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#127 Jul 11 2013 at 1:37 AM Rating: Default
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gbaji wrote:
Almalieque wrote:
Gbaji,

If he had a crowbar, some spray paint and other tools, you and everyone on his defense would say "He was about to commit a crime. Why else would he have those tools?" Am I right?


Sure, but that has no relevance to the question of whether Zimmerman was justified to use his weapon in self defense. It also doesn't preclude the possibility that he was about to commit a crime. Assault is a crime, yet does not require a crowbar and other tools. Theft is a crime, yet does not necessarily require those tools either. Your statement is like one huge logical fallacy burrito.

The question is whether Zimmerman acted in self defense when he shot Martin. The only relevant questions therefore are whether he had a reasonable belief that he was in danger of grave injury or loss of life *and* (if he started the fight) whether he had the opportunity and ability to escape (after the fight started) but chose not to. According to the law, those are the only considerations to make. Everything else is really just window dressing, which may or may not influence a jury when they make those determinations.


You're assuming that I'm confusing the two together. I've said several times over now that no one knows if the shooting was justified. That wasn't my point. My point was that you have no evidence that Martin was about to commit a crime, yet you label him as someone about to commit a crime. Based on what? That's the dictionary definition of prejudice.

Technically, Martin could have been about to do *anything*, but unless there is some sort of proof, then you can't label him as someone about to commit a crime. If I'm not mistaken, Zimmerman was concerned that Martin might have been responsible for some of the recent crimes that had taken place. There's nothing wrong with Zimmerman thinking that, but there was no evidence on Martin to support that he was about to do those aforesaid crimes.

The point being that you can't say that Martin *was about* to commit a crime with no evidence. The opposite could just as easily argue that Martin *was about* to go donate his kidney to a dying friend in the hospital. Unless there is any proof to support any claim, you can not make any argument.

Edited, Jul 11th 2013 11:40am by Almalieque
#128 Jul 11 2013 at 1:40 AM Rating: Excellent
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We don't know who started the fight. We only know that immediately prior to firing his weapon, the position and conditions that Zimmerman was in meet the legal requirements for use of deadly force in self defense.

I think the problem we are having is that it seems like total ******** that it could be legal for a person who initiates a confrontation to kill somebody and claim self defense. If Zimmerman never left his car, I feel sure that nobody would be dead right now. It reminds me of the cases where somebody breaks into a house, trips down the stairs, and then successfully sues the homeowner. I'm not saying that following Martin was illegal, but the fact that he created the situation and now might be getting off.
#129 Jul 11 2013 at 1:45 AM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
Even if the order is: Bijou does everything wrong, Bijou attacks gbaji, gbaji fights back, gbaji knocks Bijou to the ground, jumps on him, pins him to the ground and beats him, Bijou can't escape and fears he's at risk of grave bodily injury, Bijou shoots gbaji, Bijou has not violated the law.
You are ok with that, right?

Even though I followed you with a loaded gun?

Intent on saving the peace of your condo?
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#130 Jul 11 2013 at 4:27 AM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
What choice do you make? I doubt very many people would say they'd just lay there and take the beatings, and I'd doubt the sincerity of anyone who did.
Irrelevant. What someone would do has no bearing on what they're legally allowed to do.
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#131 Jul 11 2013 at 5:24 AM Rating: Good
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Uglysasquatch wrote:
gbaji wrote:
What choice do you make? I doubt very many people would say they'd just lay there and take the beatings, and I'd doubt the sincerity of anyone who did.
Irrelevant. What someone would do has no bearing on what they're legally allowed to do.

I'd be scratching out some eyeballs.
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#132 Jul 11 2013 at 7:54 AM Rating: Good
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Smasharoo wrote:
Problems for Zimmerman:

Ignoring the police directions.
I guess in the sense that it's a problem for Zimmerman if the jury is idiotic enough to believe "we don't need you to do that" and "do you want to meet with the officer when they get out there?" to be lawful orders. If how often it's come up here is any indication, he's pretty fucked.
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#133 Jul 11 2013 at 8:00 AM Rating: Excellent
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Gbaji wrote:
But what if you were in his shoes? Ignore whether you believe you'd ever be carrying a concealed weapon, or get into an altercation with someone physically. Imagine that through some series of events, you find yourself on your back, with an assailant on top of you, beating your face in with no end in sight (ok, for 5 more minutes), and you have a pistol on your belt. You know it's loaded, and you are able to grab it and shoot your assailant if you chose to.


