In a bizarre, hour-long interview last night, Sean Hannity donned the role of defense attorney for George Zimmerman and spoon-fed him a series of leading questions designed to acquit Zimmerman in the Trayvon Martin shooting. Hannity was such a lapdog that he didn’t even bat an eye or challenge a word when Zimmerman said, “It was all God’s plan” that he shot the unarmed Martin. Nor did Hannity pay attention to Zimmerman’s astonishing statement that after he shot Martin, he never made an effort to find out his condition. Hannity even seemed to agree when Zimmerman said he felt he was due an apology from civil rights leaders. The fact that Zimmerman’s real attorney, who was present throughout, barely said a word suggests that there was very little daylight between his and Hannity’s roles. But while Hannity made a splashy show of sympathy for Zimmerman, it's hard not to think that the only person who benefitted from this spectacle was Hannity, himself.
I’ve written many times before about Hannity’s penchant for helping out white guys in racial trouble. Black folks? Not so much. So it would only have been a surprise if Hannity had not leapt to Zimmerman’s side. In fact, he already had, during a previous softball interview with Zimmerman’s father.
But last night, George Zimmerman got a full hour for an effort that will almost certainly harm Zimmerman’s legal defense. Greta Van Susteren, a real-life attorney, wrote that she couldn’t fathom why Zimmerman’s attorney had allowed him to do the interview. Noting that she always advised her clients not to say anything, she wrote in a blog post:
You can be sure that the prosecutor taped this interview and that if Zimmerman takes the witness stand at his own trial, and says anything different on the witness stand from what he said to Sean, the prosecutor will play the tape and tell the jury he is lying — either in the tape or on the witness stand. This interview will likely help the prosecutor — it will give the prosecutor leads and it tells the prosecutor how the defense intends to fight the charges.
It makes me wonder how desperate Zimmerman is that he would risk his legal case for a Hail Mary pass in the court of public opinion via Sean Hannity. And how desperate is his lawyer that he would allow such a thing? Or is there some kind of other relationship going on?
Whatever the reason, Hannity’s questions went beyond softball and sailed right into the realm of advocacy.
When Zimmerman said Martin asked what his problem was, Hannity helpfully interjected that Martin had asked what his “expletive problem” was. Later, Hannity helped embellish Zimmerman’s telling of the confrontation. “So, he said to you, ‘You have ‘expletive,’ you have a problem.’ Those were the exact words he used. You remember it.”
But that’s not what Zimmerman had just said. He had said, “I immediately went to grab my phone, this time to call 911 instead of the non-emergency and when I reached into my pants pocket… it wasn’t there… I looked up, he punched me and broke my nose.”
Hannity: And you said to him, "I don’t have a problem."
Zimmerman: Yes, sir.
Hannity also put this spin in the form of a question forward: “At what moment, do you remember, when you literally – do you remember when you thought, ‘I may die?’ …’Cause you said that you felt you feared for your life. Do you remember the exact moment when you felt that?”
Later, when Zimmerman told Hannity that Martin had said he was going to kill him, Hannity affirmed it: “He said those words.”
Noting that there’s “been some dispute” as to who was screaming on the 911 tapes, Hannity asked, “Was that your voice screaming?” Zimmerman said it was his and Hannity accepted it. “That was your voice.” Hannity added a bit more authority to the conclusion. “And the police even said at one time they heard 14 screams. You were screaming that loud.”
Hannity continued, “And you said to the police at one point that he put his hand over your mouth. Do you think that was to silence you from screaming?” And, “Was there a conscious thought that went through your head that you thought you were gonna die and that you had to take this, you had to get your weapon and fire? “
Hannity – who could well be more of a bigot than Zimmerman – went after his usual targets, the civil rights leaders. He asked Zimmerman, “What do you want to say to people that did rush to judgment, that suggested there was racial profiling in this case?”
“That I’m not a racist and I’m not a murderer,” Zimmerman said.
Then Hannity asked if there was anything Zimmerman regrets about his actions that night.
Hannity: Do you regret getting out of the car to follow Trayvon that night?”
Zimmerman: No, sir.
Hannity: Do you regret that you, you had a gun that night?
Zimmerman: No, sir.
Hannity: Do you feel you wouldn’t be here for this interview if you didn’t have that gun?
Zimmerman: No, sir… I feel that is all God’s plan and (not) for me to second guess it or judge it.
Hannity asked if there was “anything you might do differently in retrospect, now that time has passed a little bit?”
Zimmerman: No, sir.
Next, Hannity was evidently so busy advancing his agenda that he let Zimmerman’s astounding lack of concern for Martin go right by unremarked.
Hannity: Did you look over at Trayvon (after he was shot). You obviously at some point recognized that he had been shot. You didn’t know it in the beginning. Did you look over at him at any time and realize he was in really bad shape?
Zimmerman: No, sir.
In other words, Zimmerman knew that Martin had been shot and he made no effort to find out if he was OK or needed medical attention. But Hannity moved right along to discuss “a report” that Hannity had offered to pay Zimmerman’s legal fees.
Zimmerman: Never happened.
