July 22nd, 2013
11:44 AM ET

Thousands Protest Zimmerman Verdict

This past weekend, and one week after the acquittal of George Zimmerman, thousands took to the streets to voice their opinions. Some defended Zimmerman, while others protested the "not guilty" verdict, calling for change.

Their voices were met by politicians on both sides, including an emotional speech from President Obama, CNN's Brianna Keiler reports.

In Houston late Sunday, there were some tense moments as Trayvon Martin supporters marched close by a group backing George Zimmerman, and 'Stand Your Ground' laws, shouting "No justice– no peace."

Earlier there were emotional rallies in some 100 cities across the country echoing President Obama's personal comments trying to explain the pain African-Americans are feeling. "....Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago," he says from the White House briefing room.

Protesters are demanding federal civil rights changes, and are supporting the President's call for states to reconsider 'Stand Your Ground' laws.

"... If Trayvon Martin was of age and armed, could he have stood his ground on that sidewalk?" asks President Obama. "And do we actually think that he would have been justified in shooting Mr. Zimmerman who had followed him in a car because he left threatened?"

Trayvon Martin's father, Tracy, told CNN: "We admire the president for stepping up and doing that because it sends a message to the world that this could have been anybody's child."

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