What choice do you make? I doubt very many people would say they'd just lay there and take the beatings, and I'd doubt the sincerity of anyone who did.


My imagination doesn't stretch that far, sorry. The person that I am would not be trolling around in the dark with a loaded pistol because a black teenager is in the vicinity. To ask me to ignore who I am and posit how I'd respond if I were in a situation I would never be in, is asking how a different person would respond. I have no idea.

I agree, certainly, that a person who sees himself/herself as the empowered protector of his/her community, who feels entitled to carry a loaded gun in the defense of his/her self-defined territory, who does not loudly and clearly greet (or warn) a suspected intruder in said territory, who is foolish enough to exit his/her vehicle and confront said "intruder" and get his/her **** kicked in the ensuing scuffle, might indeed pull out that gun and fire it. Did, in fact. But that person is not this person, and for that I am grateful.

Seems like wolf **** might be a cheaper and less troublesome way to mark one's territory, assuming one lacks the testosterone to mark it oneself.
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#134 Jul 11 2013 at 9:13 AM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
What choice do you make? I doubt very many people would say they'd just lay there and take the beatings, and I'd doubt the sincerity of anyone who did.
Yeah I'd shoot.

Of course, I'd also have not followed the guy initially, listened to the cops, tried to calm the situation down if confrontation was inevitable, and tried to get away if there was an altercation. If you ignore any of the common sense actions one would normally take in these situations then shooting someone seems really rational.

Of course that doesn't make him a criminal, only a dumbass. Smiley: rolleyes

Edit: More on point: now that manslaughter is on the table, I'm guessing he ends up guilty of that.
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#135 Jul 11 2013 at 9:34 AM Rating: Good
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someproteinguy wrote:
gbaji wrote:
What choice do you make? I doubt very many people would say they'd just lay there and take the beatings, and I'd doubt the sincerity of anyone who did.
Yeah I'd shoot.

Of course, I'd also have not followed the guy initially, listened to the cops, tried to calm the situation down if confrontation was inevitable, and tried to get away if there was an altercation. If you ignore any of the common sense actions one would normally take in these situations then shooting someone seems really rational.

Of course that doesn't make him a criminal, only a dumbass. Smiley: rolleyes

Edit: More on point: now that manslaughter is on the table, I'm guessing he ends up guilty of that.


He's been charged with both Manslaughter and Second Degree Murder.

The chances of him getting off on the manslaughter charge are slim. His defense would have to demonstrate why he wasn't guilty of creating a situation in which Martin could have died. Hard to do that when he followed the kid, holding a gun.

The murder charge could go either way. The prosecution is arguing that he was looking for a fight, and that he profiled Martin. Those are theoretically sufficient to prove Zimmerman was intent on violence (even if he had no intention of killing him). But proving that is a much taller task. Though considering how talented Zimmerman is at throwing himself under the bus...
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#136 Jul 11 2013 at 9:42 AM Rating: Excellent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
The murder charge could go either way.
Now they might add 3rd degree murder?

Like you say, I don't know. I have a hard time seeing the 2nd degree murder charge sticking, but as someone who's not totally in the loop with stuff, I suppose my guess is as good as flipping a coin. I'll also be a bit shocked if he gets off scot-free.

Oh well, either way.

Smiley: popcorn

Edit:

Samira wrote:
One was ostensibly a grown-up.
Martin was 17 though, not 10 or something. It's not like he's going to mature with the flip of the switch on his 18th birthday. While there certainly is good reason we don't punish a 17 year old the same way we do a full fledged adult, he was plenty old enough to realize his actions weren't making the situation any better.

Edited, Jul 11th 2013 8:54am by someproteinguy
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#137 Jul 11 2013 at 9:57 AM Rating: Good
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It'll most likely come down to an argument between voluntary and involuntary manslaughter if it doesn't end in a deadlock.
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#138 Jul 11 2013 at 10:22 AM Rating: Good
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Too bad the dead guy can't talk.
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#139 Jul 11 2013 at 10:24 AM Rating: Good
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Elinda wrote:
Too bad the dead guy can't talk.
No one cares what the living one is saying, so it's a toss up.
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#140 Jul 11 2013 at 11:12 AM Rating: Excellent
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Martin was 17 though, not 10 or something. It's not like he's going to mature with the flip of the switch on his 18th birthday. While there certainly is good reason we don't punish a 17 year old the same way we do a full fledged adult, he was plenty old enough to realize his actions weren't making the situation any better.