Hannity: And just for the record, you’ve been offered nothing to do this interview. And what we’ve talked about specifically was about your case and only about your case and that’s it. And I was asking you for an interview.
And yet, Hannity indicated there had been more than just talking about the case between them.
Hannity: You had told me that you were alone, in a hotel room, hadn’t talked to your family in weeks, you were armed, didn’t have an attorney at that point… Where were you mentally then? ‘Cause when I was talking to you, I was concerned.
I would not be surprised if Hannity didn’t provide some other kind of help to Zimmerman – besides playing the role of his defense attorney on TV. Hannity kept saying Zimmerman had not been “offered” anything which was the same wording as Fox’s official denial: “Sean Hannity has never offered to pay any legal fees or any fee associated with George Zimmerman.” I would not be surprised if Hannity hadn’t just gone ahead and donated or provided some other assistance. Like getting him a lawyer who would agree to reduce his fee or something like that.
Going back to his attacks on African Americans, Hannity said, “There was a bounty put on your head by the New Black Panther Party, ‘wanted: dead or alive.’ Nobody’s been arrested.”
This is an outright falsehood that Hannity has previously told. You can read the details about the arrest on FoxNews.com.
“You’ve had multiple death threats,” Hannity said. He went on to say, “Spike Lee is tweeting out what he thinks is your home address, the Rev. Al Sharpton and NBC News, you know, tries to use this case to bring up the issue of racial profiling. What do you say to Spike Lee, …Al Sharpton and those that rush to judgment?”
As I pointed out in another post, Hannity has had no problem making his own rush to judgment against African Americans: Think Abner Louima, Shirley Sherrod and ACORN.
Zimmerman replied, “I can’t guess what their motives are. I would just ask for an apology. I mean if I did something that was wrong, I would apologize.”
That last statement is just stunning. If Zimmerman was looking for sympathy, I doubt his defiant victimhood and lack of remorse for his role is going to do him much good.
In the last segment, Hannity deliberately portrayed Zimmerman as a non-racist.
Hannity: There was an incident that I read – is this true? Where you took on the local police department as it related to another case… I think it was a homeless man… that had been beaten up… and you came out publicly in favor of the person that was beaten up.
As Zimmerman told the story about how he had apparently advocated for the person, Hannity made a point of asking, “Is this person a minority?”
Zimmerman: Yes, sir.
Hannity: That you felt was mistreated by the local police.
Hannity also made a point of bringing up that Zimmerman took “as many as two, three lie detector tests” whose results were “no deception indicated.” He noted, “You did that voluntarily.”
Finally, at the end, Zimmerman said, “I do wish that there was something, anything I could have done that wouldn’t have put me in the position where I had to take his life and I do want to tell everyone – my wife and my family, my parents, my grandmother, the Martins, the City of Sanford and America that I’m sorry that this happened. I hate to think that because of this incident, because of my actions, it’s polarized and divided America. And I’m truly sorry.”
As unappealingly as I thought Zimmerman came across, I do feel bad for him. I could see how friends might be very hard to come by these days and how he would be vulnerable to Hannity’s approaches. But in the end, the only person Hannity did any favors for in this interview was Hannity, himself - and his bigoted ego.
Thank you so much. I don’t know if you saw the actual interview but it was just astounding.
Beautiful, heartfelt, writing, and the pure truth to hannityâs career of deliberate lying and vicious racism !
He tried to get President Obama to do an interview with him by offering money to his impoverish half-brother, but Obama said no. Obama knows how this clown operates and refused to fall into his trap.
Newzhound, Hannocchio won’t interview Sandusky, or anything associated with child molesters, and he knows why.
The Stop Hannity Express continues to expose Handout Hannochio to all the masses. There are two sides of him, and we know both of them. He can fool his followers, but he can’t fool us because we know his dirty linen.
George Zimmerman will end of going to prison because of this interview.
NOTE TO HANNITY
Did you pay Hal Turner’s legal defense fund or Robert Allen Stanford’s? How about Bernie Kerik? Ann Coulter’s or Rush Limbaugh’s? Your buddies have a nasty habit of having run-ins with the law.
You know where else this type of behavior is well-documented? Cult leaders and pimps. Go read up how Jim Jones and Charles Manson recruited their followers not to mention the stories of vulnerable teens and young women on the streets. A little sympathy from a “kind” stranger who offers some type of help (shelter, food), seemingly for nothing until the stranger suggests (in a very indirect way) that it’s time the poor soul repays the kindness.
I do think that Hannity is using this guy to boost his sagging ratings. He’s not above using even someone who he generally supports. Even if that harms the other guy. Hannity loves Hannity, very much. Zimmerman will regret this interview for a very long time.
Will killer Zimmerman also accept a long prison sentence as part of God’s plan for him? There may be a few black prisoners in the Raiford Florida prison that will gladly “stand their ground” against a vigilante who stalked and killed an unarmed black teenager.
Absolutely typical for these scummy fucks. It’s never their fault….it’s God that made them do it! They are only pawns in whatever chess game Gawd is playing at the moment.
Aren’t these the same people that preach personal responsibility? Or is that just for ‘others’?