Ann Coulter on Stand Your Ground Laws and the George Zimmerman Case

I thought that Ann Coulter made a valid point (or at least a point that deserves consideration) about the Stand Your Ground law on ABC This Week (see the transcript here).  (Of course, I’m not a lawyer, but she is.)  Ann was essentially disputing the idea that the shooting of Trayvon Martin had anything to do with the Stand Your Ground law, which states that, when you defend yourself, you don’t have to retreat but can stand your ground and use deadly force against your assailant.

For Ann, the Stand Your Ground law is irrelevant regardless of which narrative you accept.  In the narrative that George Zimmerman was following Trayvon Martin and then shot him, George Zimmerman is doing the stalking, so of course he’s not retreating.  He’s the aggressor.  In the narrative that Travon Martin was on top of George Zimmerman, George Zimmerman cannot retreat because he’s unable to get up.  He can claim self-defense in that case, even apart from the Stand Your Ground law.

This makes a degree of sense, but I wonder if possible complexity within the narratives could make the Stand Your Ground laws relevant.  Regarding the first narrative, suppose that Zimmerman was following Trayvon Martin and Martin responded by fighting with him, placing Zimmerman in a position where he’d have to defend himself.  Could Zimmerman claim self-defense, when he (Zimmerman) started the conflict by following Trayvon Martin?  Regarding the second narrative, was Zimmerman always on the ground?  Was there never an opportunity for him to retreat?

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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1 Response to Ann Coulter on Stand Your Ground Laws and the George Zimmerman Case

  1. Brad says:

    Everything about this story is misleading. Including the reality the kid attacked Zimmerman and Zimmerman was defending himself. If Obama had a son he would look like Tyrone Woodfork. But that won’t get him votes. Yep, last week, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, a black teen named Tyrone Woodfork severely beat an elderly couple. The couple had been married for 65 years. Media reports failed to mention the race of Woodford (black) and the victims (white). Obama could give a damn about Trevon Martin or his family. He’s just using them. Obama is a colossal opportunist. He grabs any opportunity for being in spotlight. Disgusting how Obama uses people in their times of crisis to further himself. Typical narcissiitic personality disorder. Oh, and Obama is white. Or is he a black white? Or white black? See how silly this all is. If we really were NOT judging people by their skin we would never have labeled Obama the first BLACK president. Obama’s black roots aren’t even in America anyway. What a joke this all is. We may as well elect Nancy Grace.


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