Three Hard-Earned Lessons from the Comments of Juror B29

"George Zimmerman got away with murder."

August 4, 2013 | Revolution Newspaper |


This week Juror B29 from the trial of George Zimmerman came out on TV and said what millions of people already knew: "George Zimmerman got away with murder." She also said that while "the evidence shows he's guilty of killing Trayvon Martin ..." she ended up going along with the argument that the jury couldn't convict him "the way the law was read to me."

She said, "I feel like I was forcefully included in Trayvon Martin's death."

And that Zimmerman "can't get away from God. And at the end of the day, he's going to have a lot of questions and answers he has to deal with."

At the beginning of deliberations, Juror B29 thought Zimmerman was guilty of 2nd degree murder, and at least two other jurors out of six total thought Zimmerman was guilty of at least manslaughter. Yet in the end they all voted "not guilty" on all charges.

There are some bitter lessons in B29's comments:

#1: The laws used in this trial and the jury instructions from the judge were set up and presented in a way that pushed (but didn't force) the jury to acquit a racist murderer who gunned down a young Black man. The judge instructed the jury that a key issue in the case was "whether George Zimmerman acted in self defense..." and that "if George Zimmerman was not engaged in an unlawful activity and was attacked in any place where he had a right to be, he had no duty to retreat and had the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force..." The law and the jury instructions fit into a whole system that painted a target on the back of Trayvon Martin—cops treated Trayvon like a suspect and let Zimmerman go after a few hours of gentle questioning; the jury was stacked with people who identified with Zimmerman; defense attorneys went on and on with racist innuendos about Black youth, and the prosecution basically went along with that ... and more. In short: THE WHOLE DAMN SYSTEM IS GUILTY.

#2: It is always wrong to cave in to injustice, no matter what "everyone else" thinks. Juror B29 could have, and should have, done the right thing. If she had stood her ground—there would have at least been a hung jury and that would have been much better than acquittal!

#3: There is no god for Zimmerman to answer to, there is no after-life where people are rewarded or punished for how they lived. Believing that there will be justice "in god's hands" is not only a false consolation, it is very harmful, and serves to keep people paralyzed, unable to do the right thing, and in different ways complicit with and shackled to this foul and murderous system that enslaves, brutalizes, and murders people all over the world.

Send us your comments.

If you like this article, subscribe, donate to and sustain Revolution newspaper.