So you see, everything worked out for the best! As many may have read already, the killer of Trayvon Martin got to play good samaritan a few days ago by helping a family get out of an overturned SUV. Lucky for them he -- and the other guy -- happened to be free and available at the time. They might have had to wait for the cops to extract them, but we all know that George was never one to wait for the cops. Still, it was a decent thing to do, but I bring this up now because Zimmerman's legal team could not leave well enough alone. The owners of the SUV apparently hooked up with one of Zimmerman's attorneys, Mark O'Mara, who says they asked him to arrange for a press conference. The event was scheduled for today, but the family backed out, telling O'Mara that "they were more worried about blow back from saying anything that would be favorable to George." They told their local sheriff that "they are not comfortable doing media interviews at this time." Makes you wonder who contacted whom in the first place. In the current climate there was little benefit for the family in going before the cameras to tell a half-skeptical world that Zimmerman is a good guy. You can also understand why it finally occurred to them that doing so would be more like throwing fuel on a fire, however unfair the "blow back" would have been to them. Right now it looks like the only person who benefits from the entire episode is Mark O'Mara, who gets to appear before the media again as the principled defender of the misunderstood lug against a media/political vendetta, and now gets to identify an unoffending family as collateral damage (of a sort) from the anti-Zimmerman jihad.
As always, the comments thread under this ABC News report provides extra amusement. In today's aside, let me point out something I noticed. Here's how divergently the two sides in the Zimmerman story see things: the pro-Zimmerman people are under the impression that relevant information about Martin was kept from the jury and/or general public, while Zimmerman was crucified in the media; and the pro-Martin people believe the exact opposite -- that information reflecting poorly on Zimmerman was suppressed while the media crucified Martin. The weird thing about this is that the side that won still thinks the deck was stacked against them, that supposedly crucial information about Martin's taste for "lean" and other vices has been kept and is still being kept from people, though they know all about it. There seems to be a forlorn hope among them that some decisive detail should be available that would make everyone see things their way, or at least concede room for the reasonable doubt that acquitted Zimmerman -- while the other side still doesn't see how the fact that the first cause of Martin's death was Zimmerman getting out of his car didn't overrule every other point of law. By now it should be clear that the two sides will never convince each other, so it's probably best to hope that interracial reconciliation doesn't depend on all of us agreeing on the Zimmerman case. At this point, simply agreeing to disagree would look like progress -- and the burden of compromise in that case is on Zimmerman's friends, the people who think that any questioning of the verdict is racist lawlessness. These people ought to accept that lots of other people are angry and simply ride out the storm instead of trying to convert or chastise everyone. They might take their cue from the family Zimmerman helped and leave bad enough alone.