This baby girl, Aavielle Nevaeh Wakefield, is dead because we think people have an unfettered right to firearms. Hers is not the only face…..God knows we have hundreds of them. You can see some of them here and if you want to pick and choose who you think belongs there that’s fine too….it shows what kind of person you are to minimize human life and death. This whole firearm debate has certainly changed my approach about the firearms I own and sometimes carry….#allLivesMatter
We all know about the tragedy that happened in Oregon where college students were murdered by an American terrorist with self proclaimed ties to the political right, also known as the #demonicGOP or Republican party. That part of his bio is conveniently left out…even his name won’t be uttered by the Oath Keeper sheriff of the county where the shooting occurred probably in no small part because the shooter reminds the sheriff of himself….a conservative gun loving, gun toting true blue American. In the President’s remarks above, those made passionately, he issued a challenge to news organizations at about the 6:30 mark of his speech which many responded too and which have become a constant theme here at Miscellany101 about terrorism versus good old fashioned American crime…the kind of crime we’ve become used too and are good at doing so much so that we outdo the terrorists.
Let’s start with the basics; we are a country of criminals of all shapes, sizes and descriptions. There are many people who mean to do their fellow citizens harm and this intent is practiced on a daily basis. DAILY BASIS! There have been more mass shootings in this country of “exceptionalism” than there have been days of the year, that as of October 1…a mass shooting defined as one in which four or more people have been shot, not necessarily killed. If you want to quarrel over being killed versus being shot as a measure of qualitative American lifestyle you’re an idiot. Jamil al-Amin was correct back in 1967 when he said, ‘violence is as American as cherry pie’; our propensity to embrace it, see it as a solution to all our problems and even enable it through the auspices of police departments and the NRA will only insure we continue down that path in even more egregious ways. So the President has a right to be angry if he wants to be the “leader of the free world”, wherein his country, our country surpasses ALL of the world, free or otherwise, in firearm fratricide.
But that isn’t the challenge we’re answering here……..THIS IS!
…..and about those “terrorism” related deaths…many of them were commited by our own homespun white/black American terrorists, like this one or this one or this one or this one or……….While one can show there are “others” who committed acts of terrorism on America soil where people were killed the only thing they have in common with one another and the other Americans who’ve committed acts of terrorism is the fact that they lived here in America and had access to firearms, proving what al-Amin said back in 1967 about “our” inclination to murder and death. It cuts across color, race, ethnicity…it is something unique to our political system which says we have a right to firearms and many more others of us have a right to kill. If you claim this is a Christian country beware your Christianity which warns you, Mathew 26:52, ‘he who lives by the sword, dies by the sword’. Fix this America!
If you want to know how bad it is that we have so many gun deaths in America look at how inept government has become in combating the problem. I explained in the previous post why government won’t do anything….it’s in its best interest NOT to and Congress, the best product money can buy, won’t do anything because it’s just one big special interest lobby firm but government’s looking away really is making the problem worse.
Look at this figure….of all the federally licensed firearm dealers in this country only 8% sell weapons that are used in a majority of firearm related crimes in this country. Would be nice to know which 8% they are or where they are located and shut them down and away would go the problem of gun violence in America. Won’t happen I know and perhaps it shouldn’t….but if those 8% had their sales more closely monitored and followed up, something the guns rights people claim is worse than treason, just maybe it could reduce gun violence. Maybe.
I was once asked if I ever sold drugs; after getting over the initial shock of the question and realizing it was being asked by someone not even remotely interested in his own question I laid down the hammer and told him I considered selling drugs an act of treason and therefore punishable by death. It’s treasonous I told the young man because the proliferation of drugs in a community is meant to render that group of people inert to the issues facing our country and disinterested in engaging in them. Using drugs or people who peddle them are no better than people who practice slavery I said. My reply fell on deaf ears.
I was aware of the claims made by Gary Webb in his “Dark Alliance” newspaper series that the US government has had a hand in the proliferation of drugs in the African-American community and that its intent was pretty much as I described to my interlocutor to destroy the black community. When Webb first printed his articles he was driven to suicide but we all know there was merit to his assertions. Indeed some preceded Webb in saying the same things. The US government introduces drugs into a segment of the population, reaps the financial rewards thereof, the social advantages of making an entire population static non participants in their political, economic, social, or educational future. The existence of the government’s product necessitates government intervention, bureaucracy in the form of all the various agencies that must be employed to fight the war on drugs thereby legitimizing government itself. A pretty neat slight of hand but only for government…for the people who are preyed upon by government it means their literal destruction or at least reduction to a comatose state where they are no longer relevant. Which brings me to Israel and Palestine.
