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April 26, 2012

Update on the Trayvon Martin Case w/Martin Family Attorney at Saturday Morning Forum

CHICAGO (April 26, 2012)--Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr., founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, will welcome Benjamin Crump, the Florida attorney representing the family of Trayvon Martin, as a special guest at the live, international broadcast of Saturday Morning Forum. 

George Zimmerman, the man accused of second-degree murder in the killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, was released from jail earlier this week on $150,000 bail. 

“We were disappointed that the bond was set so low”, said Rev. Jackson. “Mr. Zimmerman’s freedom has been restored. This decision cheapens black life. Justice should serve as a deterrent.  The U.S. Department of Justice and the FBI must play a critical role in this case because this is a civil rights case.  Racial profiling and killings have become a national pattern.”

Attorney Crump will give an update on the case and how the Martin family is doing. 

“It is with a heavy heart that Trayvon's parents had to watch his killer get released from jail,” Crump said. “They would rather he remain in jail until the conclusion of the criminal proceedings. However, they hope that his freedom is temporary because the pain he caused their family is permanent."

This Saturday also marks the kick-off of the Rainbow Excel Basketball League (REBL). REBL is a partnership with the Chicago Bulls, the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, and PUSH for Excellence. Each year over 200 young men ages 13 through 19 participate in a 10-week basketball league where character traits are strengthened through teamwork, perseverance, and hard work.

For the past four years, approximately 1,000 young men from the Chicagoland area have benefited from this league. The league’s primary goal is to mentor and support inner-city males academically while simultaneously giving them a safe and structured outlet. In addition, the program offers constructive activity and camaraderie aimed at steering young men away from gun violence.

Dr. Keith Harrison, associate director of the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, will be on hand to discuss issues related to gender and race in amateur, collegiate and professional sports. The Institute engages in research and publishes a variety of studies, including annual studies of student-athlete graduation rates and racial attitudes in sports, as well as the internationally recognized Racial and Gender Report Card, an assessment of hiring practices in coaching and sport management in professional and college sport.

Saturday Morning Forum airs live on the WORD Network and WVON 1690 AM The Talk of Chicago at 11:00 AM EST/10:00 AM CST.  The program can also be streamed live at   

The Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a progressive organization devoted to protecting, defending and expanding civil rights to improve economic and educational opportunity. The organization is headquartered at 930 E. 50th St. in Chicago. To learn more, please or call (773) 373-3366. To arrange an interview with Rev. Jackson, please call the numbers listed above.