Zehra Billoo, Executive Director of CAIR San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, said that her organization welcomes the Department of Justice is reviewing the civil rights issues associated with the February 2012 killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida. “We know that Trayvon Martin’s civil rights were violated.”
Rev. Dr. Andrew Kille, President of Silicon Valley Inter-religious Council, said that the reaction of George Zimmerman’s acquittal has aroused responses from across the country which remind “us again of our shameful history of hatred and discrimination, privilege and power, based on differences of race, religion and culture.” He said the issues raised by the Trayvon Martin case are complex which require to “crossover the deeply-inscribed barriers of prejudice and hostility and to discover together how to move forward as one people.”
Delorme McKee-Stovall of the Human Relations Office of Santa Clara County said she is the mother of an African-American son and she never imagined that she will be dealing with racism when my son turns to nine years of age. “This weekend when the verdict came down (in George Zimmerman case) her heart broke. “Now so many mothers are weeping for their boys.”
In a statement read by Lenine Umali, Congressman Michael Honda said he was extremely saddened to hear about the devastating killing of Trayvon Martin. While there are many unresolved questions, it is in the best interests of our country, and our commitment to all individuals in this nation regardless of skin color, that justice be served, he said adding: “Mr. George Zimmerman still walks a free man, while a 17-year-old deceased and unarmed young man is under scrutiny, validating that the underpinnings of this case must be proactively investigated, evaluated, and determined.”
The congressman was of the view that while understanding the complicated nature of this violent act, all signs point to the fact that tragedy was brutally affected by racial bias, since violent acts are disproportionately committed against communities of color, and it is outrageous that cases such as Trayvon’s go uninvestigated, overlooked, and ultimately ignored.
Syeda Reshma Inamdar, Executive Director and Co-Founder of SEMAH Inc., as a domestic violence prevention organization, SEMAH is horrified at the egregious misapplication of law in Florida which allowed George Zimmerman to go free after killing unarmed 17 year old Trayvon Martin but has sentenced Marissa Alexander of Jacksonville to 20 years in prison for defending herself.
“Marissa Alexander, a black woman, has stated that she filed shots in the air to scare off her abusive husband. She fired in self defense, harmed no one and yet she faces 20 years behind bars while George Zimmerman is fully acquitted,” she added and urged Florida Governor Rick Scott and the Florida Legislature to redress this clear travesty of justice.
Abdus Sattar Ghazali, Communications Director of the AMV, said the AMV believes that George Zimmerman targeted Trayvon Martin because he was a black guy. Unfortunately, as Muslims we have been recipients of the same treatment since 9/11. The acquittal of Zimmerman is a miscarriage of justice.
He borrowed the ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romano and said “this verdict casts serious doubts on whether our legal system provides equal protection of law to everyone regardless of race and ethnicity.”
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