Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee reintroduced the Justice Exists for Us All Act to Congress Wednesday.
The bill, which the Texas Democrat stated is a response to the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, would pressure states to drop stand-your-ground laws, which assert that citizens can use force for self-defense rather than being required to retreat from dangerous situations.
Under the Justice Exists proposal, states that didn’t amend their stand-your-ground laws and require a “duty to retreat” would face a 20 percent cut to previously allocated funds.
Additionally, to avoid the cut in funds, states would have to require local neighborhood watch programs to register with local law enforcement.
Jackson Lee’s press secretary Mike McQuerry reiterated to The Daily Caller that Congresswoman Lee is pushing the bill now because “she’s always been interested in what happened with Trayvon.”
However, Zimmerman waived his right to a defense under Florida’s stand-your-ground law. When TheDC pointed this out, McQuerry said merely, “She just thinks it’s the right time to pursue it now.”
Florida’s stand-your-ground law has benefited African-Americans at a rate disproportionate to the size of the state’s black population.