Home / Government and politics / UF Dream Defenders Hold Rally for Trayvon Martin in Gainesville

UF Dream Defenders Hold Rally for Trayvon Martin in Gainesville

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University of Florida’s Dream Defenders continued their fight for Trayvon Martin on Saturday, and this time they had the support of a state representative.

Rep. Clovis Watson Jr., of District 20, was one of the speakers at Saturday’s rally. During his speech, Watson announced his support for a repeal of the “stand your ground” law.

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“I will be either sponsoring a bill, or a prime co-sponsor, of a bill to repeal the ‘stand your ground’ law. I do not believe someone should have the autonomy to take a life because they perceive danger,” Watson said.

The rally, held at the Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center, drew a crowd of more than 100 people.

Gwendolyn Zohara-Simmons, a current professor at UF and former civil rights student activist, was there. She dropped out of school in the 1960s to join the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), famous for initiating the sit-in movement and participating in freedom rides.

“We were the student arm of the civil rights movement. We initiated the sit-in movement in the ’60s, sitting in the restaurants, buses and all of that,” Zohara-Simmons said.

To her, the Dream Defenders represent the new generation of student activists, and she believes their efforts will reap results.

“I think this is the beginning of a new mass movement in the country, starting in Florida and emanating out, and I’m very happy about it,” she said.

Dream Defenders armed with clipboards and pens roamed the crowd seeking signatures for a petition addressed to Gov. Rick Scott. Their petition asks for a special session of the Florida legislature to be called in order to address the issues surrounding the Trayvon Martin case.

About Ethan Magoc

Ethan is a journalist at WUFT News. He's a Pennsylvania native who found a home reporting Florida's stories. Reach him by emailing emagoc@wuft.org or calling 352-294-1525.

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  • Angel Perea

    THE INCONVENEINT TRUTH: So why isn’t anyone asking ex Florida governor Jeb Bush about the NRA first Stand Your Ground bill to now formally become the east version of the Old Wilde West, “have gun will travel, after all he signed in law?”This is the sad and tragic conclusion for many us to concluded, don’t get caught dead in thisred State of Florida! We are waiting to hear from you, Jeb?

  • 7skuareoff

    Why do people lock their car doors when
    they see a black president approaching?

    Oh, geez, maybe it’s just a conditioned
    response to a decade of mobs of bat crap
    crazy black people, rioting and killing in
    the streets. Followed by a decade of car
    jackings with sporadic mobs of bat crap
    crazy black people, rioting and killing in
    the streets. Followed by a decade of home
    invasions with sporadic car jackings,
    and sporadic mobs of bat crap crazy black
    people, rioting and killing in the streets.
    Followed by a decade of driveby shootings
    with sporadic home invasions, sporadic car
    jackings and sporadic mobs of bat crap
    crazy black people, rioting and killing in
    the streets.

    Maybe it’s a bat crap crazy president, his
    bat crap crazy Attorney General, their bat
    crap crazy Vice president with their bat
    crap crazy wing man, Al Sharpton, going on
    tv to actually encourage and justify mobs
    of bat crap crazy black people, rioting and
    killing in the streets.

    Which is also the answer to the question:
    Why the hell wouldn’t everyone want an assault
    rifle?

    The funny thing is, White people are the
    only people in America who need a law
    telling them to Stand Your Ground, and the
    only people in America who ever bother to
    get a permit to buy a gun.

    It took two hundred years to elect the first
    black president, and Barack Obama, Al Sharpton
    and Eric Holder pretty much guaranteed it’ll
    be another two hundred years, before we elect
    the next one.

    When you return from your next foreign policy
    excursion, Mr. President, don’t be surprised
    to find we changed the locks on the White
    House.

    • Karen Levin

      7skuareoff: Your a true sicko. How about your REAL name, chicken sh*t.

  • Pingback: One week later, Dream Defenders stand their ground — MSNBC()

  • TOTO

    Hey Dream Defenders………………….let me hear your Defence on all the Blacks that are Robbing, Stealing, Mugging, Selling Drugs, Killing, EVERY DAY here . How about doing something GOOD for a change and start a group called “Dream Mentoring”. Teach the young people that spending a Day in Jail is a Day they gave away, that they can’t get back. Teach them to Respect others, Respect the Laws, Respect Law Officers, Respect the Elders. Teach them to leave other Peoples Property alone. Teach them that Breaking the Law is wrong, that Bullying is wrong. Teach them to stay in School and get an Education, to work HARD for what they want. Teach them that Life is not easy. Teach them to LOVE, not Hate. TEACH THEM.