Zimmerman Sues NBC Over Edited 911 Call

When the Zimmerman case first hit the public spotlight NBC released an edited 911 tape to make it appear as though Zimmerman’s actions were race related. NBC’s actions may make Zimmerman a very wealthy man:

Lawyers for George Zimmerman are seeking punitive damages from NBC over edits of a police call he made on the night Trayvon Martin was killed.

They allege heavily edited extracts of the call made Mr Zimmerman appear racist in the eyes of the public.

NBC issued over the incident but by then the damage had been done. In the eye’s of the public Zimmerman was viewed as a racist who gunned down Trayvon Martin not because he was pounding Zimmerman’s head into the pavement but because he was black. To this day people are still stating that Zimmerman’s actions were race related even though evidence strongly supports Zimmerman’s claim that he was being attacked by Trayvon and fired in self-defense.

That Race Card is Wearing Thin

I really hate it when accusations of racism are used as a generic method of silencing opposition. Take this conversation that I had with a friend on Facebook:

The test on the picture seemed to imply that anybody who opposes Obama, or at least a majority of those who oppose Obama, are doing because of the man’s race. What bothers me about such an accusation is that there is no evidence to back it up. Without the ability to read minds one cannot know for certain what another is thinking. Yet one must consider the number of reasons one could oppose Obama. Obama is a very loathsome human being. He was swept into office on the promises of reducing the police state, ending Bush’s wars, shutting down Guantanamo Bay, and restoring many of the civil liberties that were lost when the state implemented tyrannical laws after the 9/11 attacks. After getting into office Obama has expanded the police state, continued Bush’s wars and started some of his own, kept Guantanamo Bay open, took more civil liberties from Americans, and even managed to find time to outright murder two American citizens without even pretending to hold a trial. As you can see there are many reasons to oppose Obama that have absolutely nothing to do with his race.

Yet some of his supporters continue to play the race card. This faction of Obama supporters like to take pictures such as the one shared by my friend and use it as evidence that everybody who opposes Obama, or at least a majority of those who oppose Obama, are racists. What’s funny is that we don’t even know if the person who defaced that sign was a racists. It very well could have been a racist or it could have been an Obama supporter attempting to make his political opponents look bad. There is no proof either way and even if there was it would prove nothing about the majority of people who don’t support Obama.

Obama’s supporters need to put the race card away unless there is a provable case of racism. If a member of the Ku Klux Klan argues against Obama because of his race then the race card is applicable. The race card is not applicable every time somebody criticizes Obama. Furthermore the race card should not be played against individuals who are entirely uninvolved in any racist acts. Trying to imply everybody who opposes Obama is a racist because one of Obama’s opponents is a racist is nothing more than a cowardly attempt to silence those who hold a different political viewpoint.

Another Major Media Source Caught Fabricating Evidence

Hot on the heels of MSNBC being forced to issue an apology for fabricating evidence showing Zimmerman as a racist, CNN is now backpedaling:

Recently, CNN enhanced audio of George Zimmerman — the man who shot Trayvon Martin — to try and determine if he did, in fact, use a racial slur while calling police on the night of the shooting. Back then, it sounded like Zimmerman might have used the phrase “fu**ing coons,” and his critics have cited it as evidence of a racially-motivated attack. But now CNN has enhanced the audio again, and the reporter is casting doubts that the term was used.

“It certainly sounds like that word to me,” Gary Tuckman said when the audio was first enhanced. But after the latest enhancement, he’s not so sure:

“Now it does sound less like that racial slur. … From listening in this room, and this is a state-of-the-art room, it doesn’t sound like that slur anymore. It sounds like … we‘re hearing the swear word at first and then the word ’cold.’ And the reason some say that would be relevant, is because it was unseasonably cold in Florida that night and raining.”

Shows like CSI would have you believe one can easily and accurately enhance any audio or visual data to get data that isn’t stored in the source material. How many times have we seen the TV cops take a low definition video and “enhance” it to the point of crystal clarity? The real world is an asshole and doesn’t abide by precedents set by Hollywood so the whole idea of “enhancing” audio or visual data and getting reliable data from it is foolhardy.

