Trayvon Martin Case: Is Media Biased Against George Zimmerman?

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The leak of George Zimmerman's statement to police have shed new light on the Trayvon Martin case, along with accusations of bias against the media and public.

Until Tuesday, the case had been framed from Martin's standpoint, which is certainly understandable to a point, as he was unarmed when he was shot and killed.

However, Zimmerman’s defense depicts Trayvon not as an unsuspecting youngster chased by an armed vigilante, but as a violent aggressor who left him no choice.

Some commentators point to Zimmerman’s story as evidence that the media and public have been too quick to lay blame in a case that has gripped the nation.

  • George Zimmerman Mug Shot
  • Trayvon Martin Photo

Zimmerman’s claim that he was jumped and beaten to the point where he shot Martin in self-defense seems dubious, especially if a dispatcher told him not to pursue the boy.

Nevertheless, he hasn't been charged with a crime.

You wouldn't know it by the mug shot, taken after a previous arrest, circulated by the media for the last month - most times, next to a five-year-old photo of Martin.

The contrast of the above images has indirectly but significantly shaped the way the sensationalized case is framed, turning the 17-year-old into an innocent martyr.

Martin's tragic death has sparked important public debate over racial profiling, gun laws and other broad social issues. Yet the media tends to sell a single narrative.

Consider how the following photos might portray the case instead:

  • George Zimmerman Picture
  • Trayvon Martin, Hoodie

Do a smiling Zimmerman in a suit and tie, or a current photo of Martin looking more like an adult, change your perception of either party? Probably at least a little.

NOTE: The authenticity of the Martin photo above, as well as others on the web (in which he sports fake good teeth), is disputed, but the point remains the same.

Stories such as President Obama's remarks or the "Million Hoodie March" get enormous attention and make the public fall in love with the idealized version of Martin.

The fact of the matter is, though, they have little to do with the case.

Police in Sanford, Fla., deserve to be under scrutiny for their decision not to arrest Zimmerman, but the April 10 grand jury investigation also needs to play itself out.

The truth, as is so often the case, won't be found easily. It almost unavoidably lies among a thousand shades of grey in a case of great complexity and magnitude.

By oversimplifying it and/or turning into an entertainment form, the media and public fail to honor both the deceased's memory and the accused's right to due process.

You tell us: Is there media bias in the Trayvon Martin case?

 

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four photographs to choose from. Are you suggesting the media wants us to ignore the WORDS behind the tragedy? Does it matter what they look like...one is walking, the other is driving and has a gun. How in the world could this possibly result in death without one of them changing the situation, i.e. Zimmerman getting out of the vehicle, or Martin getting in front of the vehicle. One of these things ACTUALLY happened. Photographs or no...how could they possibly change those facts in any way?

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Is there media bias in the Trayvon Martin case?
Yes 90.4%
No 9.6%
Total votes : 2450

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I think it is so wrong to continue to show Martin as a very young child when he was much older and bigger when the shooting took place. Also why did the news media say this am. that Zimmerman is the most hated man in America today. SHAME on them. What has happened to reporting the TRUTH? Where are the pictures of Zimmermans injuries? Than God for the neighbor who took pictures !!!

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The media is in a no lose situation in this case. If Zimmerman gets convicted then they would have succeeded in making sure he was railroaded and ruined his life. If GZ is not guilty the riots will breakout and the media gets a lot of work and all sorts of stories of interest.

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A better qeostiun is: are you for real? So you think Zimmerman just shot the guy in the chest for no reason other than he was black? You live in an alternate universe.If you were really interested in truth rather than leftist propaganda, you might have seen the photo of Zimmerman with a big gash in the back of his head.

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Poor Young Kid.. Yep..
But He Be Doing Prison Time Anyway.. Most Black Thug Youths Wind-Up In Prison Anyway.. For What Ever Reason, Blacks Seem To love Loitering in the Street and Attract Trouble..
It's In Their Nature To Rob-Steal-Scam-Commit Acts of Violence.
Blacks Are They're Own Worst Enemy..(for the most part)
They Just Aren't Smart Enough To Get Away With It.. and They Can't Help It.
( it is what it is).. Zimmerman Won't Do Much Time.. He Cleaned Up The Streets Just a Bit..

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What a bunch of racists! No, not Zimmerman. He may be, we don't know anything other than the caricature that the racists who have decided to lie and spread hate rather than even try to know the truth. They never wanted a trial, it was the hanging they are after. They the racists... Al Sharpton the exploiter, Spike Lee for texting the address to incite violence, Rosanne same thing. What will end up happening is that if we don't reality check all of the above and the only thing we spread that comes from them is more proof that they are incapable of telling the truth, things will eventually erupt into real violence. If everyone is still by then so used to being lied to the unfortunate ending will be horrific, and you can blame the anti-white haters and racists fanning the fires right now.

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@Julie And by saying-- "apparently" because we don't know for sure"--you can hardly make any judgements of this situation. In other words if you don't know for sure? Then you can't declare what this case is about. There's really no evidence of pro-filing. The profiling issue was interjected by those who wanted to further taint this incident with innuendo. And thus, putting a spin on it that is not justified at this point. We don't know yet if the case was mishandled by the criminal justice system because legal due process hasn't been completed as yet. I'm sure it's hard for you to wait, but wait we must to say we have any real credibility within our justice system.

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@whatifitwasyou: You are missing the point just as far off the mark as the media outlets you are deriding. This is not a case about a white man shooting a black boy. Rather, its about a white man apparently and erroneously profiling a black boy and more importantly a criminal justice system that apparently mishandled the case because the corpse was black. I say "apparently" because we dont know for sure. The only way we can know is if there is a trial and an acquital or conviction.

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@Texas: I saw your comments under the Spike Lee news item where you threatened to find and beat up a 60 year old woman. You scared her so badly shes quite the internet and had to get her son involved. Now even for you, thats scraping the barrel of douchiness! Cowardly troll! I hope her son does get your IP address.