Activists Join in Rally of Solidarity for South Carolina

Dozens of activists walked a mile and a half from the African American Research Library and Cultural Center in Broward County to a Fort Lauderdale church to show their solidarity with the residents of Charleston, South Carolina.

"This country needs a revolution... this country needs a systemic upbringing," said Akil Shabazz of the Muslim American Society of South Florida.

"There needs to be a systemic change within the system," added Nandee Shabazz.

Tuesday night's rally and vigil was organized by several groups. Protestors chanted loudly and with passion. They took up one lane of the road and briefly blocked traffic an intersection. Each step they hoped would be one step closer to getting rid of racism and racial injustice.

"It affects us all in different ways across this country. Systematic racism allowed him to feel the way he did about black people and to feel like you go in and just shoot up at church. And that affects us down here," said activist Jasmine Rogers.

The same dedication and emotion seen in the street during the march was matched in song and prayers at the New Life Fellowship Church in Sunrise. And while some were marching for change, others expressed their concern about church safety.

"We are here in South Florida but the reality is the very same thing could've happened to anyone of us pastors and any member of the church and bible study," said Reverend Dennis Grant.

South Florida churches are being proactive after the massacre in Charleston. It's an unfortunate reality congregations must now acknowledge.

"Even in church you can be killed, you can be murdered, you can be shot down like birds in the church," Grant said. "We have let down guards maybe all of our lives and this is saying to us oh no, it can happen anywhere, it can happen to anyone."

The FBI, ATF and BSO met with church leaders before their prayer vigil to discuss planning for the worst.

"There are plans and there are ways to practice for an active shooter but in a free society like thank God we live in, if you're going to have some lone wolf or some mentally ill person that's going to commit a massacre, it's going to take vigilance and love to stop this," Sheriff Scott Israel said.

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