By Liisa Wale
Arizona Community Press | www.azcommunitypress.org
This past Saturday just hours after it was announced that George Zimmerman was found “not guilty” in the death of Trayvon Martin people across the United States started showing up in the streets of Florida, Los Angeles, Chicago, and San Francisco. In New York City it was reported 10,000 people marched on Sunday. In Oakland there were reports of riots. Rallies and vigils keep popping up throughout the country. The unifying message is the same – “Justice for Trayvon Martin, not one more”.
The United States Department of Justice (USDOJ) made an announcement on Sunday that they will revive the investigation of Martin’s murder now that the state verdict has been released. The USDOJ will “review the facts of Trayvon Martin’s death to see if civil rights charges against George Zimmerman are warranted”.
On Sunday evening in downtown Phoenix a couple hundred people gathered at the Sandra Day O’Connor Courthouse. It was a peaceful, yet spirited event as people gathered to stand up to injustice. Speakers included Bishop Dr. Jeffrey Ellis Metcalfe Sr. of National Action Network, Rev. Jarret Maupin of the Progressive Christian Coalition, Phoenix Councilman Michael Johnson, and Sharon Zapata.
Rev. Jarret Maupin stated “The dream of Martin Luther King Jr is unfulfilled” and that we must stand up to injustice. Sharon Zapata along with some of the other speakers encouraged the audience to become “involved in the process” politically so “this does not happen again”.
Trayvon Martin has become a “symbol of outrage” of the systemic issues facing the black community not only in Phoenix but around the country.
On Tuesday evening another march and rally took place in downtown Phoenix “demanding Justice for Trayvon Martin and other victims of racial profiling”.
Rev. Maupin asked the crowd at the courthouse “Where do we go as a community from here?”. For now it appears action will be in the streets as communities throughout country hold vigils and marches to speak up for justice.
Photos taken at Phoenix rally on Sunday:
**Feature photo taken by Janet Higgins