“Suspicion Nation” – Addressing the Critics; Re: Maddy
Posted by Xena
I tend to not like writing long blog articles but this is one that I feel cannot be parsed. Thus, I apologize for the length, but it’s the only way for me to present an entire picture in support of my opinion.
From the time that the killing of Trayvon Martin hit the airways in March 2012, until the verdict was entered in George Zimmerman’s murder trial on July 13, 2013, there were people who kept up with every release of discovery material, every press conference held by attorney Mark O’Mara, and every hearing conducted in the courtroom. They watched videos of George Zimmerman’s statements. They almost memorized, word for word, all written witness statements and then their oral interviews. Their focus was on George Zimmerman and discovery evidence beyond “George said.”
If anyone wrote a book about the George Zimmerman trial, those who diligently followed everything from the beginning might expect for it to be like an investigative piece re-litigating the trial; presenting every aspect of evidence against Zimmerman. After all, re-litigating is what started after the verdict, and continues to this day in social media. In my opinion, it’s because we have heard jurors say that they considered Zimmerman’s wounds, but not that they considered any other physical evidence during deliberations.
In my opinion, Lisa Bloom writes from the perspective of a lawyer based on what she observed at trial, but without re-litigating the evidence. Lisa Bloom conducted her interview of Maddy, also known as Juror B 29, like any author would. She was not vetting but rather, interviewing Maddy.
Post trial, Juror B37 was the first juror in the Zimmerman case to come before television cameras in silhouette and tell why she decided to acquit George Zimmerman. Her interview on Anderson Cooper’s 360 was almost simultaneous to the press release of her then literary agent, Sharlene Martin. Sharlene Martin announced that Juror B37 and her husband intended to write a book of her experience on the jury in the George Zimmerman case and that the jury decided he was not guilty “…due to the manner in which he was charged…” Immediately, I remembered that during her voir dire, Juror B37 referred to rallies and peaceful protests as “riots.”
Juror B29, known as Maddy, was interviewed after Juror B37. Maddy interviewed with several news journalists. Unlike Juror B37 and alternate Juror B54, Maddy did not appear on camera in silhouette. And, unlike Jurors B37 and B54, Maddy didn’t talk about what she thought about specific witnesses, or what she thought about evidence that proved or disapproved Zimmerman’s self-defense claim. Maddy talked about the jury. She said the law was “read” to her during deliberations and caused her to change her vote, resulting in acquitting George Zimmerman.
From her first interview, Maddy made it known that something happened among the jurors that displeased her. She was not happy with her decision — George Zimmerman got away with murder. Lisa Bloom ‘s interview of Maddy reported in her book, Suspicion Nation, is a continuation and expounding of what Maddy first said in July 2013. She is being called a liar by the anti-Trayvon Martin camp who are also criticizing Lisa Bloom for not calling Maddy a liar.
I admit to having mixed feelings about Maddy. Logically, if there is no law to convict an accused, then prosecutors could not bring a charge. There are judicial processes available so that if there is no law and/or evidence to support the charge, a judge dismisses the case. Twice as I remember, defense attorneys Mark O’Mara and Don West moved for dismissal and twice, Judge Debra Nelson denied their motions. However, Maddy would not know that.
There is no way I would depend on the legal interpretations of law by lay people. Had I sat on that jury with an attorney juror whose belief was opposed to my own, I would not listen to him or her either. They are educated and trained to convince people in black robes to believe their version of interpretations of law and facts.
Maddy did not know that having a relationship or friendship with a lawyer does not mean understanding the law. There’s a thing in the practice of law that requires understanding legislative intent when interpreting law that even judges take under advisement.
During Maddy’s voir dire, and without physically seeing her, I heard a proud woman, but suspected that while in the box being questioned, that her pride was also used as a cover in anticipation of being wrongfully judged. The need for acceptance has a way of presenting everything in an agreeable fashion, even when the person doesn’t want the position they are being interviewed for.
Maddy ran down what is required for her to keep her certification as a nursing assistant – showing Don West that she knows her stuff about her career. She has two sons who financially contribute to household expenses – but she didn’t say the source of their income, possibly hiding that it might come from disability. She had recently moved to Seminole County Florida from Chicago. HELLO!! That spoke volumes to me.
Here is where I can relate to Maddy. I was born and raised in Chicago. Although moving from Chicago in 1979, until this day I am homesick and shocked of the racial bigotry in other parts of this nation. Even during the Civil Rights era, racial bigotry among individuals in Chicago had borders. (Institutionalized racism and discrimination is another story.)
Chicago gives it citizens choices. They can live in areas that are predominate to their culture, predominate to their race, or diverse in everything imaginable. No one living in Chicago is considered an “outsider” to Chicago. They may be westside, or southside, or northside, but they are still Chicagoans.
To support this, the Albany Park section in the city of Chicago is the most diverse area in America. Think about that for a moment, and ask how diverse can it be to be the MOST diverse area in the United States? Over 40 different languages are spoken in its public schools. It consists of those originally from Latin America, the Philippines, India, Korea, Cambodia, Somalia, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon and the former Yugoslavia. When thinking about people descended from Latin America, India, and the middle east, they come in various shades of complexion from white to black. I don’t think it’s necessary to point out the skin color of those from Somalia.
In Chicago are college communities, such as Hyde Park where Barack Obama lived before moving to the White House. Even in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s, it has been a community where college students of all races share apartments. Professors from different original nationalities reside in that community.
