Miramar protest brings stars, politicians

Important public figures showed up to the Black Lives Matter rally in Miramar on Saturday. Rapper Rick Ross, former Democratic presidential candidate and the city’s Mayor, Wayne Messam, and Sabrina Fulton, mother of Trayvon Martin, addressed a crowd of hundreds at the Ansin Sports Complex.

The rally and walk — one of many throughout South Florida and the country — was dedicated to George Floyd, the 46-year old African American who died at the hands of Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin. Protestors chanted “No justice, no peace!” and other slogans as they made their way through the city from the sports complex to the city hall.

Ross commended the crowd for coming out and showing support. “We put that hustle down, we put that groundwork down… teamwork makes the dream work,” he said.

Fulton, whose 17-year-old son was killed by George Zimmerman in Sanford in 2012, told the crowd that they need to vote out elected officials who do not support police reform.

“I encourage you today. . . we have to make sure we vote, not just in the major elections but the local elections as well. Hold your elected officials accountable!” said Fulton, who is running for a seat on the Miami Dade County Commission.

Jymesia Picket, who lives in Fort Lauderdale, said she was impressed by the turnout.

“I am here to speak out against police brutality that is happening around the country. . . you can’t stay silent, nothing gets fixed in silence,” said Picket, who moved from Chicago five years ago.

Nurse Maria Lespinasse, who attended with a few of her friends, agreed.

“I am just glad I could come out here and that a lot of young people are out here as well,” she said.

As part of the march, the crowd made its way to the Miramar Town Center, walking along Miramar Boulevard and Hiatus Road.

Protesters shouted the names of George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, and Breonna Taylor as they walked. Taylor was shot and killed by police in Louisville in a police raid.

One protestor laid on the floor with his hands behind his back, in front of a Miramar police car yelling “I can’t breathe.”

When they arrived at the city hall, protesters had a 30-second moment of silence to remember those killed by police brutality, afterward taking a knee to specifically honor Floyd. The peaceful protest and march ended at about 7 p.m.

Jordan Coll is from Miami and is currently majoring in journalism with a minor in philosophy. He enjoys reading and meeting new people from all walks of life. His deeply embedded passions are  music, photography, travel and keeping up with current events.