Letters to the Editor: August 1 – 7, 2013

 Full Text of Zimmerman ‘911’ Conversation Key


Nicholas F. Benton’s column “On the Murder Of a Black Youth” in the July 18 edition of the News-Press uses the 911 call from George Zimmerman as evidence of racial profiling. However, Mr Zimmerman did not simply add “He looks black.” He was answering the question of the 911 operator, who asked “OK, and this guy, is he white, black or hispanic?”, which Mr. Benton left out of his version of the 911 transcript.

With that question left out, it does indeed sound as if Mr. Zimmerman is racially profiling. NBC news first left out the question from the 911 operator about race in 2012, and have since apologized for an “error in editing.” Mr. Benton has repeated this error. The actual transcript and the NBC edited version are below:

Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. Or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.

Dispatcher: OK, and this guy — is he black, white or Hispanic?

Zimmerman: He looks black.

The altered NBC News version simply ran this way:

Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black.

While it may be true that Mr. Zimmerman engaged in racial profiling, the 911 call does not support that premise.

Preston Bennett



Growth Cannot Come Without Better Planning


I agree 100% with Donald Vafides’ letter and his concern about traffic in the city when all of this development is complete.

Not only will Broad Street be saturated but the overflow will inundate Park Avenue. It’s bad enough traffic growth has not been addressed, but local deliveries by tractor trailers now routinely block traffic lanes on Broad. This type of growth cannot come without better planning.

Stan King

Falls Church


Letters to the Editor may be submitted to letters@fcnp.com or via our online form here. Letters should be limited to 350 words and may be edited for content, clarity and length. To view the FCNP’s letter and submission policy, please click here.