Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon Martin’s mother, made it clear on Meet the Press Sunday that she has turned her grief over the death of her son into action to stop racial profiling and “Stand-your-Ground” laws around the country.
“We’re going to all 21 states with stand your ground laws to make some change,” Fulton said to David Gregory, and while it won’t happen overnight, “we’re in it for the long haul. This is part of my life now.”
Fulton appeared on Meet the Press after NYPD Chief Ray Kelly defended “Stop-and-Frisk,” a practice that a federal judge determined violated the constitution and discriminated against minorities, who make up 90% of the stops.
“You have to give, not only civilians, but police officers, the right direction,” Fulton said. “You can’t give the authority, whether it’s a civilian or a police officer, the right to stop somebody just because of the color of their skin.”
When it comes to changing policies related to how young people of color are treated in America, Martin family attorney Benjamin Crump called for people to vote in the midterm elections and to lobby legislators to amend Stand Your Ground laws.
“Trayvon voters have a clear cause: capturing the passion over the devastating verdict returned in the trial of George Zimmerman and transforming these feelings into actions that can and will make a difference,” Crump wrote in an op-ed in the Washington Post.
But voting is only one part of the equation. If progressives want to counteract the policies that have been enacted by conservatives after decades of organizing, they’ve got their work cut out for them.
“It’s not just about voting every two or four years, it’s not just about organizing and direct action,” said guest Dorian Warren, an associate professor at Columbia University. “It’s about doing both constantly. You can’t go home after the cycle. You have to keep adding and pushing policies after election day.”