DID YOU KNOW WHAT SPARKED THE TERM BLACK LIVES MATTER?
An African American 17-year-old boy Trayvon Martin was murdered by George Zimmerman which led to the invention of Black Lives Matter.
Trayvon Martin an African American teen was fatally shot by George Zimmerman, a watch volunteer in the townhouse community of the Retreat at Twin Lakes in Sanford, Florida on February 26, 2012. The watcher later claimed that he shot the 17-year old out of self-defense.
Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman: Photo Courtesy
Police opted not to arrest Zimmerman whose father is white and mother Hispanic and this sparked protests and ignited national debates on racial profiling and self-defense laws. The protest came after Martin’s parents raised concern about the investigation into the death of their son who had no criminal record. On 21, March people gathered to demand justice for Martin who they believe Zimmerman murdered because he was black. The police later charged him with second-degree murder. The term “Black lives matter” was then used for the first time on a Facebook post in response to Zimmerman’s acquittal by organizer Alicia Garza in July 13, 2013.
Trayvon Martin: Photo Courtesy
President Barack Obama said if he had a son he will look like Trayvon. The shooting drew attention to Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground law. The law allows people to use force if they fear their safety.
Martin’s death set off nationwide protests where Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors and Opal Tometi formed the Black Lives Matter Network to “eradicate white supremacy and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes.”