The Time Has Come To Do More Than Just Protest
By Lorenzo Canizares
On 6/1/22 on an article titled “The Nation Can’t Wait Any Longer,” I wrote “Somebody would have to be willfully blind not to see the crisis of inaction that we are living through. Today, another nationally reported massacre that luckily was smaller in numbers with just five people losing their lives including the gunman. Living in America today is becoming a daily ordeal, a Russian roulette, your turn for heightened excitement or even death is always present. And all of this happening because we have neglected to act against what we know needs to be done.”
And the carnage continues: Late Saturday night, gunfire erupted on Philadelphia’s bustling South Street, where hundreds of people were enjoying the warm weekend amid the area’s many restaurants and bars. At least 14 people were hit, three fatally.
In Chattanooga, Tenn., two people were killed by gunfire early Sunday morning, and another was killed by a car fleeing the shooting, according to police. There were 14 total victims, including those who were injured. The Chattanooga Times Free Press reported that police believe there were multiple gunmen, and that an investigation is ongoing.
A shooting at a strip mall in Phoenix killed a 14-year-old girl and injured eight other people early Saturday morning, according to the Arizona Republic. Police are also investigating that incident.
In Chicago, police reported that 16 people were shot, one fatally, in multiple shootings over the weekend, according to local media. The injured victims included a 6-year-old girl who was grazed by a bullet and a 14-year-old boy who was shot in the stomach and leg, according to ABC7 Chicago.
In Saginaw, Mich., police said three people were killed and others were injured in another shooting, according to WNEM TV5 News.
In Summerton, S.C., police said a suspected drive-by shooting killed one person and injured seven more at a school graduation party. Six of the seven people injured were between the ages of 12 and 17, News19 WLTX reported.
And we dare call ourselves a civilized country? We have become a shithole country! A country where you have no idea what’s going to happen when you go outside for a stroll, take your children to school, go to a restaurant, or just go out for a drink. All thanks to those Republican elected officials that are in the pocket of arms manufacturers.
Things are getting so bad that once normally “calibrated” people like Washington Post columnist Kathleen Parker in an article titled “Yes, it has come to this. It’s time to arm teachers” will agree that arming teachers it is obscene but responds in a response one of her tweets where her follower states “that arming teachers would be the end of civilization,” Ms. Parker responds, “What could be less civilized than a society that tolerates regular massacres of its citizens, especially of its children.” Still, she sidesteps the essence of the problem.
I am planning to attend one of the marches next Saturday 6/11/22. I think it is very important that the nation expresses its anger. We can’t continue to sleepwalk through this nightmare. This is not a dream. This is a sad reality. Next shooting victim could be a loved one or even ourselves. And all of this that’s happening to us, it happens to us because we are lacking collectively the internal fortitude to do what needs to be done to put an end to this nightmare.
In the article “The Nation Can’t Wait Any Longer,” I also wrote “We can argue until the end of days about the in and out of this issue, and what was meant by the Founding Fathers when they wrote the Second Amendment but what should pass the eye test and is common sense is that civilians should not be allowed to possess weapons that were built for war. The European Union prohibits its 27 countries the private possession of fully automatic weapons. Switzerland that is not part of the European Union also bans them as it does Australia, Canada and New Zealand. But none of those countries that many of them are labeled as socialists have the mindset problem we have to deal with here.” Notice I only mentioned mainly white countries because a major part of our problem is the acceptance of a white supremacy mindset.
The white supremacy mindset is what provides the alibi to those suffering from unbridled greed the ideological strain to argue nonsensically and say banalities like “the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is to have a good guy with a gun.” As we saw in both the Buffalo and Uvalde massacres that didn’t happen.
If this weekend is any indication this gun crisis that we are living through is going to continue. Today Senator Chris Murphy one of the most vocal Democratic legislators on this issue said, “lawmakers don’t plan to bring any bill to the floor that would ban assault weapons or include comprehensive background checks but are actively working on legislation that would include a range of other measures.” At best we can expect a large band-aid to cover profuse bleeding.
We saw in Uvedo how the police refused to take on a shooter armed with a semi-automatic rifle. If we don’t put an end to the sale of semi-automatic rifles to civilians, we will continue on this carnage for a while longer. I call on the police unions, PBA & FOP, to take the lead in opposing the sale of semi-automatic weapons. Your members are the public servants expected to be on the front line of defense. I call on the teacher’s unions, NEA & AFT, to take the lead in planning towards a nationwide strike of teachers and support staff in September if there is no ban on semi-automatic weapons by then. Teachers should not have to add a police job description items to their assigned duties.
Thoughts and prayers plus band-aid solutions are not going to stop this carnage that has its roots in the desire to maximize profits. Only actions directed to cut into those profits will stop this bleeding. The banning of semi-automatic weapons is a must!
Labor-Community Alliance of South Florida Co-Coordinator
The Time Has Come To Do More Than Just Protest