Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Are Self-Defense Laws "Whites Only"?

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"African Americans are caught," says Rev. William Barber. "On one hand, we fight against stand-your-ground laws, but once the laws are on the books they aren't applied to us."
May 8, 2012

Trayvon Martin's killing at the hands of George Zimmerman, who walked free for six weeks before being arrested amid a public outcry, has both traumatized and galvanized Americans. The case reminds us that justice can be hard to come by in the U.S., and that race continues to play a disconcertingly large role in whether- - and how quickly -- wrongdoers are held responsible for their crimes.

In particular, the case has shined light on dubious "stand your ground" laws. Fed to state lawmakers -- first in Florida, and then in dozens of states around the country -- by the right-wing American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) on behalf of the NRA, stand-your-ground laws allow citizens to use deadly force if they feel threatened, even if they have the opportunity to retreat.  READ MORE

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