By now I’m sure most everyone has heard about the Trayvon Martin case and the many injustices surrounding the death of this Miami Gardens teen. For those who haven’t heard or just haven’t taken the time to really read up on it, Trayvon Martin was an unarmed black 17 year old who was shot and killed by a self-appointed neighborhood watchman, George Zimmerman, while walking home through a Sanford, Florida neighborhood where he was visiting his father. Sanford Police opted not to arrest Zimmerman for the killing, immediately accepting his claim that it was done in self-defense, without properly conducting a thorough investigation. The blatant mishandling of this incident by the Sanford Police has resulted in numerous protests across the country, and has sparked emotional debates over racial profiling and grounds for self-defense that have now drawn international attention.
I feel compelled to touch on this topic for many reasons. Being that Sanford, Florida is only about 15 minutes from The Bboy Spot and an area that we often frequent, this issue really hits closer to home than one might think. Both my mother and grandparents are current residents of Sanford, with my grandparents’ home being located only one street away (not even a one minute walk) from where the murder took place. My high school was just a few miles away, and many of my friends still live around that side of town. With that being said, through both my own personal experiences and the experiences of many I grew up with in the area, I will certainly be among the many to state that the Sanford “authorities” have long been corrupted, and this isn’t something that just started now with the Trayvon Martin case.
On March 26th, The Bboy Spot team headed out to Fort Melon Park in Sanford, to attend a massive rally held in support of Trayvon’s parents, as they met with the Sanford City Hall for the first time to deliver a petition with over 1,000,000 signatures demanding the arrest of George Zimmerman for the murder of their son (this petition now holds over 2,500,000 signatures to date). The overall vibe of the rally was very peaceful and positive, and we all walked away from the event feeling incredibly inspired by the unity that was witnessed.
Although an arrest has still not been made, with the latest update being that Zimmerman has now disappeared, we stand with the millions who hope that justice will be served–not just for Trayvon, but for the many whose deaths have gone unnoticed and without redress in the hands of our system.
Photos: Josh Salcedo
Video: Adrian Colina