When Trayvon Martin’s hoodie was brought into the courtroom as evidence in George Zimmerman’s murder trial, one Martin family supporter said he felt as though he was looking at an iconic piece of history. And now the director of the the Smithsonian museum has indicated he would “love” to house the piece of clothing.
“I get goose bumps just thinking about it,” recalls Michael Skolnik, political director for hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons and a member of the Trayvon Martin Foundation board.
Skolnik, in fact, told the Washington Post that Martin’s hoodie—which the unarmed teenager wore the night Zimmerman shot him in the chest during a scuffle, killing him—is “like this mythical garment.”
The Rev. Al Sharpton—an early advocate for Martin who organized nationwide rallies after Zimmerman’s not-guilty verdict—said during a cell phone call that he “would like to see [the hoodie] preserved,” the Post reported.
“The hoodie now represents an image of an urban street kid that either embraces or engages in street thug life,” Sharpton has said. “I think it’s unfair.”
In order to redefine that image, Sharpton has indicated his desire to see Martin’s hoodie end up in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, now under construction on the Mall and expected to open in 2015.
The Post indicates that Lonnie Bunch, director of the museum, would “love” to add Marin’s hoodie.
“It became the symbolic way to talk the Trayvon Martin case. It’s rare that you get one artifact that really becomes the symbol,” Bunch said. “Because it’s such a symbol, it would allow you to talk about race in the age of Obama.”
While the desire to display Martin’s hoodie might seem odd, it’s not completely out of the ordinary for the museum to feature, shall we say, unique displays.
(H/T: Weasel Zippers)