LANCASTER – Area residents are expected to don hoodie sweatshirts tomorrow in a community rally and march in remembrance of the unarmed Florida teen shot to death last month.
The “Hoodie March for Solidarity Against Stereotypes in Remembrance of Trayvon Martin” will kick off at 5 p.m. Thursday, March 29, at the Lancaster Metrolink Station (Sierra Hwy. & Lancaster Blvd.). The group will march to Lancaster City Hall, where speakers will address attendees.
“The significance of the march is to bring peace and unity within our community and to show that no matter the ethnicity, age, [or] profession, people wear hoodies,” said March Organizer Veronica Fields, COO of Simac Production Studios. “People should wear hoodies to the march because it shows solidarity in saying we are not dangerous because we have on a hoodie, everyone wears hoodies. If we spread awareness about humanity, stereotyping and come together in unity maybe our community will not fall victim to senseless violence as it has in the past.”
Antelope Valley residents will join the thousands of people from all walks of life who have dressed in hoodies, staged rallies, and signed petitions in cities across the country in honor of Martin, the 17-year-old African American boy shot and killed on Feb. 26 by 28-year-old neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman in Sanford, Florida.
During a recorded 9-1-1 call, Zimmerman claimed Martin looked suspicious covered in a hoodie while walking through his neighborhood. Soon afterward, there was a physical altercation between the two which ended when Zimmerman fatally shot Martin. Zimmerman claims he shot Martin in self-defense and so far has not been arrested.
Much is still unknown about the incident, and conflicting reports abound on the circumstances that led to the shooting. Still, Martin’s death has received national and international attention, sparked numerous debates about racial stereotypes, and triggered multiple investigations. Additionally, millions have signed a petition demanding Zimmerman’s arrest.
Fields said Thursday’s Hoodie March for Solidarity Against Stereotypes is a chance for Antelope Valley residents to become more unified and to show peace and love towards each other no matter the ethnicity or the types of clothing.
“Trayvon Martin may have been the spark that ignited the flame, but this march is for everyone who has fell victim to violence in our community as well,” Fields said. “I want our community to speak up when injustices are done upon us and maybe after this march it will be a little easier to do so. I felt very strongly about this issue because I have younger brothers that wear hoodies, I also have a son that will one day walk the sidewalk like Trayvon Martin did, with candy and a drink; I want him to be able to do that safely.”
For more information on this event click here.