The “stand-your-ground” law was passed by the Florida Legislature five years ago.
Since then, more than 30 other states have passed similar laws. The public outcry, following the recent acquittal of George Zimmerman, has now made itself heard in the White House. President Obama in his ‘from the heart’ speech last week indicated a sympathetic understanding of the opposition to the law.
Al Sharpton can feel satisfaction that he got the president’s attention, with his high profile attacks on the law, and his demand for its repeal. It’s said that “adversity makes strange bedfellows.” The strangeness in this issue is Obama’s willingness to associate himself with a firebrand like Sharpton.
Especially since the president doesn’t seem to have much political support for his stance. Republican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer said last week that he supported ‘stand-your-ground” and Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal said: “I do not see any reason to change it.”
John Sides, associate professor of political science at George Washington University says:”The debate about stand-your-ground laws largely reproduces existing divisions in American politics, particularly between blacks and whites and between Democrats and Republicans.”
At Zimmerman’s trial, Judge Debra Nelson actually instructed the jury that they should acquit him if they believed that: “he had no duty to retreat and had the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he reasonably believed that it was necessary.”
Attorney General Eric Holder, is also following the mindset of Obama and Sharpton. He said in Orlando, at a conference of the NAACP, that the laws should be re-examined because they: “senselessly expand the concept of self-defense.”
While all these issues of life and death (literally) are being argued, Al Sharpton has discovered a way to exploit what he sees as Florida’s vulnerability to pressure. He proposed a nationwide boycott of Florida orange juice.
If that doesn’t cause the state to reverse its position on the ‘stand-your-ground’ law – what will? If you have other original ideas about suitable subjects for boycott, just jot them down in the comments feed below.
Photo credit: Zimbio.com