- David Gurecki
- Tamika Wright at the Trayvon Martin rally in Indianapolis
Two rallies were held Downtown Saturday: One organized by the National Action Network's Indiana Chapter in response to the Trayvon Martin case, the other, hosted by the Indianapolis Peace and Justice Center, protested against sending weapons to Syria. At noon at the Federal Court House, 300-400 people showed up to protest the not-guilty ruling of George Zimmerman in the Trayvon Martin case. The event corresponded with about 100 other protests that were happening across the country.
"I came out so justice could be served for Trayvon Martin - I felt like the jury made an unfair decision," said Tamika Wright, one of the citizens who came out to protest. "That's why we're here right now. That's why there's over a hundred cities out here, like we are today, protesting because everybody knows that's not the right decision to make."
David Scott, another local protester, said, "There are a lot of people that are ready to vent and to respond. This was in response to that. To gather people, update us on what's going on."
Scott summarized the event by saying: "What has happened with Trayvon Martin really causes many in the African-American community to revisit some of their old fears and questions about is America really for equal treatment and fair exchange. ... If we're equal citizens then we deserve equal treatment." Later in the afternoon at the Monument Circle, another rally protested the violence in Syria and the U.S. arming of rebel troops.
- David Gurecki
- Protesters at the Syria Peace Talks-Not War Rally at the Monument circle.
IPJC President Carl Rising-Moore, a Vietnam War veteran, said in terms of America's involvement with Syria, "What it all boils down to doesn't have anything to do with freedom and democracy. "We don't say we're overthrowing them because we want to control the pipelines that go through Syria on their way to Europe. That's what it's all about. It's about oil, and about resources, and about corporate greed, it's always about that. And we've had enough of this."
"We want two things," Rising-Moore said. "We want immediate humanitarian efforts to help the people that are dying right now. Give medical aid, food and shelter and all that sort of thing for the refugees inside and outside of Syria."
"The second thing is we want diplomatic solutions. That means all the players have to come to the table. Russia has to be there, China has to be there, Iran, United States, France, Turkey, the Hezbollah, any and all elements."
And, he added, "If everything else fails, all the peace talks, and everything then, that is the purpose of the non-violent activists that are in Syria," Rising-Moore said. He feels that if peace talks fail then the people need to continue with what they had done originally with non-violent protests. Indy's June 20 both had the same clear message of creating harmony through peaceful means.
As Rising-Moore said, recognizing Gandhi and other peaceful protesters, "Non-violence is a weapon that was given by these great people that has been utilized many times before and it seems to work. And in the end it maybe [is] how we can evolve past this 30,000 year period of human history, where we can become people that can actually live in harmony on this planet."