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“If I had a Son, He’d Look Like Trayvon”: Obama Speaks Out, FPC Students Protest

| March 23, 2012

'If I had a son, he'd look like Trayvon': President Barack Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia shop at Kramerbook & Afterwords Cafe in Washington, D.C., last November. (White House)

President Barack Obama addressed the killing of Treyvon Martin for the first time this morning, and in personal terms, calling for “soul-searching” not only about the specifics of the case, but regarding the Stand Your Ground law and the “context for what happened.”

“I can only imagine what these parents are going through,” Obama said. “And when I think about this boy, I think about my own kids.” He added later, in a 90-second statement: My main message is to the parents of Trayvon Martin. You know, if I had a son he’d look like Trayvon. And you know, I think they are right to expect that all of us as Americans are going to take this with the seriousness that it deserves and that we’re going to get to the bottom of this.”

The Flagler District’s Message About FPC’s Student Protests
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Students have been walking out of classes across Florida in protest over the killing all morning, including at Flagler Palm Coast High School, where a peaceful protest by “a few hundred students” followed by the signing of banners and student-led prayer in the Bulldog Cafe, the school cafeteria. Most students returned to class and were excused for their absence. Some did not, and had in-excused absences recorded.

Meanwhile, Gov. Rick Scott appointed an outside prosecutor Thursday night to investigate the shooting death of Trayvon Martin and formed a task force that will review the state’s controversial “stand your ground” law.

Scott made the announcement amid a national furor about the Feb. 26 shooting death of the unarmed black teenager by Sanford neighborhood-watch volunteer George Zimmerman. Black lawmakers earlier this week called on Scott to appoint a special prosecutor to handle the case.

In an executive order, Scott said Jacksonville-area State Attorney Angela Corey has accepted an assignment to handle the case. Norman Wolfinger, the state attorney in Seminole County, which includes Sanford, sent a letter to Scott requesting that another prosecutor be assigned.

“I am fully confident in the ability of my office to conduct a fair and impartial investigation, and I have already committed experienced career prosecutors and investigators to this task who have been working diligently in conjunction with FDLE (the Florida Department of Law Enforcement),” Wolfinger wrote. “This request is being made in light of the public good with the intent of toning down the rhetoric and preserving the integrity of this investigation.”

Scott also announced the creation of a Task Force on Citizen Safety and Protection, which will be led by Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll. The Rev. R.B. Holmes Jr., a prominent African-American Tallahassee minister, will be vice-chairman of the task force, and Scott said legislative leaders and Attorney General Pam Bondi will recommend other members.

In a news release, Scott said the panel will “thoroughly review Florida’s ‘stand your ground’ law and any other laws, rules, regulations or programs that relate to public safety and citizen protection.” The task force will start meeting after Corey’s investigation into Martin’s death, hold hearings and ultimately make recommendations to Scott and the Legislature.

“As we exercise our right to be free and secure both in public and in the privacy of our own homes, it is important that we have an open and honest discussion on these issues so that we might help avoid such tragedies in the future,” Scott said.

The stand-your-ground law has drawn heavy criticism since Martin, 17, was killed as he walked to the home of his father’s girlfriend home in a gated community. Lawmakers passed the self-defense law in 2005, allowing people to stand their ground and shoot — instead of retreat — if they think they are in danger.

Zimmerman, 28, argued that he shot Martin in self-defense and has not been charged. The case has spurred criticism across the country and led to an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice.

State Sen. Gary Siplin, an Orlando Democrat who had called Wednesday for a special prosecutor, issued a statement Thursday night praising Scott’s decision to appoint Corey and the task force.

“I am pleased Gov. Scott had the wisdom and foresight to listen to the pleas of the thousands of citizens in the city of Sanford who are yearning for justice in the killing of Trayvon Martin,” Siplin said.

Corey, whose office handles prosecutions in Duval, Clay and Nassau counties, was elected state attorney in 2008. A Republican, she was a long-time prosecutor before getting elected state attorney.

–FlaglerLive and the News Service of Florida

Obama’s full statement:

“I’m the head of the executive branch, and the attorney general reports to me so I’ve got to be careful about my statements to make sure that we’re not impairing any investigation that’s taking place right now. But obviously, this is a tragedy. I can only imagine what these parents are going through.” He paused. “And when I think about this boy, I think about my own kids, and I think every parent in America should be able to understand why it is absolutely imperative that we investigate every aspect of this, and that everybody pulls together, federal, state and local, to figure out exactly how this tragedy happened. So I’m glad that not only is the Justice Department looking into it, I understand now that the governor of the state of Florida has formed a task force to investigate what’s taken place. I think all of us have to do some soul searching to figure out how does something like this happen. And that means that we examine the laws, and the context for what happened as well as the specifics of the incident. My main message is to the parents of Trayvon Martin. You know, if I had a son he’d look like Trayvon. And you know, I think they are right to expect that all of us as Americans are going to take this with the seriousness that it deserves and that we’re going to get to the bottom of this.”

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63 Responses for ““If I had a Son, He’d Look Like Trayvon”: Obama Speaks Out, FPC Students Protest”

  1. GOP says:

    palmcoaster,, I think it’s about time that the people have a word.. We are always focused on polictical correction we loose our rights. People are being groomed to expect intilements.. We can’t afford it any more.. They contribute nothing to society they’re just a bunch of moochers..


    • NortonSmitty says:

      Thank you so much for that statement GOP. You finally remove all doubt about your inner heart. “It’s about time the people have a word” So if your Black, your not people? “They” contribute nothing to society? Moochers? Hell, they aren’t even human!

      If this is what you believe, you should do two things. First, your words prove you are the very definition of a racist, without a shadow of a doubt. So stop being cowed by all that “political correction” out there. Be proud of your opinions on this subject. Maybe join a club full of like minded individuals. Hell, to show you there are no hard feelings, I’ll even buy you your first sheet!

      You did pick the perfect pen name.


  2. Gia says:

    Shut up Obama. That yoyo is a liar.


  3. The Truth says:

    After just reading through the comments, I have lost complete faith in our society. This is not only about race, but it’s about a young boy being shot dead for no reason. Those of you bashing our President and making this a political issue are absolutely pathetic.

    Look at the facts and stop looking at everything from a political point of view and look at it as a human.


  4. GOP says:

    The Truth.. They made it a race issue. When ever an issue comes up the race card is played..


  5. w.ryan says:

    It’s overwhelming for me to see the posts from people like GOP. Why so much denial? We’re all people that rely on each other to succeed as a nation. Clearly race was injected from the onset. Basic police function was suspended based on assumptions based on race. The black guy must have been guilty of something. Give Mr. Zimmerman back his gun and let him go home. We’ll get the body off the street. If Zimmerman shot a dog he’d get locked up!!! The police investigation into Trayvon’s identity and next of kin notification was not conducted when basic contact information was present for their retrieval at the scene. Everyone watches cop drama on television. A novice could have done that job that night. Why so much DENIAL! With thoughts and a philosophy that spews from mouths like GOP we’re headed back to the Jim Crow era.


  6. Chuck says:

    Was Obama talking about the picture of 12 year old nice young child Trayvon or the pants sagging, bird flipping, pot smoking, jewelry stealing Trayvon? I would only hope Obama “son” would have higher standards.


    • ???? says:

      how on earth could you sit there and make a comment like that? Did you know the child personally? Or did you again make a race biased statement because he was black so that automatically makes his pants sag and make him a robber? This is why i hate palm coast. IGNORANCE.


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