George Zimmerman Was Never Violent–if You Don’t Count Domestic Violence…

George Zimmerman's mugshot

George Zimmerman's mugshot

Rarely has a story contradicted its lead like Lizette Alvarez‘s New York Times piece on George Zimmerman today (7/13/12). Here’s the first sentence:

A wide-ranging investigation of George Zimmerman, who is charged with second-degree murder in the killing of Trayvon Martin, found a man not prone to violence or prejudice and who moved easily between racial and ethnic groups–a “decent guy,” “a good human being.”

No, he’s not prone to violence–except, as we learn after four paragraphs about what a great guy he is, that time that he slapped his ex-girlfriend:

During an argument with his ex-fiancée, a stylist he met at Supercuts in 2001, he slapped her in the mouth because she was chewing gum. As the two were breaking up, they pushed each other forcefully, and he kicked her dog in the stomach, she said. The dog bit him.

And he doesn’t show signs of prejudice–aside from that “MySpace page Mr. Zimmerman once kept where he went on a rant about the Mexicans in his old Virginia neighborhood, saying they would mess with cars and pull knives.”

I think it’s safe to say that Zimmerman has never been violent or bigoted, other than when he has been.

About Jim Naureckas

Extra! Magazine Editor Since 1990, Jim Naureckas has been the editor of Extra!, FAIR's monthly journal of media criticism. He is the co-author of The Way Things Aren't: Rush Limbaugh's Reign of Error, and co-editor of The FAIR Reader: An Extra! Review of Press and Politics in the '90s. He is also the co-manager of FAIR's website. He has worked as an investigative reporter for the newspaper In These Times, where he covered the Iran-Contra scandal, and was managing editor of the Washington Report on the Hemisphere, a newsletter on Latin America. Jim was born in Libertyville, Illinois, in 1964, and graduated from Stanford University in 1985 with a bachelor's degree in political science. Since 1997 he has been married to Janine Jackson, FAIR's program director. You can follow Jim on Twitter at @JNaureckas.