Before I get into some serious stuff:

As of today, The Bones of You Kickstarter is 34% funded. This is really awesome. However, we only have 14 days left to make our goal. There are awesome backer awards at all levels. For $45, you preorder the e-book version and get a limited edition t-shirt. Click here to look at the project and kick in a couple of bucks or reblog about the Kickstarter, talk about it on Facebook, help us make it happen.

I have a new Jesus Christ, Boy Detective story over at Go Read Your Lunch. Check it out here.

***

Editor’s note: I’ve been trying to process what happened with the Zimmerman verdict. This is my take on how we have gotten to this point in Florida.

In 2002, the voters of Florida had the chance to undo a great wrong that happened in 2000 by not re-electing Jeb Bush. With a 52% voter turnout, he became the first Republican to be elected twice as Florida’s Governor. Republicans maintained control of the state Senate and House. In 2005, the state Senate and House quickly passed Stand Your Ground.

In 2010, Rick Scott is elected as Governor with a 49% voter turnout. In 2012, he appointed Angela Covey to investigate the shooting of Trayvon Martin. Angela Covey eventually charged George Zimmerman with second degree murder. The mishandling of the case by the prosecution played a contributing factor in the acquittal of George Zimmerman.

Low voter turnout during midterm elections are what allowed the Florida state House and Senate to remain Republican. Low voter turnout during midterm elections is how people came into power who wrote and passed Stand Your Ground. Low voter turnout is how we had an attorney prosecuting a case the state never believed had merit.  

Yes, Martin was racially profiled and was shot because of it. Yes, the state couldn’t (or didn’t) want to prove it in court. Yes, we will shake our fists and raise our voices and grind our teeth until George Zimmerman’s (proverbial) head is on a pike, and we pay to take turns throwing tomatoes at it, but what then? The Voting Rights Act is still gutted (and the Voter ID laws will start flooding in). The war is still happening against women’s reproductive rights. The gun lobby has too much of a say on who does or does not remain in power. When our anger is gone regarding Martin’s death, what will we do then? Will we focus it elsewhere, or will we forget?

In 2014, Florida has the chance to get Rick Scott out of office. Florida has the chance to make a dent in the Republican’s majority in the House and the Senate. I can’t wait to at least try and help make it happen.

 

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About J. Bradley

J. Bradley's is a Best of the Net and Pushcart Prize nominated writer whose work has appeared in numerous literary journals including decomP, Hobart, and Prairie Schooner. He was the Interviews Editor of PANK, the Flash Fiction Editor of NAP, and the Web Editor of Monkeybicycle. He is the author of the poetry collection Dodging Traffic (Ampersand Books, 2009), the novella Bodies Made of Smoke (HOUSEFIRE, 2012), and the graphic poetry collection The Bones of Us (YesYes Books, 2014), illustrated by Adam Scott Mazer. He is the curator of the Central Florida reading series There Will Be Words and lives at iheartfailure.net.

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