This morning on Fox & Friends, Geraldo Rivera didn’t just think Zimmerman should be acquitted, he gave his personal stamp of approval on the shooting death of “hoodie-wearing” Trayvon Martin by saying that each member of the jury “would have shot and killed” him “a lot sooner than George Zimmerman did.” (h/t Think Progress)
Here’s Rivera’s full quote:
I see those six ladies in the jury putting themselves on that rainy night, in that housing complex that has just been burglarized by three or four different groups of black youngsters from the adjacent community. So it’s a dark night, a 6-foot-2-inch, hoodie-wearing stranger is in the immediate housing complex. How would the ladies of that jury have reacted? I submit that if they were armed, they would have shot and killed Trayvon Martin a lot sooner than George Zimmerman did. This is self defense.
Off camera, you can hear co-host Steve Doocy respond by saying, “Sure.”
Later, Rivera added, “I believe that George Zimmerman will be acquitted. I really do believe that and I hope that by saying it out front and other commentators joining me, that this will mitigate any possible outrage.”
That last comment is a perfect example of the upside-down, race-baiting rhetoric that has been the hallmark of Fox News’ coverage of the Zimmerman/Martin issue. In addition to more or less declaring Zimmerman innocent long before the trial concluded (or even began), they’ve been sticking fingers in the eyes of African Americans by pretending Mark Fuhrman is a neutral legal analyst (despite his lack of a law degree), promoting Zimmerman’s Martin-demonizing defense and his defense fund and generally portraying Zimmerman as the real victim in the case. Geraldo Rivera helped lead the Zimmerman-Appreciation-Society parade early on with his own inflammatory attacks on Martin’s attire and demeanor.
And if all that is not bad enough, consider Sean Hannity’s race-baiting attacks on Al Sharpton last night because he’s calling for peace and calm in the wake of a verdict.
If Rivera really cares about “mitigating any possible outrage,” he might want to take a good look at the kind of ginned up, deliberately-divisive and inflammatory outrage that goes on right under his nose at Fox News.
But if Rivera really thinks his suggestion that Zimmerman’s only real offense was not killing Martin sooner will help mitigate any outrage – well, he ought to have his head examined. But even that would be preferable to Rivera’s and Fox’s more likely goal: using an acquittal to further denigrate anyone who thinks Zimmerman should have been found guilty.
Video below via Media Matters.
YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY NOTHING BUT A PURE 100% DYED-IN-THE WOOL RACIST REDNECK!
Also why did Trayvon not go HOME?
Everybody is whining like Trayvon got shot at 100 ft in the back. Not True.
This commenter has been banned. Comment is being saved for the record.
I, too, think that anybody being punched would probably be able only to yelp not yell anything intelligible.
Zimmerman is not one of those people- He premeditated the crime, disobeyed police orders to stalk his mark, and picked a fight thinking “Stand your Ground” would save him.
Even the NRA knows his story was BS, they told him to not plead self-defense in court.
I still haven’t figured out what exactly this poor kid did wrong that ANYONE would be justified in killing him.
I’m frankly just disturbed by the way this case has been handled by AM radio and Fox News. It’s a genuinely scary thing to me to see people cheerleading the death of a 17 year old.
Let’s accept Zimmerman’s version that Martin was a troublemaker, that he was up to no good when he spotted him, that Martin got into fights, that he had marijuana in his system, and that he was a 6.2 aggressive teen — not a twelve year old helpless boy.
This still leaves us with the burden of explaining those heart retching screams — loud enough to be captured on the neighbor’s 911 call.
Zimmerman said elsewhere that the screams are from him because he was being pummeled by the unexpectedly aggressive Martin. The jury certainly has sufficient evidence of Martin’s aggressiveness, even though Zimmerman did not testify or give us an opportunity to probe further.
Yet, this being the case that we have, we ought to look further at what is reasonable — how likely is that things happened the way Zimmerman says they did?
Is it likely for a man to cry for help when he is on the ground with someone sitting on him and punching repeatedly? Might he be too busy dealing with this to have an opportunity to cry for help — in that way that we hear it on the 911 call? Yet, he could have done just that afterwards, or in between bouts.
The 911 recording we have, however, only captures the tail end of the fight. What we hear are not the ordinary screams of a man getting punched, pummeled or pounded. Rather, they are the pleas for help by someone who is not only in grave danger, but a danger that he knows and appreciates. Indeed, the cries are of such desperation that they pierce the coldest of hearts.
Zimmerman says that it was he who was screaming and we want to believe him. We should give him the benefit of all reasonable doubt because our system of justice prefers that ten guilty men go free rather than one innocent be found guilty. Moreover, Zimmerman’s version is plausible if Martin was prying the gun away from him. Indeed, let’s assume that Martin had grabbed the gun and was about to shoot Zimmerman. Does this fit with what we hear on the recorded 911 call?
Does it fit with the lack of any physical evidence of Martin’s DNA on Zimmerman’s gun? There should have been some, even if Martin had just touched it, let alone grabbed it, or struggled for it. Indeed, we might expect that a struggle for control would have left a heavier DNA imprint. Yet, it left none.
Still, let’s disregard this lack of Martin’s physical evidence on the gun and again give Zimmerman, the benefit of reasonable doubt — the kind we give to our most important affairs.
Is there anything else that get’s in the way with Zimmerman’s version of what happened?
What about silence, the dead silence that we hear after the shot? Does it tell us anything? If Zimmerman was the one crying for help that eerie silence is odd. We might expect the cries to be interrupted by the struggle of the fight, or for the gun. Yet, they are steady and relentless all the way to the end when the shot is heard. Such a steady tempo does not indicate a struggle or a pounding on the pavement.
Those repeating howls are more from someone who is being held at gun point; someone who has felt the hard steel of a gun in his side; someone who is told in no uncertain terms that he is about to die — and believes it.
If this is how things happened, then the person who fired the gun had a depraved heart because he heard the pleas for mercy by another human being but ignored them. A conviction for murder is thus in order.
And we can arrive at this conclusion by giving Zimmerman all the benefit of the doubt — except what is not supported by the physical evidence and by common sense.
Which naturally means A FATTER PAYCHECK from Herr Goebbels II (i.e. Murdoch) and his faithful corpulent toady Jabba the Ailes.
You have great writing skills and do an excellent job of making your points. You’re a great teacher and I really enjoy reading your comments. Thank you!
By Rivera’s reasoning, I should be able to profile, follow and stalk someone I don’t like on sight, pick a fight with them, and then if I’m losing the fight, I’m entitled to shoot them to death by claiming “self defense”. He’s got the situation completely backwards. How about if the jury is looking at the situation from Trayvon Martin’s perspective – what would they do if they were walking home on a dark, rainy night and a stranger was following them in a sinister manner? Would they think it was okay for that stranger to shoot them to death?
Rivera gets bonus points for playing the race card about young black men.