-50 votes

concerned letter from a distraught member, re: trayvon martin

Dear DailyPaul.com:

About me: I have been supporting Ron Paul since 2007 and before that I was a brainwashed neo-con supporter. The Daily Paul has been an essential website in my awakening into being and solidification as a libertarian. I don’t often post but I have in the past, most recently the Monday after the George Zimmerman verdict.

I cant wait for the attention on the Trayvon Martin case to die down. The trial has been used as a means to divide the populous, which partisans are taking advantage of to solidify the legitimacy and growth of the state.

Additionally, I want the attention to go away because the Daily Paul’s participation in the spectacle has astounded me. Not only do your reactions support a police state mentality, your exaltation of Zimmerman and celebration of the verdict have been drenched in demagoguery and unwarranted harshness. You are actively contributing to the divide of the people and falling on the side of tyranny.

Regardless of whatever stories or “facts” you believe in surrounding the death of Martin, there are certain truths that cannot be denied that place Zimmerman as a violator of liberty. Firstly, let us all agree, that self defense is a pillar of liberty. Had Zimmerman been just strolling down the street minding his own business and been attacked by Martin out of the blue, without a doubt Zimmerman would be justified in killing him. Of course this was not the case, but let us give Zimmerman the benefit of the doubt and pretend that the story his defense used during the trial is the complete, truthful account of events. Zimmerman was driving in his car and saw Martin walking down the street. Zimmerman slows down and starts following him at night, in the rain. Martin sees that Zimmerman was looking at him and continues towards his destination. Zimmerman doesn’t say “excuse me young man, I want to talk to you.” He doesn’t even say “hey what are you doing?!” Zimmerman pulls his car over and keeps an eye on Martin. He then drives towards Martin again. No one else is around. Martin, taking a short cut, is able to get out of the site of Zimmerman. Zimmerman stops his car, gets out and continues to follow Martin on foot. This is aggressive behavior! After perceiving the escalating threat, Martin, a young man not an old woman, decides to confront this stranger who has been following him back to his home. After strategically positioning himself, Martin, taking no more risks, launches his attack. Zimmerman, unable to fend for himself, takes out his gun and shoots Martin dead.

No matter how you spin it, Zimmerman was the instigator. Had he not been following Martin, the 17 year old would have made it home safely. Zimmerman, even if he was well-intended, handled the situation with no respect towards Martin’s dignity as a person. Not only did he profile Trayvon based on his appearance, he treated him as though he were already guilty of a crime. This attitude is repugnant to a free society. Because of his misdeeds, a young man was shot dead, perhaps Zimmerman is not guilty of second degree murder, but how can you think the law should not hold him at least partially responsible? Let me get this straight: you can threaten someone, and when they fight you, you can just shoot them if you are loosing and get away scot-free? (such provocative behavior by a CC-er will surely be capitalized by the gun control crowd, after all it’s much less likely that Zimmerman would have gotten out of the car and followed Martin had he not had a gun)

Alas, to my horror, too many Daily Paul users think not just that, but also deem Zimmerman a hero, a great citizen and man. One person declared they wished Zimmerman would be neighborhood watch of his neighborhood!?! (apparently killing someone who is staying inside the gated community you are supposed to protect is a sign of good watchman-ship) This is a man who never became the cop he dreamed of being, so instead he carries a gun around and chronically reports things to the police. He is a self-appointed neighborhood watchman! These are the qualities of a man hungry for power and looking for trouble. I’m sure he’ll get a job offering at the NSA in a few years.

Moreover, the Daily Paul response has been toe-in-line with the talking points of the right-wing when it comes to the issues of drugs and race. You’d think these folks have never heard Ron Paul denounce drug-war propaganda or racial discrimination. Too many of you are participating in the vilification of this dead teenager based on selected internet posts and marijuana use! Also astonishing is the completely unnuanced and insensitive dismissal of the relevance of Martin’s race to the national discussion. Astonishingly, those of you who declare Martin’s race irrelevant are also the same ones attempting to legitimize Zimmerman’s actions because Martin fit the profile of wanted criminals, of which being black was an essential ingredient. He was being profiled and followed because he was young black man wearing a hoodie, forget the fact that it’s February and raining and the 21st century and the gated community has a significant population of black people. I mean it’s not like Trayvon was walking around a village in North Dakota where black people are only seen on television. Then many of you troll, “well Zimmerman is half-Hispanic so..” as if Hispanics can’t be racist. It’s not about Zimmerman’s race and it’s not about whether he is a racist, it’s about Martin’s race and whether it is just another coincidence that a young black male has been presumed to be criminal and shot dead for it. Black people experience America very differently than people of other races do. Martin’s death became a national story; it took on a higher meaning for black people—because they know all too well what it means to be looked at walking down a street and deemed suspicious. And they are frigging tired of it and they have a right to be! Your inability to understand that is atrocious. What’s next? Will they Daily Paul mock people in the Islamic world for protesting US imperialism?

