Zimmerman verdict fuels gun debate hysteria

“The death of Trayvon Martin was a tragedy,” President Barack Obama said on July 15. “Not just for his family, or for any one community, but for America.”

When I heard that George Zimmerman was acquitted of second-degree murder in the deadly shooting of Trayvon Martin, I was shocked and heartbroken, along with a large portion of the country, including prominent people like President Obama.

Though I was confused and angered, I needed to follow President Obama’s guiding words to not be angry, but to try to accept the outcome.

“I know this case has elicited strong passions,” Obama said. “And in the wake of the verdict, I know those passions may be running even higher. But we are a nation of laws, and a jury has spoken.”

I can’t be mad at the Florida jury of six women. They did their jobs and came to a decision based off of the evidence that they were presented.

No matter how clear I thought the case was, rather than questioning the legal system and being internally enraged with Zimmerman’s actions that had a deadly consequence, I need to have faith and think of what I can do next to make sure nothing like this happens again.

Gun violence, self-defense and race became huge national topics as a result of this case. Gun violence remains a huge problem in our country, and because of it, two parents are still grieving without their son.

“I now ask every American to respect the call for calm reflection from two parents who lost their young son,” Obama said. “And as we do, we should ask ourselves if we’re doing all we can to widen the circle of compassion and understanding in our own communities.”

Though race became a major topic, I think that the actions that led up to Martin’s death should’ve been the only things considered in the case.

How did Zimmerman act after the shooting? Was he remorseful?

The young life of an unarmed boy was taken at gunpoint and I don’t see how that can be considered self-defense. Zimmerman had the upper hand, while holding a gun.

I think this case just comes down to another senseless death in our country due to gun violence.

“We should ask ourselves if we’re doing all we can to stem the tide of gun violence that claims too many lives across this country on a daily basis,” Obama said. “We should ask ourselves, as individuals and as a society, how we can prevent future tragedies like this.

“As citizens, that’s a job for all of us. That’s the way to honor Trayvon Martin.”

How many more loved ones do we need to lose before the gunshots stop being fired? Guns are an issue in our country, and in Martin’s honor, we need to take action.

I don’t see the need for guns, besides when they’re being held by police officers and emergency responders who need to take immediate action (usually against dangerous people holding their own guns). I don’t see why guns are so easily sold and put in the wrong hands in our society.

We’ve experienced too many tragedies due to guns, and I think that the shocking result of the Zimmerman case needs to spark some immediate action by our lawmakers to have more gun control so that we don’t have to have another pair of grieving parents and a nation waiting on the edge of their seats to hear the verdict in a case that involved the death of another young person.

Our nation lost a young life because of the pull of a trigger, and the gun owner is now back on the streets as a free man.

Something needs to be done, but in a peaceful manner and in loving honor of Martin, who would’ve still been an innocent child today, walking to 7-Eleven to pick up some more Skittles like he did on his last night.

Colleen Young can be reached by email at [email protected].