In the wake of protests surrounding the shooting death of Florida teen Trayvon Martin, Fort Meyers born rapper Plies provided a tribute song that serves as the soundtrack to the movement. Today, he took to the airwaves to explain where the proceeds will go and where the inspiration for the song came from.
“I felt like I was alble to go in the lab and not only speak for what I like to call my brother Trayvon, but to speak for a lot of people who are normally affected by this kind of situation but don’t get the national coverage that this particular situation demanded,” Plies told the Maddhouse radio show at CBS Local’s WPEG/Charlotte. “At the end of the day, stereotyping and racial profiling still exists.”
The song, “We Are All Trayvon,” was was released last week and is as sort of open letter to Martin.
“I never thought wearing no hoodie, could cost you your life/And I never thought you could just kill someone and get out the same night,” Plies raps. [Song posted below]
Trayvon Martin was shot dead on February 26 in Sanford by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman, who made a 911 call because he said the hoodie-wearing 17 year-old looked suspicious. While the details are sketchy–Zimmerman claimed the shooting was in self defense–Trayvon was found only with a bag of candy.
When Zimmerman was not arrested for the killing, officials pointed to Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law that allows for one to defend oneself without the obligation to retreat. The outcry grew across the country with a series of ongoing rallies and shows of support for the family. It opened debate about the law and about personal responsibility.
“The climate in Florida is a little bit edgier,” he said. “Sanford is only 100 miles up the road from where I’m currently located…I’m overwhelmed by all the national support people have been given from all different races and genders and cultures.”
Plies said the song was important to reach people through music but it will also allow him to contribute financially, by donating 100 percent of the proceeds to the Trayvon Martin Defense Fund.
“That meant a lot for me, to not only assist in the situation but make a difference from a financial aspect,” he said. “I feel like his family deserves anything that this song does.”