FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
State Rep. Thaddeus Kirkland
Hoodies on the Hill rally participants call for justice in Trayvon Martin's death
HARRISBURG, April 3 – State Rep. Thaddeus Kirkland led a rally on the Capitol steps Tuesday called "Hoodies on the Hill" to demand justice in the shooting death of unarmed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida.
Kirkland was joined by other lawmakers, including Democratic leaders from the House and Senate, who donned hoodies as they spoke. A pack of Skittles and a can of iced tea – the only items Martin was carrying when he was shot to death – were placed on a podium used by the speakers.
"Trayvon Martin didn't know the rules," said Kirkland, D-Delaware. "He didn't know wearing a hoodie in a certain neighborhood was a fatal flaw."
According to reports, 28-year-old community watch coordinator George Zimmerman tracked Martin because he wearing a hoodie and looked out of place in the gated community. Zimmerman, who remains free, has claimed he shot Martin in self-defense.
Kirkland said anyone could have been a victim of the shooting because people of all races look alike when they are wearing a hoodie, have their hands in their pockets and have their back turned.
"Even Rocky Balboa wore a hoodie as he raced up the steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum," Kirtland said.
Kirkland said many questions remain about the shooting, such as who was the aggressor and if police have done a proper investigation, and the nation is demanding answers.
"No justice, no peace," Kirkland said. "Trayvon Martin cannot speak now. We became the voice of young Trayvon Martin."
Other lawmakers said the shooting should prompt Pennsylvania's Legislature to revisit the state's Castle Doctrine law because it encourages a shoot-first-and-ask-questions-later mentality, and could lead to a similar tragedy here.