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July 16, 2013
I decided today that until the Stand Your Ground law is abolished in Florida, I will never perform there again. As a matter of fact, wherever I find that law exists, I will not perform in that state or in that part of the world. As I said earlier, you can’t just talk about it, you have to be about it.

Stevie Wonder

image

I included the map to show just how much touring money he’s about to lose over this. It’s a pretty big sacrifice.

(via kingjaffejoffer)

So-called Stand Your Ground laws have garnered a lot of attention since the acquittal of George Zimmerman for the slaying of Sanford, FL teen Trayvon Martin, though as we mentioned earlier, the Zimmerman defense team never actually argued that provision of Florida law in their case. Subsequent comments by one of the six-person jury to CNN’s Anderson Cooper, however, suggest they may have included the controversial law in their deliberations in spite of that fact.

20:10 // 9 months ago
The Marissa Alexander story has been floating around online ever since the George Zimmerman verdict went down, but this piece, by the conservative media watchdog site Media Trackers, suggests that there’s more to the case than has been previously reported. The report, while disagreeing with the premise of the case being a “reverse Trayvon Martin situation,” is nonetheless a fair assessment of the situation, relying on the facts of the case as well as court documents to show the complexity of Alexander’s case. Eventually, it leans on this point:

If anything, Alexander’s case is an indictment of Florida’s mandatory minimum sentencing requirements, not its self-defense laws. State prosecutors initially offered Alexander a plea deal of three years in prison. She rejected the deal. Upon conviction, she was sentenced to a mandatory minimum of 20 years in prison. Under Florida law, often referred to as “10-20-Life” for its tiered minimum sentencing requirements, any person convicted of aggravated assault combined with the discharge of a deadly weapon “shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of 20 years.”
In Alexander’s case, she might have received a lesser sentence under Florida law if she had killed Gray and been convicted of manslaughter rather than shooting at him and missing.

Among the things the story points out is that Alexander faced domestic violence charges after the incident occurred, that her husband Rico Gray admitted to lying to protect Alexander, and that Zimmerman never actually used the Stand Your Ground defense during his trial. “Alexander’s actions immediately before and after she discharged her firearm call into question her claim that she had no choice but to fire at Gray,” the story states. In the interest of showing all sides of this situation, we recommend you check this one out. (via David Putney)

The Marissa Alexander story has been floating around online ever since the George Zimmerman verdict went down, but this piece, by the conservative media watchdog site Media Trackers, suggests that there’s more to the case than has been previously reported. The report, while disagreeing with the premise of the case being a “reverse Trayvon Martin situation,” is nonetheless a fair assessment of the situation, relying on the facts of the case as well as court documents to show the complexity of Alexander’s case. Eventually, it leans on this point:

If anything, Alexander’s case is an indictment of Florida’s mandatory minimum sentencing requirements, not its self-defense laws. State prosecutors initially offered Alexander a plea deal of three years in prison. She rejected the deal. Upon conviction, she was sentenced to a mandatory minimum of 20 years in prison. Under Florida law, often referred to as “10-20-Life” for its tiered minimum sentencing requirements, any person convicted of aggravated assault combined with the discharge of a deadly weapon “shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of 20 years.”

In Alexander’s case, she might have received a lesser sentence under Florida law if she had killed Gray and been convicted of manslaughter rather than shooting at him and missing.

Among the things the story points out is that Alexander faced domestic violence charges after the incident occurred, that her husband Rico Gray admitted to lying to protect Alexander, and that Zimmerman never actually used the Stand Your Ground defense during his trial. “Alexander’s actions immediately before and after she discharged her firearm call into question her claim that she had no choice but to fire at Gray,” the story states. In the interest of showing all sides of this situation, we recommend you check this one out(via David Putney)

19:34 // 9 months ago
16:18 // 9 months ago
July 15, 2013
Cases are brought on the merits. The merits are evaluated by the professionals at the Department of Justice. That’s not something the president involves himself in.
Jay Carney • Responding to a reporter’s question,regarding the possibility that President Obama might be involved in the Department of Justice’s review of possible federal charges to be filed against George Zimmerman, during a morning briefing at the White House on Monday. President Obama has offered little in the way of opinion on the matter since Zimmerman’s verdict was revealed on Saturday, instead urging the country to remain calm in the wake of the jury’s decision. source
15:29 // 9 months ago
July 13, 2013
The loss of Trayvon Martin’s life, everyone should and must agree, was horrible. But nearly as big a loss would be to consider the issues of racism and access to firearms and use of force now closed, resolved. They aren’t. They remain painful gashes in America’s complex and history-laden system of jurisprudence that the Trayvon Martin killing only broadened.
Philip Bump of The Atlantic Wire says the verdict shouldn’t prevent us from looking for more answers to why Trayvon Martin’s death happened.
23:42 // 9 months ago
Trayvon’s father Tracy, on the verdict. Three tweets clearly written with a heavy heart.

Trayvon’s father Tracy, on the verdict. Three tweets clearly written with a heavy heart.

23:20 // 9 months ago
An atrocity…A slap in the face to those that believe in justice. A sad day in this country.

Al Sharpton

(via humanrightswatch)

23:12 // 9 months ago
22:50 // 9 months ago
It means there was reasonable doubt. They just could not put the pieces together.
Jury consultant and body language expert Susan Constantine, speaking to USA Today of the jury in the Zimmerman trial—which she had studied closely, attending the proceedings multiple times during the trial.
22:32 // 9 months ago
George Zimmerman cannot be guilty of manslaughter by committing a merely negligent act or if the killing was either justifiable or excusable homicide. Each of us has a duty to act reasonably toward others. If there is a violation of that duty, without any conscious intention to harm, that violation is negligence.
Jury instructions from the George Zimmerman trial • Detailing the nature of the alternate, lesser manslaughter option in the George Zimmerman trial, an option the jury ultimately declined, acquitting Zimmerman minutes ago. source
22:32 // 9 months ago