threat to our nation's safety is the scourge of Peruvian-American neighborhood watch volunteers. I'm guessing that Zimmerman is responsible for the hundreds of unsolved homicides of young AA men in Chicago every year. Oh, and the cops, if what I heard on the radio is true.

We all profile  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 12:01 PM

Is a racial profiler a racist? No, not in Oak Park. My wife was mugged by three black youths in front of our house at 7:00pm, and suffered injuries for months. Our son was with a friend when physically attacked by four black youths at a school playground who stole his bike. Our home was invaded during the night and car stolen by black youths. We do profile by appearance. We teach our kids to profile. We hope the police profile. It's called survival instinct, and part of the human DNA.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 7:12 AM

@ JC - Yes, I heard President Obama say that he respects the constitution and the rule of law! That isn't even close to me believing him. We have all been lied to to many times to believe anything he says about any subject! The constitution specifies his job and he refuses to meet his obligations much less take any responsibility. He has never learned that delegation does not mean abdication. The Obama re election is more of an indictment of your blind obedience than to my understanding of reality. BTW I seem to remember my grandfather speaking of "Having the vapors" when he had uncontrollable flatulence. Perhaps that does fit! Can anyone help Mr Coughlin's humanist party out with logo suggestions? I favor the Monty Python fluffy pillow or a door mat that says " CONDITIONALLY WELCOME"

realitysux  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 2:55 AM

Is anyone able to calculate the number of times COUGHLIN has asked a question only to change the subject when someone posts a response confirming the ignorance of his original question or claim. His responses have now veered off to questioning reagan's tenure as head of the SAG. This simply proves he is only able to post talking points and NOT engage in any in-depth discussion/debate on any topic.

realitysux  

Posted: July 20th, 2013 2:00 AM

@COUGHLIN-please elaborate on exactly what tax breaks are given to companies that move operations overseas? If you are going to make a claim, I trust you can back up comment with specifics. However, reading your inane and rambling comments, I seriously doubt you can cite a single tax law that does what you claim.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 6:29 PM

@Ray Simpson. I trust you heard President Obama say that he respected the rule of law. Which answers your claim against "the guy sworn to uphold the constitution and laws of our land". And he is not just some "guy", Ray. Like it or not, President Obama has been elected twice by a majority of the American people. "What the hell is a humanist?", you asked. For myself it means respect for the dignity and value of every living person. Enjoy your weekend, one and all. I'm vapor!

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 6:15 PM

@OP Transplant - Today President Obama spoke much more elequently on the subject. He related on a personal level the realities of the black experience in this country. I regret that you viewed my comments as an attempt to lecture. This forum is designed to promote a civil discourse and I was merely sharing my views and opinions on a subject that is dominating the national attention.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 5:29 PM

@ Jim - I am sorry but I heard those words from the president. You might be able to parse them to have a more favorable intent. I know what I heard and he flat out said that had Zimmerman been black and Martin white the verdict would have been different. What the hell is a humanist?

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 5:29 PM

Jim - When you hear a white guy lecturing a black guy on the realities of life for young, African-American men, you know you're in Oak Park!

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 5:11 PM

Don't try to tag me as liberal. I identify as a humanist. Your facts are wrong about Reaganomics. His deregulation of the savings and loan industry cost taxpayers hundreds of millions. Reagan promoted tax breaks that rewarding moving jobs overseas. He demonized the poor while offering huge tax breaks to multi-national corporations. Reagan's policies produced bankruptcies across the airline industry and a stranglehold of power in communications. He doubled the Social Security tax on middle class wage earners and reduced the tax rate for the wealthiest Americans. I also belive that more information needs to be revealed about Reagan's involvement with organized crime figures during his tenure as head of the screen actors guild.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 4:23 PM

Ray, you are distorting the real message and cherry picking his words to attack President Obama. He spoke of the need to examine stand your ground laws and asked if we really would have wanted Trayvon Martin to have been legally allowed to engage in a shootout with George Zimmerman. That's a great topic for discussion but cannot proceed if there is a deliberate attempt to deceive.

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 4:22 PM

Jim, sorry, but you don't get to play the "Reagan" card either. African American wealth & employment outpaced other ethnic groups from '81-88, a time of unparalleled prosperity & growth. Another myth of the left is that Reagan "cut" programs. Wrong. Reductions in rates of growth aren't now, nor ever have been a "cut". You also show that very liberal trait of condescension toward minorities (intended or not). You know better, so folks like "Sense' should only follow your advice. Wrong.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 4:15 PM

@Uncommon Sense. To be fair, when you cite racist comments reportedly uttered by Trayvon Martin; please mention the same type of insensistive utterances made by George Zimmerman. I still am having troubling grasping why you are so focused on painting such a negative image of the young teen while continuing to give the shooter a free pass. You've identified yourself as a black man but have yet to offer anything in regards to understanding what the realities of life are for many young black children, especially boys.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 4:04 PM

"Less government help and programs" is a solution you support. Okay. Which specific programs and support are you demanding be reduced? Self help and personal responsibilty is what are you calling for to address inner city crime. How would that work? Are there enough good paying jobs in those neighborhoods that will provide real results? Why embrace a conservative philosophy that targets the most vulnerable members of our society. Corporate welfare and obscene spending on defense contracts contribute more to our economic troubles than the meager assistance provided to the poor, seniors, disabled people, our veterans and children. You cite 50 years of real world data. Does that include Reagan's "trickle down" debacle?

