Obama says Martin's death a tragedy, asks nation to respect call for calm
President Barack Obama spoke about the killing of Trayvon Martin on March 23, 2012 at the White House.
July 14th, 2013
02:58 PM ET
8 years ago

Obama says Martin's death a tragedy, asks nation to respect call for calm

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama called on Sunday for "calm reflection" following the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

The president, in a statement, acknowledged an emotionally charged climate but concluded that "we are a nation of laws, and a jury has spoken."


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (778 Responses)
  1. no justice

    You all seem to forget this was an unarmed teenager minding his own business. How would you feel if it were your innocent son? I won't let Anybody make my son into a target just because he is black

    July 14, 2013 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  2. Name

    God i am crying out! In your son jesus christ name please help us All!!!!

    July 14, 2013 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  3. tim

    gun control takes it away from the law abiding citizen. Thugs like Martin will still have access to guns.

    July 14, 2013 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  4. Woman In California

    This verdict wasn't a surprise to ANYONE of my family members. In fact, we turned away from this case over a week ago. This was the Trayvon Benjamin Martin case not the zimmerman case. This young man was tried on everything from his hair to his tennis shoes and scorned for fighting back to protect himself. Never was there a time zimmerman was tried for anything. Ms. Fulton (although she's hard to understand), made a good point – the jury only dictacted how their children will be tried in cases like these and yes, it can happen and when it does, REJOICE AND ENJOY THE JUSTICE.

    July 14, 2013 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  5. Woman In California

    As a Christian, I believe there are two kinds of justice: OUR justice and God's. zimmerman will pay for killing this young man.

    July 14, 2013 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  6. toph

    so in islam, being a female victim of rape is your own fault and in america, being stalked and shot is your own fault.

    funny country you guys got there. apparently TM's real mistake was not having his own gun and firing first. you know, in self defense, of course.

    July 15, 2013 12:57 am at 12:57 am |
  7. Name

    People need to shut up, yall lose a child for no reason, bothering no one and see how it feels, that man had NO reason following that child, they told him NOT to do that....Zimmerman said he was afraid, tell me what person would follow something that they afraid of???? He lied over and over changing his story up, If some strange man chasing me for no reason i would beat him to!!!!! Zimmerman was looking for trouble and he need to be in jail....

    July 15, 2013 01:19 am at 1:19 am |
  8. Canadian

    There is NO travesty here.

    When a non violent passive person saves THEIR live at the expense of the aggressive criminal attacker who is trying to take it there is NO travesty!

    If a cop shoots a person trying to knife him do you put the guys parents on TV and call it a travesty?

    If a CITIZEN shoots a person trying to knife him do you?

    What if a CITIZEN shoots a person trying to bash his brain in on concrete?

    There is no travesty here folks, sometimes bad people die at the hands of good people. IF you cant tell the difference, the good guy is the one not trying to kill the other guy and only uses lethal force as a last resort to save their life.

    Zimmerman had no means of retreat and no recourse. Self defense is a human right and a constitutional one.

    Any president that darkens these rights, lessens the rights, is no president at all.

    July 15, 2013 01:43 am at 1:43 am |
  9. Sadat

    life in this century is very funny first we are in a new century and people are holding on to the last century because we have been mind controlled it was suppose to be over and everyone should be in heaven well lets roll with it we have 8 decades to go just think Americans we have not done the 2020s-2030s-2040s-2050s-2060s etc well get strong and remember we are in for one hell of a ride.

    July 15, 2013 02:22 am at 2:22 am |
  10. Anonymous

    Although the United States is a nation of laws, it would appear that there are no laws that protect people of color. It is ostensible that it is ok for people of color to kill themselves and to be killed at will by anyone, including law enforcement as well as private citizens that just have a whim to kill. There are no ramifications for anyone that chooses to take the life of any person of color. Animals have more protection than darker people. Will it ever change? The ignorance hurts.

    July 15, 2013 03:04 am at 3:04 am |
  11. Name

    When obama was kid being Raise by his Grandmother he was in predominantly neighborhood this could have happen to him to make a statement we nation of laws true but how could you reach a verdict with jury where there only white over looking evrry issue it should have been African American on that jury

    July 15, 2013 05:29 am at 5:29 am |
  12. Keith

    IF it was self defense why is Obama honoring the aggressor?

    July 15, 2013 08:02 am at 8:02 am |
  13. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I have two sons that DO look like Trayvon.
    Not even manslsaughter. Really?
    You get time for killing dogs but not for killing a kid that looks like my sons.
    Let's keep it real here, this would not be the first time that a jury made a mistake nor the first time that a prosecutor botched up a case.
    Every parent that has children that look like Trayvon is stunned. Hell, White people are stunned.

