Richmond NAACP: The verdict has been rendered, now the work begins
7/16/2013, 2:45 p.m.
The Richmond Branch of the NAACP shares the wide-range of the public concern about the not guilty verdict in the George Zimmerman case. The branch membership supports the National NAACP’s efforts to generate one million signatures for a petition to the Department of Justice in a request for a civil rights case in this matter. However, the Richmond Branch of the NAACP also recognizes that public requests that Zimmerman be arrested and subjected to due process have now taken place. The rule of law prevailed in the verdict. The question before us now is also about changing the law.
This case should be considered a call to action to all those who support laws and legislation that does not allow loopholes for injustice, racial profiling, and other acts of discrimination. It is our responsibility to take the actions necessary to protect the rights and lives of ourselves, our families and our communities.
This means educating ourselves about laws that are on the books and are being considered as legislation. It also means mobilizing in support of efforts to repeal those laws and doing the hard work of proposing legislation that looks after the interests of all of us.
The call to action has been named ‘The Trayvon Martin Action Plan’. It is a call for action that goes beyond legitimate civil disobedience and public outrage and challenges citizens to become engaged in the legislative process.
Florida’s ‘stand your ground’ law didn’t happen by itself. There were a number of groups who helped draft the legislation, garnered the necessary financial and political support, and helped push it through. We can’t blame them for it, they advocated for their interests. In Virginia, we must match their passion and commitment with our own opposition to similar stand your ground laws, and we will.
- Dr. Kim Allen, president of the Richmond Branch of the NAACP.