Done from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 3:20 PM

Uncommon Sense has just boiled the whole situation down in one 500 word-or-less comment to exactly what defines the situation that has taken educators and policy-makers years to research, explain and screw up. I have yet to hear it put any better or more honestly.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 2:42 PM

I just heard the president of all of the people of the United States and the guy sworn to uphold the constitution and laws of our country state that had Zimmerman been black and Martin been white the jury would have found differently. That is such blatant racism that I was shocked to hear Obama state it outright. He went on to say that the young men in the black community have been ignored by our society. I always thought keeping your kids on the straight and narrow was mom and dad's job.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 2:19 PM

Jim, OP#545 is right. I say that as a black guy. Much of the conservative philosophy is around self-help & personal responsibility. The solution is often times LESS govt help and programs. What is ironic is that this is what was preached up until about the late 60s in the black community when self help was replaced with government help. We have 50 years of real world data to see the destruction of that philosophical change. Time for something new imho.

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 2:04 PM

Also, Jim...have you noticed that in cities, like Chicago & bankrupt Detroit and others, where those "neighborhoods neglected for decades, understaffed police....etc" there is one common denominator? Yes, that's right. They are now, and have for decades, been the exclusive kingdom of the Democrat Party. Again, it's not blame. It's cause & effect. You can't solve it until you admit the real problem.

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 1:58 PM

Jim, I'm not quick to blame those policies. I've been doing it for years as a result of much personal involvement, research & observation of facts. It's not blame. We need to know the causes before we can solve the problem. Conservative proposals are too numerous to mention, but most are based in the love of all our fellow man & individual liberty. Liberals are too entrenched in the institutions of govt & education, & have vested interest in keeping people in poverty. That's fact. Own it.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 1:34 PM

jim, just trying to make sense of the point you are trying to make. I highly doubt Florida allows 17 years olds to conceal carry legally. I'm assuming you are coming up wih some wild scenario where GZ really is a "creepy azz cracka" and Trayvon shoots GZ in self defense for "stalking" him.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 1:31 PM

Jim - I don't know the answer to your question about Florida gun law I'm not sure that a newspaper comment section in Illinois is the best place to find that answer. Regardless of whether the law prevented or allowed TM to carry a gun, he didn't have one at the time of his death. I'm not sure what your point is.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 12:56 PM

OP Transplant, I am not seeking to retry the case via this forum. The discussion from both sides regarding the jury verdict have been for the most part interesting and informative. I take it from your non answer that you also don't know if Florida law would have allowed Trayvon Martin to have been armed and carrying a concealed weapon.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 12:51 PM

Uncommon Sense, I guess from your non answer that you have no knowledge of Florida law regarding gun ownership or possession by a minor. You seem to take some weird pleasure in continuing to disparage the victim in this tragic case. Hard to understand your motivations and thought process.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 12:48 PM

Jim - I'm assuming that the jury members, who heard all of the evidence presented by both sides, know more about this case than either you or I do. They acquitted GZ. If the evidence they heard had matched the version of events you seem to have in your head, GZ would have been convicted. You might have to accept that you're just wrong about this one. The evidence supported the claim of self defense.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 12:40 PM

OP Resident #545, you seem quick to blame "liberal social policy" for the alarming figures you posted relating to the murders of African-American. I can't recall any ideas proposed by conservatives to address the problem. Fingerpointing isn't a solution. We already incarcerate a large percentage of black men and the for-profit prison industry reports record profits. So, what's the solution? Build more jail cells? Call in the National Guard? Cut aid to dependent families? I see city neighborhoods that have been neglected for decades, understaffed police districts and deteriorating school buildings as key contributing factors as well as the overall lack of employment opportunities. if you got an analysis to share, please do. And let's hear how you would think we should address the problems.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 12:30 PM

jim, when you have dug yourself in a hole, the easiest way to get out is to stop digging. Considering Mr. Skittles had a picture of himself holding a firearm already on his cell phone and text messages asking where he could procure one (not legally from a gun store mind you), I don't think he would have gone for legal concealed carry permit in your scenario.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 12:20 PM

Would 17 year old Trayvon Martin have been permitted under Florida law to carry a concealed weapon? If too young to own one himself; could the father had provided his son with a licensed gun to use for protection prior to going to the convenience store? Several folks on this forum are presenting themselves to be fully versed on the facts of this case and I hope they are able to answer my questions.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 10:01 AM

Zimmerman may be guilty of being a pathetic, doofus, wannabe cop, but that isn't actually illegal. The prosecution went forward with no evidence to counter his claim of self defense, and he was acquitted, as he should have been. But, since the evidence doesn't match the narrative manufactured by the media, the verdict doesn't "look" right to the partially informed. So GZ will be hounded in the name of Democratic votes. The tragedy of a premature death is compounded by politics.

