TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and faith leaders risked arrest with an act of civil disobedience, holding a sit-in demanding Governor Rick Scott to act on the dangerous “Stand Your Ground” law.
Click here to watch Gillum and faith leaders risk arrest to enter a secure area of the Governor’s Office and demand a meeting with his staff. Ultimately, they met with Deputy Chief of Staff Jack Heekin and demanded three things:
Governor Scott must personally contact the McGlockton family and meet with the mother of Markeis’ children, Britany Jacobs.
Governor Scott must reconsider declaring a State of Emergency over “Stand Your Ground” due to the confusion about the law and the message it sends to communities of color, who view this as a dangerous law. Mayor Gillum demanded Governor Scott call a State of Emergency last week.
Governor Scott must convene a statewide clergy meeting to discuss the dangerous racial implications of “Stand Your Ground.”
“It was a powerful moment. We felt that the Governor and someone on his staff ought to talk to Markeis’ fiance. The Governor should see her pain and her hurt, and I hope he’ll be sensitive to revisiting this law,” said Reverend R.B. Holmes, Bethel Baptist Church, Chairperson, Tallahassee Chapter, National Action Network. “Moving forward, we need the next Governor to amend this law. It was a powerful moment to have Mayor Gillum, clergy from across the state, and two extraordinary lawyers, Ben Crump and Michele Rayner, come together today. I believe this will galvanize the electorate so we can elect a governor who is committed to repealing ‘Stand Your Ground’.”
“Today was very impactful and meaningful. We had the ability to speak with a representative of the Governor’s Office to share our concerns. We wanted him to hear the plight and concerns facing our African-American citizens of our state,” said Reverend Dr. Julius H. McAllister Jr., Bethel AME Church, Tallahassee, Florida. “We want him to look into the eyes of those suffering, the eyes of those under threat, and the eyes of Markeis’ fiance. We want the Governor to have a meaningful dialogue on the ‘Stand Your Ground’ law.”
Members of the McGlockton family, attorney Ben Crump, and civic and faith leaders from across the state joined a rally and march on the Capitol today.
Mayor Gillum has forcefully spoken out against “Stand Your Ground” before this tragedy, including in a debate in Pinellas County on June 9.
Gillum has been a passionate advocate on behalf of Trayvon Martin’s family, including during a February 13 debate with Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran, and hosting a town hall meeting after the George Zimmerman verdict.
Gillum also has the strongest gun safety record in the gubernatorial field, including beating the NRA in court twice.