Sadly the damage to Zimmerman’s name is done. Stating outrage over an apparently race driven crime is fun because it makes one’s self feel righteous, but later admitting you were suckered into the media’s cheap attempt to boost ratings isn’t.

An Inconvenient Truth

Les Jones has a post detailing a rather major lie told by MSNBC regarding the Zimmerman case:

Jake caught MSNBC Dowdifying the 911 call in the George Zimmerman/Martin Trayvon shooting. Here’s what MSNBC has George Zimmerman saying on the 911 call:

This guy looks like he’s up to no good … he looks black,” Zimmerman told a police dispatcher from his car.

That sure makes Zimmerman sound racist, doesn’t it? But notice the ellipsis. Those three dots indicate that something’s been edited out. Here’s the full, un-Dowdified quote from the 911 recording:

Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good, or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.

Dispatcher: Okay, is this guy, is he white, black, or hispanic?

Zimmerman: He looks black.

And with the filling in of three little dots meant to indicate abbreviation holes are shot through the theory that Zimmerman was obsessed with race. If MSNBC lied about this what else may they have lied about? Why are they working so hard to make this case about racism? Why are they actively working against finding real justice? Is it because they don’t want a valid self-defense case coming out in positive light? Is it because they are racist against hispanics like Zimmerman? Who knows, but we do know they lied and that bring everything else they’ve said about this case into question.

I also rescind my previous theory that Zimmerman was a man with a hero complex. As more evidence has trickled its way past the media censors the picture of an angry man with a gun and a vendetta against black people is quickly dissolving. Underneath evidence of Zimmerman being attacked can be seen leading the way for a valid self-defense claim. We can only sit and wait for the grand jury to look at all the available evidence and decide whether or not it’s enough to take this case to trail.

Yet More on the Zimmerman Case

I’m sure most of you have had you fill of the Zimmerman case, but I’m going to toss up one more post detailing my thoughts now that I’ve listend to the 911 recording (at least the most complete version I’ve found). After listening to the recording I think several things are worth noting.

First, the accusations of Zimmerman’s apparent racism are not upheld in the recording in my opinion. People mentioned Zimmerman’s apparent obsession with Martin’s race as Zimmerman reported Martin as a black male twice. It’s common for somebody giving a description to list race and gender first because they are two of the most easily noted characteristics of a person. Usually people start with the roughest information and move to more fine detail so it’s not uncommon for race and gender to precede estimated height, weight, and age. The description Zimmerman gave also including the clothing being worth by Martin, another common thing to report. I did not get any apparent racism coming from Zimmerman during the 911 call.

Second, the 911 operator never ordered Zimmerman to stop pursuing Martin as many (including myself) have reported. What the 911 operator did was ask Zimmerman if he was chasing Martin and when Zimmerman said yes the operator simply told Zimmerman that he didn’t need to do that. Neither the wording nor the tone of voice used by the operator projected an order. Furthermore as it became obvious that Zimmerman was still moving the 911 operator never asked Zimmerman if he stopped his pursuit (I also want to add that it’s not obvious from the 911 recording if Zimmerman stopped pursuing Marting and was returning to his vehicle or if he continued to pursue Martin).

Third, I was unable to hear Zimmerman use any racial slur as he has been accused of doing. A few parts of the recording were blanked out and it is possible Zimmerman said the slur at one of those times but if that’s the case, and this is the most complete recording of the call, I’m not sure how anybody came across such a statement. I also wish to add that I could have missed Zimmerman’s use of a racial slur but I was actively listening for it so I don’t believe that’s the case.

It’s worth noting that Zimmerman’s statements, tone of voice, and mannerisms did not indicate any vindictive behavior to me. Obviously such things can’t be entirely determined by an audio recording but it can be a good heuristic. Zimmerman sounded calm, collective, and not different from most officers I’ve heard giving updates on their activities during a contact. Reports have noted that Zimmerman was studying criminal justice, and combining that with his role in neighborhood watch, leaves me to believe he was acting based on received training.

Obviously I’m not an expert but condemning Zimmerman at this point, in my opinion, would be erroneous.

