By Carter Maness
While Mother's Day is usually celebratory, Sybrina Fulton, the mother of Florida shooting victim Trayvon Martin, is using the holiday as an opportunity to amass support for the reform, repeal and blockage of Florida-style Shoot First laws across the country with some help from Russell Simmons.
Martin's gruesome death, which might have been avoided if there wasn't a self-defense law in Florida that allows shooting first and asking questions later, encouraged the formation of the Second Chance on Shoot First campaign to repeal existing laws. With Shoot First laws enacted in 26 states and pending in 10 more, she is hoping there will be a re-examination of these policies.
The video first premiered on Russell Simmons' Global Grind and was sent to his millions of followers with a special plea to watch and sign a petition. "My friend and Trayvon Martin's mom, Sybrina Fulton, has created a powerful video. I urge you to watch it and to join folks all across America in sending a special Mother's Day message to the people that need to hear it," he wrote. "Together, we can end the pain that gun violence is bringing into too many mothers' lives."
For Fulton, it's an appeal to think of the mothers who have their lives altered because of reckless violence. "I'm going to say a prayer for the mothers across America who share this unbearable pain," she says in the clip. "Just like me, 30,000 mothers lost their children this year to senseless gun violence. Nobody can bring our babies back, but it would bring us some comfort if we can spare other mothers the pain that we feel on this Mother's Day, and every day for the rest of our lives."
Follow the campaign on Twitter at @SecondChance