December 17, 2014 at The Legal Aid Society Holiday Party for Homeless and Other Vulnerable Children at the Synod House of The Cathedral of St. John the Divine in Manhattan

Legal Aid Party 2014My annual appearance. It has been one of my favorite gigs since I first appeared there in the mid 1980’s. About five hundred children enjoyed hot dogs and candy, face painting, painting, music, an appearance by Santa Claus, and gifts for all. Thanks to The Legal Aid Society for the photo (just published yesterday on The Legal Aid Society web site).

Walking While Black – A Song for Trayvon Martin

Walking While Black

Music and Lyrics by Paul Stein

People of conscience, please let me impart
An American story that’s breaking my heart.
Young Trayvon went out for Skittles and a can of ice tea,
Took a break from playing video games and watching TV. (chorus)


Trayvon is dead and Zimmerman’s free.
No justice, no peace, what a travesty!
Zimmerman claimed he was under attack,
But Trayvon’s only crime was walking while black.

Trayvon didn’t rush in the rain with his snack,
His father kept waiting for him to come back.
Trayvon wore a sweatshirt topped with a hood.
Zimmerman assumed he was up to no good. (chorus)

Zimmerman reported his unfounded suspicion.
This wannabe cop then embarked on a mission.
Against police advice he followed Trayvon.
Suddenly with one shot this black child was gone. (chorus)

At Zimmerman’s trial, the jury acquitted.
“Racial profiling” evidence could not be admitted.
Trayvon was silenced so Zimmerman won.
No black boy is safe from any stalker with a gun. (chorus)

This story is tragic, it troubles me so.
Trayvon reminds me of children I know.
They see that the law puts their lives at risk too.
What should we say when they ask what to do?

© 2013 Paul Stein

[May be used without permission for noncommercial purposes]

I hope to post an MP3 within a few days.