More on the Martin Case

The more I look into the shooting of Trayvon Martin, the more messed up the entire situation appears to be. I theorized in my post yesterday that George Zimmerman, the shooter, suffered from a hero complex. After doing a little more research my suspicion is even strong:

SANFORD — The people at the Retreat at Twin Lakes had been missing bikes, grills and a few times thought strangers were casing their town houses.

When the homeowners association wanted to start a neighborhood watch, only one man stepped up: George Zimmerman, the 28-year-old who admitted to shooting an unarmed Miami Gardens teenager and who is now the focal point of a race-related scandal of national proportions.

Interviews with neighbors reveal a pleasant young man passionate about neighborhood security who took it upon himself to do nightly patrols while he walked his dog.

Licensed to carry a firearm and a student of criminal justice, Zimmerman went door-to-door asking residents to be on the lookout, specifically referring to young black men who appeared to be outsiders, and warned that some were caught lurking, neighbors said. The self-appointed captain of the neighborhood watch program is credited with cracking some crimes, and thwarting others.

Being the only applicant for a neighborhood watch isn’t evidence of a hero complex in of itself but the combination of that, being a criminal justice student, and his actions on the night of the shooting point in that direction. Many people are putting a lot of weight into his warnings to neighbors about “young black men.” I’m not touching that with a cattle prod, not because I’m afraid of being labeled a racist if I don’t agree with the generally accepted sentiment, but because I lack knowledge about Zimmerman’s statements. That is to say the community wanted to establish a neighborhood watch after items started going missing and if there were witnesses that reported the suspects to be young black men Zimmerman’s statement could have been based on those accounts. On the other hand Zimmerman may have simply been stereotyping, I haven’t a clue.

Back to my original point, Zimmerman’s possible hero complex. Zimmerman became the community’s neighborhood watch, was a student in criminal justice, and decided to pursue a person he believe to be suspicious even though he was instructed not to by a 911 operator. The last part is where my suspicion ultimately stems from. Most people would avoid a confrontation that can ensure by pursuing a person unless there was solid reason for doing so. From the evidence I have available Zimmerman had nothing but a gut feeling, certainly not something you would potentially put your life at risk over. In addition to that the police were on their way, why risk your life for nothing more than a gut feeling if the police are en route to take care of the situation? To me it just doesn’t add up.

With that said I don’t have all the evidence at hand so I’m speculating on evidence that I’ve read in news articles. My final judgement is meaningless, that’s the job of juries, but it’s still an interesting case to mull of in one’s mind. I’m still fearful that any chances of a fair trial, if this goes to trail, are gone. Anybody ruling in Zimmerman’s favor would be risking a permanent label of racist and that makes it in everybody’s best interest to rule him guilty regardless of the evidence.

The Case of the Trayvon Martin Shooting

We’ve all heard about the Trayvon Martin shooting. The 17 year-old kid was shot by a 28 year-old man named George Zimmerman. What is unfortunate is the fact that this case has turned into a circus of accusations of racism. I say this is unfortunate not because I don’t believe racism has played a part in how this case has been handled so far (I’m withholding judgement at this time) but because it has injected strong emotions into this case making it impossible to determine what actually happened. I’ve already been accused of being a racist because I asked what evidence exists at this point instead of mindlessly marching along with the crown yelling, “RACISM!”

From what I’ve been able to gather so far Zimmerman was the captain of his local neighborhood watch group. Upon seeing Martin running in the rain Zimmerman called 911 and reported the apparently suspicious kid, then pursued the kid even when told by the 911 operator to not do so:

It has emerged that Mr Zimmerman, acting as a neighbourhood watch volunteer, had called police several times in the months before the shooting to report incidents.

Call logs and recordings show that Mr Zimmerman called police on 26 February, reporting there had been break-ins in the community.

He told police there was “a real suspicious guy” who “looks like he’s up to no good”.

When he said he was following the person he had identified as suspicious, the dispatcher said: “We don’t need you to do that.”

Using a expletive, Mr Zimmerman expressed his frustration, saying “these assholes always get away”.

Zimmerman wasn’t held, a fact that is being blamed on Florida’s “stand your ground” law:

The incident sheds light on Florida’s seven-year-old self-defence law, which critics say is too lenient.

The law, nicknamed a “stand your ground” or “shoot first” statute, gives protection from criminal prosecution or civil liability to people who claim self-defence after a shooting or violent incident.

