What Lessons Have We Learned from the Buffalo Shooting?
Thoughts. Prayers. Rinse. Repeat.
An 18-year-old heavily armed kid deliberately targeted Black people when he entered a Buffalo grocery store and started shooting. He killed 10, wounded 3. Of the 13 victims, 11 were Black.
We are shocked. We are saddened. We are horrified.
Or are we?
Because there are two different we’s here. There’s We Americans, and as such we are indeed shocked and saddened and horrified that this could happen in our free and progressive country.
Then there’s We Targets. We who often are the victims of personal or political violence. We who are targets of the mentally ill, the sexually frustrated, the politically inadequate, the emotionally stunted. We who are marginalized based on gender, race, religion, ethnicity, or sexual orientation.
Why us? Because we are the visibly vulnerable whose basic constitutional rights are under daily attack by politicians and pundits rabble-rousing for votes or money or both. All this finger-pointing and fear-fanning sends the conscious and subconscious message that because we are more vulnerable we are also less valuable. If our rights are disposable, why wouldn’t we be?