Patterico's Pontifications


The Zimmerman Trial Is Not About Whether Trayvon Martin “Deserved” to Die; UPDATE: Reports Say Jury Has Reached a Verdict; UPDATE: NOT GUILTY

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 4:13 pm

A reporter named Ben Montgomery cluelessly reports in the Orlando Sentinel:

George Zimmerman shot a 17-year-old through the heart on a rainy night in February 2012. Now, finally, nearly 17 months later, a jury will try to decide whether the dead boy deserved it.

Zimmerman contends he did.

No. A thousand times: no.

It would be really great if Big Media could get this point right, because it’s as important as it is simple.

This trial is not about whether Trayvon Martin “deserved” to die.

It is about whether the prosecution can prove to a unanimous jury beyond a reasonable doubt based on the evidence submitted in court that George Zimmerman did not act in reasonable self defense.

Period, end of story.

I have spoken with a lot of people about this case, and some people don’t buy every aspect of George Zimmerman’s story. They think it’s too perfect; or they think he profiled Martin; or they think George Zimmerman was a coward with a gun.

I don’t buy any of that — but even if you do, none of that relieves the state of the burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman did not act in self-defense. Even if you think he’s a lying racist, the prosecution still has to prove he did not act in self-defense. And even cowards with guns have a right to self defense.

And the trial is not about whether Martin “deserved” it. I suspect the whole thing was largely a giant misunderstanding. And if I’m right, Martin didn’t “deserve” to die.

That doesn’t mean Zimmerman is guilty.

I have decided it’s time for a new thread. Comments are open.

UPDATE: Reports say the jury has reached a verdict. Stand by.

UPDATE x2: The jury found Zimmerman not guilty.

That was the right verdict.

Your Taxpayer Dollars at Work: NTSB Confirms “Sum Ting Wong,” “Wi Tu Lo,” and “Ho Lee Fuk” Piloted the Crashed Asiana Airlines Flight

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:22 am

Someone gave a local TV station the following purported names of the airline crew from that Asiana Airlines crash. The names included the following:

  • Captain Sum Ting Wong
  • Wi Tu Lo
  • Ho Lee Fuk
  • Bang Ding Ow

The TV station dutifully checked the names and then rushed them onto the air:

One wonders if the anchor realized what was happening as she read the names out loud, probably for the first time.

I wondered when I first saw this clip if it was a tasteless Onion-style joke newscast. The answer is: nope, that’s a real TV newscast. Power Line links a USA Today article confirming that the NTSB did in fact confirm the names:

In seeking to verify the names with the National Transportation Safety Board, an unidentified KTVU reporter who made the call to the government agency’s public affairs office didn’t read the names out loud. KTVU didn’t clarify how the names were conveyed to the NTSB representative, who turned out to be a summer intern.

The KTVU reporter also failed to ask for the identi[t]y of the NTSB intern who confirmed the spellings of the names.

“We heard this person verify the information without questioning who they were and then rushed the names on our noon newscast,” KTVU’s note read.

The NTSB also issued its apology late Friday afternoon for “inaccurate and offensive names that were mistakenly confirmed as those of the pilots.”

“A summer intern acted outside the scope of his authority when he erroneously confirmed the names of the flight crew on the aircraft,” its statement said. “The NTSB does not release or confirm the names of crewmembers or people involved in transportation accidents to the media. We work hard to ensure that only appropriate factual information regarding an investigation is released and deeply regret today’s incident. Appropriate actions will be taken to ensure that such a serious error is not repeated.”

The “summer intern” is no doubt a low-level employee from Cincinnati.

Thanks to redc1c4.

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