One of the most expansive such laws in the US, it states that people have no duty to retreat from a place they are legally allowed to be, and have the right to use deadly force if they “reasonably” believe they or another person are threatened with death or serious harm.

Before 2005, deadly force was only allowed if the perpetrator had shown that he or she had tried to avoid confrontation.

Needless to say I had to look up the language of Florida’s law:

(3) A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

Those criticizing Florida’s “stand your ground” law haven’t been very forthcoming with details. They blame the law for Zimmerman’s current state as a free person. The first question I had to ask was whether or not the police department had any evidence that doubting Zimmerman’s story about the case being one of self-defense. All I found out is that asking this will get you labeled a racist, but the question is of the utmost importance. Did the police who freed Zimmerman review the 911 recording? If not what other evidence existed that countered Zimmerman’s story?

After review of the 911 call and other evidence it seems likely that Zimmerman was the aggressor in this case. The 911 operator told Zimmerman to cease is pursuit and an affidavit from one of Martin’s friends further adds to the pile of evidence against Zimmerman:

Mr Crump played a recorded affidavit from the young woman in which she describes Martin’s last phone call. She spoke with him repeatedly while he visited Sanford, the Orlando suburb where he died.

According to the affidavit, Martin was walking back from a shop with his phone in his pocket connected to a headset earphone.

He ran to a nearby building to take shelter from the rain and then pulled up his hoodie before he walked the rest of the way back. He then realised that someone was following him.

“I asked Trayvon to run, and he said he was going to walk fast. I told him to run, but he said he was not going to run,” ABC News quoted the 16-year-old as saying.

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He eventually ran, but Mr Zimmerman caught up with him.

The young woman heard Martin ask Mr Zimmerman repeatedly why he was following him and then heard his headset falling, losing contact with him.

Martin was fleeing a potential aggressor, and likely made no threatening move against Zimmerman until Zimmerman initiated the encounter. Since Florida’s law states “A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be” the question about Zimmerman’s initiation of contact after pursuing Martin constitutes unlawful activity. If Zimmerman did chase down Martin and engage in physical restraint I would call that an unlawful initiation of force, but I’m also not a lawyer and I don’t have all the facts.

The other part of the law that states “any other place where he or she has a right to be” brings up a question of property rights. Did Zimmerman pursue Martin across private property? If so did the property owner give prior permission for Zimmerman to enter his or her property? The question I’m raising is whether or not the property owner recognized the neighborhood watch detachment and whether or not he or she was OK with members of the neighborhood watch entering the property. Unless given permission you have no right to be on another’s property.

I believe answers to these questions are necessary before one begins blaming the “stand your ground” law. Truthfully I doubt these questions will be answered because the case has become about racism, and therefore all other questions are being entirely tossed to the wayside.

From the evidence we have available now I would say Zimmerman suffered from a hero complex. He wanted to be a hero and saw an opportunity, in his mind, to claim his status by apprehending a suspect. Most people would be unwilling to pursue somebody unless they had real cause to do so. Pursuing or otherwise engaging somebody you suspect to be guilty of a crime is a risky proposition because you’re putting yourself into a situation that can escalate into violence very quickly.

Another question I raise is whether or not a recent crime had been reported to Zimmerman. Was a home in the neighborhood broken into within hours of Zimmerman’s contact with Martin? If not what ground did Zimmerman have to suspect Martin of wrongdoing? If it was merely the other break-ins that the neighborhood experience in days gone by there was no reason to believe Martin was the suspect. Simply walking in the rain while wearing a hoodie doesn’t make one suspicious of crimes occurring in the past, if such evidence did qualify I’d say a good portion of the neighborhood I live in would be labeled criminal suspects. It seems Martin may have simply been a target of convenience for Zimmerman, a person who could be detained to elevate his status from lowly unknown neighborhood watch captain to the hero of the community.