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 9:59 AM

The sad reality is the fact that in the 513 days between Trayvon Martin dying and the GZ verdict a whopping 11,106 African Americans have been murdered by other African Americans. This is a crisis that involves all of us, & is where our attention needs to be focused. The media & the Sharpton/Jackson race hustlers avoid this inconvenient truth because they don't want light shed on the truth. The truth of the failure of liberal social policy & it's destruction of the black family.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 9:46 AM

@TWIB - As I read your comment - you sound like you find zero responsibility in TM's actions. The judge in this case refused to allow the true Travon to be exposed to scrutiny - he was no angel. It is sad that he died and it is sad that George Zimmerman will live with that forever. It is unconscionable that the full force of our government is going to "Get" Zimmerman. He stood and presented his side of the story in court and a jury believed him. That should end it, but our president and AG have decided he has to pay for legally defending himself. It is sad that our government is going to spend money, we don't have, extracting vengeance against a poor mope whose life is already ruined. You guys live to anguish over "Fairness" - where is the fairness for George Zimmerman?

That Which Is Best  

Posted: July 19th, 2013 8:49 AM

George Zimmerman bought a gun and loaded it. George Zimmerman shot and killed Trayvon Martin. George Zimmerman told a story about why he shot and killed Trayvon Martin. The defense demonstrated that Zimmerman's story might be true. The prosecution failed to disprove Zimmerman's story beyond a reasonable doubt. George Zimmerman committed homicide as he was allowed to do under Florida law. Trainor's sorrow and anger is appropriate.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 5:50 PM

@ Magpie - this is Oak Parks own 'bug house square' and we do have our corners reserved. Few of you are old enough to remember that bastion of free wheeling opinion on the near north side.

Magpie  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 3:29 PM

@ Jim Coughlin/@Ray Simpson - Laugh out loud funny! All that's missing is a wisecrack from Butch Murtaugh to complete the WJ trifecta. Tip of the hat, gentlemen.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 3:17 PM

Funny!

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 3:12 PM

@ JC is that the Colt property?

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 2:48 PM

I"ll be down at the end of Lonely Street on the 12th of Never.

realitysux  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 2:20 PM

@COUGHLIN- can i puch you in the face, give you a black eye and break your nose and see if you really think those are insignificant, minor "scratches" Let me know where and when! .................http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/05/15/11722144-physician-zimmerman-had-broken-nose-black-eye?lite

realitysux  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 2:12 PM

It is clear people like COUGHLIN just repeat what they hear without bothering to do their own research since it was clear GZ had more than just a few minor scratches. The following day the back of his head had 2 large bandages on it while he was going thru the reenactment for the police, who happened to have found him to be credible and why the Sanford police did not originally charge him. Also, mayor Daley's nephew was charged when he hit a bar patron who died when his head hit the sidewalk.

Jim from Oak Park  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 1:31 PM

There's an Irish folk ballad titled "Finngans Wake." In it, a laborer gets tipsy, falls from a ladder, breaks his head and dies. At his wake, whiskey spills on him, and he rises from the dead. The novelist James Joyce turned this idea into the most complex novel in English literature. Me thinks Ken Trainor did the same here?"at a distance of some 1,200 miles from the event, and, presumably, by interpreting media reports. (P.S. Thanks to the Clancy Bros. for the song-to-book analogy.)

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 12:22 PM

JC, all of those points were addressed in the trial. Watch it from start to finish, particularly the defense experts. GZ injuries were quite extensive. There was a case a few months ago where a 17 year old killed and adult at a soccer match with ONE PUNCH. Self defense laws don't even require you to be injured. The threat of injury is enough. http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-204_162-57583107/soccer-referees-death-shows-how-dangerous-head-blows-can-be/

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 11:50 AM

@ JC - if every little detail was entirely wrong and everyone in court lied - what difference does it make? The case was decided by the system that has served us pretty well for the last couple hundred years. Crying over spilled milk is a waste of time! Giving credence to the race baiters is a disservice to your community. The case is settled and the AG is just giving lip service to Sharpton and his cabal of thugs by suggesting a civil rights case..

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 11:18 AM

Hard to understand and explain how George Zimmerman's claim that he was beaten repeatedly by Trayvon without any his blood or dna being found on Martin's hands. Same questions about "bashing his head into the sidewalk". Where's the evidence? A couple of very small abrasions but no skull fractures or report of concussion-like symptoms. Scrape a knee or elbow on the sidewalk and you'll wind up at least with a heckuva of an abrasion. You seem to accept Zimmerman's version of events without question. I think there are too many inconsistencies and false statements offered by Zimmerman to reach many of the conclusions you are comfortable promoting as factual.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 9:11 AM

Jim, GZ was a concerned homeowner reporting suspicious activity to the police. Trayvon was not killed because he was black. He was killed because he broke a man's nose and bashed his head into the sidewalk. Think about what would have happened had GZ not killed Trayvon. TM would probably be in jail for felony assault and everyone would be crying about how sad it is people can't even keep watch over their neighborhoods safely.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 8:27 AM

@ Ken - your court of public opinion seems less than what you stated - - http://www.gallup.com/poll/153776/blacks-nonblacks-hold-sharply-different-views-martin-case.aspx

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 8:12 AM

@ Twinsonic - A first step could be to get the village to stand strong against anyone who commits armed violence in Oak Park. If we could find a few retired lawyers who would help by spending a couple hours a month, in court, pressing a community demand for punitive action, no plea bargains, and no reduced bail against bad people. If the courts ignore our demands the lawyers involved, judges and states attorneys might all get their pictures in the Wednesday Journal and a short piece about letting bad people back on the street. At election time I am sure that a box score of jurists we would love to dump would strike fear in the hearts of many judges and elected officers of the court. Just think about the Rollaide moment when a judge enters his/her courtroom to expedite several thugs cases and see a legal representative of each community protecting our safety. I would love to be there to see that.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 18th, 2013 6:23 AM

Ken wound up his piece with " In the court of public opinion" But failed to footnote that that Jury is composed of 'dream defenders', SEIU, ACLU, 'Occupy' and a raft of ultra left race baiters. I would bet that those six ladies in Florida got it closer to correct.

