It is one year later, since unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin was gunned down on a Stanford, Florida street while walking home. The alleged shooter George Zimmerman has been in custody and awaiting trial for a little under a year now. Trayvon’s family and many around the nation have been waiting for justice to be served. But with the one year anniversary of this sad slaying we must remember to keep a few things in mind. IMG_6123

While consistent media coverage has waned, the thoughts, prays, and public support of Martin’s family has not. This week in honor of Trayvon and in remembrance of his tragic death many cities throughout the nation held, hoodie vigils. To not only still show support for the family but to send a message that violence isn’t the answer and that gun violence is a problem in this country.

Through this tragic event and the others like it we must make those incidents into a movement. Though Mr. Zimmerman’s gun were brought legally, we must still look at the culture as to why guns are so readily needed. Support cannot just be given to Martin’s family and not followed through to initiatives of gun reform. We must remember that this tragic event isn’t singular to Florida, Colorado, Wisconsin, or Connecticut; there’s Chicago, St. Louis, Cleveland, and New Orleans.

Lastly even with our support and calls for movement, because of this tragic event, we must remember to not be quick to judge. That George Zimmerman deserves and will have his day in court and until all the facts are laid out we cannot crucify. In the meantime we must do what’s necessary to support the Martin family as they continue to grieve and move forward with their lives. Do what’s necessary to ensure that reasonable and sensible gun reforms are passed and enacted.

There are many lessons that we can learn from this tragic event. I think that Trayvon’s death would be in vain if we didn’t learn. A young man at the beginning stages of his life, at the beginning stages of his mistakes and of his successes, life was taken. Whether it was done with malice or not, one thing can be said, an innocent life was lost on that tragic evening, as a nation we must move forward doing what must be done to ensure no other innocent lives are lost.