Beyond the tragedy and the turmoil caused by the death of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman in Sanford, Florida, is to assess who is ultimately responsible for the passage of the Florida “Stand Your Ground” law in 2005.
One could blame the Florida legislature, and particularly the majority Republican Party, which passed a bill left purposely vague, and has caused the death of many people who could be alive today if the legislation had never passed.
But, in reality, one cannot blame the legislature as the primary source of criticism!
Rather, it is the job of the Governor of the state to use his wisdom and judgment, and utilize the veto if legislation passed is seen as unwise, dangerous, and reckless. As President Harry Truman said while in office, “The buck stops here”, meaning in the office of the executive, whether President, Governor or Mayor!
It is the job of the executive to stand in the way of emotional reactions by the legislative branch. No one can claim that he or she had to sign legislation, as that is what we elect him or her for, to use their best judgment, and if seen as wrong, that executive must be held accountable.
Ok, so therefore, who is ultimately responsible for this disaster? Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, who now must take responsibility, but will he? Don’t bet on it! The Bush family has NEVER taken responsibility for anything they have done which went wrong, certainly not brother President George W. Bush, and the arrogance of their father, President George H. W. Bush is legion in public situations. The Bush family does not have a distinguished record of decency and honesty, so to expect an apology or taking any blame is highly unlikely to be the reaction of Jeb Bush.
However, with the recent discussion that Jeb might be running for President in 2016, or accept a Vice Presidential nomination from Mitt Romney, this is the time for it to be made clear to Jeb Bush that he has forfeited his right to run for Vice President or President!
And if he does, all good people will haunt him and his campaign for the arrogance, the egotism, the gall of Jeb Bush to do what he knew had to lead to disaster, but instead, he chose to cave in to the National Rifle Association and the right wing of his extremist party in the Florida legislature!
Look at it this way: Jeb Bush will likely forfeit a chance for the Presidency or be dogged by it if he does run, but his life will go on, and he will live in great comfort, while Trayvon Martin has forfeited his life and a chance to give joy to his family, to accomplish occupational goals, to fall in love, to have children, to have a normal, decent life!
One wonders how Jeb Bush can sleep at night knowing that what he failed to do, veto this despicable law, has caused the death of a promising young man, who should not have had to face the threat of a bully who thought he had license to kill, thanks to Jeb Bush’s lack of conscience!