Twinsonic  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 8:33 PM

Mr. Simpson you are a man after my heart. Anita Alveraz the Cook County state's attorney and other prosecutors have dropped charges on ALL wilding suspects that was arrested for assault, battery, and robbery - on the lakefront a few weeks ago. Meanwhile, criminals do not get jail time or punishment. This parallels the decline and bankruptcy of Detroit - crime going out of control.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 7:47 PM

Wouldn't we all be served by understanding that the legal system tried to convict Zimmerman and failed to make their case. Legally, it's over and done with. Why don't we all try directing some of this rage toward the carnage just east of us - or are those lives less valuable than TM?

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 5:56 PM

That still doesn't answer the question. You called Trayvon Martin "a thug in training". What's your tag for George Zimmerman?

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 5:42 PM

Jim, the prosecution successfully kept those facts out of the case (hence the whistle blower lawsuit by the state's attorney IT manager). They intentionally hid the cell phone data from the defense which showed texts of Trayvon bragging about all the fights he had been in where he made people bleed. Trayvon taking a swing at a bus driver. Trayvon's brother asking when Tray was going to teach him to fight. Even Rachel Jeantel alluded to Trayvon fighing a lot.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 5:36 PM

This case is a what happens when two idiots cross paths. One guy was scared wussy who just couldn't announce he was with neighborhood watch and the other was a hot headed juvenile delinquent. However, GZ did not deserve have his face knocked in for simply looking out for his community.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 5:34 PM

There has been mention of the trouble past of Trayvon Martin. Yet there is no indication that any of these incidents were violent in nature. The same came not be said about George Zimmerman who was formally charged with resisting arrest and battery of a police officer. In additon, his ex-fiancee cited domestic abuse when she obtained a restraining order. It's also been claimed that Trayvon Martin was abusing cough syrup but it was George Zimmerman who agree to enter an alcohol education program as part of his plea agreement relating to the two felony charges brought against him. If Trayvon Martin was indeed "a thug in training" as he was called in an earlier posting; how should we refer to George Zimmerman?

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 5:30 PM

Leslie, you could at least pretend to have actually reviewed the facts of the case. GZ didn't disobey anyone. Even the 911 operator admitted this during the trial. GZ was looking for an address and was assaulted on his way back to the car. The timeline, map, and other facts of case all bear this out.

The definition of a vigilante from an ironic point of view:  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 5:07 PM

From Wiki: 'Vigilante justice is rationalized by the idea that adequate legal mechanisms for criminal punishment are either nonexistent or insufficient. Vigilantes typically see government as ineffective in enforcing the law; and such individuals often presume to justify their actions as fulfillment of the wishes of "the community". Persons alleged to be "escaping the law" or "above the law" are sometimes the victims of vigilantism.' ---.i.e. the guy claiming he knows what the "real verdict" is.

Leslie Roberts from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 3:45 PM

Did GZ check TM's school records before he started following TM? He was playing cop because he wanted to be one. It does not matter who TM was, GZ disobeyed the 911 person and was perfectly safe in his car, so why did he get out? It is so obvious from his language calling a person or persons "a...." that his attitude, his mood, his thoughts, led to aggressive actions were very clear. Actions follow thoughts and we know what GZ was thinking.TM had every right to defend himself too

Doth Protest Too Much  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 2:05 PM

Wow. Does everyone feel better? All of the aggrieved victims of being called racist can swoon that justice prevailed. These commenters are so sure that racism wasn't (and isn't) an issue in this case that they have to drop 45 comments to say so. We get it. You aren't racist to avoid Austin. I bet you all are disappointed that the reaction in the black community was indifference. Maybe they weren't watching cable news or blogs (or Trainor's excreble column). Show trial? You bet. For the Fox crowd

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:55 PM

I just listened to an interview on HuffPo with Rachel Jeantel. Even SHE believes that Trayvon was the first to get physical! And she even mentioned that it was a Black area (where TM was killed) and implied that GZ didn't belong there, which may have been part of the impetus for Trayvon to start the fight. It doesn't absolve GZ of everything obviously. He never identified himself as a community watchperson and that was totally inappropriate and led TM to have anxiety about his intentions.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:50 PM

I wonder if Zim could turn the tables and sue the Martins for his injuries caused by Trayvon. Negligence case?There is plenty of evidence to show they knew Trayvon was acting out. His multiple suspensions, being kicked out the house (whole reason he was in Sanford to begin with), his social media trail paints a very clear picture of who Trayvon really was as a person. Not to mention Miami Dade schools for hiding his behaviorial problems to juke the stats...

