I haven’t diaried on this affair previously in part because I feel it is one of those sideshow voyeurish quasi-meta things to discuss, and also cuz I thought the matter would have died down and been largely forgotten by now, late June and entering the campaign season.

Since the beginning, the ‘MSNBC fake left’ and the ‘Al Sharpton fake left’ have thoroughly embarrassed themselves even as the evidence against their narrative piled sky high, misleading their audiences and shielding them from the most important evidence, and thereby blithely alienating the hispanic and white working and middle classes, really making a point of it. Alienating, in other words, tens of millions of potential voters for either President Obama or the presidential candidates to the left of him. But I note MSNBC giving the anti-Zimmerman crusade a rest in recent days. This is what they usually do when exculpatory evidence comes out, but hopefully they’ve realized that it’s best to run away from the topic, far and fast, on a permanent basis. I think that would be smart, and, hey, no need for an apology to the fair-minded, we’ll consider it implied.

Anywho, in case you’re unaware here on MyFDL, the latest evidence release shows that the murder case against George Zimmerman is at this point and probably permanently dead. Talkleft’s excellent criminal defense attorney Jeralyn summarizes succinctly (cuz that’s all that’s needed) and very capably in ‘George Zimmerman Statements and Reenactment Released‘ (emphasis added):

the point the fear comes into play (#71)

is after he is attacked by Trayvon. He has to be in fear when he responds using deadly force.

His fear was eminently reasonable at the point in time it matters: after being attacked and unable to get up.

Don’t assume [interviewing detective] Serino’s questions are legally relevant. They are not. Why he thought Trayvon was suspicious, whether and if he followed Trayvon, why it took him whatever time it took to get back to his car, why he equated Trayvon with criminals make no legal difference. He had every legal right to get out of his car.

What I glean from all of it: Trayvon physically attacked Zimmerman without legal provocation. He had no legal right to do so.

Trayvon initiated both the verbal and physical encounter between them.

There is not one iota of evidence that would legally justify Trayvon’s physical attack on Zimmerman.

Zimmerman’s injuries are consistent with his version of the attack. Zimmerman cried out for help. The witnesses’ statements the night of the event support Zimmerman’s version of events.

Jeralyn on Thu Jun 21, 2012 at 02:05:58 PM EST

The reasonable fear question arises again later in the comments, and Jeralyn summarizes beautifully, after bmaz (emphasis added to her nuanced reference to the Stand Your Ground law):

Actually… (#158)
by bmaz on Thu Jun 21, 2012 at 06:56:37 PM EST

I think the self-defense claim involves both of those factors [fear of TM going for his gun, and fear of death by head-banging] and either one alone would be sufficient as making Zimmerman’s use of force “reasonable”

Bmaz is correct (#177)
by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 21, 2012 at 07:46:30 PM EST

He [Zimmerman] says just west of the “T”, Trayvon appeared out of the darkness and confronted him. When he reached for his phone, Trayvon punched him. As he struggled to get up, Trayvon started banging his head into the cement. His body was on the grass, his head on the cement. Zimmerman cried out for help. Trayvon put his hand over his mouth. He thought he was going to lose consciousness. As he was trying to move his head onto the grass, his jacket lifted and his gun was exposed. Trayvon reached for his gun and told him to shut F* up. He was slamming his head into the cement.

At that point, anyone in that situation would reasonably fear serious bodily or death. He was also unable to extricate himself. He was justified in using deadly force under traditional self defense principles even without Stand Your Ground. But Stand Your Ground also applies. He was in a place he lawfully had a right to be – a public area in his community. He was attacked. He did nothing to provoke a physical assault. His fear of imminent serious bodily injury or death only had to be reasonable, not actual. He had no duty to retreat, but even if he did have such a duty, since he was unable to extricate himself by any lesser means, he was justified in using lethal force, whether in fear Trayvon would get his gun and shoot him, or to stop him from beating him into unconsciousness.

On the Mason in Blue (MyFDL) focus on where the body of Trayvon Martin (may he RIP) ended up, please read without prejudice these comments under the same article. In sum, there was a dynamic and intense fight taking place, so imperfect memory on the ‘where’ question is expected.

In sum II, unless the prosecution has hidden earth-shaking evidence to the contrary, this case is an open-and-shut one, especially in reference to the second-degree murder charge. The common sense view should be, imho, that Zimmerman’s actions were wrongheaded, and certainly no one should want him on any police force, but they weren’t illegal. He might’ve been able to cool off the confrontation after Trayvon Martin asked him what he was doing around there, by identifying himself as a neighborhood watch volunteer and speaking very reassuringly to Martin, for example. But there was nothing illegal, of course, about not doing so. And then the fight started and it became a clear-cut case of self-defense.

Anyone for moving on to the economy, or the empire’s war on Syria, or how to win the ‘vote for a third party’ argument? That’s what I’m gonna do. Barring the thought of mea culpas, can we leftists just, as quietly as possible, walk away from this mess?

(If you continue to be fascinated by the Zimmerman case and just can’t get enough detail, I (obviously) highly recommend TalkLeft, at least as a way to balance out your intake of the mainstream ‘fake left’ media on this case.)