"Justice for Trayvon" rallies in over 100 cities commenced on Saturday, a week after George Zimmerman, the man accused of murdering unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin, was acquitted.
The demonstrations were largely peaceful, with hundreds of people participating in some cases. Their message: change the "stand your ground" laws that allowed Zimmerman to claim he shot Martin in self-defense; and bring civil rights charges against Zimmerman.
Martin's mother, Sybrina Fulton, and brother Jahvaris Fulton attended the rally in New York City, as did Al Sharpton, who last Saturday called the verdict an "atrocity," and Jay Z and Beyonce.
The couple did not speak at the event, but Sybrina Fulton addressed the crowd, saying: "Of course we're hurting. Of course we're shocked and disappointed, but that just means that we have to roll up our sleeves and continue to fight."
Martin's father, Tracy, attended a rally in Miami, telling protesters there that: "I will continue to fight for Trayvon until the day I die. Not only will I be fighting for Trayvon, I will be fighting for your child as well," the New York Times reported.
In Los Angeles, a rally turned into a march. Hundreds of protestors, according to the Los Angeles Times, made their way from downtown's federal court building to the Mid-City area. A "smaller group," the newspaper said, then headed to the Crenshaw district. On Monday, protests in that neighborhood broke out in several incidents of violence and vandalism. So far, Saturday's protests have been peaceful.
On Friday, President Obama spoke out about the trial at a White House press conference, his first live comments since the verdict. "Trayvon Martin could have been me," the President said.
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