After the 7-13-2013 verdict in the George Zimmerman trial in Sanford, FL was handed down (allowing the neighborhood watchman to go free after murdering 17-year-old Trayvon Martin last year), US Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD) told those who were looking for a different verdict from the six-member jury: "Justice was done. Get over it."
I've got news for the sole Maryland Republican currently in the US House:
It's NOT that simple to get over the verdict.
Yes, some people argue that the six women who sat on the jury were only working with the evidence presented them during the trial...and when you're a jury member, you're supposed to work with the facts presented in the trial you're involved in.
I just feel as if not enough of the facts were brought out during one of the most heavily-watched trials in years.
And Zimmerman's act wouldn't have even come to trial to begin with if all kinds of people- especially Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton (Martin's parents) and civil rights activist Al Sharpton (he hosts MSNBC's Politics Nation series)- hadn't demanded a trial.
What's more, Zimmerman wouldn't have gotten arrested if all kinds of people- especially Sybrina Fulton, Tracy Martin, and Al Sharpton- hadn't called for the Sanford Police Department to act.
From what I watched of the coverage of the trial, I don't remember either the prosecutors or the defense attorneys calling any SPD officials (especially Bill Lee, the police chief who was in charge 2-26-2012, the day of the shooting) to the witness stand.
What if Lee had to testify during the Zimmerman trial?
If some of Sanford's Finest had been subpoenaed and been called on to testify this month, I would've felt better about the verdict. If some of Florida's government leaders had been told to testify in Sanford, I'd have felt better about the verdict the six women arrived at.
That's right...Florida's government leaders.
After all, in 2005, the Sunshine State's then governor, John E. Bush (that's his real name, folks; I still can't bring myself to use that phony-baloney nickname of his), signed the so-called "Stand Your Ground" Act into law. (The state that gave us Pro Football Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith is one of twenty now boasting the law where you can kill anybody if you "believe" you're in danger of "great bodily harm.")
And so, those six jurors used Florida's "SYG" law...freeing our fortysomething from having to use said law in his defense.
Never mind that a police dispatcher told Zimmerman that night NOT to get out of his (George's) vehicle and follow Trayvon Martin...the same Trayvon Martin who had as much right to walk through that same gated Sanford neighborhood as George Zimmerman did.
After the trial, Rick Scott (Florida's current governor) met with people who protested the verdict...and then he declared this past Sunday a statewide day of prayer.
How phony and useless.
Scott's declaration struck me as useless and phony on account of his continued defense of his state's "Stand Your Ground" law.
The law didn't help Marissa Alexander, who got a 20-year sentence for shooting into a wall to scare off her abusive husband. And "SYG" didn't help Orville Lee Wollard, also serving a 20-year imprisonment because he fired a gun inside his own house...to frighten off his daughter's boyfriend.
The law (and its misuse) has caused many big-name celebrities (such as Stevie Wonder) to boycott Florida as long as "SYG" is in place there.
And if you're a parent of a teenager (or of a child of any age) and you've wanted to visit or revisit Florida, and you don't agree with the decision to let that neighborhood watchman go free, I'm with you.
Just don't let your babies grow up wanting to go to Disney World.
It's forty miles southwest of Sanford.