Nevertheless. With ten years' difference between them, one might reasonably expect the older guy to make better decisions. One would be disappointed in this case.
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#141 Jul 11 2013 at 11:27 AM Rating: Good
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Samira wrote:
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Martin was 17 though, not 10 or something. It's not like he's going to mature with the flip of the switch on his 18th birthday. While there certainly is good reason we don't punish a 17 year old the same way we do a full fledged adult, he was plenty old enough to realize his actions weren't making the situation any better.


Nevertheless. With ten years' difference between them, one might reasonably expect the older guy to make better decisions. One would be disappointed in this case.


I'm personally a advocate that it's unacceptable to bend the age of majority retroactively. If you're going to create an age of majority in law, and then control the rights and movements of minors under it, than you are obligated to uphold that even when its inconvenient for you. I'm fine with something like emancipation voiding it, but I'm not okay with us treating teenagers as adults only when we want to **** them over harder.
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#142 Jul 11 2013 at 1:56 PM Rating: Decent
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Elinda wrote:
Uglysasquatch wrote:
gbaji wrote:
What choice do you make? I doubt very many people would say they'd just lay there and take the beatings, and I'd doubt the sincerity of anyone who did.
Irrelevant. What someone would do has no bearing on what they're legally allowed to do.

I'd be scratching out some eyeballs.

You can do quite a bit of damage with a pistol without pulling the trigger.
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#143 Jul 11 2013 at 3:44 PM Rating: Default
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Martin was 17 though, not 10 or something. It's not like he's going to mature with the flip of the switch on his 18th birthday


Oh, how I've been arguing this point for years now...
#144 Jul 11 2013 at 5:46 PM Rating: Default
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Friar Bijou wrote:
gbaji wrote:
Even if the order is: Bijou does everything wrong, Bijou attacks gbaji, gbaji fights back, gbaji knocks Bijou to the ground, jumps on him, pins him to the ground and beats him, Bijou can't escape and fears he's at risk of grave bodily injury, Bijou shoots gbaji, Bijou has not violated the law.
You are ok with that, right?

Even though I followed you with a loaded gun?


Yes. Because I would have been the idiot to decided to escalate a conflict with a guy with a gun. Assuming you didn't start out shooting at me (didn't I already make this point?), it shows that you don't intend to just shoot me outright unless I give you cause to do so. Maybe you don't want to shoot me. Maybe you don't want to shoot me in a way that can't be justified as self defense. I don't know. But what I do know is that if after knocking you to the ground I then jump on top of you and continue punching you, I've taken any possibility that you might not shoot me off the table.

So yeah. If you are armed, and I know you are armed, and I do that and fail to disarm you in the process, then I'm the dumbass who just got himself killed. If you are armed, and I *don't* know you are armed, and I do that, then I'm the dumbass who just got himself killed. Either way, it's my **** fault for getting shot.


And let's not forget that this all assumes that Martin knew that Zimmerman was armed, which is incredibly unlikely. As I've stated before, the much more likely possibility is that Martin assumed Zimmerman wasn't armed, and assumed he could beat him up, so he chose to do that. If he'd known Zimmerman was armed, it's almost certain he would not have engaged in a fistfight with him.
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#145 Jul 11 2013 at 5:58 PM Rating: Good
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So moral of the story: Always carry a gun with you. If anyone is stupid enough to start a fight, you're free to shoot them.

What a grand world.
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#146 Jul 11 2013 at 6:02 PM Rating: Default
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Almalieque wrote:
You're assuming that I'm confusing the two together. I've said several times over now that no one knows if the shooting was justified.


Isn't that the point of this whole thing? To discuss whether it was justified? I mean, the jury's going to have to make that exact decision, right? Sidestepping the core issue is kinda pointless, isn't it?

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That wasn't my point. My point was that you have no evidence that Martin was about to commit a crime, yet you label him as someone about to commit a crime. Based on what? That's the dictionary definition of prejudice.


Um... At the risk of bursting your bubble we know that Martin was committing a crime. Let me remind you: I'm talking about Zimmerman shooting Martin, not Zimmerman following Martin into the complex. Zimmerman isn't on trial for following someone. He's on trial for shooting someone.

