JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The founder of a local mentoring group said the upcoming Michael Dunn trial is an important one for the greater community.
“I don’t know if Jordan Davis could have changed the situation, maybe, maybe not,” said John Guns, senior pastor at the St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church on the Northside. “But I think that the African-American male, especially teenager, has to understand that there’s certain perceptions and they have to be able to manage those perceptions.”
Guns said he plans to be at the courthouse most days to watch the trial. With such intense national interest in the case, he said the community’s reaction will be important.
“At the end of the day, this trial can polarize us or bring us together on a common ground, that respect is not a one-way street,” he said. “Respect should be something we all expect from each other and we all give to each other.”
Guns founded the group Operation Save Our Sons in response to the death of Trayvon Martin. He said the Jordan Davis incident reinforces the lessons learned from that case.