L.A. Protesters Rally For Trayvon Martin
Hundreds of protesters rallied Thursday afternoon at Leimert Park in Los Angeles, calling for justice in the slaying of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
“No justice, no peace!” the crowd chanted, holding signs and pictures of Martin. “What do we want? Justice! When do we want it? Now!”
Martin was a high school student who was shot dead on Feb. 26 in Florida. George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch captain suspected of the shooting, has yet to be charged in the case.
This case has captured national attention amid allegations of racism and demands for more scrutiny of how local police handled the investigation.
“We want George Zimmerman to be arrested and prosecuted for the murder of Trayvon Martin,” said Najee Ali, one of the organizers of the rally.
“This is not black against white. This is a right and wrong issue,” he said.
More than 20 speakers voiced their opinions over microphones in a radio booth set in the middle of the park. A DJ played music to heighten the protesters’ enthusiasm.
At 7 p.m., two hours into the rally, the crowd's passion was unphased by the chill as more people joined the rally and surrounded the booth.
Zach Raynor, 29, attended the rally in a hoodie and sweats-- the way Martin was dressed when he was being followed and shot. Raynor is an investment associate at Northern Trust Bank and attended Harvard as an economic pre-med.
“He [Zimmerman] would have racially profiled me. I just want to show that just because I dress like this gives you no clue about who I really am and what’s really going on,” he said.
Raynor said Zimmerman should be arrested and the local police be reviewed for their negligence.
Chanell Temple said that as a mother of a son she was “terrified and outraged” when she first heard the news.
“If Martin were white, Zimmerman would have been arrested the first hour-- not the first day, the first hour,” she said angrily.