The Media’s Rush to Judgment of George Zimmerman

by GREGORY D. LEE April 4, 2012

The media's new poster child for victims of racism is Trayvon Martin. His death has marked the beginning of a media frenzy and brought out the usual race baiter suspects. Before the official police report has even been released, the Sanford City council, pressured by media reports, temporarily removed its police chief, Bill Lee, (no relation) and quickly replaced him with an interim chief, a black police captain from the department. Chief Lee was suspended because the State's Attorney wouldn't file charges against Zimmerman. Go figure.

Reverends Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson raced each other to Florida to be in the spotlight and organize rallies to demand the arrest of George Zimmerman. They maintain, along with a purported two million petitioners, that Zimmerman is a murderer who shot a "defenseless" black 17-year old juvenile armed only with a can of iced tea and a bag of Skittles. (Trayvon Martin is a lean 6-foot, 170 lbs.)

President Obama stirred up his political base, the same way he did after the arrest of his friend, Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. He said that if he had a son, he would look like Trayvon. At least he didn't say the Sanford, Florida police "acted stupidly" this time. He vowed to "get to the bottom of what happened."

Even after eyewitnesses began to emerge corroborating Zimmerman's version of the chain of events, including Martin knocking Zimmerman down and striking his head repeatedly on a concrete sidewalk, the frenzy grew even larger. The latest media revelation is a police videotape of Zimmerman, in handcuffs, exiting a police car and escorted into the station. Reporters and sympathetic talking heads all agreed that Zimmerman exhibited no visible signs of trauma to the back of his head or nose; therefore, he's obviously guilty! They forgot to mention that the police at the scene called paramedics to treat Zimmerman before transporting him to the station. Did the paramedics clean his wounds before treating him? Nah! That does not fit the template of a racist wannabe cop who called 9-1-1 over forty times since 2007 as a "self-appointed" Neighborhood Watch "captain." (That would be 40-times in a 60-month period, or .67 times a month.) If Zimmerman wasn't injured, then why did the police call the paramedics?

The media obtained audio tapes of the 9-1-1 call preceding the shooting and concluded that the person heard yelling during an apparent violent struggle was obviously Martin because his dad, Tracy Martin, said so. They neglected to mention that the police played the audio tapes for the father who said the voice was not his son's until it dawned on him that meant that the person yelling for help had to be Zimmerman, so he recanted. This happened the next day, instead of that evening, because Mr. Martin failed to call the police to report his son missing. Guess he had something else to do.

The grieving mother, Sybrina Fulton, must have shed tears on the paperwork she signed to trademark "I am Trayvon." Her attorney said that she didn't do it for profit; however when you see the news coverage of pro-Trayvon marchers, many are wearing t-shirts with the trademarked slogan and Trayvon's smiling hooded face when he was thirteen years old. I guess she didn't like Trayvon's recent photo associated with his Twitter account where he snarls at the camera and flips the bird.

The initial AP news articles were dripping with admiration for this child who helped little old ladies cross the street. When it was later revealed that the lad was visiting his father during a two week suspension from school for having marijuana residue in his book pack, and that he had previously been suspended twice before for tardiness and truancy, the grieving mother exclaimed, "They killed my son, now they want to kill his reputation." The black city manager of Sanford said he would find and fire whoever leaked the information to the press. Seems like, when actual facts emerge, he won't tolerate them being leaked.

Movie director Spike Lee (no relation) got in the act by Tweeting what he thought was George Zimmerman's home address. This caused unspeakable horrors for the poor 70-something couple because the man shared the same name. He later apologized to his many Twitter followers not for giving them George Zimmerman's address, but for giving them the wrong address. He was hoping one of his followers would collect the New Black Panther Party bounty of $25,000 to find and "arrest" George Zimmerman.

Not to be outdone, Congress held a public forum on Capitol Hill about the shooting. Every available black Democrat representative posed for photographs with the grieving parents to gin up their political base in an election year, including Sheila Jackson Lee (no relation). To show solidarity with his rap-a-dap, "gangsta" constituents, former Black Panther Rep. Bobby Rush wore a "hoodie" in the well of Congress in defiance of House Rules dress code.

Unfortunately, if Zimmerman escapes indictment for Trayvon Martin's death, the followers of the race baiters will never be convinced of his innocence, regardless of the truth. The main stream media will ensure they never will.


Family Security Matters Contributing Editor Gregory D. Lee is a retired Supervisory Special Agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the author of three criminal justice textbooks. While on DEA diplomatic assignment in Pakistan, he was involved in the investigation of several notable terrorism events and arrests. He recently retired after more than 39 years of active and reserve service from the U.S. Army Reserve as a Chief Warrant Officer Five Special Agent for the Criminal Investigation Division Command, better known as CID. In 2011 he completed a combat tour of duty in Afghanistan while on special assignment to the Special Operations Command Europe. Visit his website at and contact him at

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