By Yaasmeen Piper
Feb. 26 marks the fifth anniversary of Trayvon Martin’s death. Martin, 17 at the time, was gunned down by former neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman.
Since Zimmerman was acquitted of the murder in July of 2013 protest erupted across the country and sparked the Black Lives Matter movement.
The Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) is teaming up with Metropolitan Community Church for Lehigh Valley’s “Hoodie Rally” to honor Martin.
“This rally is an opportunity to stand in solidarity with young people of color, to publicly show love, respect and care,” said OMA’s program coordinator Ly’Esha J. Fleming.
The phrase “Hoodie rally” was derived from Martin being found in his hoodie with nothing but a pack of Skittles and an iced tea.
“On the five year anniversary of Trayvon Martin’s death, the rally ensures the legacy of Trayvon and so many victims of social injustice are not forgotten.”
The days after his death and Zimmerman’s acquittal, people have walked out of their classrooms, and jobs, wearing their hoodies in protest.
According to The Guardian, protesters have gathered outside of court and police buildings in more than 100 cities.
Since Martin, hundreds of civilians have been killed by officers including Michael Brown, Eric Garner and Alton Sterling, none of which have been convicted.
As well as OMA, organizations such as Community Action Committee of Lehigh Valley (CACLV), Bradbury Sullivan LGBT Community Center and more are involved in the rally. The public is free to participate as well.
“It is very important for students to become vocal in combatting social injustices because it is in their vocalization and mobilization that we find power and what’s needed to promote progressive change,” said Fleming.
The Rally takes place in the City Hall Plaza in Bethlehem, Pa. at 2 p.m. Wear your hoodies to honor Trayvon Martin and the hundreds of other innocent people of color.
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