Good Source of Info On Gun Deaths, Statistics, etc.

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Photo courtesy of, an independent online news organization, has compiled a thorough collection of gun-related articles on their website. It’s a great resource for anyone wanting a deeper understanding of gun violence in America.

The website lists a variety of gun-related articles and research, grouped by subject/issue. Issues covered: Are mass shootings increasing?; gun deaths among women and children; the NRA; how politics protect gun dealers who sell guns used in crimes; Stand Your Ground” laws; and others.

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Bad News for Gun Control Advocates

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A gun bill that will give sweeping “Stand Your Ground” immunity to people who use deadly force “to protect themselves” advanced in the Ohio House Tuesday, passing a House committee 7-4, over the objections of the state’s law enforcement community ( The full House passed the bill by a vote of 62-27 late Wednesday. The Senate, which is more than two-thirds Republican, has not yet considered the bill. But as we know, Republicans don’t like gun laws, so it’s not looking good.

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The panel, made up of several people of diverse backgrounds (including politics and law enforcement), and its conclusions represent an important development in the debate about the Stand Your Ground law. I call it the “Shoot First, Ask Questions Later” law, for obvious reasons! I’m just hoping that enough people are even aware of this panel and that it’s conclusions will have some influence on Congress.

Trayvon Martin Shooting Reenactment Ad About “Stand Your Ground” Laws


Pardon Abused Mother Marissa Alexander for Standing Her Ground (petition)

50th Anniversary of The March On Washington

From the National Action Network:

NAN March on Washington Flyer

For general info about the march, click here.

For info about bus transportation to the march, click here.

Matt Damon Talks New Film, Stand Your Ground Law and Trayvon Martin Case

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Watch video of politically savvy actor Matt Damon express disappointment in Pres. Obama’s second term. He also criticizes the Stand Your Ground law in regards to the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin case. 

“Stand Your Ground” Defense Doesn’t Work for Everyone

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Marissa Alexander is many things- a black woman, a mother, a domestic abuse survivor, and a violent criminal serving a 20-year bid.

Her crime in the eyes of a jury that took only 12 minutes to render their verdict was three counts of aggravated assault with a firearm, according to The thing is, no one was actually hurt. That’s unless you consider a ceiling a person.

It all happened during a confrontation between Alexander and Rico Gray, her then-husband, in which she felt threatened. Considering the fact that Gray had a history of abusing her physically, it is not hard to understand why she may have been frightened.

So, in the course of the confrontation she took out a gun and fired it above her husband’s head, presumably to scare him off, since she never once aimed at him directly. His two children happened to be in the room during the incident, hence the three counts, though the children were never hurt, either.

A typical self-defense case? In the eyes of many, yes. A Stand Your Ground-worthy case? In the eyes of the law, it should have been. In fact, Alexander attempted to use the law as her defense, but the judge in the case rejected it. explains the outcome of the case:

“The fact that Alexander, a domestic violence victim, was denied use of ‘Stand Your Ground’ to facilitate her claim of self-defense has served as an example for some of how the law is not equally applied to all races and all genders.”

The fact that George Zimmerman actually did shoot someone, and that person died, yet Zimmerman is walking free doesn’t make much sense in comparison to Alexander’s case. Zimmerman shot and killed someone “in self defense” who was smaller than himself and was unarmed; Alexander fired a warning shot in self defense that didn’t hit anyone and was not intended to hit anyone, while trying to protect herself from someone who had battered her before. Yet she’s in prison and he’s not.

Fortunately for Alexander, Florida State Senator Dwight Bullard also sees this as an imbalance of justice. According to TheGrio:

“State Senator Dwight Bullard sent letters to three members of the governor’s cabinet Monday, requesting that Alexander be granted a pardon and released from prison.  The letter was sent to Attorney General Pam Bondi, the state’s Chief Financial Officer Jeff Attwater, and the Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putman.”

Under the Florida constitution, the governor has the authority to give pardons. In the letter, Bullard writes:

“[Alexander] was denied a defense under Florida’s ‘stand your ground’ protections, and was found guilty of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.  Surely Ms. Alexander had a clear right to defend herself and not retreat from the middle of an altercation in which her life and safety were at stake.”

So what are the chances the pardon will be issued? Bullard is optimistic, saying that the work of the Dream Defenders (a group of young activists fighting to have Stand Your Ground repealed) has helped bring more exposure to Alexander’s case. He says:

“When [the Florida government] looks at the facts of the case it’s obvious, and that’s what gives me optimism,” says Bullard, “Opponents of ‘Stand Your Ground’ didn’t have much to look forward to [after the Zimmerman verdict] but between the success of the Dream Defenders who have been protesting for weeks in the capital, people are now doing a serious analysis of the flaws in ‘Stand Your Ground’ and this will carry over to Ms. Alexander’s case.  For the everyday citizen [it] is hard to understand how one person [George Zimmerman] goes free claiming self defense for killing an unarmed teenager and another person goes to jail for killing no one.”

“These facts should create an uneasiness and from the political standpoint it would be in the best interest of the governor to pardon Ms. Alexander.”

There are several petitions on Alexander’s behalf calling for a pardon, as well.

UPDATE: Dream Defenders Score Victory: Florida Lawmakers To Review ‘Stand Your Ground’ Laws [VIDEO]

Possible Display of Trayvon Martin’s Hoodie In African American History Museum

National Museum of African American History and Culture - courtesy of

National Museum of African American History & Culture – courtesy of

The director of the National Museum of African American History & Culture has expressed interest in displaying the hoodie Trayvon Martin wore on the night he was shot and killed by George Zimmerman, according to Director Lonnie Bunch said of the hoodie to The Washington Post:

“It became the symbolic way to talk [about] the Trayvon Martin case. It’s rare that you get one artifact that really becomes the symbol.”

Rev. Al Sharpton, who had a pivotal role in bringing national attention to the case, has said he’d like the hoodie preserved, as well.

The museum is currently under construction in Washington, D.C., and is scheduled to open in 2015.