UPDATE: Capitol sit-in planned over Zimmerman not guilty verdictby Dara Kam | July 16th, 2013
Young people from around the state are planning a sit-in at Gov. Rick Scott’s office in reaction to George Zimmerman’s acquittal in the killing of Trayvon Martin.
Dream Defenders are busing up college students and others from Jacksonville, Tampa, Orlando, Miami, Gainesville to demand that Scott call a special session to review stand your ground, racial profiling and zero tolerance school policies they believe are the reason Trayvon Martin wound up in Sanford last year.
Organizers expect as many as 200 to attend the protest they’re calling #TakeoverTuesday on Twitter.
Dream Defenders Executive Director Phillip Agnew said they’re prepared to wait “as long as it takes” for their demands to be met.
Scott’s in New York today and the Legislature won’t be in town until September at the earliest, when committee meetings meeting.
Like many others around the country, Agnew and his group, who’s protest has the blessing of the left-leaning Florida New Majority, are frustrated by Zimmerman’s not guilty verdict. Protests and vigils began the day after Saturday’s verdict and Al Sharpton, who will be at the NAACP convention in Orlando on Wednesday, said his organization is planning rallies in 100 cities in front of federal courthouses on Saturday.
“This is our step. We can’t burn our communities down. We can’t riot. So what can we do but go to the seat of power and ask them to do what they’re supposed to do,” Agnew said early this morning.
Agnew said the group is aware that Scott and the Legislature aren’t around but they wanted to give the leaders plenty of time to work on the Dream Defenders agenda the protesters believe will help avoid future tragedies.
Trayvon Martin, who lived in Miami Gardens with his mother Sybrina Fulton, was suspended from high school prior to going to Sanford to stay with his father Tracy. The Dream Defenders and other groups have made zero tolerance policies they call the “schools-to-prisons pipeline” a top issue.