This past Saturday night, a Florida jury found George Zimmerman not guilty of all charges relating to the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. The controversial decision provoked a fierce debate across the Web, including in our own comments sections. Here are 10 comments our readers posted about the Zimmerman verdict that stood out. (Some have been lightly edited for clarity.)
Remember, OJ got off too. Not guilty doesn't mean innocent.
After listening to the jury members, I understand their decision. The fault here not just George Zimmerman, its principally the law in Florida which allows someone to use deadly force even when they are the ones that provoked the incident.
George Zimmerman may have acted within the law, but he made just [about] every single bad decision possible to make sure that this tragedy happened the way it did. It wasn't murder but it was negligent homicide/manslaughter.
This was not an unavoidable altercation like the Bernie Geotz case. George Zimmerman made choices all of them bad or reckless and he should be punished for it (which will probably happen in the civil trial).
If anyone over the age of 30 was even remotely surprised (let alone shocked) by the verdict, then you've absolutely been sleepwalking through your life.
What do you mean black and white people see this differently? White people are no more a monolith than black people are. This white person considers the whole affair from the racial profiling through the failure to arrest through the acquittal to be a travesty of justice. I am angry. I am troubled. I am disgusted. I am afraid. I am furious. I am depressed. What George Zimmerman doesn't get, however, is that for him this is not the end of the case. It is just one stage of the beginning.
I will always believe that we all have a natural born right to defend ourselves, our families and our property. Does not matter who you are.
All—and I mean all—of my white friends and family, and I, myself, disagree vehemently with the verdict. Maybe it's because we're educated and many uneducated white people don't understand what really happened. I don't know. What I do know is it's not going to help racism between black and white people to assume all white and all black people see this so differently. That just isn't factually true.
Liberal white America, firmly in control of the mainstream media, convicted George Zimmerman day one, then proceeded to fan the flames of racial tension for months. If they weren't doctoring tapes on NBC to make Zimmerman appear racist, they were calling him a white-hispanic, and this at the flagship of liberal media, the New York Times. They justify this by saying he was half white. Really? How many times did they call our current President a white-black?
All poor Trayvon had to do was walk away and he would be alive right now, but his parents taught him to seek conflict and conflict he found. Just as much the parents’ fault as Zimmerman’s.
I really don't understand America. Any other job—say a bus driver—where the operator is negligent in carrying out his duties—say making text call while driving—and that negligence results in death, then that is criminal negligence causing death and that drier would go to prison. But a neighborhood watch person who carries gun in violation of his duties and pursues a "suspicious" person in violation of his duties is responsible for the death of someone because of these violations of his duties gets off.
This could go on for a while. I'm signing off only to say: a young boy was killed, it could have been my son, or yours. Let's pray for the families wounded hearts.”