American Baptist Home Ministries responds to Trayvon Martin case: We must find a better way
On April 2, 2012 At 10:50 am
Responses : 11 Comments
Wearing a hoodie in support of Trayvon Martin, Dr. Aidsand F. Wright-Riggins III, executive director of the
American Baptist Home Ministries says "we need to find a better way." Dr. Aidsand F. Wright-Riggins III, executive director of the ABHM recounts the experiences with the police African Americans have had, including himself and his son, regarding "walking and driving while being [a minister and being] Black. " This issue has been forced to the forefront with the events of the Trayvon Martin case. We reported on the the calls for justice by African American churches regarding the Martin case .
March 23: Roughly 50 schools in Florida stage walkouts to protest the killing of Trayvon Martin and show support for the change.org petition, demanding George Zimmerman’s arrest.
The online petition surpasses 1.5 million signatures, making it all time fastest growing petition in change.org’s history, according to the website.
At a White House press conference, President Obama takes time to addressthe Trayvon Martin case, saying, “If I had a son he’d look like Trayvon.”
“Hoodies on the Hill,” a group of Capitol Hill staffers, rally in support of Martin.
Fox News contributor Geraldo Rivera ignites a firestorm of criticism when he seemed to indicate that Martin’s hoodie, which he was wearing the night of the shooting, was to blame for his death.
A second “Million Hoodie March” takes place in Philadelphia. Thousands attend.
Members of the Miami Heat basketball team dispatch Twitter pictures, showing team members wearing hoodies in support of Martin.
March 24: A friend of George Zimmerman’s family tells ABC News that thevoice heard howling on the 911 tapes was Zimmerman’s, not 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. The friend also said Zimmerman ”couldn’t stop crying” in the days following the shooting.
Zimmerman’s attorney Craig Sonner tells ABC News that Zimmerman is not a racist, and that his client has received numerous calls and threats.
The Black Panthers put up a $10,000 bounty for Zimmerman’s “capture.”
March 25: Joe Oliver, who describes himself as a close friend of George Zimmerman’s family, appears on “Good Morning America” and reiterates that Zimmerman has gone into hiding, fears for his life and is “just now becoming aware of how big this has gotten.”
Oliver later tells ABC News’ David Muir that he “didn’t even know whether George pulled the trigger.”
Zimmerman’s attorney Craig Sonner tells ABC News it will be clear in court that Zimmerman acted in self defense, and that he suffered a broken nose and an injury to the back of his head the night Trayvon Martin was killed.
March 26: George Zimmerman originally told police in a written statement that Trayvon Martin knocked him down with a punch to the nose, repeatedly slammed his head on the ground and tried to take his gun, a police source tells ABC News.
Lead prosecutor and veteran State Attorney Angela Corey tells ABC News that convicting Zimmerman won’t be easy because of Florida’s “stand-your-ground” law.
“The stand-your-ground law is one portion of justifiable use of deadly force,” Corey said. “And what that means is that the state must go forward and be able to prove it’s case beyond a reasonable doubt… So it makes the case in general more difficult than a normal criminal case.”
ABC News confirms that Trayvon Martin was suspended from school for 10 days for possession of marijuana in mid-February. No comment from the family.
Reverend Al Sharpton announces he vows to “occupy” Sanford, Fla., over Easter.
March 27: ABC News confirms that the night Trayvon Martin was shot, Chris Serino, the lead homicide detective on the case, said he “disbelieved” George Zimmerman’s testimony and recommended in an affidavit that Zimmerman be arrested for manslaughter. But the State Attorney’s office, headed by Norman Wolfinger, instructed him not to press charges because it was deemed there wasn’t enough evidence to lead to a conviction.
ABC News also confirms that Trayvon Martin was suspended from school three times.
About 200 to 250 protesters gather in front of the U.S. Justice Department to ask the department to charge George Zimmerman with a federal hate crime.
Martin’s parents, Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, attend a forum on racial profiling and hate crimes on Capitol Hill. Tracy Martin says he believes his son was racially profiled.
March 28: ABC News EXCLUSIVE: A police surveillance video taken the night that Trayvon Martin was shot dead shows no blood or bruises on George Zimmerman. The initial police report noted that Zimmerman was bleeding from the back of the head and nose. His lawyer later insisted that Zimmerman’s nose had been broken in his scuffle with 17-year-old Martin.
Rep. Bobby Rush, D-Ill., dons a hoodie in support of Trayvon Martin and is kicked off the House floor for improper dress code.
Many Christian groups have rallied in support of Trayvon Martin. The Christian Post reports that Christians across the country have rallied wearing hoodies to church to speak out for Trayvon:
Christians across the country went to church on Sunday wearing hooded sweatshirts to show solidarity with Trayvon Martin, who wore one when he was killed by a neighborhood watch volunteer in Florida. Pastors called for justice for the slain black teenager as part of their sermons.
At Martin's family church, Antioch Missionary Baptist Church in Miami Gardens, Fla., Martin's mother Sybrina Fulton, attended the 7 a.m. service Sunday. The members planned to leave in buses for rallies in Sanford Monday, Miami Herald reported.
At Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church in Eatonville, Fla., the Rev. Jesse Jackson spoke about Martin's death with the hundreds of congregants. "How do we turn pain into power?" he posed, as reported by The Associated Press. The church is about 20 miles from the site of the killing. "How do we go from a moment to a movement that curries favor?"
He said Martin's "martyr" death could revive the Civil Rights Commission and raise some long-standing issues. "The blood of the innocent has power," he said.