Entries in george zimmerman (6)


After the verdict in Sanford

Outside the courthouse, the field of a group of protesters? Before long, it was all but abandoned.


Ben Montgomery at the Zimmerman trial

On 1A today: Prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda spent nearly four hours Thursday trying to convince the jury that George Zimmerman was a lying, racist, paranoid, wanna-be cop who stalked 17-year-old Trayvon Martin through a gated community because he thought the teen was a criminal.


Our fellow citizens

The six most dispiriting comments left at the bottom of Ben Montgomery's most recent story from Sanford and the ongoing Zimmerman trial:

1. Why is this news?

2. This article was a total waste of space.

3. What a piece of garbage article!

4. What the hell?

5. You must be trying to get a gig at TMZ?

6. Anybody else think the dude looks a lot like Chaz Bono in this picture?


Thinking about Ray Bradbury

Ben in today's Tampa Bay Times:

"This guy looks like he's up to no good or he's on drugs or something," Zimmerman told the dispatcher. "It's raining and he's just walking around, looking about."

In 1951, Ray Bradbury wrote a short story called The Pedestrian, set in 2053. An out-of-work writer (because no one reads anymore) goes on a nighttime walk and notices the windows of every neighboring cottage lit only by the lights of the television sets. A police car stops before him.

"What are you doing out?"

"Walking," the writer says.

"Walking where? For what?"

"Walking for air," he says. "Walking to see."

The writer is arrested and taken to the Psychiatric Center for Research on Regressive Tendencies.

"These a-------," Zimmerman said to the emergency dispatcher on the phone, as Martin continues walking. "They always get away."

Made me think of something I wrote about JumboTrons a couple years back:

Walter Lippmann in "Public Opinion" distinguished between “the world outside and the pictures in our heads.”

He wrote that in 1922.

Ray Bradbury in "Fahrenheit 451" envisioned a future of wall-sized televisions with images that seemed “as real as the world.”

He wrote that in 1953.

Daniel J. Boorstin in "The Image" outlined the effects of what he called the Graphic Revolution. Its “central paradox,” he explained, was that “the rise of images and of our power over the world blurs rather than sharpens the outlines of reality. …

“We are deceived and obstructed,” he concluded, “by the very machines we make to enlarge our vision.”

He wrote that in 1961.

Ray Bradbury! Just pulled from my shelf his Zen in the Art of Writing. Here's a little shop talk, on page 7, underlined on a previous read: So, simply then, here is my formula. What do you want more than anything else in the world? What do you love, or what do you hate? Find a character, like yourself, who will want something or not want something, with all his heart. Give him running orders. Shoot him off. Then follow as fas as you can go.


Ben Montgomery in Sanford

While George Zimmerman was watching the neighborhood, his neighbors were watching television. Click.



Today in America's favorite fantasy land: In Jacksonville, after the body of a girl named Cherish was found near a church, people are reading about a pastor discussing man's wicked deeds and a prosecutor considering commensurate retribution; in Sanford, attorneys are trying to sway incurious citizens in an effort to determine culpability in a lethal confrontation borne of fear; and in Starke, state-paid workers are busily preparing to kill a man who killed a stripper he later pitched in a pile of trash. As always, he will have the chance to say what he wants to say while strapped to a thin, pure white bed, and then one chemical will sedate him, a second chemical will paralyze him and finally a third chemical will halt the beating of his heart.