The problem with the 'but this is the law' response.
Marchers in New York City following the Zimmerman verdict. Photos by Katie Ryder.
by Katie Ryder
To everyone pointing out that they believe George Zimmerman’s acquittal was “correct” insofar as it strictly relates to “the law” and so “disappointed” in “smart liberals” for getting carried away:
1) We have some basic misunderstandings about the English words self defense.
2) “The law” is multivalent. Quite literally: We all understand that the laws and rulings of the state of Florida may fall into conflict with the United States constitution.
3) If a ruling were to be correct in accordance with a law, and people were to find either or both to be unjust, they may respond. Sloshing “this is the law” through the marbles in your mouth as an answer to public complaint is ostentatiously incoherent in a system defined by laws that change, in a society dependent on the opinions of its citizens.
4) Grow up. Be honest about the world you see around you.
Katie Ryder is New York-based writer and a contributing editor to Guernica.