First, the only reason we have heard about this incident is because Zimmerman is not black. If he were, this story would have been local — just another “black kills black” story. Sharpton and Jackson would be waiting for other headlines to exploit.
The media, today as in 1890, do not care what black criminals do to blacks. Whites really do not care much. If the crimes are contained in the ghetto, the white community pays little attention. Blacks know this. It angers them. It should. The law should apply to all people, irrespective of race, but it doesn’t. All races should be equally protected against violence, but they aren’t.
Second, I grew up in a family headed by an FBI agent. That was in the 1950s. Here were the two rules that FBI agents were required to follow:
1. Never aim a gun at anyone unless you are prepared to pull the trigger.
2. Always shoot to kill.
When an FBI agent pulled a gun on you, you took it seriously, because he took it seriously. Pointing a gun at someone was deadly serious.
In 1980, I took a combat handgunning course from Col. Jeff Cooper, the master trainer. I went to his Gunsite training facility in Arizona. Cooper and I had been in grad school together. He was a scholar, a widely read historian, and the most dangerous man in America if you pulled a gun on him. He was a warrior. “I’m old,” he said. “I would just as soon die with my boots on. The man pointing a gun at me is not equally ready to die. If he has not yet pulled the trigger, something is holding him back. I have two seconds on him before he can react. That’s all I need.” If you ever saw him in action, you know that it would not take him two seconds to draw, aim, and fire. He was always armed.
Here is what he told us.
If you pull a weapon, you are responsible for your actions. You must be sure that the person you are about to shoot is a threat to an innocent person. You must not pull the trigger unless an innocent person’s life is at stake. You then shoot to kill.
These are the basics of armed self-defense.
Cooper believed it was morally reprehensible not to stand your ground. Armed or not, if he had been on a hijacked airliner, at least one of the hijackers would have died. Of that, I am sure.
With respect to the shooting, let me state the obvious: If a grand jury votes to try him, Zimmerman will get his day in court. If found guilty of premeditated murder, he should be executed. Liberals don’t like to hear this, but I do not write for liberals.
If he is declared innocent by the jury, anyone who calls for his murder should be tried as a felon. Vigilante justice is injustice.
Anyone who sets fire to a building in a riot should be arrested for arson.
The court of public opinion is not a court with the authority to impose violence lawfully.
We have courts because we want justice. We want justice because we want peace. The jury system is the backbone of justice in the United States. This is where a dozen citizens can decide guilt or innocence, without the presence of any bureaucrat. Anything that undermines respect for juries is a threat to our liberty and social peace.