I literally bolted out of my chair when I heard the Democracy Now interview last week with Budour Hassan talking about the situation in one of the refugee camps, Shuafat refugee camp and what goes on there. She said this
……Subhi Abu Khalifa lives in Shuafat refugee camp, which is literally a ghetto, which the Israeli occupation since the 1970s has tried to crush with all means possible, turning it into a poverty hub, turning—putting drugs in the camp, smuggling arms to some of the residents. So they’ve tried to do everything in the camp, not just to destroy the community there, but to also prevent this camp from being active in the Palestinian resistance movement.
I thought finally, the US has taught Israel a thing or two about oppression…..America has at least at some point in the relationship between Israel and the US been a leader, not a follower of the Israeli agenda. Everything about the US-Israel relationship has been completely and utterly one sided. America has been the sole servant to Israeli interests even when they contradicted our own. Now I had in front of me an example where Israel was doing the very same things to Palestinians living in the squalor of their Israeli imposed existence with the same diet of drugs and guns that have destroyed African-American communities being used to wipe out Palestinians as well. In the interest of fairness it must be said Americans have resumed following Israel by parroting extra judicial killings of oppressed people without repercussion; #blacklivesmatter is an outgrowth of that but Israel has the advantage of looking at how that deadly cocktail of drugs and guns can benefit government in many ways and we can say they learned that from us. #AmericanExceptionalism!
While out shopping in Georgia at my favorite bookstore, the same day theEmanuel AME Church reopened its doors after the mass shooting, a white man in camouflage entered the store openly carrying a gun on his hip.
In my home state, we recently allowed licensed individuals to bring their guns into bars, churches, and college campuses, all for the sake of “safety.” Yet, in this moment, at the bookstore, I realized that such gun control laws only ensure certain people feel safe, while others who do not wish to own a gun are left feeling powerless.
This tense moment was still too soon. Too soon after Charleston, after the deaths of Eric Garner and Rekia Boyd—and even too soon after Emmett Till. Too soon after cops in Georgia attacked Kenya Harris until she miscarried.
Too soon because I haven’t processed the constant surveillance and prosecution I experience as a dark-skinned Black person navigating a society where I can be tried and executed in the streets without jury.
The gun-toting man had a wide-shouldered build and was probably shorter than me once he took off his combat boots. Looking back, I probably could have taken him on in a fair fight. Lord knows, I’ve fought men bigger than him before.
The bookstore employee, who will go down in history as my favorite bookstore employee ever, immediately said to the man, “Woah, that’s a gun! That makes me uncomfortable.”
Anywhere you stood in the store you could hear his reply: “Well, it shouldn’t be a problem so long as I don’t feel threatened.” The way his voice trailed off as his eyes panned the room froze me temporarily. I tucked myself behind a bookshelf where I could still see and hear what was happening. He also said he has an open carry license—as if that would make us feel safe.
And then to change the subject, as if carrying a gun in a bookstore is no big deal, he shared that he had been scoping out the bookstore for some time, but only just decided to come in. I popped my head over a bookshelf to lock eyes with the bookstore employee. We widened our gaze and raised our eyebrows at each other to non-verbally confirm that this situation was indeed absurd.
But what troubled me most about the situation as it was happening was the realization that our legislative system was working as intended in that moment.
Long before I walked in to buy a copy of Octavia’s Brood, so that I could think about a world where my body is free through activism-driven science fiction, the system set things up with discriminatory gun control laws.
The idea of openly carrying a gun to protect myself has never been a realistic option—only when I’m imagining myself as Storm from X-Men dismantling oppressive systems with Black feminist thunderstorms and a small silver glock just in case. In reality, if the cops saw me with a gun, a bag of Skittles, or even a loosey cigarette, they would probably shoot me and ask questions about my permit later. As a Jamaican-American whose parents had to navigate the country’s unjust immigration system, I’ve almost always known that papers and permits don’t save dark-skinned people.
And so now, Georgia’s open carry policy, the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and the whole foundation of America’s justice system works as it was always intended: allowing certain people to feel safe at the expense of others existing in fear. I was without arms and face-to-face with a man who may or may not have wanted to kill me—and a man who had the freedom to make that decision without repercussions.