    July 15, 2013 08:17 am at 8:17 am |
  14. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    BTW the President's statement was, per usual, truthful and appropriate, two things that are hard to do in the hateful climate that surrounds this brilliant and good man.

    July 15, 2013 08:24 am at 8:24 am |
  15. ixqus

    There isn't a law man has created that wasn't meant to be broken. Such is the way of the paradoxical lovers, to be in conflict with one another. Equal protection, under the law, hah. The only real justice is from causation as laid forth by the paradoxical other, from absolute elsewhere. Even with flesh aside, had the consequences been in reverse: I could see either of these men seeking mercy towards the other; as all men are brothers, in the great beyond.

    July 15, 2013 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  16. Jsmith

    Obama incites protests through funding from DOJ and can't keep his mouth shut.

    Zimmerman was released because the prosecution had no case. Time to move on.

    July 15, 2013 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  17. Lynda/Minnesota

    "I'm 16 years old, White and Male, I live in Tallahassee, and If it were me, I would be very concerned with some creepy dude riding around checking me out. ESPECIALLY if he gets out of the car. Just sayin."

    I would add: ESPECIALLY if he gets out of his car, and starts following me with a concealed weapon he is itching to use.

    July 15, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  18. George Hilbert

    I have heard nothing from the president on how glad he is that Mr. Zimmerman has survived his encounter.

    July 15, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  19. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Whent he police tells you to not do something, as in "Don't move", and you disobey their directive there are consequences. This grown man was told NOT to follow this kid that was walking home with a bag of skittles, a can of Arizona iced tea AND talking into his cell phone. How, I ask you, did this grown man feel threatened by someone that HE was pursuing? It just makes no sense.
    Where was Trayvon's gun? His knife? Hell, the rock he used for a 16 year-old kid to make a fully grown man CARRYING A GUN fear for his life? In what hand did Trayvon carry said weapon to brandish it seeing how he was holding a cell phone and a can of iced tea/ No weapon is the answer. This kid defended himself against someone who stalked and accosted him and the prosecutor allowed his character to take center stage.
    Terrible job of prosecuting this case. Outstanding job from the defense. An overzealous wannabe-cop that took a life because he ignored police instructions, common sense, and profiled has gone free.
    You can cheer if you want to.

    July 15, 2013 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  20. Obama's Missing Birth Certificate

    I find it funny that he says the people should rest on what was decided yet something tells me that the Justice Department is going to stick its ugly head in where it does not belong. I wonder if it going to be another tradgedy like fast and furious?

    July 15, 2013 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  21. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Lynda Minnesota:
    I would add: ESPECIALLY if he gets out of his car, and starts following me with a concealed weapon he is itching to use.
    Absolutely my friend. Absolutely.
    Just when I think I'm done being surprised by turn of events, the Almighty provides me with yet another WTH moment.
    I'm over it.Kind of. I'm prayerful and thankful that my sons have come to no harm walking/jogging in neighborhoods other than their own. Yet as a mother of two men of "color" I despair sometimes, and I fear for their safety....then I pray.

    July 15, 2013 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  22. Fair is Fair

    "Terrible job of prosecuting this case."
    You'll get no arguement there. If you look strictly at the evidence, the state overcharged the case from the onset. But the bottom line is this – I wasn't there, you weren't there, and there were no eyewitnesses. Which means the jury was swayed by whichever side made the best arguement... and clearly that was not the prosecution.

    July 15, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  23. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Yet as a mother of two men of "color" I despair sometimes, and I fear for their safety....then I pray."

    Oh, Dominican mama. Your emotions are coming through loud and clear. It is all we can do as parents anymore. Pray. As a mother of 3 daughters, I spent a great many years sleeping on our couch just so I would know they each had gotten home after their jobs at the local mall ended for the night ... after being with friends for the evening ... or after extra curricular school events. No cell phones back then. During those years, six a.m. came all too soon.

    Add a few "wannabee a cop" non professional surveillance macho's (and prejudices) to the mix, and I imagine your stress is well over the limit any mother should suffer though.

    I wish I could tell you it will get better in time. I think we both know differently.

    July 15, 2013 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  24. Moderate Sean

    Austin from Tallahasse – well stated young man, well stated!!

    July 15, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  25. Steveo

    We are filling up heaven with the broken bodies of the unborn. Where is the honor for them? Where are the protests for them, those truly innocent ones? Why no outrage from the "reverends" on this genocide? Why no NAACP protests over abortion that primarily victimize the poor and minorities? How can anybody who claims to Christian continue to support this?

    July 15, 2013 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
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