The news that George Zimmerman's thrown-together website has garnered $200,000 has come as a surprise to many people who consider him the most hated man in America now.
Zimmerman launched the site in early April in an attempt to collect donations for his legal fees and living expenses. On the site, which seemed to be designed by someone with no design experience at all, Zimmerman stated that he had been unable to work or support himself since Trayvon Martin's death on February 26.
In the weeks before Zimmerman was charged, outcry across the country reached a fever pitch as thousands of activists and protesters demanded justice for Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman has maintained that he shot Martin in self-defense, even as he faces a charge of second degree murder.
Could the substantial amount of money Zimmerman has been able to raise be representative of a shift in perception? In the last week, a photo surfaced taken moments after Martin's death, showing the back of Zimmerman's head bleeding from several wounds. That photo could prove crucial in court for Zimmerman's self-defense case, in which he claims Martin was attacking him and bashing his head on the ground before he pulled the trigger.
A recent Reuters report offers a glimpse into Zimmerman's life leading up to the shooting. It includes new details never known by the public, like how a police officer advised Zimmerman to buy a gun after a neighbor's aggressive dog threatened his wife, and how, as a young insurance agent, he partnered his business with a friend — an African-American man.
While Zimmerman remains at the center of the most controversial court case in the country right now, the public continues to learn more about the man who claims he shot a teenager to death in a backyard inside a Florida suburb because he was being attacked. Does Zimmerman's wealth of donations indicate that he is slowly turning public hatred into public support?