Fight Back! reporter Fernando Figueroa sat down with Michael Sampson, one of the Nashville 5 arrested on July 12, to discuss what happened, how he was released from jail and what's next for the movement.Fight Back!: Can you tell us what happened?
Nashville, TN – On July 12, five people – Malaya Lynch, Marshawn McCarrel, Aaron Hayes, James Hayes and Mike Sampson – were arrested here without warning. Over 100 people held a protest that coincided with the meeting of the National Governors Association. The cops acted unjustly when they arrested the Nashville 5. The five people were booked by the Davidson County Sheriff's Office and a project is currently underway to raise bail for them.
Tallahassee, FL – On May 21, at a meeting of the Florida State University Presidential Search Advisory Committee, Tallahassee Dream Defenders spoke out against the nomination of Senator John Thrasher as the new Florida State University (FSU) president. Students from Tallahassee Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), FSU Progress Coalition and Graduate Assistants United joined them.
Tallahassee, FL – On the morning of April 23, over 20 students from Florida State University (FSU) and the historically Black college Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU), gathered outside the state capitol building. Despite final exams, they joined together to speak out against the split of the joint FAMU-FSU Engineering School.
Tallahassee, FL – About 150 members of Dream Defenders, an organization dedicated to fighting against racism while building the power of Black and Brown youth, marched into the Florida Capitol, March 3 to confront the Florida law makers and Governor Rick Scott with chants and protest on the first day of legislative session.
Washington DC – More than 300,000 people are gathered on the mall today for the March on Washington, with at least 150,000 on each side of the reflecting pool. The massive crowd is largely African-American, mobilized by the 50-year anniversary of Martin Luther King’s speech and by the pressing demand for justice for Trayvon Martin. African-American groups range from Florida’s Dream Defenders, to New Jersey’s People’s Organization for Progress, to the national NAACP. There is also a big union mobilization, with the United Auto Workers turning out thousands of members in t-shirts. Many other unions and their associated groups like Working America are also out in force.
Tallahassee, FL – On July 16, around 100 members of the youth civil rights organization Dream Defenders flooded the Florida Capitol and marched to the office of Governor Rick Scott. Their demand was simple: Justice for Trayvon Martin and pass Trayvon's Law.
Tallahassee, FL – After three days of occupying the governor’s office in the Florida capitol building, protesters demanding justice for Trayvon Martin finally secured a meeting with Governor Rick Scott, July 19. Scott met for about 45 minutes with several leaders from Dream Defenders, a student activist organization led by Black and Latino youth. He refused to give into any of the protesters’ demands.
Tampa, FL – Protesters gathered in front of Senator Marco Rubio’s Tampa office May 31 to criticize the Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill currently being debated in the U.S. Senate and to demand, “Legalization for all!”
Tampa, FL – Activists came together here, March 29, to announce a campaign under the demand “Licenses for All” undocumented people in Florida. Members of Dream Defenders, Hondurenos Unidos en Tampa, Mexican American Student Association (MASA), and Latin American Student Association (LASA) at the University of South Florida will be pushing the Tampa City Council to allow drivers licenses for undocumented immigrants. The number of undocumented immigrants in Florida is estimated to be 1 million people. Many of the undocumented end up being deported after being pulled over from driving without a license.