“More justice! More peace! More justice! More peace! More justice! More Peace!”
About 100 people marched for peace and prayer for Trayvon Martin’s family at Central State University on Monday evening in the wake of the George Zimmerman not guilty verdict.
Students, faculty and community members rallied from the residence halls to the heart of campus in the Sunken Garden to let their voices be heard and to advocate for love and unity.
“You’re Trayvon. I’m Trayvon. Even though the color of our skin is different, it could have been your son, your nephew, your cousin, your brother,” said Central State student Lamarr Cole to a crowd of motivated listeners during the rally.
Central State is familiar with the importance of advocacy. The town where the 125 year-old HBCU is located is named after William Wilberforce, an English politician and a leader of the movement to abolish the slave trade, and the university actively promotes change with its motto “Change is Central.”
“Things like this happen every day,” said Miss Central State University Teaairra Tolbert. “It definitely put it in our hearts that this is real. We can’t ignore it. This is a real-life issue.”
Cole and others who helped organize the march said that though they support the jurors decision, there is still a need to speak on the events that led to the killing of Trayvon.
“It just hurts my heart to know that the man who killed him did not get his just due,” said Cole.
HBCU leaders and civil rights activists are urging students to get involved and take a stand. Hundreds recently gathered at Howard University to protest the George Zimmerman’s acquittal.
“My grandparents were civil rights advocates,” said Cal Colgan who was at the Howard march. “They taught me that it’s not fair that some people have it better than others just because of their skin color. That’s why I came to this rally. Some of us get it.”