Trayvon Martin's father speaks on Capitol Hill

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WASHINGTON - The father of Trayvon Martin spoke at a congressional caucus on Capitol Hill Wednesday afternoon.

Tracy Martin was invited to the newly-formed Congressional Caucus on Black Men and Boys to speak about the challenges facing African-American men and the Trayvon Martin Foundation.

Tracy Martin also revealed how he felt about the jury finding George Zimmerman not guilty.

On Capitol Hill Tracy Martin began by telling lawmakers how he felt about his son, especially in the aftermath of the not-guilty verdict.

"I always said Trayvon was my hero, saved my life ... not able to save my son's life. And to have his name slandered, demonized; I think as a father is real important is my message to world is we won't let this verdict sum up who Trayvon was," Tracy Martin said.

Martin told lawmakers, that a source of strength for his family recently came from President Obama, who weighed in on the verdict last week.

He said the point Obama made was so important because the most influential man on the planet is weighing in on the African-American perspective.

On July 13, George Zimmerman was acquitted on all charges, in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin.

Since then, there have been protests and marches nationwide calling for justice, and a change in Florida's stand your ground law.

Tracy Martin said he hopes the Trayvon Martin Foundation can also spark change.

Martin said communities need education about Florida statutes and laws, and need to understand how the laws apply to African-Americans.

It was the first session of the Congressional Black Men and Boys Caucus.

The meeting was organized for lawmakers to talk about issues ranging from racial profiling to chronic unemployment.
 
One of the organizers, Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton of the District of Columbia, said it's time to "bring our black men and boys to center stage."