Florida governor sets 'day of prayer for unity'
July 19th, 2013
11:03 AM ET
9 months ago

Florida governor sets 'day of prayer for unity'

(CNN) – Saying "emotions are running high," Republican Gov. Rick Scott of Florida formally called for a "Statewide Day of Prayer for Unity," following last week's verdict in the George Zimmerman trail that's sparked large protests in the Sunshine State.

The day of prayer is set for Sunday.

Read the proclamation:

WHEREAS, the people of Florida are strong and optimistic people who band together in times of crisis; and

WHEREAS, Florida has faced many challenges before – including natural disasters – with a spirit of unity and perseverance; and

WHEREAS, the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin is a tragedy; and the Martin family, the family of George Zimmerman, and all those affected by Trayvon's death remain in our thoughts and prayers; and

WHEREAS, emotions are running high as we continue to grieve the loss of Trayvon and the toll that the tragic events surrounding his death have taken on the community of Sanford, Florida, and other communities across our state; and

WHEREAS, tragic events compel us to a time of deep reflection and prayer to find strength and peace in uncertainty; and

WHEREAS, Floridians are unified in not only their resilience, but also in being a people of great humility, kindness, and compassion;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Rick Scott, Governor of the State of Florida, do hereby declare
Sunday, July 21, 2013, as a STATEWIDE DAY OF PRAYER FOR UNITY IN FLORIDA.

Late Thursday night, Scott told a group of protesters that he planned on calling for the day of prayer. But he added he had no plans to amend his state's controversial "stand your ground" law.

"I put together a task force of 19 individuals, bipartisan. They traveled the state. They listened to ordinary citizens. They listened to experts, and they concluded that we didn't need to make a change in the law, and I agree with their conclusion," he said.

Zimmerman pointed to Florida's "stand your ground" law as part of his legal defense, saying he shot Trayvon Martin while defending himself in a confrontation.


Filed under: Florida • Rick Scott
soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. S.B. Stein

    Personally, I would have said "prayer and mediation" in the proclamation. Honestly, Gov. Scott needs to be a bit more response to the affected communities. He should do as they ask and repeal the stand your ground laws because it can lead to something crazy like this.

    July 19, 2013 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  2. michael

    These repuglican's are so disingenuous, the manipulate, agitate, inflame, distort, lie, deceive, then want everyone to pray! Where was bible ethics when you changed voting law, had 3-6 hr voting lines, called for drug test for food stamp recipients, influenced the Travon Martin preceedings by appointing a woman to do your dirty work, by calling for a 2nd degree murder charge(which you knew would not fly), to support stand your ground law. This charlatan deceiver is like his repuglican cohorts, out of touch with reality bible ethics, but not "hypocrisy."

    July 19, 2013 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  3. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Zimmerman pointed to Florida's "stand your ground" law as part of his legal defense, saying he shot Trayvon Martin while defending himself in a confrontation."

    But for the fact that Zimmerman followed and then got out of his car (with a loaded gun in stuck next to his butt) and stalked Martin ... Martin would be alive today.

    But for the fact that Martin was walking alone minding his own business, Martin would be alive today.

    Apparently ... they each "stood their ground". One lost. One was acquitted of wrong doing.

    So, Florida. What exactly does "stand your ground" mean? And to whom does it apply?

    "I put together a task force of 19 individuals, bipartisan. They traveled the state. They listened to ordinary citizens. They listened to experts, and they concluded that we didn't need to make a change in the law, and I agree with their conclusion," he (Rick Scott) said.

    Shoot first ... think up a defense later. Yeah. Florida needs unity right now. No doubt about it.

    July 19, 2013 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  4. Larry in Houston

    The Jury Has Spoken – Next.
    Like I've always said – You have to put yourself in GZ shoes – GZ was wrong in the first place, and he should have waited on the COPS, and should not have gotten OUT of that Car. BUT it Happened, TM Should NOT have slammed GZ head into the Concrete & Rubbed the back of his body & clothes in the GRASS !!
    That's why he got OFF !!!
    Why can't this country SEE This ??
    GZ is innocent = "Stand Your Ground" = Innocent of all Charges.

    The Jury has spoken. Next case.

    July 19, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  5. Sniffit

    Yawn. Shorter Scott: "I like it when white people shoot minorities and then get acquitted simply because white jurors relate to the idea that minorities are inherently threatening."

    July 19, 2013 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  6. Sniffit

    "TM Should NOT have slammed GZ head into the Concrete & Rubbed the back of his body & clothes in the GRASS !!"

    Really? He was just standing his ground when a threatening weirdo followed him around at night and then approached him in a threatening manner. TM had every right to stand his ground.

    July 19, 2013 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  7. JAX FL

    As a resident of Florida I would invite all of those individuals and groups who are threatening a boycott of Florida to please feel free to do so and please do not ever come back to our state.

    July 19, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  8. Fair is Fair

    Larry in Houston

    The Jury Has Spoken – Next.
    ------
    Can't have that, Larry... what would MSNBC talk about for 5 hours every night?

    July 19, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  9. jinx9to88

    All this ruling says if you get into a fist fight you better lose or you will get shot!!! This is the stupidest law out there period!!!! Your gonna have a bunch of school yard kids get into a fight that will lead to bunch of school kids dead.

