Letter: Stand your ground laws should have protected Trayvon Martin

July 18, 2013 

Mark Wilcox (Letters, July 18) who suggests that I wrote an uninformed letter (July 17), needs to improve his own reading skills.

He claims I inferred that George Zimmerman was a racist. I did no such thing. I criticized supporters of stand your ground laws for backing Zimmerman in his confrontation with Trayvon Martin, when it was Zimmerman who engaged and pursued Martin, thereby giving Martin very strong reason to feel endangered.

In my admittedly sarcastic letter I pointed out that under Florida’s stand your ground laws, it was Martin, not Zimmerman, who had the right to use lethal force to protect himself. For supporters of stand your ground to persist in upholding Zimmerman as the good guy in this unforgivable incident is for them to say that Martin could not exercise his rights under the law.

Because these people have been attacking Martin relentlessly for defending himself, I can only conclude they either don’t understand the laws they support or don’t believe that young black men are covered by them.

— David A. James



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