Episode 39

GunBlog VarietyCast

EP039 GunBlog VarietyCast Episode


  • Blue Collar Prepping – David Blackard on Gloves
  • Foreign Policy for Grownups – GE2015
  • This One Time – Gene Hoffman
  • Tech Tips with The Barron  – It ain’t easy being Crypto
  • This Week in Anti-Gun Nuttery – Anti-Gunners Finally Jump into Safety!



Blue Collar Prepping – David Blackard on Gloves


Felons Behaving Badly


Foreign Policy for Grownups – GE2015


Strange laws


This One Time – Gene Hoffman


Fun With Headlines


Tech Tips with The Barron – It ain’t easy being Crypto


The J Block – Zimmerman Shooter Charged


This Week in Anti-Gun Nuttery – Anti-Gunners Finally Jump into Safety!


Stuff that grinds my gears

10 thoughts on “Episode 39

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  3. Alpheus

    I looked at Andrew Blanca’s article before listening to the blogcast. When I read it, I had this sense that the guy shouldn’t be sentenced for 60 years for shooting at Zimmerman…and I couldn’t understand the sentiment, at least not completely.

    Now that I heard that he was doing crazy things before shooting at Zimmerman, I think I have a partial understanding of that feeling: the guy sounds crazy. If he is, he should be receiving treatments, and possibly be secured in a mental institution. Prison is (likely) no place for him!

    While I still have no idea why I had this original sympathy (notwithstanding a soft spot for genuinely insane people), perhaps it had something to do with that smile he had in the picture at Branca’s article. It almost says “Derp. I don’t know why I’m being arrested for shooting at someone. I’m only following the voices in my head!”

  4. Sean D Sorrentino Post author

    Except that the photo at the link isn’t of the shooter. It’s someone who was at the press conference with the shooter’s mom and the shooter’s wife. He appears to be mentally challenged. I don’t know who he is, but I know he’s not the shooter.

  5. Alpheus

    I tried to identify the shooter from the videos, but I cannot. In any case, though, by viewing the videos, I got to see the bullet hole in Zimmerman’s car, and that alone makes me think that straight-up “Self Defense” is going to be very difficult for him to establish….

    (Some sort of insanity plea, however, still can’t be ruled out…)

  6. Sean D Sorrentino Post author

    Insanity? Almost certainly. He’s cuckoo for Cocoa-Puffs. But is he so impaired that he doesn’t understand the nature of his actions? Or that he’s unaware that his actions are wrong? That’s a tougher sell.

  7. Alpheus

    Yes, that’s certainly true. One of the comments at Legal Insurrection said that if the Defense was going to plead Insanity, they would have done that by now; I’m not sure if that’s true, or if they would prefer to wait until the trial (or even the plea-bargain stage) to talk about such things.

    I don’t know if the lawyer would be able to successfully leverage the “he called first, so that means that he thought he was defending his life” angle that the lawyer was already pushing in one of the videos–but that argument rubs me the wrong way. While somewhat true–indeed, Branca specifically suggests that it’s a good idea to call the police as soon as you are out of danger–I can’t help but think that “calling first” won’t protect you if the elements of your story don’t add up. Indeed, it’s also true that self-defense is the first refuge of scoundrels, which is why it is typically somewhat difficult to convince police and prosecutors to take claims of self-defense at face value–especially when what you did wasn’t really self defense, after all!

    (That, and while Appleton may have *technically* called first, Zimmerman contacted the police as soon as he could as well, which meant that Zimmerman thought he was in the right too…)

  8. Alpheus

    I should clarify something. When I say I don’t think the lawyer will be able to successfully use the argument “My client called 911 first, so he thought he was innocent”, I meant to add that I kindof think that Appleson’s lawyer *might* use this to sneak in an insanity plea, by trying to make the case that his client sincerely thought that he was in the right. This type of argument would probably be tenuous at best, though….

    Now that I think about it, perhaps the lawyer could even claim that Appleson was insane, on account of believing everything that he heard in the media about Zimmerman and Stand Your Ground…

  9. Sean D Sorrentino Post author

    “My client sincerely thought he was in the right, but he was so clearly not that anyone who believed he was in the right would have to be insane to think that.”

    That’s actually not a bad definition of legally insane. If his actions were as a result of his mental disease or defect, he (i) did not know that his act would be wrong; or (ii) did not understand the nature and quality of his actions

    Hey, it’s as good an idea as any other.

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