    July 19, 2013 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  10. michael

    George Zimmerman was told by those who represent the law to stay in his vehicle! Why did George Zimmerman receive basically an attaboy for this behavior of civil disobedience, no consequences! If, he were black that would have been the straw that broke the camels back, if Travon was white! The media, conservatives, the racist, the conservative radio, would have went crazy with the jury's decision! I think that George Zimmerman bruised his own head, people have done worse to deceive the law because he knew the law and what he needed to do, get away with murder! He had already plyed this through his mind for the day of confrontation

    July 19, 2013 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  11. ????

    @Sniffit
    Yawn. Shorter Scott: "I like it when white people shoot minorities and then get acquitted simply because white jurors relate to the idea that minorities are inherently threatening."
    -------------
    At the risk of appearing rude, why don't you check the statistics relating to the demographics of which groups commit the most assaults and murders based on their percentage of the composition of the overall population.

    July 19, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  12. king

    stand your ground laws that repubs seems to think is ok. lesson folks if you started something and end up killing someone, that is not stand your ground. Zimmerman chased Trevon and killed him, then shouted self defense. lesson folks, imagined a white guy in a rural setting being followed by a black man in a hoody in the dark of night, what would that white man do, or what do you think he should do, now give that black man with the hoody a gun. then replace this with the Trevor and Zimmerman incident, then tell me what would verdict be "honestly" without being political.

    July 19, 2013 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  13. Romney is STILL NOT My Hero

    The new law is this... Follow someone around, antagonize them until they get enraged (even after 9-1-1 told you NOT to), they start a FIST fight, you shoot them, they die, you are found not guilty, you get the gun back you shot them with, you go home and celebrate. I think I'll try this in my neighborhood. I have the right to do it, and you can't stop me. *rolling eyes*

    July 19, 2013 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  14. Sniffit

    "All this ruling says if you get into a fist fight you better lose or you will get shot!!! "

    Says more than that. It says that white people who don't like minorities in their neighborhood, because they think those minorities look "criminal" and "thuggish", can go start a confrontation with that minority, instigating an altercation, and then use the altercation they instigated as their excuse for shooting that minority....all so white conservatives can "send a message" to "them."

    July 19, 2013 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  15. Larry in Houston

    """TM had every right to stand his ground""" sorry, but u r wrong on this 1 – If u done to my kid, like Tm did GZ, y he would have shot you too. I don't blame him, GZ should have shot him, and anybody else would have also !!!

    case closed

    July 19, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  16. Steveo

    Did the "Reverends" call for prayer?

    @Jinx9to88
    Your gonna have a bunch of school yard kids get into a fight that will lead to bunch of school kids dead.
    ----------
    Gonna have? How about already had! See the Huff Po piece on 15 SYG aquittals, dated 16 Jul 13.

    July 19, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  17. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Blah Blah Blah. All words and no action means diddly squat. Try this on for size Gov. Scott: No Justice, No Peace! I have no sympathy for GZ because he should have never gotten out of his vehicle in the first place. An innocent child is dead because some wanna-be cop profiled him. As GZ himself called TM, "the suspect." Suspected of what? Walking While Black?

    July 19, 2013 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  18. M.A.P.

    Stand your ground does not mean you can attack people if you think they are following you. God, use your common sense! It is if you are being attacked you have the right to use force – lethal if you believe your life is being threatened. Yes George followed Treyvon while he thought he was up to no good – perhaps he was wrong to do so, but are you saying you know for a fact that TRayvon didn't attack George? This is BS – Trayvon attacked a guy with a gun and was shot. No racism, no foul injustice.

    July 19, 2013 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  19. Boo

    JAX FL – I don't plan to ever visit Florida again....no worries.....

    July 19, 2013 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  20. Chuck

    @Sniffit
    "TM Should NOT have slammed GZ head into the Concrete & Rubbed the back of his body & clothes in the GRASS !!"

    Really? He was just standing his ground when a threatening weirdo followed him around at night and then approached him in a threatening manner. TM had every right to stand his ground.
    -----------
    Wow, we have an effing Perry Mason among us who has rendered a legal opinion. Too bad that noted right-wing conservative Allen Dershowitz disagrees with you. What does he know, anyway?

    July 19, 2013 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  21. Boo

    Yeah..."let's all pray to the invisible man in the sky – why should we take responsibility for ANYTHING?" Florida – please secede and take Arizona and Texas with you....sort of like a geographical version of "The Three Stooges."

    July 19, 2013 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  22. Silence DoGood

    We will never know the full details. We should follow the president's advice for reflection and DOJ's hint to move on to addressing the broader issue of Stand-Your-Ground laws.

    If we just keep focusing on the tragedy of this one case, sad though it is, we will miss the opportunity for bigger progress.

    July 19, 2013 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  23. M.A.P.

    This whole story is media hyped race baiting at its worst. It is truly embarassing to see so many normally smart people decide to take the emotive and obvious position of "he must be racist because why else would a white guy shoot a black guy". They just jumpin on the band wagon with all the celebrities to prove they are not racist. I am anti racism and I think the Jury made the right desicion.

    July 19, 2013 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  24. sonny chapman

    Soooo, you want to call yourself a Christian(a follower of the Teachings of Jesus Christ as found in the Four Gospels). Start with, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God",Matthew 5,9.

    July 19, 2013 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  25. Nsikan

    So if the SYG law has been re-adopted despite the circumstances what would be the prayers and who would we be praying to – the god that was his will for GZ to kill TM? Don't stoke it in their eyes, they can see thru what you are trying to do and that makes it more painful. Like anything else, it will take one of the sons or daughters of the 'special people' before this law can be revisited and reviewed. Meanwhile, I think everyone should look beyond the state of florida for answers and comforts 'for ther have niether'.

    July 19, 2013 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
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