Bill  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:49 PM

(Cont) profiling, but I think it is fear. Second why do we ignore black on white crime? Last year we had a hate crime charge in Oak Park related to this same national case. WJ reported the initial charge and never followed up with the case as it went thought the courts. I think the village could have benefited from a frank conversation on this incident. I'm ready to admit racism exists in the U. S., but does every confrontation between people of different races have to be defined as racial?

rj  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:40 PM

TM first became a victim of Miami-Dade school Police Chief treating outright crimes as disciplinary problems. TM should have been arrested & charged after being found w/burglary tools & 13 pieces of jewelry stolen from a house a half mi from his school. Instead he was suspended! The police chief attempted to reduce crime stats & falsify reports instead of doing the right thing & try to save TM from himself. Enforce existing laws so we don't need neighborhood watch. It's not that complicated.

Bill from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:37 PM

Ken's views present the racial perspective and experience of his generation. I don't know that he and other boomers are able to see this tragedy as anything other then a Jim Crow incident with associated lectures on the state of racist America etc. etc. I think this hardens hearts, while leaving us afraid to talk about two issues that exist in our nation today, even in Oak Park. First is why do we fear young African American men who look and act a certain way. You might call it (cont)

Real List  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:35 PM

@Whew-I never said great life, I said "successful" life, which can mean a lot of things. Education is key. Math is math no matter where you live. Inner city teachers don't tell their students to NOT study. Education is the escape, but apparently is not valued by the folks who really need it. But make no mistake...that is their choice, yet the rest of society is held hostage by that fatal decision. I say it is THEIR heads in the proverbial sand, not mine. The solution resides in their mirrors.

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:28 PM

Cont. our best interests at heart and EXPLOIT various issues to get us distracted from this. Politicians are basically worthless--that is the first thing we need to admit to ourselves. So trying to work within a system that is not designed to really do much of anything is wasted energy.

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:25 PM

Cont. of believing that meme. The worst thing a person can tell another person is that they are a victim of circumstance. That does NOTHING to alter the situation. All it does is create the belief that one must wait until the outside world conforms to what one needs to have or experience. If like-minded people banded together and pooled resources, skills and shared housing, grew produce, taught children ourselves and went off the grids, we could stop being depedent on those who don't have...

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:21 PM

Cont. their homes, etc. He could have easily ended up dying in the same way, only with the gunman being his race and his age. And the sad thing is that NO ONE would organize a march, let alone a vigil if that scenario had taken place! Why is that? Why is a rare event so troubling to the Black community and a common event not more so? I categorically refute your claim that a great life is not available to all Americans! We create our realities! I am beginning to learn this after years...

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:18 PM

The bottom line is that we are NOT our melanin content, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation...So it's silly and ignorant to get hung up over these things. Trayvon was found with 12 pieces of jewelry and burglary tools. So it is not beyond the pale that he MIGHT have been casing houses. In any case, he was young, it's a shame he died, but I am not going to create a warm and fuzzy narrative that did not exist. He was on the wrong path. Neither of his parents would allow him to live in..

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:15 PM

Cont. not aware of any overt racism. However, upon reflection I wonder if I was not accepted as part of the crowd in certain instances because of my difference in appearance from the dominant culture. And at age 19 I was called an ethnic slur in OP: the first and last time. And then I understood that there is overt racism and the fact that it can fester underneath the PC surface. However, I do not identify with being a Hispanic, either! I didn't grow up amongst many people of that ilk...

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:12 PM

@Whew: First of all, in regards to the White/Black Hispanic deal, let me explain it to you. See, I am one (my earth shell, I should say) so I feel I have the right to comment on it. As with a biracial person, it is about both appearance and socialization. If you look other than lily-white, then you are not going to be regarded (and sometimes treated) as White, and therefore may experience Otherization. This was me. But since I was raised in Kumbaya-ville, otherwise known as OP, I was...

Whew  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:04 PM

Don't know where to start. First, Real, it is not true that a great life is available to all Americans and how nice of you to keep your head in the sand. There were current pics of Trayvon by the way and I just don't think a character assassination of him is fair. We don't know he was looking in homes at all. That's "Georgie's" story. I will let the Hispanics explain the white Hispanic/black Hispanic difference to you all. It's definitely there and I am surprised no one has brought it up.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 12:55 PM

Thank god for alternative media or the public at large would have bought the propaganda of this case. You have the media editing the 911 call to make Zim look racist. Lying about his ethnicity. Editing tapes/photos so Zims injuries don't look as bad. Won't show current pictures of Trayvon. Then you have prosecution intentionally hiding pertinent facts about Trayvon's thuggish tendencies. Prosecutions own witness is suing as a whistleblower!

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 12:27 PM

Ken Trainor makes his living getting opinionated people expressing their opinions. He views the world through his rose colored liberal progressive glasses and every event either proves his ideology or is George Bush's fault. Sorry Ken - I couldn't resist that little dig.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 12:10 PM

Mr. Trainor would have us believe that this case reflects problems with gun control laws. I would point out that, in national terms, we really don't have a major problem with Anglo-Peruvian vigilantes shooting young African-American men with legally carried handguns. Far more young AA men are killed by other young AA men with illegal handguns, a situation unlikely to be changed by any legislation, as it is already illegal.

