COMMENTARY | According to Florida Statute, second degree murder is defined as the unlawful killing of a human being when perpetrated by any act imminently dangerous to another and evincing a depraved mind regardless of human life. According to Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, these elements are not close to being met in the Trayvon Martin case.
In an interview with Glenn Beck, Dershowitz bluntly stated how second degree murder was a gross prosecutorial overreach and that any reasonable jury would acquit Zimmerman of the charge. If Dershowitz's analysis is correct, then that means Zimmerman will go free. Unfortunately, Zimmerman's acquittal will not be the end to this tragic saga, rather, it will only signify the beginning to another much darker, and much more violent, story.
From the beginning this case has been a societal and racial powder keg. An unarmed black teenager killed by a white-Hispanic watchman who has so far eluded that abstract principle known as 'justice' in a town that has dark racial overtones. What could possibly go wrong? In case you did not get my sarcasm, the answer is pretty much everything.
The Martin case has rehighlighted the many fissures that still exist in modern day society. Among the most prominent of these is the racial divide. Take for instance a poll conducted by Gallup/USA Today which shows a huge difference in opinion between blacks and non-Hispanic whites. But the Martin case has the potential to do much more than just highlight this fissure; the Martin case has-unfortunately-the unique ability to actually widen and deepen this rift.
Much like other loaded cases such as the BART shooting of Oscar Grant or Rodney King's now infamous beating, the Martin case has the ability to generate and sustain massive levels of violence. Simply put, there will be riots. Already it seems that civil discourse is breaking down, and need I remind you that Zimmerman's actual trial has not even taken place yet? Take for instance the recent beating of Matthew Owens, an Alabama man who is now in critical condition courtesy of a mob of "Justice for Trayvon" people. Although several arrests have now been made in this case, the actual occurrence of this incident suggests that the rule of law is at the verge of breaking.
If Zimmerman is acquitted of second degree murder (which he should be), there will be riots. But why? Can't we all just sit around and sing Kumbaya and say enough with the hate and enough with the hate crimes? But alas, it is so much more enjoyable to watch things, and society, burn is it not?