The mother of slain Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, Sybrina Fulton continues her battle against the state’s “Stand Your Ground” law by joining an African American lawyers group.
According to reports, Fulton has joined an organization to pressure legislators to reconsider the law.
Sybrina Fulton repeated her assertion that neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman “got away with murder” in the 2012 killing of her son largely because of Florida’s self-defense law, which generally removed a person’s duty to retreat if possible in the face of danger. It was the first of its kind in the nation when passed in 2005. Now, about two dozen states have similar laws, but the focus of repeal efforts is squarely on Florida. “We have to change the law so that this doesn’t happen to someone else’s child,” Fulton told reporters at the National Bar Association’s annual meeting. “My son wasn’t doing anything wrong. He was simply walking home. He wasn’t a suspect.” (Houston Chronicle)
Despite ample backlash, Republican politicians are unfazed by the “Stand Your Ground” protestors.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican, has rejected calls for a special legislative session on “stand your ground” from protesters who have been occupying part of the Capitol in Tallahassee since Zimmerman was acquitted earlier this month by a jury in Sanford. Zimmerman claimed self-defense in shooting the 17-year-old Martin during a fight; Martin’s supporters say Zimmerman profiled and followed him because Martin was black. Senate President Don Gaetz, also a Republican, said Monday he agrees with Scott that there is no need for a special session. Gaetz said there is little agreement on whether change is needed to the “stand your ground” law and that voters have a chance in the 2014 elections to make their views known. “If people want to change the policymakers, if they want to change the policies, that’s why we have elections,” he said. (Houston Chronicle)
Florida rapper Rick Ross has shined some light on the law with his new “I Wonder Why” track.
Rick Ross dropped a new song today, “I Wonder Why,” in which he ponders his life. On the track, Ross wonders why his brother is incarcerated and why his ambition continues to push him forward. The MMG honcho also indirectly references slain Trayvon Martin and the incident which led to his death in Rozay’s home state of Florida. “Now I’m being followed by some creepy a** cracker,” Ross raps, a seemingly thinly-veiled reference to vigilante George Zimmerman following Travyon. “Stand your ground! Stand your ground! You gotta stand your ground!” Ross cries. Zimmerman stood behind Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground law to justify shooting Trayvon since he felt “threatened.” (RapFix)
Earlier this month, music icon Stevie Wonder vowed to boycott performing in Florida until the state abolished its Stand Your Ground law.
Luckily Stevie Wonder is 10 zillion light years smarter than those people. His boycott is politically savvy, morally righteous, and it could be enormously important. Wonder is one of the two or three most important American musicians walking the earth (Bob Dylan, maybe Aretha Franklin; end of list), with an unsurpassed track record for melding music and activism. His politics were forged in the American civil rights movement, and from a precocious age he knew the power of a musical boycott. (Slate)