When Will Black and Brown Individual Sovereignty Be Recognized? Do You Value Your Gun More than Life?
As many have heard by now, the COWARD that massacred the innocent peace-loving Sikhs in Wisconsin was a neo-nazi white supremacist, who has been on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Hate Watch List for at least a decade. When are we going to stop letting these COWARDLY WHITE TERRORISTS literally get away with murder? When are we going to stop letting these COWARDLY WHITE TERRORISTS obtain weapons?
Gun toting zealots say, “go out and get a gun.” But guess what, black and brown folk are more likely to be scrutinized by the police and government for obtaining weapons than white folk. And black and brown folk are more likely to be targeted by the white terrorists who hate them for no other reason than apparent and perceived differences. One need not go further back than the history of the Black Panthers. So guess who is made more vulnerable by the lax gun control laws in this country — a white supremacist or an innocent brown or black person merely going about their day?
And what about those who oppose carrying weapons because it is antithetical to their own philosophical and moral framework? Antithetical to their own belief and value system? Those who are overzealous about their guns embrace a culture of fear and machismo, a culture that has been nothing but destructive.
When will the black and brown person’s individual sovereignty be recognized? When will those who cherish their beloved guns do the responsible thing and advocate for better protection of black and brown folk from organized hateful white supremacists in this country? Do you really value your gun, and the false sense of security and machismo it gives you, more than the lives of others?
A piece in Colorlines today hit the nail on the head:
Murderous insanity can infect any community, and maybe that leads people to call these senseless acts of random violence. But of course they are neither senseless nor random, and the vast majority of such incidents here involve white men. Racism holds a terrible logic, for a concept with no grounding whatsoever in science or morality, yet too many white people don’t see any patterns.
I think about the young woman who taught me to speak English in a tiny rural schoolhouse, the widow who gave me my first peanut butter and jelly sandwich and the father of my best friend who was so kind to me while I was growing up. Yesterday, did they quietly hope that the shooter wasn’t one of theirs? Probably not, even though the link between violence, masculinity and whiteness is well-established. White men seem to be in deep crisis, and white people would do well to deal with it, as Tim Wise points out again and again. I implore of my white friends, when your nutty uncle or classmate goes off about some set of foreigners, you must make a fuss, cause a family crisis, become unpopular, speak up. We cannot do this for you.
I despair for our country on days like these. How long before paranoia and fear, recast in the language of moral fortitude (stand your ground!), cut so deeply into the beautiful American friendliness, open-mindedness, and generosity that I have grown up with? How many Trayvon Martins, Brisenia Floreses and Balbir Singh Sodhis must there be before white folks question whether suspicion of brown skin is justified? Must I arm my mother and send her to the shooting range if she wants to wear a sari in public? In two weeks, 20 families have lost a beloved member. Are we going to have 20 more every month for the foreseeable future?