We the Students Statement regarding Stand Your Ground

 

August 18, 2018 (Clearwater , Florida) -- We the Students are devastated by the unjust murder of Markeis McGlockton in Clearwater one month ago. As local Pinellas County student organizers for gun violence prevention, we feel it is crucial to protest the injustice of Stand Your Ground that has now been brought to our doorstep. Stand Your Ground has to be repealed because of the encouragement of unnecessary gun violence in our communities. The law also embodies the disproportionate effect of gun violence on communities of color and the institutional racism weaved into legislation. Too often this law causes what would be simple conflicts or minor disagreements to evolve, or rather devolve into instances of senseless violence resulting in loss of life. To combat this issue, we need to collectively encourage people to vote for candidates voicing opposition to the law and will hold the gunman responsible for the unchecked killings of innocent people. Stand Your Ground must be repealed, and replaced with new legislation upholding the right to self defense but ensuring deadly force is not used as a first resort or as a justification for violence against people of color.