OP Transplant  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 11:53 AM

Strange day...I agree with Violet Aura! The state prosecuted this high-profile case knowing they didn't have nearly enough evidence to convict. They knew Zimmerman would claim self defense, and had no compelling evidence to dispute his claim. Textbook reasonable doubt. So why not begin the trial with a lesser charge but an increased chance of a conviction? Are they really just that inept?

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 11:31 AM

I will say one thing, though: I believe the prosecution threw this thing. I don't think they really tried to get GZ any jail time whatsoever. I knew it when they put Rachel Jeantel on the stand without enough preparation. They should have known that she could not read (not just cursive; she can't READ!) and had adjustments in advance so that the defense couldn't exploit that as a dog whistle (See? "They" are all stupid!).

joe from south oak park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 11:26 AM

I agree with you here violet. folks are not going to turn off something that is hardwired into their brain. I doubt that Travoneesha would have struck first and asked questions later to the person following. I know that if I felt that someone was following me, regardless of race or gender and i felt threatened, I'd tell the person to stop. If they didn't I'd scream for help/police/fire rather than punch the person in the face. Better being embarrassed if I am wrong than assaulting someone.

Dude  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 11:18 AM

cont. youth that come over from Austin and rob and assault Oak Parks, often in groups. The people who are saying that you should not "profile" are then of the belief that if you don't walk along Austin Blvd then you are racist, because you are profiling the people that are along there. So I tell people who want to make this point, go to Austin Blvd every night and take a stroll by yourself. What? You're scared? Well, you must be a hypocrite and a racist.

Real List  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 11:16 AM

I just wish the NAACP and the Reverends Du Jour would actually focus on the real issues in their community and in their control instead of further promoting the "grievance industrial complex" they built to enrich themselves. There is no conspiracy. This verdict, either way, changed nothing about your daily life. Society has made you a victim only if you chose it to do so. The basic building blocks of a successful life are still attainable by all. The question is...do you care?

Dude  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 11:13 AM

I've said it before, I'll say it again; if you want to stay safe, and be able to anticipate crime, you HAVE to "profile". This does not mean "racial profiling", but getting a sense of how someone is acting, the small gestures etc... If you are of the mind set that you give everyone the benefit of doubt, then walk along Austin Blvd every night, alone, at midnight, and see how long it goes until you're a victim of a robbery. We all know that robberies happen often there, by black men and cont...

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:58 AM

Cont. kicked out of his mom's house! And now I hear that his dad lived in Miami Gardens, too, and not with his girlfriend so why didn't Tray live with his dad? The distance from his parents' residences and Sanford is 200 miles. So there were a series of events in both people's lives that led them to that night.

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:56 AM

Cont. that Trayvon had swung at a bus driver (referenced by a friend in a text to him). Why did he do that? A bus driver may act rude but that is not illegal! You cannot act out physically when you feel insulted. This case was a bit more complicated because of the fear factor of being in the dark with someone following you--I get that. But it shows that Trayvon was most likely a powder keg. After all, the only reason he was at this apt. complex of his dad's girlfriend was due to being...Cont.

Truth from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:55 AM

Everyone is entitled their own opinion but this article is very poorly written. The author uses inaccurate charges to support his position..Stalking..No..Stalking requires two prior contacts between parties..Entrapment...No...Only representatives of the State can Entrap someone..."Stand your ground"...No...The Martin/Zimmerman trial was not charged or defended as a "Stand your ground" case...I'm not commenting on the specifics of the trial but WDJ please use facts in your "Opinions" column.

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:53 AM

Cont. Finally my neighbor went on his front porch and said to them: "What's going on?" I don't know what they said to him but he replied: "Good." And then they drove off. What if they had been Black and said: "Why are you profiling me? Just because I am Black and sitting in my car in front of your house, you need to question me?" And what if they were close enough where the stranger could get physical due to feeling dissed? I think this might have happened with Trayvon. We already know..

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:50 AM

Cont. then to claim he was just buying it for his brother is not true! We don't have to make TM a saint in order to show where Zimmy went wrong. I actually agreed with this essay until you said that George began it by causing a confrontation. Actually we don't know what sort of confrontation occurred. I live in RF. I heard noises late one night and peeked out the window. There was a car idling in front of my neighbor's house next door. I kept looking to see why they were just sitting there...

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:47 AM

The thing I detest is that the whole case was framed by the media in dishonest terms. Let the facts speak for themselves. No need to show pics of Trayvon sans grillz when he was younger and more innocent looking alongside an old pic of a glaring chubby George. Very dangerous for race relations! And then NBC editing that tape to make it look like GZ was deliberately focusing on race? Unacceptable and almost seeming to be done by design to CREATE a race war! If TM was using the candy and drink...

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:45 AM

The "wrong decision" was made by George Zimmerman when he left his vehicle instead of waiting for the police officers he had been told were in route. They had the training and experience to assess the situation and would have investigated the report of a suspicious person in the neighborhood. Had he waited for them to arrive instead of going off on his own to look for Trayvon Martin; this tragedy would never had happened.

