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Please... Don't Shoot Especially Armed with Hate

One of the few minor blessings of the pandemic, was the temporary decrease in gun violence and mass shootings at the beginning of Covid. As we perhaps prematurely put the pandemic in our rearview, we have recently seen an explosion of gun violence. Just this past weekend in Buffalo NY, the most recent, horrific incident has left 10 dead and two injured at a supermarket. As is increasingly common in America’s gun violence epidemic, the shooting was perpetrated by a member of the hateful, and cancerous white supremacist scourge seemingly on the rise in this nation. The depth of hatred and bigotry driving this murderous display couldn’t be clearer, with the shooter driving over 200 miles specifically to target majority-minority areas. The details are simultaneously both dread inspiring, and frighteningly familiar: An 18-year-old white male, driven by hate, anger and cowardice, wearing body armor and carrying guns, has terrorized one of our black communities. Accompanying this terrorist’s activities was yet another in a line of bigoted “manifestos” explaining clearly his racist motives. Nowhere was this more evident, than in live-streamed footage of the massacre still circulating the internet, in which the terrorist lets a white man live, and even apologizes to him, before resuming murdering people of color. This tragedy is especially bitter, as it comes just as our reactionary SCOTUS is deciding the fate of some of the limited remaining gun laws cities like New York have put in place. Any reasonable American, as demonstrated by the consistent polling in support of common sense gun laws, would recognize this moment as a wake-up call, yet in all likelihood, we will see a SCOTUS decision over the next few weeks which utterly ignores the barbaric and murderous reality we live in, and argues for an even more absolutist interpretation of the second amendment. If it does, this will be the second example in as many months, of the SCOTUS ruling in direct opposition to the will of the American people. Robust gun control legislation is definitely not a panacea for the rising tide of rage and violence sweeping the nation, but it is incontrovertible that it would increase the safety and well-being of most of our citizens. We are looking, however, at another situation like reproductive rights, in which even if, by some miracle, our Congress passed legislation tightening gun laws, SCOTUS will likely intervene to thwart the active expression of the people’s will, even as tens of thousands continue to die every year from gun violence. We’ve discussed multiple times the relationship between gun manufacturers, lobbying groups like the NRA, and primarily Republican politicians, one rooted in the endless pursuit of money and power, and undersigned in the blood of innocent American victims. The people and organizations involved clearly have no regard for human life if it comes at the expense of their profits. Appeals to morality or decency will gain no traction. As ever, the only language the donor class, and their political servants, speak is money and raw power. To get back our safety in public spaces and freedom in our own homes, it will take political and economic organizing, to create an economic cudgel which can stand up to this hateful and poisonous greed enabling the tide of violence. So join us each Tuesday in solidarity, stand against white supremacy and hate. #UPM #DSOT

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