Justice Should Not Depend on Skin Color


This message is from Laura Murphy, Director of ACLU's Washington Legislative Office, who's sharing her perspective on the Trayvon Martin case as a mother.

When I learned that George Zimmerman was found "not guilty" for the murder of Trayvon Martin, my heart immediately went out to his mother.

Trayvon's mother is living my worst fear—of what can happen to my own 23-year-old black son because of the color of his skin.

I've had to teach my son how his racial identity can be an invitation for scorn and mistreatment. I even announced his return from boarding school to neighbors once, to be safe: "Don't be alarmed if you see a black kid walking around; he's my son and he lives here."

From being stopped in the streets without cause to the way police handle cases-for the accused and for victims like Trayvon—countless Americans are racially profiled every day.

Racial profiling violates our Constitution and American values—and sends dangerous signals to people like George Zimmerman. If we're to prevent more tragedies like Trayvon, we must tackle the racial bias that undermines our justice system.

The End Racial Profiling Act, currently in Congress, would help make clear that people should be judged by what they do, not the color of their skin.

20,100 Signed 25,000 Needed

To Members of Congress:

The tragedy of Trayvon Martin and his family is a symptom of the pervasive racial prejudice in our justice system. We urge you to pass the End Racial Profiling Act without delay to help get racial profiling out of law enforcement.

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