Do I look suspicious?

“It could have been your brother.” The words resounded loudly in the hearts and minds of many Eastern University students, administrators and professors who gathered around the flagpole on March 28, 2012, to pray for the family of Trayvon Martin as well as for the American Justice System.

Many prayer vigils and “Million-Hoodie Marches” have taken place throughout the United States in response to the slaying of seventeen-year-old Martin. The killing took place in a gated community in Stanford, Florida, on February 26, 2012, where self-appointed neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman allegedly gunned down Martin, claiming that he looked suspicious. Martin was returning to his father’s fiancĂ©e’s home located in the community after stopping at a 7-Eleven to get a bag of Skittles and a can of iced tea.

The Trayvon Martin case has become a hot topic in America. Many believe that Zimmerman, claiming self-defense, was in fact racially profiling Martin, who was wearing a black hoodie with the hood up. It was raining when the incident occurred. Demonstrators in many cities have donned hoodies as a way to protest the killing, dubbing their marches “million-hoodie.” Wearing a hoodie has become the movement’s symbol, while its cry for justice is, “Do I look suspicious?”

Joe Oliver, an African-American friend of Zimmerman, said on Good Morning America that Zimmerman is not a racist and that “he is a guy who thought he was doing the right thing at the time, and it’s turned out horribly wrong.” Oliver is one of few African Americans that are standing up for Zimmerman.

Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, stated, “Trayvon was our son, but Trayvon is your son. A lot of people can relate to our situation and it breaks their heart like it breaks our heart.”

The Trayvon Martin case has become for many the foundation for the cry for justice in America. For many Americans, this case is uncovering the fact that racial profiling is alive and still a major issue in America today. No matter what the verdict in this case, the important thing is that Americans are reaching out together to try and seek justice for all.


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