Tag Archives: United States

Why was the Zimmerman Case So Politically Polarizing?

Image courtesy of Foxnews.com

George Zimmerman.                           Image courtesy of Foxnews.com

July 13, 2013, an all women jury consisting of 6 individuals found George Zimmerman, who shot and killed 17 year-old Trayvon Martin in February of 2012, not guilty of second-degree murder, and not guilty of manslaughter.

Image courtesy of Newsbusters.org

Trayvon Martin.                              Image courtesy of Newsbusters.org

The Zimmerman trial was unlike any murder/manslaughter trial that the 21st century had witnessed. While the familiar “who attacked who” aspect was the focus of the jury, the media’s attention was on issues of race and gun control.

While many believe that the media’s portrayal of the accused Zimmerman was biased and over-inflated, there are still a lot of people who agree that the shooting (or at least the events leading up to it) was racially driven.

The interesting phenomenon, however, is the fact that the United States was split on the issue according to their political stances.  Below is a video of the Liberal news source, The Young Turks , criticizing the Conservative Fox News Network for supporting Zimmerman during the trial.

According to Washingtonpost.com, “Nearly six in ten (59 percent) Democrats say the shooting was unjustified while just one in five (22 percent) Republicans say the same.” But how could a murder trial with so many complications become so political?

The Zimmerman trial added fuel to the already burning issue of gun control in the united states. Typically, Republicans wish to keep guns available and legal, and Democrats want to put stricter laws on guns or have them banned altogether.

The death of unarmed Martin had the potential of being a catalyst for stricter gun control laws. The tragedy also brought Florida’s “stand your ground” law (the law that led to Zimmerman’s acquittal ) into public view, which caused an outcry among many anti-gun activists.

Conservative news sources began negatively  portraying Trayvon Martin, and showed support for Zimmerman, brandishing him a victim:

Liberal news sources showed support for Martin, and depicted Zimmerman as a liar, and a murderer:

The most traumatizing thing learned from the trial was that the political system had the ability to twist the media, even in the case of a young man’s death.  The fact that the citizens of the United States are more likely to support their political parties than mourn a tragedy is also devastating.

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Three Great Political Bloggers

Taegan Goddard

politicalwire.com

goddard

Goddard, former policy adviser to U.S. Senator Donald Riegle and Governor Lowell Weicker, uses his political knowledge to inform his readers of what’s happening in the world around them.

According to Goddard, the site is completely non-partisan, and he himself is an Independent.  However, his blog site has been listed as one of the “10 Popular Liberal Blogs” on blogs.com

Politicalwire covers everything from current military actions to political sex scandals and, in my opinion, remains fairly unbiased.  This makes Goddard a great person to follow if you’re looking to simply read the news, without having to do research later.

Paul Krugman

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/

NYTOped NYT OPED mugshot headshot portait

Krugman is  an economics expert, a liberal and an author, which makes him a liberal blog reader’s best friend.

His blog on the New York Times’ website focuses mostly on economic issues in the United States, but also offers a left-leaning viewpoint of the way American trading, wealth distribution and economic politics are run.

Although this blog may not be a conservative’s favorite place to visit, it should be at least considered, given Krugman’s impressive stats.

Krugman is a Professor of Economics and International Affairs at Princeton University, columnist for the New York Times and has a BA from Yale and a Ph. D. from MIT.  On top of all that he is the author or editor of 20 books and more than 200 papers in professional journals and edited volumes.

Bill Maher

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bill-maher

maher

Another great liberal blogger, Maher is a political satirist, talk show host and comedian.

His blog entries on The Huffington Post’s website are brutally straight forward, hilarious and sometimes a little over the top.  He is not afraid to start “flame wars” with opposing political commentators, or to send insults at people who he believes are wrong.

Maher prides himself on being “a sane person” and has referred to himself as a progressive.  His sense of humor, though a bit brash, is well worth taking a trip over to his blog posts.

Although these three bloggers are all in the political line of work, each has their own charm to bring to the reader.  Goddard’s ability to remain unbiased (or as unbiased as you can find these days), Krugman’s experience and expertise in financial matters, and Maher’s talent of making politics uncomfortably funny are all three necessary if a reader wants to stay on top of the political world without getting too bored, or too much information from one place.

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