(CBS) – Spiritual leaders and parents who have lost children to gun violence pleaded for peace Friday in anticipation of a verdict in the Trayvon Martin case.
The Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. joined St. Sabina parishioners for their weekly peace rally and march.
Friday, it included a plea for peace once a verdict is reached in the trial of George Zimmerman, the Florida neighborhood watch captain accused of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Martin.
“No matter what the verdict is tomorrow or Monday whenever it may be, we want peace. We want peace on the streets,” St. Sabina Pastor Michael Pfleger said.
“I hope people will listen, will accept the verdict and pursue it in a process that works for us. We do not want to compound the crisis with more violence,” Jackson said.
Also participating in the march was Cleo Pendleton, whose talented teen daughter Hadiya, was slain early this year.
The Pendleton family fears there’s no end in sight for violence now that Illinois has a concealed carry law.
Their concern was echoed by Jackson.
“The pain is much too deep. Killings come much too frequently. The bloodshed is flowing much too freely,” he said.
Pfleger said the General Assembly “let down” the state of Illinois by rejecting Gov. Pat Quinn’s efforts to make the bill tougher. He said he was particularly unhappy that guns were not barred from restaurants and churches.
Former Illinois state Public Health Director Dr. Damon Arnold said the gun violence has reached epidemic proportions in many Chicago neighborhoods, and said he felt safer as a U.S. Army colonel in Iraq.
Pfleger urged businesses, churches and homeowners to post signs at the front door proclaiming, “No guns allowed.”