What I worry about now is whether or not a fair trial will occur. The case has devolved into a racist witch hunt, meaning people are demanding somebody be punished and that somebody is Zimmerman. Police in that region are going to be under heavy pressure to make themselves look like they’re fighting racism and thus will be motivated to prove Zimmerman guilty whether or he is. A jury ruling Zimmerman innocent at this point could lead its members being accused of racism and therefore hunted down after the trail, it would be easier for them to simply rule Zimmerman guilty regardless of the evidence. If the grand jury currently decided if this case will go to trail say no I fear for the members of that jury.

Witch hunts are never good because those hunting for witches will find them. If the witch they find isn’t actually a witch they won’t care, in their eyes somebody must be burned at the stake for witchcraft. What I’ve said isn’t a call for finding Zimmerman innocent, nor a call for finding Zimmerman guilty, that is for a jury to decide in my opinion. Racism is an ugly thing because it creates strong emotional hatred in people, hatred that can only be satisfied through physical punishment of somebody. Once racism enters the field it’s impossible for everybody to walk away unscathed. In this case the police department that didn’t detain Zimmerman, the grand jury, and the jury involved if the case goes to trail are all facing potential accusations of racism and their only way out is to rule Zimmerman guilty. This doesn’t set a good foundation for a fair trial, a tragedy because trails should be used to rule innocence or guilt based on objective evidence. If Zimmerman is guilty of murder he should be convicted of such, if he is innocent of murder he should be allowed to walk free. Sadly the mere act of brining up Zimmerman’s potential innocence gets you labeled a racist so it’s not even an easy case to talk about.

Again With the Race Card

Attorney General Eric Holder decided to take a card, a very specific card, from the Obama debate strategy book. With all the heat coming down on the Attorney general over Fast and Furious he’s now decided to play the race card:

Holder said some unspecified faction — what he refers to as the “more extreme segment” — is driven to criticize both him and President Barack Obama due to the color of their skin. Holder did not appear to elaborate on who he considered to make up the “more extreme segment.”

“This is a way to get at the president because of the way I can be identified with him,” Holder said, according to the Times. “Both due to the nature of our relationship and, you know, the fact that we’re both African-American.”

Right, because none of the criticism or the demands you resign have anything to do with your little false flag operation that involved smuggling guns into Mexico and arming the cartels. I have bad news Holder, your little game to advance gun control in this country failed miserably and many of us our a wee bit upset about the entire thing.

Honestly Holder should be grateful that members of Congress are only asking him to resign, I’d be demanding criminal charges if I was in Washington.

The Irony is Almost Too Thick

I’m as much a fan of irony as any one man can be but sometimes it’s just too much. The Examiner has an article up that talks about Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy’s claim that “loose” federal gun laws are akin to racism:

Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy earlier this month told parishioners at St. Sabina’s Church that federal gun laws are akin to “government-sponsored racism.”

“I want you to connect one more dot on that chain of African-American history in this country, and tell me if I’m crazy: Federal gun laws that facilitate the flow of illegal firearms into our urban centers, across this country, that are killing black and brown children,” he said according to an WMAQ-Channel 5 story that aired Thursday.

Of course anybody who has studied the history of gun laws in the United States knows that guns laws weren’t put into place for “public safety” but to keep newly free blacks from obtaining firearms. Jews for the Preservation of Firearm Ownership (JPFO) put together a video sometime back that explained the racist roots of American gun control. The video can be freely viewed on YouTube:

That’s Racist

Not really but this story is funny. Apparently Chinese employers are willing to rent white people to mull around their facilities acting as employees:

“Face, we say in China, is more important than life itself,” said Zhang Haihua, author of “Think Like Chinese.” “Because Western countries are so developed, people think they are more well off, so people think that if a company can hire foreigners, it must have a lot of money and have very important connections overseas. So when they really want to impress someone, they may roll out a foreigner.”

Of course the pay kind of sucks if you ask me:

Zatkin was paid 2,000 yuan (about $300) to fly, along with a couple of Russian models, to a small city in the central province of Henan where he delivered a speech for the grand opening ceremony of a jewelry store there.

But it’s a job so simple anybody could do it… so long as they are white:

The requirements for these jobs are simple. 1. Be white. 2. Do not speak any Chinese, or really speak at all, unless asked. 3. Pretend like you just got off of an airplane yesterday.

I’m white, willing to shut up, and have no problem pretending I just got off of a plane, I could do this. Sweet deal!