George Zimmerman sues NBC

by Walter Olson on December 7, 2012

Many major press outlets misreported the Trayvon Martin affair, following the lead of Martin family lawyers eager to portray Zimmerman as a hothead racist and advocates hoping to discredit Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” self-defense law. NBC went further than most, however, in airing 911 audio doctored during editing by a local affiliate so as to make Zimmerman appear racially motivated. [Poynter] More: Jacob Sullum.

{ 8 comments }

1 William Nuesslein 12.07.12 at 7:51 am

Zimmerman is morally correct, but I wonder how he would establish level of damages for himself., The public was harmed in receiving bad information about and the law. In a just world, those who feed unjustified conspiracy theories and racial discord would be whacked in the head.

2 marco73 12.07.12 at 8:02 am

Makes you wonder if NBC ever heard of Richard Jewell, the wrongly accused 1996 Atlanta Olympics bomber.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Jewell

The jury pool here in Central Florida has been terribly tainted. Just recently, the color pictures were released, of a bloodied and beaten up Zimmerman getting out of a police car on the night of the incident. Apparently the prosecutors decided that showing just had badly Zimmerman was beaten by Trayon Martin might have been prejudicial. Of course, the lead prosecutor praying with the dead man’s family before throwing the book at Zimmerman, why, that’s just good lawyering.

3 Anon 12.07.12 at 9:18 am
4 Jim Collins 12.07.12 at 1:26 pm

No marco, they were too busy putting model rocket motors in truck gas tanks.

5 E-Bell 12.07.12 at 2:46 pm

Interesting. Max Kennerly is one of Zimmerman’s attorneys. Doesn’t he regularly comment here?

6 asdfasdf 12.07.12 at 8:13 pm

Impressive complaint.

It reminds me of the complaint against Nifong, the careful cataloging and documentation of the demonization of another person, and the interplay between hyperbolic media reports, statements by public officials, and legal action.

That said, the politics swirling about this case are deeper than those around the Duke case.

The reality is that the set of people who take their opinions from TV shows may not intersect the set of people who understand nuances of editing: the TV shows evoked a particular set of powerful emotions among the credulous – emotions that ipso facto are unlikely to be affected by textual reasoning.

7 Fox 2! 12.08.12 at 3:29 am

how he would establish level of damages for himself

Start with the letter “B” and work up to the net worth of GE/NBC/Universal. Then double it.

8 wfjag 12.08.12 at 1:24 pm

@E-Bell:
Yes, Max does regularly bless us with his wisdom.
If he wins, I expect he’ll be nearly insufferable for a while – but that will be a small price we all must bear for justice. So, in a manner of speaking, I’m looking forward to it.

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