This past weekend’s cowardly shooting sprees in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio—which resulted in the deaths of 31 people and the serious wounding of approximately four dozen more—once again casts a spotlight on the murderous violence which permeates throughout the land of the free. Some social analysts contend that the recent spate of innocent, unarmed Americans getting murdered, by primarily Caucasian men, is merely an act of karma, or as Malcolm X once said, a case of “the chickens coming home to roost,” and they blame your president.
“Yes, we’ve had a rise in hate crimes every single one of the past three years, during an administration where you have a president who’s called Mexicans rapists and criminals, although Mexicans commit crime at a far lower rate than those born here in this country,” argued El Paso native and Democratic presidential candidate, Beto O’Rourke.
Along with the previous week’s murders of three people in Gilroy, Calif., the country’s on edge.
Continued O’Rourke, “He’s tried to make us afraid of them to some real effect and consequence. Attempting to ban all Muslims from this country. The day he signed that executive order that mosque in Victoria, Texas was burned down to the ground… He’s a racist and stokes racism in this country. It doesn’t just offend our sensibilities, it fundamentally changes the character of this country, and it leads to violence.”
On Saturday, at 10:39 a.m. local time, 21-year-old Patrick Crusius from Allen, Texas, unloaded his assault rifle at a Walmart adjacent to Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, shooting innocent, unarmed civilians in a cowardly act of domestic terrorism. When the smoke cleared approximately four dozen people, ranging from 28-82 years old, had been shot. Twenty died that day, 26 seriously wounded, with seven requiring emergency surgery.
“We’re treating it as a domestic terrorism case and we’re going to do what we do to terrorists in this country, which is deliver swift and certain justice,” noted John Bash, attorney with the District Court for the Western District of Texas.
The FBI opened a “domestic terror” investigation and charged Crusius with a “hate crime” and “capital murder.” They discovered online posts allegedly linked to him containing “white nationalist language and hatred toward immigrants, specifically Latinos.”
El Paso police chief Greg Allen stated: “Right now, we have a manifesto from this individual that indicates to some degree a nexus to a potential hate crime.”
Later that evening hundreds of activists carrying lit candles and/or flashlights, cellphones, other devices, marched in Washington, D.C. to the White House where they conducted a vigil in front of it. They then marched to Capitol Hill while repeatedly chanting “not one more!”
However, only a couple of hours later, a bit past 1 a.m., Cone Betts, 24, shot and killed nine people at a bar area in Dayton, Ohio, and wounded 27 others. Although he wore body armor, he was immediately shot dead.
Rampant murderous shooting sprees rarely occur outside the U.S., so why does it happen here so frequently? Maybe because although only about 5 percent of the planet’s total population lives in the U.S., about 42 percent of all existing guns are held here. More than any other country. Along with Trump’s consistent racist rhetoric being spewed, seems like a surefire recipe for some domestic terrorism.