What about Martin's right to 'stand his ground?'

Miller Francis (CNN) | 7/11/2013, 9:51 a.m.
Like many people, I've been riveted by the George Zimmerman trial. I call it "the George Zimmerman trial" because that's ...
George Zimmerman was accused of profiling, pursuing and fatally shooting Trayvon Martin (above), an unarmed black teen, in February 2012. Zimmerman, a former volunteer crime watchman in Sanford, Fla., has pleaded not guilty, saying he shot in self-defense when Martin attacked him. Jury for the case found him not guilty.

Years after the movie came out, Lee told an interviewer, "White people still ask me why Mookie threw the can through the window. ...Twenty years later, they're still asking me that."

"No black person ever, in 20 years, no person of color has ever asked me why," he said.

This speak volumes about race and power relations in this country.

Here's what I think: Assuming Martin did engage Zimmerman physically, perhaps if the teen had hit back a little bit harder, perhaps if he had been able to prevent Zimmerman from grabbing his concealed and loaded gun and perhaps if witnesses had come to Martin's aid, then maybe he would be alive today. That's speculation.

One thing I feel sure of is that if Martin, in fear for his life, had used Zimmerman's own gun to shoot and possibly kill his attacker, when the police arrived on the scene, they would not have failed to charge him with murder.

Why hasn't the prosecution team used Florida law to argue strongly for Martin's right of self-defense, his right to stand his ground against a stalker? Why not turn the tables on Zimmerman's exclusive claim to that argument?

It will be interesting to see whether this question even gets posed for the jury at all. It certainly will be front and center as this case is tried by the jury of history. And future generations will likely puzzle over how the term "racial profiling" could have been banned by the judge before the trial even began.

This country's racial history, the list of names, like Sean Bell, Amadou Diallo, Oscar Grant and other victims of "deadly force" by the police---these represent an even bigger Elephant in the Room.

They may have been ruled irrelevant in the courtroom, but they are certainly relevant to those who seek justice in this society.These things might have been ruled irrelevant in the courtroom, but they are certainly relevant to those who seek justice in this society.