One year ago, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was unjustly pursued and killed while walking home from a convenience store in Sanford, Florida. For weeks after Trayvon's murder, police failed to take his shooter, George Zimmerman, into custody. This lack of accountability was a tragic reminder of the racism persistent in the criminal justice system and it sparked a national outrage. ColorOfChange members and our allies, have worked tirelessly to demand justice for Trayvon, and an end to Shoot First laws — the laws used to protect Trayvon's killer from justice. As a result of these efforts, Zimmerman may stand trial in June. But even with a trial date planned, we must continue to demand justice.More »
ColorOfChange Executive Director Rashad Robinson appeared on Current TV's The War Room Friday to discuss our campaign urging ALEC's corporate funders to take a stand against profit-driven gun violence. Thanks to ALEC's deep, decades-long relationship with the NRA, a hard push to enact "model" bills designed to expand the gun market — at any cost — has long been a cornerstone of ALEC's legislative agenda.
ALEC is the driving force behind the infamous "gun show loophole" widely discussed in the 1990s, more accurately described as a private sale loophole. In over 30 states, the loophole permits anyone who isn't a licensed firearms dealer to sell an unlimited number of guns with no criminal background check or mental health check — and with no real liability for making sales to straw purchasers engaged in gun trafficking. Unsurprisingly, ALEC's loophole now drives 40% of all gun sales in the United States.
ALEC's work to ensure that as many people purchase as many guns as possible, knowing that more guns mean more homicide, is why we're demanding that corporations cut ties with the American Legislative Exchange Council. Watch the video above and join our campaign.More »
For decades, the NRA and ALEC have worked hand in glove to pass legislation designed to increase gun sales — regardless of the human cost. In the wake of the shooting tragedy in Newtown, the NRA has unabashedly called for even more guns in our communities, recommitting itself to blocking commonsense efforts to reduce gun violence.
That's why today ColorOfChange launched a campaign highlighting ALEC's relationship with the NRA and renewing our call to ALEC's corporate funders to cut ties with the group. It's time these corporations draw the line: continuing to fund ALEC helps push NRA-drafted gun access laws that devastate our communities, and elevates gun industry profits over human lives.
Check out the email we sent to ColorOfChange members today, and join us here.More »
Last Friday, Jordan Russell Davis, a 17-year-old Florida high school student, was shot and killed during a dispute over loud music with Michael David Dunn, 45. According to Davis' father, the teenager was unarmed.
It's hard to ignore how closely the circumstances of the case echo the shooting of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed Florida teenager who was shot less than a year ago. ColorOfChange members spoke out against Florida's "Shoot First" law, which shielded Trayvon's killer from arrest and prosecution. Now, Black communities are once again feeling the devastating impact of "Shoot First," which will likely be invoked by Dunn's legal defense.
Join us in redoubling our efforts to demand that state government officials oppose "Shoot First" laws where they are under consideration and repeal them where they are in place. Read the email we sent to our members after the jump.More »
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) — the corporate "bill mill" known primarily for pushing discriminatory voter ID laws through statehouses across the country — is bleeding members. Since ColorOfChange began drawing attention to ALEC's voter suppression efforts last year, 40 major corporations and 70 state legislators have publicly disavowed any relationship with the group.
In the midst of this PR disaster, ALEC is grasping at straws to try to polish its image. Last week, Executive Director Ron Scheberle tried to convince readers of the San Francisco Chronicle that ALEC is a natural ally of tech startups and small-business entrepreneurs. Scheberle failed to mention that ALEC continually pushes legislation designed to protect entrenched special interests by killing off the competition.
Today, the Chronicle is featuring ColorOfChange Executive Director Rashad Robinson's response to Scheberle's op-ed, and to ALEC's cynical attempts to whitewash its record.More »
Capitalizing on LeBron James' heightened visibility during the much-hyped NBA finals — which is enjoying its highest ratings in eight years — State Farm is heavily promoting an eye-catching public service announcement featuring the celebrity spokesman. The ad graphically illustrates the devastating effects of a stunted education on a young Black man's life prospects, then reassures us: "State Farm and LeBron are helping kids graduate."
But if State Farm cares so much about our kids, why is it still funding the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)?More »
This week, Trayvon Martin's parents joined the Second Chance on Shoot First Coalition to deliver 370,000 petition signatures to a meeting of Florida's Task Force on Stand Your Ground Laws yesterday. The petition delivery and press conference featured powerful testimonies calling for an end to "shoot first" laws nationwide.
More than 32,000 of the signatures came from ColorOfChange members who signed a petition demanding that the law that was used to justify George Zimmerman's actions come off the books in Florida and across the nation.
The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights has voted to launch an investigation into so-called "stand your ground" laws. The laws, which permit the use of deadly force in cases of self-defense, have come under scrutiny after playing a key role in the defense of George Zimmerman, the man who shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida earlier this year. In its proposal, the commission cited potential racial bias in the laws' implementation as the chief reason for the probe.
Members of the ColorOfChange community know well the connection between "stand your ground" and the American Legislative Exchange Council. ALEC, a far-right policy group, has pushed the laws in almost two dozen states.More »
Yesterday, ColorOfChange launched a campaign calling on state officials to repeal Shoot First Laws -- the dangerous law that's being used to shield George Zimmerman, the man who shot Trayvon Martin. Please join us in calling on elected officials in your state to stand against these laws. Here's the email we sent to our members yesterday morning.
Dear ColorOfChange Member,
Florida's 'Shoot First' law allowed Trayvon Martin's killer to walk free without formal charges — for more than a month. Shoot First laws legalize vigilante homicide, even in circumstances that would otherwise merit murder charges.
Today, Sybrina Fulton released a powerful Mother's Day message calling for a nationwide reform of Shoot First Laws.
“This will be my first Mother’s Day without my son, Trayvon. I know it will be hard, but with my faith, family, and the outpouring of national support, I will get through,” says Ms. Fulton.