Thursday, December 27, 2012
I realized the defendant was lying when I first read his narrative about the shooting.
Because I believe it’s extremely unlikely that an unarmed person would flee from a menacing stranger following him and, after successfully getting away, voluntarily approach, engage and attempt to beat that stranger to death with his bare hands.
That story is ridiculous. It made no sense to me when I first read it and it makes no sense to me now.
With two exceptions, I never have understood why anyone would believe that ridiculous story.
As a former criminal defense attorney and law professor, I certainly understand, support and believe in the presumption of innocence. I trained myself to think that way and always searched for the weaknesses in the prosecution’s case against my clients. I had no problem exploiting those vulnerabilities for the benefit of my clients. I suspect that most of the lawyers and law professors who have publicly supported the defendant did so from the perspective of presuming that he spoke the truth.
Since I no longer practice or teach law, I believe I can evaluate this case from a more objective perspective.
I cannot and will not presume that an obvious bullshit story is the truth.
I have reviewed all of the evidence released to the public to date and I have not found any evidence that supports the defendant’s story. Instead, his multiple inconsistent and contradictory statements conflict with the physical and forensic evidence. In fact, he has admitted that he shot and killed Trayvon Martin after he had him under control with a wrist lock. He said he pulled out his gun, extended his right arm, aimed to avoid shooting his left hand, and fired the single shot that killed Trayvon Martin. The terrified, prolonged and desperate shriek protesting the depraved execution that was about to occur finally and forever was silenced by the gunshot.
No one is going to believe that the defendant uttered that inhuman shriek with a loaded gun in his hand.
I feel obliged to remind my former colleagues that the presumption of innocence does not require them to blindly accept a liar’s story and actively defend that liar by supporting his effort to demonize an innocent victim and his parents. I am offended, horrified and disgusted by the unrelenting attacks on Trayvon, his family and their supporters. I have no respect for anyone who participates in or supports those attacks, including members of the mainstream media who publicize them, and by so doing, legitimize them.
Enough is enough.
We do not need or want to hear any more lying racist Zimmermans polluting the news.
The Trayvon Martin murder case is much more than a set of hypothetical facts to be discussed in a classroom. It is a real case involving real people and I think our responses to this tragedy reveal much about ourselves as individuals and as a society.
For example, in order to believe the defendant’s story, one would have to believe that Trayvon Martin acted like a stereotypical Black Gangsta thug in a Hollywood action movie. Would any Caucasian person believe the defendant’s story, if the person he killed were Caucasian?
Is it not easier for Caucasians to believe his story because the victim is Black?
I believe we would not have heard about this case, if Trayvon Martin had been a Caucasian kid. The defendant would have been arrested and jailed that first night. He would have been charged with second degree murder and prosecuted without any of the publicity and controversy that we have seen.
The most important lesson of this case is that racism is alive and well in our nation. The defendant’s characterization of Trayvon Martin presents each one of us with a litmus test. Those who accept and believe what he said are failing the litmus test and seriously need to ask themselves why they were so willing to believe such an obvious lie.
Those who continue to believe the defendant in the face of overwhelming evidence that he is a liar may be beyond help.
We live in a racist society and nothing will change unless we admit that we do and we commit to ending racism. As always, the self is the place to start changing society.
Trayvon Martin will not have died in vain if his death becomes the rallying point for a systematic, determined and prolonged effort to once and for all eliminate racism in our society.
Unless we succeed, we will remain a racist and failed society.