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This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

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Trayvon Martin Update: Zimmerman's Defense Fund Is Offering His Autograph

Nov 29, 2012

"Thank You Cards ... personally signed by George," are now going to be sent to those who donate money to the man facing second-degree murder charges for the Feb. 26 shooting death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.

George Zimmerman, 29, needs money for his "living expenses and legal costs," according to his new website — GZDefenseFund.com. It adds that since May 3 the fund has raised more than $140,000, but "the balance ... is at its lowest."

So:

"The New George Zimmerman Defense Fund, at George's request, will begin sending Thank You Cards to people who have contributed to the Defense Fund. Each card will be personaly [sic] signed by George. The identity of all donors will continue to be kept strictly confidential, and the envelope of the Thank You Cards will not have any reference to Mr. Zimmerman or the O'Mara Law Group."

The Miami Herald doesn't shy away from saying that Zimmerman is selling his autograph.

As we've written before:

Zimmerman, who called police to say he had seen a "suspicious" young man in his neighborhood, has said he acted in self defense. Trayvon's family and supporters say Zimmerman racially profiled the 17-year-old, should not have continued following Trayvon after a police dispatcher said it wasn't necessary to do that and that they question whether the teenager attacked the older man as Zimmerman claims.

The case spotlighted "stand your ground" laws in Florida and other states, and ignited another discussion about race relations in the nation. There were protests in cities across the country in support of Trayvon's family and to call attention to what many viewed as authorities' initial unwillingness to charge Zimmerman.

The stand your ground law is back in the news this week, as WLRN reports:

"Michael Dunn, 45, a white software developer from Satellite Beach, went with a gun to the window of an SUV in a parking lot to ask that the black teens inside lower the volume of their music. Reportedly, hot words were exchanged and Dunn fired eight times, killing 17-year-old Jordan Davis.

"Investigators said no weapons were found in the SUV."

Dunn has been charged with second-degree murder. His attorney is reportedly considering a stand your ground defense.

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