President Barack Obama shocks news reporters today (Friday July 19) by stating his first remarks about the Zimmerman case in his weekly press conference. “Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago“, President Obama commenting after a Florida jury acquitted George Zimmerman last weekend in the teenager’s shooting death.
He also said protests against the verdict should remain nonviolent.
CNN reports that the President stated that Americans are aware of the “history of racial disparity in our criminal laws” and said the government should review some state and local legislation, such as Florida’s “stand your ground” law, saying they may promote rather than discourage violent confrontations. President Obama also sent “I send my thoughts and prayers to Trayvon’s parents” and also stated “there’s a lot of pain” in the African-American community.
A jury acquitted Zimmerman Saturday in Martin’s February 26, 2012, shooting death, inciting anger among many who considered the incident racially motivated murder.