Trayvon Martin Case: 'Trial of the Century'?

As the trial starts, experts talk about its potential effect on how we see race and justice in America.

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"In a case of racial profiling by the police, we would have data, statistics and other evidence to prove that race was a motive," Dianis said. "But this is a case against one person, and we may never know what he meant by that comment because he could actually never take the stand."

 If Dianis is right and Zimmerman never testifies, will all the hoodie marches and congressional support be in vain?

Not if the community channels that same passion that was prominent during the formative stages of this case and applies it to a bigger movement, she said.

"Wherever people are across this country, they should be doing something like finding and rooting out racial profiling in their own hometown," Dianis said. "We have to take the outcome of this case and turn it into something productive for us. We can't turn it into anger -- we have to keep it moving and honor Trayvon."

Aja Johnson is an editorial fellow at The Root. Follow her on Twitter.

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Trayvon Martin Case: A Timeline

Take a look at the major events in the controversial case as the trial begins.