Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Ah yes, government control of health care (Score 1) 490

In US political dialogue, "socialism" is just a vague term used to smear people or plans that you don't like.

No, it's used as short-hand for the general bundle of sensibilities that give rise to the urge for a Nanny State approach to things. Collectivist thinking, where people born with or raised to have a work ethic are, by definition, slaves to those who aren't, won't, etc. It doesn't matter where you draw the line between Communism and Socialism, because they come from the same ideological place: they call for an elite group of people to spell out how the efforts of some people will be confiscated in order to dole them out to other people. Structurally, permanently. The harder you're willing to work, the more of a slave you are.

Comment Re:All guns are dangerous... (Score 1) 976

You're obviously taking brandish very literally.

Right... because words have actual meanings, and we have entirely different words that mean "handling" or "loading" or "storing" or "testing" or "fumbling" or "cleaning," etc. Lack of precision in the language surrounding the nature and use of firearms is a non-trivial problem (see so-called journalists who interchangeably - and cluelessly - use "machine gun" and "assault rifle" and "semi-automatic" and the like).

brandish [bran-dish]
verb (used with object)
1. to shake or wave, as a weapon; flourish: Brandishing his sword, he rode into battle.

I don't know anybody who would refer to, say, handing someone else a gun (say, while out plinking cans in the woods) as "brandishing."

But you typically would not load, or clean the weapon in public.

You typically wouldn't be handling a gun in public pretty much ever. But around strangers? Say, at the range? Loading, cleaning, etc., happens all the time around other people. As a range officer, I can assure you it happens all the time.

Comment Re:All guns are dangerous... (Score 1) 976

First of all, even if open carrying is legal, that does not mean that the police will not come and investigate and also express the concerns of the neighbors to the gun owner.

Maybe once. But if they keep calling them for no reason, they'll arrest the caller for wasting their time and harassing the legal gun owner. Most cops are very familiar with the habitual paranoids and whiners on their beats.

First of all, even if open carrying is legal, that does not mean that the police will not come and investigate and also express the concerns of the neighbors to the gun owner

A bullet cannot be accidentally discharged unless you are brandishing the weapon

This is, as they say, so wrong it's not even wrong.

Comment Re:So exactly how close is "right by," ScentCone? (Score 1) 325

So exactly how close is "right by,

Close enough that the witness also thought that his dad being there in the house, or not, was relevant. She pointed out that though Martin was there, his dad wasn't. Which is important because if we're talking about Martin being half a block away (not "right by"), the dad being in the house or not would have been meaningless.

Comment Re:Martin never returned home from the 7-11. (Score 1) 325

There really isn't any room for misunderstanding the testimony of the witnesses, of the police that interviewed Zimmerman, or the rest. There's no misinterpreting Martin's father's initial (honest) reaction to the recording he heard. Understanding the trial is about understanding the motivations of the people who put it on in reaction to craven political pressure. Understanding the facts is also very straightforward.

Comment Re:you know damn well which part you despicable wo (Score 1) 325

Martin never returned home from the 7-11.

He never went in the house. But he was talking on the phone as he walked up to the back of the house (the same conversation during which he used the racist epithet). This according to his friend, who testified to that. The "drivel" part is you really, really wishing that he hadn't, because that takes all the fun out of your narrative.

Comment Re:Whole Trial is bullshit (Score 1) 325

The only thing a dispatcher is powerless to do is arrest you, and that's actually by law.

Nonsense. Dispatchers - in almost every jurisdiction - are civilians trained in handling such calls and performing dispatch duties. Union rules and contracts very often prevent even injured cops from booking time as dispatchers, as those are not law enforcement positions.

I know people in this line of work in half a dozen local jurisdictions surrounding a major metro area. In no cases do dispatch employees have any legal authority of any kind, and cannot direct people to do anything - medical or otherwise. In fact they are required to ask people if they would do this or that to help an injured person, and always say "please" because the are, essentially, asking a favor of the caller. They can't make them provide CPR (or anything else) and people who can't or won't do what a dispatch employee suggests face no consequences because they absolutely are not acting with legal authority of any kind.

All of which you know, so it's kind of mysterious that you're pretending it's otherwise, unless your understanding is limited to your own county or city where they perhaps don't do what they do most everywhere else. Regardless, the Martin/Zimmerman case does not involve a copy giving orders to Zimmerman. The dispatcher said, "OK. We don't need you to do that." And testified that it wasn't an order, meant to me one, or coming from anyone who could give one.

Comment Re:Whole Trial is bullshit (Score 1) 325

That didn't happen

Which part? The part where he was at his dad's girlfriend's house? The prosecution's star witness quoted Martin himself as saying he was. Are you saying that the prosecution and their witness are lying? Interesting.

Or are you referring to the part where he referred to him as a "cracker?" That's the prosecution and their witness saying that.

