The Roots - ?Uestlove Joins Protesters Calling For Justice For Shot Teenager
The Roots star Ahmir '?UESTLOVE' THOMPSON joined hundreds of protestors on the streets of New York on Wednesday (21Mar12) demanding justice for an unarmed black teenager who was shot dead by a man in Florida.
Trayvon Martin, who was wearing a hooded sweater, was killed in a gated community on 26 February (12) after self-proclaimed "neighbourhood watch captain" George Zimmerman alerted cops to his "suspicious" behaviour. He then began to pursue the 17 year old against the explicit instructions of the police dispatcher and allegedly gunned him down. Zimmerman was not arrested and has not been charged with any crime.
The case has been attracting the attention of celebrities such as Cher, Mia Farrow, director Spike Lee, actor Jamie Foxx and singer Chaka Khan, who have all called for Zimmerman to be brought to justice, and a special rally was held in Manhattan on Wednesday to put pressure on authorities to take action.
Drummer and producer ?uestlove was one of the campaigners who participated in the Million Hoodie March on Wednesday evening wearing a hooded sweater as a sign of solidarity, but he called for calm as the demonstration threatened to get out of hand.
In a series of posts on Twitter.com, he wrote, "#MillionHoodieMarch this is about to get outta hand. Let's keep this peace yall... Whew ok. We're organized. Cops want us in the streets and not the sidewalks people. Let's keep this peace(ful) please".
The protest managed to remain a peaceful one, and the hip-hop star was impressed with the turn out, adding: "Kinda gotta say I'm amazed & elated that our youth wasn't as indifferent as I'd thought they'd be to these issues".
The public outrage at Martin's murder prompted officials at the Fbi and the Justice Department to launch an investigation into the shooting on Monday (19Mar12), while Florida State Attorney Norm Wolfinger announced on Tuesday (20Mar12) that the case would go before a grand jury.