When I tried to make these points, I was met with vitriolic denunciations and name-calling. Among other things, I was accused a “Democrat,” an “idiot” and an Al Sharpton echoer. I was not personally offended, just very disappointed: this close-minded hostility does not belong on the DailyPaul! These are the very “mob-rule” tactics that you denounce the left for adopting. Both sides are guilty of demagoguery and manipulation. As libertarians, we ought to transcend the partisan fray. We ought to understand both sides and point out the truth in both. We ought to frame the issue in Natural Law. We ought to protect the second amendment by punishing those who abuse it. We need not buy into the racial politics of the left but we ought to acknowledge the legitimacy of the origins of their grievances. And we ought to always insist on the dignity of the individual as an individual. You may still be glad Zimmerman was acquitted, but don’t pretend that it would be un-libertarian to think otherwise.



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"Secondly, what does

"Secondly, what does zimmerman having a gun have to do with anything at all? (maybe you'll be the first person out of 12 that will actually answer me)"

The reason is because Zimmerman had plenty of time to be prepared. Zimmerman followed him, watched him, and knew the area. For someone to be armed - there is no excuse to even allow yourself to be dragged into a fist fight (nevermind the fact that zimmerman also had the vehicle). The whole purpose of open carry is that it prevents an altercation - not to provide insurance in case you get your butt kicked. Zimmerman could have revealed his gun physically or verbally when they arguing or when trayvon was still beyond arms length. Trayvon had no weapon. Lets say Trayvon jumped zimmerman - i dont see how zimmerman could not free himself for a single moment to free himself and showcase the gun or even get arms length and do the same. Assuming it was semi-automatic, zimmerman wouldnt have even had to shoot trayvon - he could have fired warning shot. There are literally 1,000 options and zimmerman used the most deadly surprise option

And once again, you are making things up to suit your

Agenda. You say "there is no excuse to even allow yourself to be dragged into a fist fight" yet you have zero evidence that Zimmerman was drug into a fist fight. Then you start making guesses about what Zimmerman did with his gun, yet no one knows. You then say Martin had no weapon, but when the concrete wash touching the back of Zimmerman;'s head then it is the same as if Martin had a block of concrete hitting him in the head with it. When a CC or licensed holder brandishes a fire arm it can be a felony, and you also have no proof that Zimmerman fired with intent to kill, he only fired one shot which shows he had self control. 1,000 options Zimmerman had, and Martin could have gone home...

Always remember:
"It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds." ~ Samuel Adams
If they hate us for our freedom, they must LOVE us now....

Stay IRATE, remain TIRELESS, an

Thank you for atleast trying to answer me

The whole purpose of open carry is that it prevents an altercation - not to provide insurance in case you get your butt kicked.

Wrong on so many levels.
Open carry is a political statement. Zimmerman was concealing his gun. Carrying a firearm is not for de-escalation it's for protecting your life.

Zimmerman could have revealed his gun physically or verbally when they arguing or when trayvon was still beyond arms length.

And broken state law and wound up in prison for doing so. It's called brandishing. You never ever EVER pull a gun unless you aim to use it. You will be seen as the person escalating the events in court if you do so. That is not opinion, there is case law and the most qualified trainers in the country will tell you the same thing. Not only for the reasons mentioned above but it is tactically unsound and can lend to you harming someone that really wasn't a threat to you.

Trayvon had no weapon.

WHAT DOES HAVING A WEAPON HAVE TO DO WITH IT?
Maybe in caps you guys can see the question. Guns aren't evil entities that magically make you the person to blame if bad shit goes down. That's what you are insinuating. That because Martin wasn't armed he somehow is less to blame for the incident. Being armed doesn't make you culpable, it doesn't make you responsible, it makes you able to defend yourself.

Lets say Trayvon jumped zimmerman - i dont see how zimmerman could not free himself for a single moment to free himself and showcase the gun or even get arms length and do the same. Assuming it was semi-automatic, zimmerman wouldnt have even had to shoot trayvon - he could have fired warning shot. There are literally 1,000 options and zimmerman used the most deadly surprise option.

This just perfectly illustrates my point. You've clearly NEVER been in a life or death situation involving firearms and probably have never really handled guns that much. For that matter you don't know much about the law or gun safety either. This isn't the movies.

"Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of liberty."

Click Here To See The Candidates On The Record

I don't know about FL law

but in AZ you can brandish your gun, I don't know if you have to see a weapon or if you simply are in fear for your safety.

"It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere".
--Voltaire

It's hard not to be a menace to society when half the population is happy on their knees. - unknown

improper exhibition of a firearm

Florida Statute 790.10

Az is just lucky, even then my other points stand.

"Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of liberty."

Click Here To See The Candidates On The Record

zimmerman was poorly prepared

zimmerman was poorly prepared and is either an idiot or has a cop-complex...There is no getting around that

niether of which

are illegal or harm anyone.

"Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of liberty."

Click Here To See The Candidates On The Record

Nowhere did i say anything

Nowhere did i say anything about the legality or the verdict of the case. With regard to harm....Yes, being unprepared or an idiot will lead to violence - that storyline is repeated all around the country

Sure, so will being brown

that doesn't make the person initiating the violence right.

"Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of liberty."

Click Here To See The Candidates On The Record

we will never know who

we will never know who initiated the violence

As knowing goes, you are

As knowing goes, you are correct. We simply cannot know with certainty. But a preponderance of evidence does seem to indicate that Zimmerman suffered a sustained assault that night, and it is a cold hard fact that Martin was shot dead, the bullet killing him only moments after impact. By 'sustained' I simply mean it was more than a single punch, but a series of punches or various other strikes.
It is not unreasonable to infer that Zimmerman shot Martin in self defense. If Zimmerman initiated the coercion, then Martin attacking Zimmerman was indeed self defense. But based on what we can know with certainty, it would seem more reasonable to believe Zimmerman's actions were more of the self defense kind, than Martin's.

Bottom line for me is that the Jury made what I believe to be the best choice under the circumstances. The state must prove its case.

As a strictly Libertarian question, it seems unreasonable to demand Zimmerman be punished. For as you say, we can not know.

Sure, but my argument is

Sure, but my argument is clearly not that zimmerman should be punished. I take aim at everyone who have constructed a narrative, made a judgement, and act emotionally when someone brings up alternative views.

There is anecdotal evidence one way or the other but certainly not enough to judge. I have learned in life that the majority is usually wrong and always more to a story. Oftentimes, the unimaginable is the most plausible - just look at the events and actions of our government over the last 20 years.

I wouldn't call a comparison

I wouldn't call a comparison of the wounds each person sustained in relation to the event 'anecdotal'. Martin had a bullet wound to the chest and bruised knuckles. Zimmerman had injuries consistent with being hit by a closed fist. And so the majority would infer that Martin was striking Zimmerman and Zimmerman shot him. And there is additional circumstantial evidence suggesting that this is a valid inference... for example, that Zimmerman contacted the police prior to killing Martin (not something someone with criminal intent does often). Sometimes the majority is not wrong at all... especially when the math is simple. As for there being more to the story, no doubt there is. But one can only make clear inferences from the details one has, not all the details one doesn't have. We can search and probe and hope to find more. But it seems counter intuitive to jump on the opposite side of a majority, simply because they are the majority with limited facts. We all have limited facts and go right on judging things all the same. If you want to withhold judgement about what happened to any clear degree, that's fine.

Let me guess

you don't carry a gun do you? And have you ever been in a fistfight?

"It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere".
--Voltaire

It's hard not to be a menace to society when half the population is happy on their knees. - unknown

What if the Queen had balls?

Then she'd be the King.

Point is, Trayvon Martin wasn't a teenage girl, nor was he a little boy who was skipping home from the store after buying skittles and soda. He was a six foot tall, 200lb+ teenage male who had a reputation for causing trouble and initiating violence, and no amount of "what ifs" designed to attract emotional responses is going to change that.

A signature used to be here!

don't simplify

"what ifs" can be designed to question the principle by applying it to an analogous situation

What ifs....

.....are just that. What ifs.

Whatif by Shel Silverstein

Last night, while I lay thinking here,
some Whatifs crawled inside my ear
and pranced and partied all night long
and sang their same old Whatif song:
Whatif I'm dumb in school?
Whatif they've closed the swimming pool?
Whatif I get beat up?
Whatif there's poison in my cup?
Whatif I start to cry?
Whatif I get sick and die?
Whatif I flunk that test?
Whatif green hair grows on my chest?
Whatif nobody likes me?
Whatif a bolt of lightning strikes me?
Whatif I don't grow talle?
Whatif my head starts getting smaller?
Whatif the fish won't bite?
Whatif the wind tears up my kite?
Whatif they start a war?
Whatif my parents get divorced?
Whatif the bus is late?
Whatif my teeth don't grow in straight?
Whatif I tear my pants?
Whatif I never learn to dance?
Everything seems well, and then
the nighttime Whatifs strike again!

What if...

...trees got up and walked around? How would you feel then?

I wrote this letter in part to clear the libertarian name

I find it mind boggling that so many of u do not think he shld be held at least partially responsible for trayvon's death. This promotes the police state agenda of spying on each other and the undignifying notion that appearance and dress equate suspicious activity, a tenet used too often to justify warrentless searches and harassment of middle eastern peoples. Being the neighborhood watchman does not make you king of the streets, and those individuals who take on that role should identify themselves, instead of lurking around quietly staring and following like a creeper. DON'T TREAD ON ME

How does a watchman.....

