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President Obama Makes Statement Regarding Zimmerman Verdict

10:44 PM, Jul 19, 2013   |    comments
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Greensboro, NC - There are two different ways to look at the George Zimmerman verdict. One view is the court of law and the other is the court of public opinion.

President Barack Obama made statements in both courts Friday afternoon during a surprise press briefing. 

READ: Obama: Trayvon Martin Could Have Been Me

Political expert Jason Husser says there's a reason for that.
"By talking in this manner, by getting people to sort of feel the implications of this case, he's really bringing home that some sort of policy proposal will come from this and he's making the soil more fertile when he brings that legislation forward," explained Jason Husser, political science professor, Elon University, 

President Obama did not lay out any new policies but did point out some areas of focus.

He brought up a need to reduce mistrust in the judicial system and with law enforcement by referencing racial profiling legislation he passed in Illinois.

The president also argued state laws need to be examined. He asked this question, "...if we're sending a message as a society in our communities that someone who is armed potentially has the right to use those firearms even if there's a way for them to exit from a situation, is that really going to be contributing to the kind of peace and security and order that we'd like to see?"

Obama also questioned if Trayvon Martin would have been justified in shooting George Zimmerman if the circumstances were reversed.

"Often times these major public trials become bigger than the case themselves, they become about an idea. And that is certainly the case here. While it's tragic all around for these specific individuals, the reason it's gotten so much attention is not because of the individuals but because of the larger ideas and themes that we see present," explained Husser. 

He added, "He wants the themes of this case to not be forgotten, he wants to keep this case on the public agenda so it's a touchstone to come back to in the future saying hey we need these changes because of this, this and this we've seen from the Zimmerman case."

A defense attorney tells News 2 the prosecution in the Zimmerman trial did not have to prove he was racially motivated. They had to prove Zimmerman was guilty of second-degree murder without a reasonable doubt. 

To read President Obama's remarks, click here.
To watch President Obama's remarks, click here

WFMY News 2

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