The controversial “Stand Your Ground” law played a part in why Sanford, Florida was top national news in America for about a year and a half. This law has come under fire ever since George Zimmerman was acquitted of the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin in February 2012. The “Stand Your Ground” law essentially means that if someone feels as though another person is threatening their life they can use deadly force to protect themselves.
Although Zimmerman did not actually use the “Stand Your Ground” law as his legal defense, people were still angered by the acquittal and associate the law with the outcome of the trial. Ever since the decision of the jury ended with Zimmerman’s acquittal, protesters have been insisting that Florida governor Rick Scott do something about the “Stand Your Ground” law, among other Florida policies. After a few months of protesting, Florida lawmakers decided to look into changing the laws.
Florida lawmakers won’t be making any major changes to the “Stand Your Ground” law. They will just make minor adjustments to it, such as not allowing people who are considered the attacker in the situation to use the “Stand Your Ground” law as a defense. Also, the revised law would require police and law enforcement to still complete a full investigation into cases where someone invokes the “Stand Your Ground” law.
Although Florida lawmakers say they have been planning on revising the “Stand Your Ground” laws even before the Zimmerman incident, there’s no question that the protesters are a big part of why lawmakers are now taking action. Even after these revisions take effect, I’m sure there will still be people protesting.