Will Artists Boycott Florida Over Zimmerman Verdict?

July 26, 2013

I suppose the real question is: will they boycott Florida over the existence of the “Stand Your Ground” law. As for now, the answer is complicated. Conflicted reports have surfaced, but one thing is for sure, celebrities are reacting to the verdict in varying degrees of disgust.

As a Florida resident who has been here for over thirty years, I can tell you: the law has been controversial since before Trayvon. There are dozens of instances where people have killed individuals they were engaged in “altercations” with and have either wound up leaving the scene without arrest, or have had charges dropped.

Sadly, the law apparently disproportionately affects minorities.

There is no duty to retreat, and if we take the Zimmerman case as setting any precedent, you can evidently pursue someone, engage in a fight with them, lose, and then shoot them. All you have to do is claim you were in fear of your life. Even with very limited eye-witness involvement, simply stating you were in fear of your life is sort of a golden ticket.

Needless to say, some people are outraged. Others find it a welcome open door to protect themselves from thugs and would-be criminals — which there are plenty of here in the Sunshine State.

Anyway, the ranks of the outraged have grown lately. This time, it is celebrities who are having their voices heard.

The story goes that Stevie Wonder announced during a Canada concert that he would not be playing in Florida or any state with similar laws. From there, things went haywire, and HuffPo announced a pretty heavy list of people joining his cause. It turns out that many of the original people on the list have denied even knowing about the boycott, much less participating in it. Multiple celebs PR people also denied it until the entire list was considered to be a sham. So for now, there is not a huge boycott of Florida by celebrities. But if something changes, we will keep you updated.

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