....watch without staring? Please explain that.

Again, it wasn't the clothes or appearance, it was Martin's ACTIONS....looking in windows, running away.....his ACTIONS. Can you understand that?

If you lived next to me, and I knew you thought this way and someone suspicious was walking around your house, I would do nothing, as that would upset you that I'm creating a police state.

If something happens to you, don't call the police or anything. Just deal with it yourself. Otherwise you are creating a police state.

who knows

with regard to Trayvon's actions, we have only the story of Zimmerman - which i have found to be questionable for the following reasons (and i havent even followed the case much:

1.) In order to find a street name, he goes down the exact same corridor that Trayvon went down?

2.) He claimed that he did not remember he was carrying his gun until he was getting beat up and felt it on his waist

3.) During the 911 call, after the operator told him to stop pursuing, there was a period of at least 2 minutes of non-confrontation - plenty of time for him to get back to his car. Once in his car, why would he get out of it again trying to look for a street when he had just passed one during his following of Trayvon?

4.) I cannot fathom a fight in which he would not be able to wrestle free (arms length) for a moment in order to show his gun (even if you accept the notion that he forgot he had one).

I will answer your questions, unlike how you treat everyone

elses.

1. He was parked on a street that had the backs of the Condo's to him. There was only one through way in which to get to a main road that displayed apartment numbers. He was certainly looking for Martin to ensure he; a stranger in the area acting suspicious by running away, was headed.
2. Most people that carry might forget they have their gun when attacked by a shot in the face and a broken nose. This would lend to the evidence he was attacked and hit so hard he was woozy.
3. You make an assumption of how long it would take Martin to get back to his car. While on the 9-11 he exited his car and over 4 minutes passed before he got off the phone.
4. Any CC holder has been taught never to brandish a weapon for the use to scare someone, and in Florida it is illegal. You only remove said firearm in the event to protect yourself in preparation to firing the gun. This shows you do not have firearms training of any sort, so you should probably not argue about what anyone should or should not do that carries a gun.

Always remember:
"It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds." ~ Samuel Adams
If they hate us for our freedom, they must LOVE us now....

Stay IRATE, remain TIRELESS, an

From what I understand...

..
1) The street names had changed recently. I'm sure you can verify that

2) When in a stressful situation, most people forget lots of things

3) Operator did not tell him to stop. It was not the 911 operator. An operator has no legal bearing to tell anyone what to do. Plenty of time for Martin to go to his dad's house. Oh, wait, he was already there, then came back.

4)So let me get this straight. It would have been good to have the firearm, but it is not good to have the firearm.

And to further your fathomness, have you ever been punched in the nose that it puts you down? I'm betting Zimmerman, at that point, didn't even know he was Zimmerman.

Chew on this for a

Chew on this for a while...

http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2012/nov/30/jury-deliberates...

Then ask yourself, where is the outrage over the white guy who died? Why isn't this a national story? Cases like these happen daily and are swept under the rug.

“Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it’s realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy.”
― Ron Paul

The man was found guilty

The man was found guilty

And if Trayvon had survived,

And if Trayvon had survived, trayvon should have been found guilty of assault.

“Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it’s realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy.”
― Ron Paul

This post is ridiculous.

This post is ridiculous. There is no evidence Zimmerman followed Martin after the dispatcher said "we don't need you to do that". And even if he did, there is no law against it. You can spin it any way you'd like...Zimmerman didn't break any laws that night, Martin did. Martin is now dead because of it.

“Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it’s realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy.”
― Ron Paul

But he had been following him

But he had been following him and then happened to cross his path as he "gave up"--Zimmerman may not have broken "a law" but he instigated the whole situation, found himself in too deep and therefore killed someone.

If you are out driving and I

If you are out driving and I appear to be following you, do you have a right to slam on your brakes, get out, come over to my window, reach in and start assaulting me? Apparently, you believe so.

“Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it’s realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy.”
― Ron Paul

So what you are saying.....

....is that wherever someone is walking, everyone else needs to walk the other direction.

When a suspicious person is in your neighborhood, everyone needs to ignore them and not investigate.

If a suspicious person is walking around your house then you need to go hide in a closet and not look at them. Don't even look out the window at them as that is being aggressive and instigating a confrontation.

Apparently you feel that Zimmerman following Martin was somehow an attack. If Martin had hit Zimmerman and then ran away, he would be alive today. Self defense is not stopping the attack and then continuing your own attack. If, like you believe, Martin was engaged in self defense, he would have hit Zimmerman, and when Zimmerman went down, he would have gotten away and called the police. This did NOT happen. Sorry.