George Zimmerman received a fair trial, despite the best efforts of the mainstream media. Now that he has been found not guilty, many are calling for the US Department of Justice to investigate – and prosecute – him for violating Trayvon Martin’s civil rights. If the Feds prosecute Zimmerman, however, it would spell the end of justice in America.
As the NAACP – by definition, a racist organization – and the other usual suspects, such as Al Sharpton, call for the federal government to take action against Zimmerman, it is worth considering the consequences of such action.
The facts before us, whether one agrees, or not, with the verdict, are very clear: George Zimmerman shot and killed Trayvon Martin; Zimmerman was subsequently charged with second-degree murder and found not guilty. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), meanwhile, has already concluded that there is no evidence that Zimmerman was motivated by racism. As reported July 12, 2012 by the Orlando Sentinel and the on the website of the examiner, the FBI have already investigated Zimmerman’s motives. As part of that investigation, the Bureau interviewed more than 30 people, including family, friends and co-workers of the defendant. According to the FBI document reporting the findings of their investigation, one of the questions asked of each interviewee was whether Zimmerman had ever “displayed any bias, prejudice or irrational attitude against any class of citizen, religious, racial, gender or ethnic groups.” None of those interviewed answered “yes” to this question.
One of those interviewed, a former girlfriend, filed a domestic violence injunction against Zimmerman, in 2005, according to the Orlando Sentinel article. The newspaper quotes the former girlfriend as describing Zimmerman as being
“protective and territorial” toward her and “having a bad temper,” She told the FBI that he socialized and played basketball with whites, blacks and Hispanics. A FBI agent quoted her as saying that Zimmerman “never exhibited any biases or prejudices against anyone and did not use racial epithets of any kind,” an agent quoted her as saying.
An investigation by the Reuters news agency revealed more evidence that Zimmerman was not a racist; after a resident in the housing complex for which Zimmerman acted as a neighborhood watch captain fell victim to an attempted burglary, Zimmerman visited her and offered her support – even bringing her a stronger lock for her back door. The woman, who did not wish to identify herself, is black, as are 20 percent of the community’s residents, according to the US Census.
It should be noted, at this point, that the Justice Department has yet to announce any intention of bringing charges against Zimmerman. Should it do so, it is be beyond doubt that the DoJ would be prosecuting a private citizen – already acquitted of allegedly committing a crime – either out of racially motivated revenge or simply to appease one disgruntled section of the population.
Additionally; taking into account that a Doj agency has, themselves, concluded that there is no credible case for George Zimmerman being a racist. The ‘double jeopardy’ rule prevents Federal prosecution of George Zimmerman for second-degree murder. Therefore, it actually seems unlikely that the Doj could possibly come up with a case against him.
A free society should never have to witness the federal prosecution of a private citizen, on the grounds that the individual’s acquittal in criminal court did not satisfy the DoJ, or one section of society. The authority invested in all lower courts would be invalidated. The final arbiter of who is, and is not, guilty would be the federal government. The United States is perilously close to tyranny; such a development would complete the journey. Zimmerman’s prosecution by the feds would, truly, spell the end of justice in America.
An editorial by Graham J Noble