On February 26, 2012, Sybrina Fulton’s son’s life was cut short after being fatally shot in Sanford, Florida, by George Zimmerman. Trayvon Martin was only 17-years-old at the time and had his whole life ahead of him. Since his murder, Fulton has made it her mission to continue to give his life meaning through her work as an activist, public speaker, and author.
In an exclusive interview with ESSENCE, Fulton spoke about the last seven years of her life, and how it has changed. What was interesting was the fact that Fulton says one common thing people ask her a lot has to deal with forgiving her son’s killer.
“I have not gotten to the point where I have forgiven the person that shot and killed my son. Prior to this, I was just an average mom working an average job living in an average house, taking care of average kids. It took my son to be shot down before I stood up, because I never expected to be a community activist, to be a spokesperson, to be an author,” Fulton said.
Fulton then went on to speak about how Black people are commonly expected to forgive, regardless of the circumstances.
“I think Black people are not forced to forgive, but they are expected to forgive because there are so many times where we have forgiven people who have done mean, evil, and nasty things to us,” she said.
To hear Fulton’s complete interview, check out the video above.