TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) — A group of peaceful protesters, demanding legislators reevaluate the state’s self-defense laws, will spend a third night in the hallway near Gov. Scott’s office.
Governor Rick Scott has denied the activists, who are upset that George Zimmerman was acquitted of charges in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin, demands seeing no reason to change Florida’s “stand your ground” law.
Scott returned to the state Capitol late Thursday to meet with members of the Dream Defenders, a group leading the protest.
During the meeting, activists talked about their disappointment as a result of the verdict. Also, they spoke of the racial profiling they witnessed.
Scott denied the demand for a special session but said that he planned to call for a day of unity this Sunday.
“I also told them that I plan to call for a Statewide Day of Prayer for Unity in Florida this Sunday, July 21st,” Scott said in a news release. “We have a great state with wonderful, resilient people that rise to meet any challenge. While emotions run high, it is even more important that we join together to strengthen and support one another.”
The group, allowed by Capitol Police to remain the hallways overnight, appears to be well-stocked for a longer stay and vowed to stay until Scott shows “leadership” by calling the special session.
“We provided Gov. Scott the opportunity to show real leadership tonight and he did not rise to the call,” the Dream Defenders tweeted after the impromptu meeting. “Our demands have not been met. We are going to stay here until our demands are met. We are calling on the youth to band together now.”
Scott did say he would be willing to listen to their ideas on how to deal with racial profiling.
Wednesday night the group of about 30 people, chanting phrases such as “Mama, mama, can’t you see what the system done to me,” seemed prepared for the Capitol sleepover, equipped with pillows, water, pizza and other food.
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