At the time that Zimmerman fired his weapon, Martin was committing a crime. Anytime you are on top of someone, pinning them to the ground and punching them, you are committing a crime (ok, outside of a regulated fighting match of course). It's called assault. And as I have repeatedly stated, self defense laws do *not* allow you to do what Martin was doing. Ever.

You keep wanting to obsess over whether Martin's behavior prior to Zimmerman following him could be proven to be criminal, but that's utterly irrelevant to the question at hand. It does not matter. Zimmerman has every right to follow Martin through the complex whether Martin is committing a crime or not. He has every right to approach Martin. He has every right to talk to Martin and ask him what he's doing, if he's a resident, where he lives, etc. Martin is not required to answer, but he's *not* allowed to attack Zimmerman for doing that either.

Quote:
Technically, Martin could have been about to do *anything*, but unless there is some sort of proof, then you can't label him as someone about to commit a crime. If I'm not mistaken, Zimmerman was concerned that Martin might have been responsible for some of the recent crimes that had taken place. There's nothing wrong with Zimmerman thinking that, but there was no evidence on Martin to support that he was about to do those aforesaid crimes.


So what? Zimmerman doesn't have to prove that Martin was going to commit a crime in order to decide that what he's doing is suspicious and to follow him and see what he does and where he goes. He's perfectly within his right to do that, and one can argue that this is precisely what he's supposed to do when he's on watch. You know: Watch. Watching doesn't stop at the edge of the street.

Quote:
The point being that you can't say that Martin *was about* to commit a crime with no evidence. The opposite could just as easily argue that Martin *was about* to go donate his kidney to a dying friend in the hospital. Unless there is any proof to support any claim, you can not make any argument.


No argument I've made in this thread rests on the assumption that Martin was going to commit a crime while walking home that night. So you're proving something no one is arguing. Um... Congratulations!?
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#147 Jul 11 2013 at 6:07 PM Rating: Good
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My favorite part of this discussion is that there's no room in gbaji's mind to believe that Zimmerman wasn't protected by a self defense law...

...and no room in his mind to even accept the chance that Martin was.
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#148 Jul 11 2013 at 6:10 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
Yes. Because I would have been the idiot to decided to escalate a conflict with a guy with a gun.

Noted Smiley: grin
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#149 Jul 11 2013 at 6:25 PM Rating: Excellent
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And let's not forget that this all assumes that Martin knew that Zimmerman was armed, which is incredibly unlikely. As I've stated before, the much more likely possibility is that Martin assumed Zimmerman wasn't armed, and assumed he could beat him up, so he chose to do that. If he'd known Zimmerman was armed, it's almost certain he would not have engaged in a fistfight with him.


Wasn't Zimmerman's justification for using the gun something about Martin grabbing for it?
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#150 Jul 11 2013 at 6:29 PM Rating: Default
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
So moral of the story: Always carry a gun with you. If anyone is stupid enough to start a fight, you're free to shoot them.


As opposed to the alternative: No one is allowed to carry a gun, so if you're bigger and stronger than them, you can beat them up, rob, them, rape them, or whatever with impunity.

Quote:
What a grand world.


No world is perfect. Pick your poison. What's the old saying: God created man. Sam Colt made them equal.

Point being that being armed with a gun equalizes the playing field. The guy who is bigger and stronger no longer automatically wins. Thus, the little old lady who would otherwise always be a victim may be able to defend herself. More importantly, as long as we allow folks with guns around, it acts as a deterrent, thus protecting tons of other people who are not armed. Unfortunately, Martin wasn't bright enough to realize that the person he decided to bully might be armed, and paid for that mistake with his life. What we can hope is that the next kid who thinks he can knock someone around because he's bigger and stronger will remember what happened to Martin and realize that it might cost him his life, and maybe *not* do what Martin did.

Sadly, there's always someone who'll serve as a cautionary tale to the rest of us. Harsh? Yes. True? Absolutely.
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#151 Jul 11 2013 at 6:32 PM Rating: Good
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My poison is that one that isn't ******* insane.

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As opposed to the alternative: No one is allowed to carry a gun, so if you're bigger and stronger than them, you can beat them up, rob, them, rape them, or whatever with impunity.


Ignoring the fact that I'm fine with strict gun controls, you DO realize there's a middle ground, right?

As in, you don't chase after someone with a gun and get off scott-free because they fight back. The scenario you just painted allows any thug to get off of a murder charge by technicality that they fought back. Either you do exactly as you're told, or you give them the right to shoot you by resisting. Brilliant.
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