Or are you referring to the part where Martin was beating on Zimmerman? Because there are eye-witness reports of that. He was seen doing so.

Comment Re:Whole Trial is bullshit (Score 1) 325

For some reason, you seem to believe every word that Zimmerman says

No need to. The prosecution's own witness established that Martin had already returned to his dad's girlfriend's house. For him to have been beating on Zimmerman where the attack occurred, he would have to have turned around and chosen to go back and go at him. The evidence backs this up exactly, even the evidence provided by a witness the prosecution chose.

You know, the guy who shot and killed another guy.

You mean the guy who stopped his own murder from happening? That guy?

Are you so gullible you believe whatever anyone says?

No, otherwise I'd have to believe some of the nonsense that the prosecution tried to trot out (like the BS voice analysis the judge very rightly kept out of the trial).

Comment Re:Whole Trial is bullshit (Score 1) 325

A dispatcher is an officer of the law as much as the street police.

This is not true. The dispatcher testified to the fact that mentioning to Zimmerman on the call that they didn't "need" him to follow Martin was not instruction to Zimmerman.

I've had dispatch give me orders to begin CPR and instructed me on timing and breathing when my friend's aunt died in-home.

You're very confused about this, aren't you? When you call 911 and ask them for help with a medical emergency, their advice to you to do CPR is not the same as being told by a police officer what to do. Are you really that obtuse?

Comment Re:Whole Trial is bullshit (Score 1) 325

that doesn't change the reality that he got out of the car because of Trayvon Martin.

What are you talking about? Your lie is that doing so is a confrontation. Zimmerman was walking peacefully back to his truck, and Martin had made it to his dad's house. You are clear on that, right? Because if you say you're not, you're lying. Martin, instead of going into the house, decided to turn around, and run back to dish out a beating on the "cracker" in question. What's your agenda, in leaving out the most important detail, here?

Comment Re: Whole Trial is bullshit (Score 2) 325

Choices? Zimmerman chose to participate in the Neighborhood Watch Program.

Right. Because he was tired of crime in his neighborhood. A perfectly normal reaction, and not only legal, but actively supported by law enforcement.

And Zimmerman choose to arm himself, despite the fact that the Watch Program discouraged its participants from doing so.

Right - such civic groups do not want to be sued into oblivion if a member has an accident while participating. So they take the policy stand that it's not them, but the members themselves that make that decision.

But at the time of the attack, Zimmerman wasn't on watch.

Which doesn't in any way reduce Martin's responsibility for doubling back from his dad's house in order to attack Zimmerman, and then actually committing that assault.

He chose to follow Martin that night.

Right. Because he didn't recognize the person taking an unusual route through the private community while hiding his face. Thought he'd call the police to report it, and take a moment to see where the person was going. Again, a perfectly reasonable response, and in no way illegal.

He chose to disregard police instructions.

See, now you're just lying. Why? The only time he spoke to police was once they arrived on the scene. On his phone call, he was talking to a dispatcher. A dispatcher has no authority to tell anyone to do (or not do) anything, and the dispatcher in question has already testified that no such instructions were given. You've obviously heard the transcript, so you know that the dispatcher remarked that they didn't "need" Zimmerman to follow the suspicious person. The transcript shows no instruction, the dispatcher - who has no authority either way - said that no instructions were given or intended as such.

He chose to get out of the car.

Right - to see where the person was going. Which he did, and then he turned around and walked back towards his truck.

As the one "trained" and armed with deadly force, it was his responsibility to see that the situation didn't escalate out of control.

And it did not get out of control. He observed, he talked to the dispatch on the phone, and he walked back to his truck. Do you consider that to be out of control? The next situation had nothing to do with him - because it involved Martin leaving his destination, and deliberately coming up from behind, having decided he wanted to dish out a beating. That situation had nothing to do with Zimmerman, who was walking the opposite direction.

Personally, I'd characterize Zimmerman as a police officer wannabe.

Which in what way caused Martin to run up behind him and start beating on him?

So he armed himself and continually went out on "patrol", looking for trouble and a chance to be a hero.

Which is you characterization, and appears to be false (in terms of his motivation) by all reports. Regardless, how did his interest in slowing down the rate of crimes in his neighborhood cause Martin to run up behind him and start beating on him?

he allowed the situation to escalate totally out of control

By turning his back on they guy and walking back to his truck?

Faced with an actual confrontation, he panicked and resorted to using deadly force.

No, faced with a punch in the face, a broken nose, and having his head pounded against the sidewalk and being told he was going to die, use his gun once. I supposed you'd have preferred that he allowed Martin to continued bashing his head against the pavement?

End result of Zimmerman's choices? One dead kid.

No, that was the end result of Martin's choice to - having already made it to his dad's house - turn around, make his way back to Zimmerman, and begin a physical assault.

Slashdot Top Deals

"The greatest warriors are the ones who fight for peace." -- Holly Near