As he approached me in a corner of the store, my heart raced as I thought about the families of the victims and the nine people who were being put to rest in Charleston. I kept thinking ofTywanza Sanders jumping to defend his aunt Susie Jackson. I wondered if I could drum up that courage. I wondered if Cynthia Hurd was as frozen as I was. I wondered if Ethel Lancefelt as caught off-guard. I thanked the employee, a fellow woman of color, repeatedly in my head for maintaining calm in that moment of uncertainty. The man and I stood for a moment side-by-side browsing titles like Does Your Mama Know. It was a split second. Then I darted away to the middle of the store in three wide steps.
After he burrowed his nose into every corner of the bookstore, all he bought were two button pins with probably the most unpolitical messaging on them. I didn’t get to see them, but I know the store carries some very alluring pins of cats. Maybe he got those? At the counter, he showed the employee his Harry Potter tattoo. He made uncomfortable comments about how the tattoo reminds him of seeking truth and justice against liars, loud enough for all of us to hear. He talked about his “no good” ex. He said “open carry” ensures that his son respects him.
“Do you need a bag,” the bookstore employee interrupted, making it clear it was time for him to go.
Once he left, the rest of us still in the store let out a communal, belly-deep sigh. One customer noticed that subconsciously all the books they had collected to purchase were about men and violence. “They take up so much space,” the customer said with regard to the man who just left and the bundle of books in their arms.
Oppression can preoccupy our safe spaces, even in our minds.
My fellow customer’s comment allowed all of us in the store to laugh and begin the process of grasping what had just happened.
I don’t know why he came in armed. I don’t know what his intentions were. I don’t want to know. I want to know a world where I don’t have to be caught up in fear in the first place. I want a world where none of us feel the need to carry a gun. A world where the Confederate flag and a CVS aren’t more important to our political leaders than seven burning churches, the countless dead at the hands of militarized police, and those empowered with the false hubris of white supremacy.
People like me, and hopefully you, are trying to make that world a reality in the here and now. Bree Newsome, for example, took the Confederate flag down from the South Carolina statehouse with her bare hands. Emanuel AME Church reopened its doors when I’m sure domestic terrorists and other right-wing extremist groups were hoping they’d stayed closed. Not only are these activists not giving in to the pressure, but they’re reminding all of us that the world we’re fighting for uses love to overpower violence. Sanders’ 5-year-old niece, just by virtue of surviving the shooting by playing dead, is proof of Audre Lorde’s prophesizing.
No, we were never meant to survive, Lorde, and so whenever we end up doing so, we are being revolutionary, perhaps even futuristic.
Amazing story of how an armed white citizen is dealt with by police and the lengths people like him, citizens, go through to show they have “privileges” that ordinary citizens don’t
An open carry activist in Madison, Michigan, caused a high school to be placed on lockdown last week, and then began taunting police officers who were called by parents who saw the man marching in front of the school while carrying a loaded shotgun.
The incident occurred last Thursday morning when a man carrying a shotgun and video camera began walking in front of Lamphere High School. As you might expect, police officials said they “received about a million 911 calls” from concerned residents in the neighborhood. The high school was then placed on lockdown for nearly an hour, until police,
“…determined the man was exercising his right to open carry and was not a threat.”
So a man near a school with a shotgun isn’t a threat? Excuse me if I beg to differ, but I happen to be a parent! If a guy is brandishing a gun outside the school my daughter attends, he is most definitely a threat!
The story, however, merely begins with the open carry lugnut and his “right” to have a loaded gun outside a school. The man, who as yet is unidentified—he goes by the YouTube handle Nunya Beeswax—then copped an attitude when the police began to ask him a few questions. An officer is heard asking the man how long he planned to be out in front of the school, to which he replied:
“Oh, the funny thing about you’re asking me a question is, I’m not going to answer it […] Anything I say can be held against me in a court of law, right?”
At this point, the officer tells Mr. Beeswax he has no plans to arrest him, and this only makes him angrier:
“Are you going to shoot me? […] That badge on my chest gives him no more rights than I have. You work for me and the tax payers, right?”
No, the officer says, he merely wants to have a conversation with Beeswax. Beeswax then took his lunacy to the next level, saying:
“No, I’m trying to talk to you, tough guy […] We all know y’all are chompin’ at the bit to put something on me.”
