Wednesday, August 14, 2013

East St. Louis Trayvon Martin Rally/March

On July 20th childhood friends of Tracy Martin, Tommie Liddell, Undre Howard, Reginald Jordan and Raymond House with the assistance of Stephanie Miles planned and organized a march/rally in Martin’s hometown of East St. Louis, Illinois. The march to the United States district court and the rally that took place there were to show love and support for Martin in his continued fight for justice in the aftermath of the acquittal of his son's killer. The peaceful demonstration, attended by several hundred people, started at the East St Louis Board of Education. It occurred under the umbrella of the National Call to Action Day, a nationwide protest where people in over a 100 cities marched on the lawns of federal courts to pressure the U.S. Justice Department to file charges against George Zimmerman for the violation of Trayvon Martin’s civil rights.

Barry Malloyd, a minister at Mount Sinai M.B. Church and author of the book Mama Said Write It, started the rally on a spiritual note.  He petitioned God with a passionte prayer asking that justice be served in the nationally known case. Malloyd said, "Truth crushed to stone will rise again." He also pleaded for peace in East St.Louis, a community plague by violence and crime.

Among  the featured speakers were personal friends of Tracy Martin, Tommie Liddell and Raymond House, Ayonna Khayyam, financial literacy educator and vice president of Young Money Entertainment Inc., and Saint Louis radio personality Carol Daniel.

House (left) professed the community's love for the Martin family. He said, "East St. Louis loves Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton and we are especially proud of them for the way they have expressed themselves with dignity, from the circumstances surrounding their son's death and throughout the trial of the man who killed him. They took the high road when there where so many other avenues they could have taken".

Daniel (left) delivered a powerful message to the youth in attendance. She said “We need you to be all that Trayvon Martin will never be”.

Liddell (right) read a statement from Martin to the residents of East St. Louis. His message in the wake of the aquittal verdict was “My faith is being tested right now".
14 year-old Khayyam (right) also addressed the younger people. She said "Knowledge is the key to success. If you're illiterate nobody's going to take you seriously, and with our generation, not taking school seriously, society is going to treat us like a joke"!

As Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton continue to pursue justice in the killing of their son, they are advocates of the Trayvon Martin Foundation, a non-for-profit organization that raises awareness of ethnic, gender and racial profiling. A goal of the organization is to educate youth in the area of conflict resolution as part of a larger effort to prevent deadly confrontations between them and strangers.                                                                         


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  2. Excellent Blog! Just sharing that according to reports, there were more people at the rally in East St. Louis than were in attendance at the rally in the neighboring city of St. Louis, Missouri.

    1. Thanks. It's great that people all over have united for such a worthy cause. It is not without recognition that there is much more work needed with the problems in our community. Thanks for commenting.