There are also communities such as Olde Town, which going back to the 60’s, anyone interested in the arts resided without one thought of the color of their skin or how they spoke.
If anyone doesn’t want to live among others of different cultures in Chicago, they can find their own communities. Bigots stay in their own neighborhoods.
I don’t know where Maddy lived in Chicago, but when first hearing her at voir dire, I thought about the area of St. Mary of Nazareth’s hospital. I have experience in that area. It is predominately Puerto Rican, of various shades of complexions, and at the time of my experience that hospital was staffed with people from the Philippines and Poland, Black, White, and Latino.
Communication problems? No. People in Chicago do not mock accents or pronunciations. It must have been a horrible experience for Maddy to be mocked for saying “Roman noodles.”
When I first moved to where I now reside, it was unwelcoming. People thought of me as an “outsider” and for a time, I felt that I had to prove myself. Then I snapped back into reality that no one defines me – I define myself. Watching Maddy’s media interviews, and then reading about her in Lisa Bloom’s book, I perceive a woman who, while in Florida, resisted having others define her. Maddy has confidence to come before cameras without being in silhouette. That is a confidence that Jurors B 37 and 54 do not have. Why did she not have the confidence to stand on her beliefs of the facts in that jury room?
Maddy, I can understand you more now as a person, but I still don’t like that you changed your vote. There, I said it. Does that mean that I hate you? No. Does it mean I have no respect for you as a person? No. If I were to meet you, I would want to sit and hear about everything you experienced in Seminole County. I think we might have something in common moving away from our hometown within our hometown, to find that people in other parts of this great nation are not welcoming to “outsiders.”
I would tell you that our brains process what our guts tell us. Example? When you were mocked and demeaned, did you first feel it in your gut, or your brain? It took your brain time to discern that the women were not laughing with you, but at you. If your gut hadn’t processed their motivation, your brain would not have discerned it.
So, what is the problem that the anti-Trayvon Martin camp has with Maddy and Lisa Bloom’s interview of her? They allege that Maddy told Reverend Sharpton on his Politics Nation program, that she had not been bullied.
Thankfully, that interview is on Youtube. Reverend Sharpton said that there are those who question what happened in the jury room. Did people pressure people? Were people bullying Maddy? He asked her directly, “Were you bullied, Maddy?” Maddy hesitated. She started her answer with “we.” She stopped again, and when she continued stated, “I can’t say I was bullied.”
As she continues, she goes back and repeats what she has always contended; i.e., that the way the law was read to her, she could not say that Zimmerman was guilty.
What I see in Maddy’s interview on Politics Nation, and her interview with Lisa Bloom, is that Maddy speaks of two distinct times. She tells Lisa Bloom what happened BEFORE the jury deliberated and it was at that time when she was bullied. By the time that the jury deliberated, two of the jurors had already re-defined Maddy in her person to believe that she was not educated and intelligent enough to understand anything presented to the jury at trial, neither the jury instructions, nor the law to in which to apply the facts. By the time of jury deliberations, there was no further need to bully Maddy. She was already intimidated.
Lisa Bloom writes that there were two jurors who strongly favored acquittal from the beginning. One juror mentioned things she knew about the case that hadn’t come up at trial and that her husband is a lawyer. Hello Juror B 37! She is the juror that during voir dire, was directly instructed by Mark O’Mara to tell other jurors that if it didn’t come from the “witness stand,” that it could not be considered during deliberations. Another juror’s son is a lawyer. Those two jurors took over interpreting the law using their associations to impress other jurors, including Maddy.
There’s another conflict in Maddy’s representations. In her first media interview, Maddy said that she was the person who was going to hang the jury. She told Lisa Bloom however, that she changed her vote to not guilty as two other jurors held on to convict. Is that because of public criticism and backlash that Maddy changed her story from being the one who was going to hang the jury? I don’t know. What she told Lisa Bloom however, reveals a plan of leading the jury to the vote that Mark O’Mara wanted. If Juror B37 could not convince all jurors to accept her interpretation of the law, then she would convince them to acquit Zimmerman by painting Trayvon as a “bad kid” though no evidence of that was presented at trial
I will correct Maddy’s perception on one issue about herself. She is not the cause of Trayvon’s death. George Zimmerman is the only person responsible for his decisions and actions.
Following this case from when George Zimmerman was arrested, I carefully listened to his lay advocates in the media. There was something about his not being arrested from the onset due to stand your ground law. There was something about stand your ground as presented by its defenders that appears to circumvent homicide laws, rendering them moot, as long as self-defense is raised as a defense.
After watching Juror B 37, Maddy, and alternate Juror B 54’s interviews, on July 28, 2013, I wrote an article, saying therein that I suspected that Maddy had been duped by other jurors who hold to sovereign citizen ideology. Before the media, Frank Taaffe continuously expressed those ideologies.
I have not yet finished reading Lisa Bloom’s book, but have read portions in which there has been expressed criticism by those who make excuses for George Zimmerman. Next, I will write about the criticism of what Lisa Bloom wrote concerning where Zimmerman carried his holster.
Posted on 03/24/2014, in George and Shellie Zimmerman, Justice For Trayvon and tagged bullying, Chicago, George Zimmerman, Juror B29, justice for Trayvon, Lisa Bloom, Maddy, Suspicion Nation, Trayvon Martin. Bookmark the permalink. 43 Comments.