The officers got back into their cars and left Beeswax alone with his shotgun, his camera, and the voices in his head telling him to cause a scene and make a total asshat of himself.
Even other open carry advocates were offended by the actions of Beeswax. A pro-gun blog entitled “Bearing Arms”posted this message:
“Law enforcement officers were diverted, and school was disrupted, because this ‘gentleman’ insisted on open carrying past a high school, seemingly with the express intent of getting a rise out of authorities and making a public spectacle out of himself.”
I respect the right of Americans to legally possess guns for their personal protection. But the day you start doing so outside a school my child attends, I am going to call you on that action. As the old saying goes: Your rights end where my rights begin.
It can be purchased in Wal Mart, or on line at Amazon, Ebay or other game sites and as far as I can tell anyone can buy it because it’s a toy, a part of the Black Ops game collection that features a lot of life like firearms….you know like the one Tamer Rice had when he was murdered. Rice’s toy was an air soft replica however. Because of America’s fascination with firearms it is perfectly legal to purchase this toy and play with it. Back in the day when cops and robbers wasn’t a lethal game, young boys commonly played with such toys and put them away when they were finished. In today’s America we put young boys away, bury them, typically young black boys like Tamer Rice, after they have been killed by over zealous police who thought such guns were real.
Check out this youtube video that shows the toy in more detail and what it can do. I think the background noise is appropriate and couldn’t come at a more foreboding time. Don’t buy this toy for your children nor let them play with friends who have it. It could cost them their lives.
Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) spent one minute too long debating with someone…..I really don’t care who…..during a Congressional hearing funded by the American tax payer whether someone who accepts Jesus Christ as the ‘way, the truth, the life’ will or will not go to Heaven!?! Should time on the government’s clock be spent on this topic?!?! What are Gohmert’s intentions on knowing the answer to this question? Will he institute a faith based litmus test for citizenship….thereby abrogating the Bill of Rights and the First Amendment?
Don’t forget where Gohmert comes from…..T-E-X-A-S the state where people are intimidating citizens with vigilantes walking around with long rifles strapped across their backs in a manner so extreme even the NRA consider their in your face attitude politically unacceptable, weird before it backed off feeling itself intimidated as well. T-E-X-A-S is the state where the #DemonicGOP wants to correct homosexuals with “reparative therapy” which in essence is saying the way one is is not acceptable to them…….and it doesn’t take much to conclude such “therapy” might come whether one wants it or not. (Having people walking around with the full blessing of elected officials carrying semi-automatic long rifles in the streets subconsciously drives home that point.) T-E-X-A-S is the home of white elected officials who want to enforce the disenfranchisement of its African-American
citizens…..voter nullification as it were and has gone on to legislate some of the more stringent voter registration laws in the country. Gohmert is just as normal as they come in the state of T-E-X-A-S but still as dangerous in his beliefs as the others.
Aaron Ybarra, 26, allegedly opened fire Thursday at Seattle Pacific University, killing one person and wounding three others. The rampage only stopped when 22-year-old student Jon Meis tackled Ybarra. Meis also pepper sprayed Ybarra and, along with other students, confined him until the police caught up. Investigators called Meis a hero and said they were in awe of his selflessness.
The shooting happened just two weeks before Meis’ wedding. As people learned of his heroism, they wanted to thank him and began buying the gifts on his wedding registry. Meis and his fiancé registered at Target and Crate & Barrel. By Friday, people had purchased every single item on Meis’ registry that they could buy online. Meis and his fiancé registered at Target and Crate & Barrel.
But even after all the gifts were purchased, people still wanted to thank Meis. Jessamyn McIntyre — who tweeted that she doesn’t know Meis — was one of those people and started a crowdfunding campaign for Meis’ honeymoon. The campaign quickly spread online and in local media. It reached its goal of $5,000 within hours. Meis’ wedding is scheduled for June 21. By Friday night, more than $6,800 had been contributed.
Courage and a can of pepper spray stopped a mass murderer. That’s all it takes America to stand up to evil…..courage!
The article below really exposes the lie advanced by the Right that guns don’t kill people, it’s people who kill people. In reality it’s people with guns who kill people and such brutality doesn’t have as much to do with gang related activity as we’ve been led to believe. (Emphasis in red mine)
In a scathing critique of ABC’s recent report “Young Guns,” Dana Loesch stated that most gun deaths were the result of gang violence; therefore, America has a gang problem, not a gun problem. Her claim appears to be supported by sites positing that “a staggering 80 percent of gun homicides are gang-related.” As it turns out though, not only is her statement factually incorrect, as the majority of gun deaths are suicides, but there is not a shred of evidence to support her characterization that gangs are the driving force behind firearm violence.