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:44 AM

OP Resident Also: You are right--Zimmy should have been charged initially. There is also a crazy case of a Black women sitting in jail for 20 years for firing a warning shot (not AT her husband) in a domestic violence situation just to scare him! I think Floriduh is most likely racist as hell. But the problem is that the Skittles and watermelon juice is used to make "purple drank" and it was documented in texts from Trayvon that he was interested in obtaining one of the ingredients for it...

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:40 AM

Cont. and ignored piece of all this. Now we're having yet another march about a done deal. Spinning wheels instead of looking squarely at the problem. There are not enough government programs and other outside influences that will actually solve this problem. It is not simply due to one thing. The family is fractured and when the foundation is fractured, everything built upon it is shaky at best. If the family is intact, even dire circumstances can be overcome with more ease.

OP Resident Also  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:39 AM

We ONLY have GZ's word on any of this. When you talk about what happened, you are relaying his side of it. The issue is that GZ wasn't treated like a criminal after shooting a 17-year-old. He wasn't handcuffed & his story was solid. That's wrong. As far as the skittles and tea, many kids buy that but not all of them use it for drugs and again, why are you ASSUMING that? When the Fenwick kids go to 7-11, no problem. When a group of black kids go,watch them! There's plenty of racism everywhere.

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:37 AM

Cont. a vulnerable position, I must make snap judgments based on totally superficial observations. If Trayvon Martin had been Trayvoneesha Martin, would George Zee have shot HER? I think we know that it was not about race but about the overrepresentation of violent crime by a particular demographic that just happened to include people that look like TM. The irony is that Trayvon was in a much, much, much greater danger dodging bullets from other males who had his skin color. That is the sad...

Violet Aura  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 10:33 AM

Using a stranger's appearance to make decisions on personal safety is hard-wired into the human animal as a tool of survival. It is sheer nonsense to even debate this point. When I am walking at night down a side street and I keep turning my back to see if I am being followed, if a MAN of any race is behind me, I may very well cross the street and turn the corner. I know that 95% of all sexual assaults are committed by the male species. Doesn't mean I hate or even fear men. If I am in...

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 9:36 AM

Trayvon was a thug in training. Did he deserve to die? No and the loss of life is tragic, but he made the wrong decision that night to assault GZ. To act like he was some angelic 12 year old skipping to the store for candy is just silly. The left wing media bias/propaganda in this case is just scary. Yes, there is a racism, but this is in no way the case we need to hang our hats on given the FACTS.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 9:23 AM

Racism is like a double edge sword. If I deny you something or injure you because of the color of your skin I would be a racist. If you claim I am a racist without example or proof, you are using racism claims as a weapon and that makes you the racist.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 9:12 AM

It is absolutely amazing that the race baiters/lefties were screaming for a trial and then when the verdict is not guilty, they now want a to scream some more. Face it, you never wanted a "justice" if the only acceptable outcome is a guilty verdict. That isn't justice, that is a lynch mob.

Newop  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 8:58 AM

You do realize that Stand Your Ground was never invoked as a defense, right? Your personal opinions are no excuse for ignorance.

Luke ScottWalker from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 8:34 AM

"The left fails American blacks (14.8 percent unemployment), lies to them (immigration reform will be good for them), then exploits them after a tragedy like the Trayvon Martin death (incessant media drumbeat by Al Sharpton types). It's a clever but sinister way to keep people who are already hurting in a vulnerable position." - Laura Ingraham I couldn't have expressed the truth better. Indeed, Ken...fight the real enemy. Well said, OP Res # 545 and Ray...

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 8:15 AM

Ken, this piece is wrong on virtually every point. The fact is, this was a show trial designed to take everyone's eyes off the real problem of black on black crime, and the utter failure of liberal social policy. Fight the real enemy, and for goodness sake, think. Don't emote.

Speedway from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 8:09 AM

My opinion is that both GZ and TM were wrong and both were culpable. If either man had backed down, no one would have died. GZ is getting what he deserves. His life is ruined. To continue taking sides is to perpetuate the same problems that started this horrific incident.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 7:46 AM

If New Black Panther Party leader Shabazz pays the bounty he has put on George Zimmermans head will you guys express any outrage? The local prosecutor and chief of police both lost their positions because they viewed the case the same way the jury did - Doesn't that trouble you? The special prosecutor overcharged the case and the judge had her thumb on the scales of justice to favor the state - no problem there? Why would George Zimmerman call 911 if he intended to harm TM - that is an invitation to have the police there instantly? BTW Jim C are you going to kick in a couple bucks to help NBC settle the suit over doctoring the 911 call you just quoted as gospel ? The FBI concluded that there was absolutely no racial issue and that no ones civil rights were abused - no issue there ?

Twinsonic  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 7:17 AM

Dan - the great blogger Iowahawk describes people like Trainor and his ilk: "Of all black shooting victims, in this country, you name one. Because you've have trained like a circus seal to bark on command........." How true.....

