Yesterday Lizette Alvarez triggered a bit of a reader revolt in the comments to her website story which included a brief summary of the Trayvon Martin shooting, and I joined in from this post.
Today, Ms. Alvarez has expanded and corrected the summary, so now cranks like me ought to acknowledge her effort and responsiveness. It's nice to see the Times focusing on the truth and responding to the concerns of all their readers across the political spectrum. Weird, but nice. [In an UPDATE we learn that we have less company in reading the Times than we imagined - Times editors are ignoring their own reporting. Maybe the cranks and critics are the last remaining audience.]
Less weird, in this age of web journalism where stories are never final, is that the Times has flushed the old story and re-linked to the expanded, corrected version. Folks who wonder if the Times was originally wrong can see my excerpt from yesterday commemorated in this screenshot of the Times archive search.
In this case, Mr. Zimmerman, who had founded a neighborhood watch over the summer after a string of burglaries in the area, saw Mr. Martin, began following him, and called 911, telling the dispatcher that he appeared “suspicious.”
The dispatcher asked if Mr. Zimmerman was following him. “Yeah,” Mr. Zimmerman said.
“O.K.., we don’t need you to do that,” the dispatcher said. Mr. Zimmerman said: “O.K.”
The case will probably hinge on what happened next.
Much better. And if the cranks and critics did in fact contribute to improving a first draft, well, we will use this newfound power wisely. I hope. After we catch our breath.
We have lots to cover and more to come, so away we go - in the next post we Stand Our Ground!
UPDATE: It's two papers in one! Times editors don't read their own paper or follow their own links, which is interesting to learn - why are we taking their reporting seriously if they don't?
From their editorial today lauding the decision to charge George Zimmerman:
In this case, Mr. Zimmerman exited his car to follow the teenager despite a 911 dispatcher’s warning: “We don’t need you to do that.”
I urge them to read their current coverage. Or, I urge them to read the link they provided, to a March 20 story by Ms. Alvarez:
In the 911 call, Mr. Zimmerman, using an expletive and speaking of Trayvon, said they “always get away.” The 911 dispatcher told him not to get out of the car and said the police were on their way. Mr. Zimmerman was already outside. A dispute began. Mr. Zimmerman told the police that Trayvon attacked him and that he fired in self-defense.
She was right then, she is right now, and I don't know where the editors of the Paper of Record are getting their "news".
PILING ON: They aren't getting their news from their own exhaustive April 1 study of the case:
Mr. Zimmerman told the dispatcher that the hooded figure was now running. He jumped out of his car to follow him, the beep-beep of his car, as recorded on the 911 call, announcing the instant that he moved beyond his understood mandate as neighborhood watch coordinator.
The wind could be heard whooshing through Mr. Zimmerman’s cellphone as he tried to keep the visitor in view. Also heard is a garbled epithet that some have interpreted to be a racial slur, though his father insisted that his son would never say anything like that. Dispatcher: “Are you following him?”
Mr. Zimmerman: “Yeah.”
Dispatcher: “O.K., we don’t need you to do that.”
Mr. Zimmerman: “O.K.”
He and the dispatcher arranged for Mr. Zimmerman to meet a police officer near the mailboxes at the development’s clubhouse, and the call ended with a “thank you” and a “you’re welcome.”
Some of what happened next, along a poorly lighted path that runs between the back ends of two long rows of town houses, is lost to the night.