Unfortunately, Dana Loesch’s sentiment is shared by many gun advocates, including the Executive Vice President of the National Rifle Association, Wayne LaPierre, who, when opposing firearm background checks said, “President Obama should be as committed to dealing with the gang problem that is tormenting honest people in his hometown as he is to blaming law-abiding gun owners for the acts of psychopathic murderers.”
So, do we have a gang problem or a gun problem? Data collected by the National Gang Center, the government agency responsible for cataloging gang violence, makes clear that it’s the latter. There were 1,824 gang-related killings in 2011. This total includes deaths by means other than a gun. The Bureau of Justice Statistics finds this number to be even lower, identifying a little more than 1,000 gang-related homicides in 2008. In comparison, there were 11,101 homicides and 19,766 suicides committed with firearms in 2011.
According to the Federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), the number of gangs and gang members has been on the rise for some time now, increasing by more than one-third in the past decade. Between 2010 and 2011, for example, there was a 3 percent increase in the number of gangs, but an 8 percent decrease in gang-related homicides. If gang violence was truly driving the gun homicide rate, we should not see gang membership and gun homicide rates moving in opposite directions.
The most recent Centers for Disease Control study on this subject lends further credence to our claim. It examined five cities that met the criterion for having a high prevalence of gang homicides: Los Angeles, California; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Long Beach, California; Oakland, California; and Newark, New Jersey. In these cities, a total of 856 gang and 2,077 non-gang homicides were identified and included in the analyses. So, even when examining cities with the largest gang problems, gang homicides only accounted for 29 percent of the total for the period under consideration (2003-2008). For the nation as a whole it would be much smaller.
The 80 percent of gang-related gun homicides figure purporting to support Loesch’s claim, then, is not only false, but off by nearly a factor of five. The direct opposite is necessarily true: more than 80 percent of gun homicides are non-gang related. While gang violence is still a serious problem that needs to be addressed, it is disingenuous to assert that the vast majority of our gun problem (even excluding suicides) is caused by gangs.
Gun advocates’ blind focus on gangs, drugs and violent felons overlooks the larger gun problem facing America. It is irresponsible and disingenuous for some of us to brush off our staggering death toll from firearms merely as the product of gangs or even violent criminals. Recognizing America’s high homicide rate for what it is — a gun problem — is the first step in solving it.
Don’t expect to be able to persuade people with the rational of the article above about the perils of the proliferation of firearms because for the Right facts never are the driving point of their argument but now YOU know.
I knew it wouldn’t take long before the hue and cry for some type of government control on citizen behavior would start, led of course by a compliant mainstream media, and so it has with the issue of gun control. Excuse me while I gloat and say I told you this would happen when we embarked on our outrageous WOT and our discrimination against Muslims the world over because particularly some segments of American society wanted to settle a centuries old feud with their Muslim cousins/brothers. It was easy to use 911 to incite passions against a targeted group of people, just as it probably, over time, will be easy to inflame the public for more “gun control” as MSM focuses on those occasions in social interaction where some people just loose their handle on reality and go crazy. Why don’t we have a war on mental illness or on human insanity, or better yet, a war on evil, which is colorless, stateless and sexless. But the latter is just the reason why we don’t wage such wars; they are not sexy enough, not divisive enough to sustain and so we suffer at the hands of kooks who commit crimes and kooks who profit from the commission of crimes who go on to advance their own political agendas. Outrageous crimes of passion, murder and mayhem course through the veins of humanity and date back to the beginning of time and Cain and Able, or further. None of us are immune from this genetic imprint on our behavior; the rule of Law is what keeps some of us in line more than others of us, but even when that doesn’t work, the punishment of the law equally applied to all lawbreakers should. Of course, there is a group of people, notably lawyers, whose job it is to make sure that doesn’t always happen. They too are agenda driven, but humanity has been smart enough to erect, over time, a legal system capable of dealing with almost any human transaction that insures social cohesion and the continuation of the species. Piling on that system of laws, as has happened at the proclamation of every other War we have waged, is draconian at best, oppressive at worse, and not the role of government.