Dan Hefner from Oak Park  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 6:59 AM

The Tribune reported that since January 1, 2013 over 1000 people have been shot in Chicago. The vast majority of the victims and the criminals, are black. Why no outrage? Where are Rev. Al and Rev Jesse, where is Eric Holder and Pres. O? It leads one to believe that unless a non black in involved the assault, than it is not worthy their attention. Personally, I follow, Dr. MLK's teaching and look beyond the color of one's skin. We are all members of one race, The Human Race! Peace

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 2:22 AM

Twinsonic, I'm sure you listened to the infamous 911 call and heard Zimmerman's own words in describing Trayvon Martin to the dispatcher. No doubt he profiled the black teen as a possible criminal and clearly expressed his anger and frustrations with a stream of expletives. If Zimmerman stayed in his car, there would never have been a confrontation that evening and Trayvon makes it home safely. But Zimmerman made up his mind that this time would different and took it upon himself to go looking for someone that he was so certain was up to no good.He was wrong. Dead wrong!The stories about Zimmerman that you chose to relate ignore the troubled side of this man and his own record of violent and bad behavior. To me what speak volumes is his lack of moral fiber and cowardly explanation that what happened that rainy night was "God's plan" and he, himself, has "No regrets".

Rez  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 2:20 AM

Ken, you write "In the court of public opinion, however, a very different verdict has been reached." Because public perception is always right, right? You know, back when people believed in witches, villages use to burn women alive just cause everyone had the perception that they the woman was evil, and there fore must be a witch. It's funny how mob mentality works, it's like an infectious illness. Care to write about the flash mob attacks on single whites by large groups of blacks? Thought not.

Rez  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 2:14 AM

Then once you've been beaten to a pulp, and you have somehow managed to recover enough to overcome your attacker's assault, you can now restraint your attacker, or multiple attackers, in a gentlemanly fashion, and hold them there until the police come to rescue you. Sounds realistic and reasonable, right? Because you really need to be assaulted, because you can defend yourself against an assault... cause that just makes a ton of sense.

Rez  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 2:10 AM

So what are our choices from defending ourselves from anyone? Basically you have to wait for your attack to hit you, for some bystander to see them hit you, and to have in their minds without a doubt that you got hit first. Then you may defend yourself, but you can't use deadly force, even if you think your life is in danger, so you must gain some perspective while being sucker punched and pummeled, then decide on the correct level of force to apply, cont...

Rez  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 2:06 AM

The common conversation is that the law is constantly stacked against the minority, because he will always be profiled, by police, by the courts, by whites? But the conversation that no one talks about is that the law is also stacked against whites, because if a white is attacked by a black, or a group of blacks, they better be severely injured in the attack if they plan to fight back, because if they come out without a scratch, they will be judged a racist attacker.

Rez  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 2:01 AM

cont. because we do not know Martin's behavior other than the way GZ describes it, but that doesn't stop people from jumping to conclusions that it was because Martin was black and wearing a hoodie. GZ was judged guilty by much of the public because he even took the stand, why? Because America, and black America are constantly waiting for some "white" or "semi-white" person to kill a black person just so Americans can bring up how racist white society is.

Rez  

Posted: July 17th, 2013 1:56 AM

GZ is an easy target because he killed a black teen, and he isn't black. Would this story be as big as it is if it were at black man killing a black teen (which happens on a weekly or bi weekly basis in Chicago)? Or if it were a black man killing a white teen? No, it wouldn't. We can argue about whether GZ's actions were justified or not, but the fact is, people are using this situation to drive their own race filled ideological agenda. Was GZ profiling? That's impossible to know cont...

Twinsonic  

Posted: July 16th, 2013 11:29 PM

Racial Profiling? Seriously?!?!?! George Zimmerman tutored black children, took out a black female to Prom, went after the Sanford Police Department for violating a homeless black man while ass-chewing the NAACP for action and not standing up with the homeless black man. To top this, the FBI found NO racial component on George Zimmerman. PERIOD. Here is the facts - lets see if you print this with a mea culpa. But you are not open minded at all. Very sad........

Twinsonic  

Posted: July 16th, 2013 11:15 PM

Here is a fact: Why did Trayvon Martin buy Skittles and Arizona Iced Tea at 7-11? He bought it to add and mix with Cough Syrup to make an intoxicating drink. Don't believe me? Trayvon posted on Facebook or Twitter looking for cough syrup to use........

joe from south oak park  

Posted: July 16th, 2013 11:15 PM

ken- cont. maybe you should look at the use of force statute. When zimmerman was on the ground screaming for help after being mounted by martin, did martin stop his battery? Did he stop when the neighbor Mr good came out and told him to stop? no, he didn't. regardless of who started what by following or anything else martin became the aggressor. the threat had stopped and because martin did not stop zimmerman was justified in using deadly force to stop the attack.

Twinsonic  

Posted: July 16th, 2013 11:11 PM

Can you tell me sir, that Trayvon Martin is innocent? He could have called the police that he was followed right? That Zimmerman have no right to protect himself while Martin was straddling Zimmerman MMA style and assaulting him. You could bring up Martin's very troubled past to be fair, but no, criticize the victim - you sir, are the problem, not the solution - why not get the facts out then write the article. But then, it doesn't fit the narrative - guns are the problem not the aggressor...

joe from south oak park  

Posted: July 16th, 2013 11:09 PM

Ken - the community police coordinator in Sanford testified that following at a distance is encouraged, and as far as entrapment you really must have lost your mind. following at a distance constituted asking for an attack? no evidence of racial profiling either. If any of us were to see a kid walking off the sidewalk looking into cars and into houses we would think the kid is up to no good.

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