By John W. Lillpop
On October 3, 1995, OJ Simpson was acquitted of murder. His guilt had seemed so obvious, to some. The verdict shocked and angered scores of millions of Americans.
In the minds of millions of Americans, Judge Lance Ito had presided over a miscarriage of justice that allowed a brutal killer to escape punishment for heinous crimes.
Many continue to believe that OJ Simpson killed Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman and should have been held accountable, instead of being set free.
Reverend Al Sharpton was not among those who lamented Simpson's acquittal.
In fact, no religious or political leader led angry protesters through the streets to demand that Los Angeles be shut down because of the trial result.
Fast forward to July 13, 2013, where jurors in Florida ruled that George Zimmerman did not commit a crime when he killed African-American teen Trayvon Martin in self defense.
In this case, Reverend Al Sharpton decided that the Zimmerman verdict was unacceptable. The Reverend had this to say:
The Rev. Al Sharpton announced Tuesday that he will lead a national "Justice for Trayvon" day in 100 cities this weekend to press for federal civil rights charges against George Zimmerman.A question for the Reverend: EXACTLY why do you believe that justice was not achieved in the Zimmerman case? And how is it that OJ Simpson can walk away from a brutal double murder without a peep from you?
Zimmerman's acquittal over the weekend in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin has touched off protests around the country. The Justice Department is investigating whether Zimmerman violated Martin's civil rights when he shot the 17-year-old during a February 2012 confrontation in Sanford, Fla. Zimmerman said he fired his gun in self-defense.
"People all across the country will gather to show that we are not having a two- or three-day anger fit. This is a social movement for justice," Sharpton said as he announced the plan outside the Justice Department with several ministers.
The rallies and vigils will occur in front of federal court buildings at noon Saturday in cities including Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia and New York.
Sharpton admits there are possible legal hurdles, but says "there is also a blatant civil rights question of does Trayvon Martin and the Trayvon Martins of this country have the civil right to go home."
Sharpton says vigils will be followed by a conference next week in Miami to develop a plan to address Florida's "stand-your-ground" law. The law gives people wide latitude to use deadly force if they fear death or bodily harm.
A six-member jury acquitted Zimmerman of second-degree murder and manslaughter charges.”
Is it all about your race, Reverend?