Stevie Wonder announced Sunday night he would boycott Florida over its "Stand Your Ground" self-defense laws in the wake of George Zimmerman's acquittal in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin. And when Stevie Wonder boycotts something, he doesn't mess around. In 1991, he vowed not to perform in Arizona over its refusal to honor Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday and when the NFL jumped on board – pulling its Super Bowl plans in the state – Arizona eventually changed the law. He boycotted the state again, more recently, over its controversial SB 1070 immigration law.
This time however, Wonder is not just boycotting Florida until it abolishes its stand your ground law. "As a matter of fact, wherever I find that law exists, I will not perform in that state or in that part of the world," he told a Quebec concert audience when making the announcement. Zimmerman's attorneys did not actually invoke "Stand Your Ground" in his legal defense, yet the law is still facing much scrutiny.
How Wonder defines "Stand Your Ground" could determine how far his boycott extends. If he is targeting states whose legislatures have passed laws that specifically protect a person's right to "stand their ground" in self defense when he or she feels threatened, 16 states would be affected.
However, if you expand the map to include any state that has expanded the so called "castle doctrine," be it by legislature of judicial measure, to legally protect those claiming self defense when accused of homicide, the map grows much wider. Per The Washington Post's count, 30 other states have a version of Florida's law on the books, meaning Wonder's next tour may be quite limited.