We have been to the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso many times. We have also shopped in the Walmart that is next door to the mall. Yesterday morning 20 people were killed and more than 24 were injured when the shooting suspect, Patrick Crusius of Allen, Texas entered the Walmart at 10:39 A:M: Mountain Time. Mr. Allen is white.
‘The gunman’s sister was one of nine-people killed in a shooting early Sunday in downtown Dayton, Ohio, police said.’
‘At least 27 others were injured when Connor Betts, 24, fired in a popular nightlife district about 1:00 A:M:, authorities said.’ CNN
Twenty-six people were injured and the shooter was apprehended in less then one minute…Dayton was the 250th mass shooting this year!
I recall being admonished by friends and family through the years to be careful about traveling to certain countries…as they were dangerous. It had not occurred to me until my last visit to the United Kingdom where a middle Englander told me that he was afraid to visit the United States due to the gun violence!
I remember when a mass shooting would captivate all of the major television networks and dominate our news media for days on end due to the horrific tragedy and rarity of the occurrence. On the networks the regular Saturday night fair continued uninterrupted and many Americans thought how tragic and sad… and offered their thoughts and prayers.
The constitutional right of the second amendment does not say the the right to bear arms is the right to endure two mass killings in one day and 250 in one year…and the year is far from over!
Why is it that so many of our elected political leaders are speechless and mute when it comes to speaking out against gun violence? How can it be that the NRA has hamstrung the Senate and the House of Representatives and the President of the United States in such a complete manner that they have no answer to the carnage…but to offer their thoughts and prayers?
Our current Administration often points to terrorism being a product of Muslim extremist…but the majority of gun violence in our country is perpetrated by causacion men who are white nationalist. It is not brain surgery to deduct that a successful mass killing begets another mass killing.
Now, the powerful legislatures and President and Governors…area quite certain that they are insulated from the ‘American Carnage’, to borrow a well worn term from former presidential advisor Steve Bannon…and from the President himself, but the randomness and evil of the plethora of mass shootings in our beloved country can happen anywhere at any time? Perhaps I can speak philosophically regarding my ‘God given rights to bear arms as set out in the second amendment to the Constitution’…until my family is murdered while they are shopping for school supplies!
Social media has aided in the proliferation of Hate Groups in our country. Disenfranchised and lonely white men have found a group to identify with and they aspire to be a star of the white nationalist movement! The President of the United States constant hate filled speech toward brown and black people as well as Muslim people has enhanced the hidden hate that many… quite…prejudice and bias people have held in their hearts for years and has emboldened them to take action on their fever dream of violence as the answer to their ‘straw man’ upon which they blame their lack of success and failure to achieve economically in our capitalist dominated society, that honors those who make a lot of money…and discounts those who do not.
When you are poor…you understand the poor! When you are marginalized…you understand the marginalized! When you are the victim of bullying…and misogyny…and prejudice…and xenophobia….you understand the abject feeling of alienation and suffering and loneliness that these assaults…bring!
Guns…in and of themselves are not the answer to the problem….political speech and action for the people that elected the leaders to represent their interests…is!
We should begin today with a study of gun violence in this country and what are the root causes for the Armageddon…that we are experiencing!