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Eric Holder’s Stand Your Ground Squirrel

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By Michelle Malkin  •  July 17, 2013 09:34 AM

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Eric Holder’s Stand Your Ground Squirrel
by Michelle Malkin
Creators Syndicate
Copyright 2013

Welcome to the Obama administration’s cringe-inducing non sequitur of the week. On Tuesday, Attorney General Eric Holder continued stoking the fires of racial resentment over a Florida jury’s acquittal of George Zimmerman. In an address to NAACP leaders, who are demanding federal intervention, Holder attacked Stand Your Ground self-defense laws.

All together now: Squirrel!

“Separate and apart from the (Trayvon Martin) case that has drawn the nation’s attention, it’s time to question laws that senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods,” Holder opined. He then baselessly claimed that such laws are creating “more violence than they prevent” and used his platform to promote citizens’ “duty to retreat.”

So, what exactly do Stand Your Ground laws have to do with Zimmerman and Martin? Absolutely nothing, of course. Outside your own home, common principles of self-defense dictate that unless you have reasonable fear of deadly force or harm, you must flee if possible rather than use deadly force. But a “duty to retreat” rests on the ability to retreat. And “duty to retreat” was irrelevant in Zimmerman’s case because — pinned to the ground with Martin on top of him, bashing his head on the concrete — he was unable to retreat.

This didn’t stop the NAACP crowd from cheering their heads off when Holder tossed out his red meat. Holder’s racial-grievance-mongering agenda has also been bolstered by media propaganda outlets, who’ve been dutifully bashing Stand Your Ground regardless of the facts.

The New York Times, for example, falsely claimed in an editorial preceding Holder’s speech that the jury “reached its verdict after having been asked to consider Mr. Zimmerman’s actions in light of the now-notorious Stand Your Ground provision in Florida’s self-defense law.” Rolling Stone made a similarly inflammatory claim, calling Martin a “victim of Florida’s Stand Your Ground law.”

All nonsense. The jury received standard instructions. Zimmerman did not invoke the Stand Your Ground provision. Zimmerman later waived his right to a pretrial immunity hearing under the Stand Your Ground procedures.

And as National Review’s Sterling Beard points out, “The only time Stand Your Ground came up during the trial proper was when a prosecution witness stated that he’d taught a class Zimmerman had attended that covered Stand Your Ground.”

Even the prosecution rejects the cynical attempt to tie Martin’s death to Stand Your Ground. Prosecutor John Guy couldn’t have made it clearer during the trial: “This case is not about standing your ground.” During their post-trial press conference, as conservative talk show host Victoria Taft first noted, a Miami Herald reporter asked the prosecution team specifically whether Stand Your Ground “affected the facts in this case and whether this case could have been won, perhaps, pre the changes in the law.”

Prosecutor Bernie De La Rionda replied: “You know, self-defense has existed for a long time. And we’ve dealt with it in Jackson for a long time. We’ve tried a lot of self-defense cases; I’ve personally tried 10-15 self-defense cases. They’re tough cases, but we accept it so … the law really hasn’t changed all that much. Stand Your Ground was a big thing, but really the law hasn’t changed. We have a right to bear arms and a right to self defense.”

In short, Stand Your Ground did not kill Trayvon Martin. Stand Your Ground did not sway the jury. Stand Your Ground saboteurs don’t have a leg to stand on. Columnist Jacob Sullum observed drily: “You might think that, given all we now know about Zimmerman’s actual defense, critics of ‘stand your ground’ laws would have to find a different, more apposite case to illustrate their concerns. Instead they just barrel along, citing the same phony example again and again, without regard to the facts. It does not inspire confidence in their argument.”

Nope, it inspires exasperation and contempt. Once again, Eric Holder’s Department of Selective and Social Justice is grasping for straws. Holder now vows to “continue to fight for removal of Stand Your Ground laws” that had nothing to do with the Zimmerman trial. He promises to ban “racial profiling” in the aftermath of a local crime incident that — according to Holder’s own FBI employees — had nothing to do with race.

This is all a transparent pretext, of course, for undermining a plethora of state laws enacted by pro-Second Amendment legislatures. (Never mind that eight of 15 states that adopted Stand Your Ground legislation were helmed by Democratic governors at the time of passage.) Even more insidiously, left-wing groups have exploited the Martin case to launch broader attacks on the political speech and activities of limited-government groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council, which supported Stand Your Ground.

The Obama administration’s cynical campaign against Stand Your Ground laws is a racially charged weapon of mass distraction. The goal isn’t public safety or community harmony. The goal is for conservative political opponents to Surrender Your Ground. Silence, as always, is complicity. Political self-defense, as with physical self-defense, begins with self-assertion.

  • Howard

    Liked the article- the only thing is, the prosecution team are from Jacksonville and not from Jackson. H2

  • http://Kim.snipes.771@Fb.comAlsoKimsnipes3atTwitter.com Kim Snipes

    First–I don`t understand why anyone would take Holder seriously anymore…This is a man, after all–who has botched any number of responsiblities he`s been entrusted with. His fumbling of “Fast & Furious” led to the death of an innocent man. He`s admitted he didn`t have the about facts about AZ`s SB 1070 Bill–yet he saw fit to squander tax-payer money to BULLY Az & Gov. Jan Brewer–by all accounts a Christian lady. What else? The NYTimes leans hard Left; it has done so for years!!! Rolling Stone? Keep in mind–not that many years ago their semi-professionalism led to the firing of one of our most experienced Military officers–Gen. MCcrystal, at a time when we NEEDED good men while at war. ALSO–they`re mainly know for coving MUSIC–for God`s sake…They do things like putting (in the recent past) Lady Gaga (LOL!!!) on their cover!! & (sorry!) the NAACP has gone ballistic so many times–even segments of the african-american population think they`ve gone overboard!!–Check out the documentary “Runaway Slave” featuring African-American Religious/Community leaders confronted with the rabid tactics leaning HARD-LEFT out of that (once revered) organization… There are those who feel the NAACP is no longer what it was…BUT mainly–Michelle–I wonder why ANYONE is taking Holder seriously after all the screw-ups he`s been a part of…Then, of course–he`s admitted he lied under oath. Why trust him? Bye!

  • Frank Thompson

    You are spot on Michele as usual.

  • kevin ross

    Maybe we should throw some nuts and acorns so the so called atty general can snack cause he has no case if he should attempt to prosecute. Its all insufficient evidence, he might get laughed out of federal court once and for all

  • Bill Zeallear

    Excellent commentary, Mrs. Malkin. Amazing how so many facts are ignored regarding the verdict of the Martin-Zimmerman trial while fabrications are created daily and inserted at will for political gain. The fact that Eric Holder- the Attorney General- is leading this circus is beyond absurd and unforgivable. Holder is the iceberg to Obama’s Titanic.

  • Marc C.

    From hooded white thugs terrorizing innocent people to hooded black thugs terrorizing innocent people, yessiree, “civil rights” sure has come a long way under the watchful eyes of so-called civil rights leaders and the DOJ… what’s next, mob rule instead of the rule of law?

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