Call to Action: HOODIES UP for Trayvon Martin on February 26th

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HOODIES UP! February 26, 2014 Two years since the murder of Trayvon Martin, A Day of Outrage and Remembrance, We Are All Trayvon Martin, The Whole Damn System is Guilty!

February 26, 2014 – 2 years since Trayvon Martin was murdered by vigilante, wanna be cop George Zimmerman; 2 years since this 17-year-old African-American walking home at 7:15 PM with skittles and iced tea and wearing a hoodie was murdered because he looked “suspicious” and “up to no good” to Zimmerman.

This was a modern day lynching. It sent a message that Black youth have a bulls-eye on their backs that cops and any ordinary racist can use as target practice. The recent murders of Renisha McBride in Detroit, Jordan Davis in Jacksonville, Florida, Jonathan Smith in North Carolina and Andy Lopez in Santa Rosa, California underscore this message.

In response we must deliver our own message: we will not stand by in silence as our youth are brutalized, locked up, murdered and more. On Feb 26th, we must say NO MORE! to the criminalization of whole generations of Black and Latino youth.

Look at what this case revealed. When the police arrived on the scene finding Zimmerman standing over Trayvon’s dead body, they drug tested Trayvon – the victim – and let Zimmerman – the killer – walk free. It took weeks of nationwide mobilization to force the authorities to put Zimmerman on trial.

Then Trayvon was put on trial. Stories of marijuana being found in his backpack and a school suspension filled the media. As Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon’s mother, put it: “They’ve killed my son, and now they are trying to kill his reputation.”

In the trial, the judge ruled the prosecution could talk about profiling, but not RACIAL profiling. The prosecutors forgot how to prosecute, putting on Zimmerman’s case so well he didn’t have to testify. The defense assassinated the character of Trayvon and then unleashed crude insults and racist attacks on Rachel Jeantel, who spoke the truth about what happened the night of Trayvon’s murder.

The question is what will we do now in the face of this outrage? Will we stand by in silence as youth like Trayvon die or face lives of brutality, misery and incarceration? Or will we stand up and say NO MORE! – on February 26, 2014, and from here on out? Now is NOT the time to “move on.” Now IS the time for basic people and youth, professors and students, artists and writers, athletes, musicians and prominent voices of conscience to rise up in spirited resistance with the clear objective of STOPPING mass incarceration, criminalization and murder of our youth.

On February 26, step off in determined street protests; hold campus teach-ins and cultural events; speak out in the media; spread the image and national sticker “We Are All Trayvon, The Whole Damn System is Guilty” and say NO MORE! to the green light this system has given to police and vigilantes to gun down and murder any youth they deem “suspect” because of the color of their skin or the clothes they wear. Spread the “We Say No More” statement which condemns the murder of Trayvon.

The murder of Trayvon was and is a towering outrage. Remember: when the verdict came down many thousands rejected the call for “calm reflection” from Obama and others and took to the streets in outrage. Many more asked: Why does this happen? And, what can we do about it? There is a challenge before us: what kind of world are we going to live in? On February 26, 2014 we must answer that challenge with a day of outrage and remembrance for Trayvon Martin and all the others like Trayvon.

Hoodies Up! We Are All Trayvon,
The Whole Damn System is Guilty!
The Youth Are Not Suspects, They Are Human Beings!

Join the fight for justice here and get out to the streets!

Oh, The Irony: 31 “Terrifying” Pictures From Black Twitter’s #DangerousBlackKids (PHOTOS)

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#DangerousBlackKids is among the best tags on the internet.

Global Grind

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On Saturday, Ta-Nehisi Coates, a national correspondent at The Atlantic, articulated the sentiments of black mothers and fathers everywhere who live in an America where unarmed black teens can lawfully be killed because of the sheer fear their person evokes.

In a beautifully written, but disheartening op-ed, Coates wrote his response to the Michael Dunn verdict, which ended in a mistrial for the first-degree murder count:

I wish I had something more to say about the fact that Michael Dunn was not convicted for killing a black boy. Except I said it after George Zimmerman was not convicted of killing a black boy. Except the parents of black boys already know this. Except the parents of black boys have long said this, and they have been answered with mockery.

Jordan Davis had a mother and a father. It did not save him. Trayvon Martin had a mother and a father. They could not save…

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Petition for an All-Inclusive Human Rights Ordinance

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Organizers in Jacksonville are working toward social justice in our city as part of the progressive change that the JPC strives toward.  Among the numerous campaigns in which JPC organizers are involved is the HROJAX 2014 initiative for an all-inclusive Human Rights Ordinance.

The HROJAX 2014 initiative in Jacksonville is beginning a petitioning drive this next month and has just created an updated Change.org petition to the City of Jacksonville in support of a Human Rights Ordinance that will protect citizens from discrimination in employment, housing and services on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, non-violent criminal record and military discharge status. Supporters of this initiative can sign right here.

Supporters of an all-inclusive HRO can also get updates from the HROJAX 2014 organizers by liking our Facebook page or email us at hrojax2014@riseup.net to join our mailing list.

Welcome to Our New Page!

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Welcome and thank you to all supporters of the Jacksonville Progressive Coalition!  We finally have a blog website up and running to more easily communicate with folks and the media in the progressive community and keep everyone updated on what our coalition is doing.  We hope to grow and share with folks locally and statewide as we work toward progress in our communities.

Currently, JPC members are working toward social justice on numerous fronts in and around the Jacksonville area.  Our coalition is comprised of a diverse group of organizations dedicated to progressive change in North Florida and Duval County.  For updates on all of the work our organizations are doing, follow us on here or join our group.

Anybody interested in getting on our mailing list can send a request to jaxprogressivecoalition@gmail.com

See you in the streets!