Occupation of Florida Governor's Office Enters Second Day
The occupation of Florida Governor Rick Scott's (R) office by Trayvon Martin supporters entered its second day Wednesday with no clear endgame in sight.
The activist group "Dream Defenders" began a sit-in on "Takeover Tuesday," days after the acquittal of George Zimmerman, and said they would not leave the office until their list of demands was met.
The group's primary demand was that Scott call a special legislative session to address what Dream Defenders call the "Trayvon Martin Civil Rights Act," which includes a repeal of Stand Your Ground laws and an end to racial profiling by police.
The Dream Defenders' agenda received a boost from Eric Holder Tuesday at the NAACP's annual convention. Holder brought up both Stand Your Ground laws and racial profiling. Those same issues have been talking points for Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, NOW, MoveOn.org, and many other liberal groups.
In this exclusive interview with Ahmad Abuznaid from Dream Defenders, he expresses his view that the issues go beyond left/right ideology, but the pressure on the issues is clearly coming from the institutional left, up and coming activist groups like Dream Defenders, and the political class in Washington.
Abuznaid also reaffirmed that the group's members are 100 percent committed to sticking with the the sit-in until it get what they want.
Dream Defenders, made up of motivated college students and experienced professional organizers, has a history of getting their way in the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman case through their direct actions, such as inciting Zimmerman's arrest last year and contributing to what former Sanford Sheriff Bill Lee described as a forced resignation.
Gov. Scott's communication director Melissa Sellers issued a statement affirming support for Stand Your Ground:
Immediately following Trayvon Martin's death, Governor Scott called a bi-partisan Special Task Force with 19 citizens to review Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law. This Task Force listened to Floridians across the state and heard their viewpoints and expert opinions on this law. The task force recommended that the law should not be overturned, and Governor Scott agrees.
As the sit-in heads into its third day, there is growing media coverage, including CNN cameras seen on-site, and a front-page article in the Tallahassee newspaper.