I received this interesting and thought-provoking email from my friend Alan (bold added):
I prefer the short-play here and would like to see the killer of Martin convicted. But I think the Florida stand-your-ground law is so broad (and poorly written) that I can see a legal case for Zimmerman's acquittal (though not a moral one).It seems to me that if Zimmerman is convicted of a felony, then the Florida laws are apparently defensible. Sure, a guy is allowed to shoot someone in certain circumstances; in this case such circumstances did not present and so he's going to jail. The laws did not apply and the state justly punishes the perpetrator.
On the other hand, if the prosecution fails and the court acquits, now we can assert the Florida laws have accommodated the brutal slaying (since you can't call it "murder"!) of an unarmed youth, and now we can more easily make a case that the FL laws are ridiculous.
In other words, as liberal pacifists who appreciate the state's monopoly on armed force, a guilty verdict serves us poorly. It has the welcome effect of obtaining immediate justice for Trayvon Martin's death (since repealing the laws presumably wouldn't remove Zimmerman's protections that applied at the time), but Florida civilians can continue to walk around with concealed weapons and use them with impunity. The long play here is to pull for an acquittal.