George Zimmerman has been preparing for a Grand Jury indictment by adding another lawyer, Hal Uhrig, to his defense team. In an attempt to draw sympathy from his detractors Uhrig is using an interesting diversion. In defense of claims that the force used to kill Trayvon Martin was too great, Uhrig claims that the killing was justifiable because when Zimmerman hit his head scuffling with Trayvon, he suffered what could have been a life threatening injury similar to a baby that has been shaken,”We’re familiar with the shaken baby syndrome: You shake a baby the brain shakes around inside the skull, you can die.” Uhrig said on CBS “This Morning.”
I’d just like to set the record straight here. The terrible assault, the injury and the lifelong illness or traumatic death that can be caused by shaking a baby is not also known as Shaken Adult Syndrome. When you shake a baby, its brain does indeed rattle around inside its skull causing terrible life threatening injury and this injury can be sustained in as little as 15 or 20 seconds. However, in an adult or even an older child, the brain has grown to fit in proportion to their skull. While it is in fact possible to have a tragic and fatal head injury in an adult, it is not possible that a traumatic head injury to an adult man could ever be relevantly classified as Shaken Baby Syndrome.
It is apparent to me that this is one of many ploys that Mr. Zimmerman’s defense team will use in an attempt to justify an unjustifiable killing. In using language like the phrase “Shaken Baby Syndrome,” Zimmerman’s defense lawyers hope to paint their client as though he were a baby who has done nothing but cry for a parent’s love, as if he were an innocent who got nothing but unprovoked violence.
Let’s not be fooled. We know that Zimmerman is no baby. He is a grown man, who hosted neighborhood watch meetings in the months prior to Trayvon Martin’s death that instructed fellow watchers not to carry weapons and to call the police but not pursue suspected criminals. Zimmerman is an adult who chose to pursue a child after he was told not to by a 911 dispatcher. He is a man who somehow left his house one day and felt he found a reason to shoot a child as he was walking home to his family.
George Zimmerman may or not be a racist bigot. He may or may not be a paranoid lunatic who should not have been armed in the first place. I admit that I do not know how Trayvon reacted after being followed through the rain by a strange man. I don’t know who swung first, or who’s chilling cries for help are caught on the neighbor’s 911 call.
I do know this: George Zimmerman is not an innocent babe crying for his mother, he is not a child whose life was threatened by an adult’s anger and rage. That was Trayvon Martin – the dead kid with the candy in his pockets. Don’t get them confused America. One is a grown man, the other is a slain child, and neither is a shaken baby.
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