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Topics In the News
 
Glbtq Groups Denounce Verdict in Trayvon Martin Murder Trial
Posted by: Claude J. Summers on 07/16/13
Last updated on: 07/16/13
 
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In an open letter calling for justice for slain teenager Trayvon Martin, a coalition of 35 glbtq groups have denounced the verdict in the recently concluded murder trial in which a jury found George Zimmerman not guilty. The letter associates Trayvon Martin's death with the murders of glbtq youth such as Brandon Teena, Matthew Shepard, Lawrence King, Gwen Araujo, and Ali Forney, and endorses the call for action by the Department of Justice to ensure that justice is served for Martin.

The letter is headed "Trayvon Deserves Justice" and reads as follows.

"We cannot begin to imagine the continued pain and suffering endured by Trayvon Martin's family and friends. We stand in solidarity with them as they continue to fight for justice, civil rights and closure. And we thank everyone who has pushed and will continue to push for justice.

Trayvon Martin deserves justice and his civil rights. We support the organizations and community leaders who are urging the federal government to explore every option to ensure that justice is served for Trayvon and that his civil rights are honored and respected. But our work does not end there: we will honor Trayvon Martin by strengthening our commitment to end bias, hatred, profiling and violence across our communities.

We represent organizations with diverse lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender constituencies. Our community has been targets of bigotry, bias, profiling and violence. We have experienced the heart-breaking despair of young people targeted for who they are, who they are presumed to be, or who they love: Rashawn Brazell, Lawrence King, Ali Forney, Brandon Teena, Brandon White, Matthew Shepard, Marco McMillian, Angie Zapata, Sakia Gunn, Gwen Araujo and countless others.

Every person, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity, must be able to walk the streets without fear for their safety. Justice delayed is justice denied and in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 'a right delayed is a right denied.' We honor Trayvon by seeking justice for all people."

Organizations signing the letter include All Out, American Civil Liberties Union, Believe Out Loud, BiNet USA, Bisexual Resource Center, Center for Black Equity, CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers, Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals, Equality Federation, Family Equality Council, Freedom to Work, Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, Gay-Straight Alliance Network (GSA Network), GetEQUAL, GMHC, GLAD, GLAAD, Harvey Milk Foundation, Human Rights Campaign, Immigration Equality, Lambda Legal, Movement Advancement Project, National Black Coalition, National Center for Lesbian Rights,,National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, National Minority AIDS Council, National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance, Out & Equal Workplace Advocates, PFLAG National, The Trevor Project, Trans Advocacy Network, Transgender Law Center, and Trans People of Color Coalition.

In the wake of the verdict, MSNBC anchors Thomas Roberts and Melissa Harris-Perry discuss its ramifications for those of us who are "others."

 
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