More than 150 people turned out for a vigil for Trayvon Martin held outside the Tompkins County Courthouse Wednesday night.
There were a variety of speakers—some public figures, some ordinary members of the community—but all spoke with passion and anger that George Zimmerman was found not guilty in the murder case.
Executive Director of the Greater Ithaca Activities Center Marcia Fort said she was angered and despaired by the verdict, but said she decided to turn that anger into action.
“It was not a jury of Trayvon’s peers. It was a jury of George Zimmerman’s peers,” Fort said. “I don’t respect the verdict. We should be angry about what happened, and turn that anger into action.”
Ithaca resident Phoebe Brown took the opportunity to rally her fellow Ithacans to take action.
“I thank Trayvon Martin for giving us an avenue to come together, but we don’t have to wait for something tragic for us to come together,” Brown said. “We need to do it every day all day.”
The not guilty verdict in the murder case has spurred similar demonstrations across the country, mobilizing people to protest for social and racial justice.
In Tallahassee, Florida, sit-in protests against the George Zimmerman trial verdict are continuing at the state governor’s office.