TNR falsely claims Zimmerman racially profiled 7-year-old black boy; Updated!/chopnshoot/status/349956008392671232

No, he didn’t. But the false claim that George Zimmerman racially profiled a seven-year old back child has been floating around the Twittersphere for awhile now:!/MindOfPryze/status/359050033129205760!/PaintingDaBlues/status/183602115262939136

Earlier this month, The New Republic published an article in which a law professor repeated the falsehood:

… Zimmerman was an edgy basket case with a gun who had called 911 46 times in 15 months, once to report the suspicious activities of a seven year old black boy.

As Michelle N. Meyer notes, not all of those calls were to 911 (some were made to a non-emergency police number) and they were placed over a period of 7.5 years not 15 months. Most importantly,

Zimmerman’s call (to the non-emergency police number) regarding a seven-to-nine-year-old black boy was placed because Zimmerman was “concerned for [the] well being” of that child, who was walking unaccompanied on a busy street (see page 37).

From the police log:

concerned for well being

The New Republic revised the article in response to complaints. Here’s what it says now (the typo is in the original):

… Zimmerman was an edgy basket case with a gun who had called the polics 46 times in 15 months, once to report on a seven year old black boy.

Some “correction.”!/avik/status/360561104235151361

Indeed. But what do you expect from the magazine that made Stephen Glass and Scott Thomas Beauchamp famous?


Well, would you look at that.!/sistertoldjah/status/360811236574760961

Here’s TNR’s new correction:

This article has been corrected. Zimmerman called various law enforcement officials 46 times, not just 911, as originally stated. He made the calls over an eight-year period, not over the course of 15 months, as originally stated. The original sentence also cited a call Zimmerman made about a seven-year-old boy; the clause has been removed as it implied that Zimmerman was reporting suspicious activity. It appears that Zimmerman made the call out of concern. We regret the errors.