Even Stevie Wonder can see that the justice system let Trayvon Martin down. On Sunday (July 14), the renowned singer announced during a performance that he plans to boycott Florida or any other state that has “Stand Your Ground” laws.
The Huffington Post reports:
Stevie Wonder told a crowd on Sunday that he won’t perform in Florida until the state repeals its controversial Stand Your Ground laws, effectively boycotting any state with similar legislation on its books.
“I decided today that until the ‘Stand Your Ground’ law is abolished in Florida, I will never perform there again,” the singer said in Quebec City. “As a matter of fact, wherever I find that law exists, I will not perform in that state or in that part of the world. The truth is that — for those of you who’ve lost in the battle for justice, wherever that fits in any part of the world — we can’t bring them back. What we can do is we can let our voices be heard. And we can vote in our various countries throughout the world for change and equality for everybody. That’s what I know we can do.”
Florida’s Stand Your Ground laws, which demand that authorities have proof that refute a self-defense claim before arresting or trying someone claiming self-defense, have come under heavy criticism during and after the George Zimmerman trial. Zimmerman was accused of murdering Trayvon Martin, an unarmed, black 17-year-old who was walking home. Police did not arrest Zimmerman for almost two months after he shot Martin dead on account of the law, though he did not end up invoking the law in his defense.
If Wonder hold true to his word, he won’t be performing in almost half of the United States. There are reportedly at least 22 states with similar Stand Your Ground laws, including North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Georgia.
Wait, Georgia? You may not want to hold your breath when it comes to expecting rappers to follow suit.