July 20, 2013
One week after George Zimmerman was found not guilty in the death of teenager Trayvon Martin, people have started to gather for nationwide rallies to press for federal civil rights charges against the former neighborhood watch leader.
Beyonce and Jay Z joined the Florida teenager’s mother as she spoke to crowds in Manhattan alongside the Reverend Al Sharpton.
The case has become a flashpoint in separate but converging national debates over self-defense laws, guns, and race relations.
The Rev Al Sharpton’s National Action Network organized Justice for Trayvon rallies and vigils outside federal buildings from noon in at least 101 cities, from New York and Los Angeles to Wichita in Kansas and Birmingham, Alabama.
On Saturday morning he told supporters in Manhattan he wanted a rollback of stand-your-ground self-defense laws.
‘We are trying to change laws so that this never, ever happens again,’ he said.