South Carolina seems to demonstrate that – since Treyvon Martin – it is indeed open season on black people in America. AGAIN.
As a British Methodist of Afro-Caribbean descent I experienced more than just sympathy, empathy and huge sadness for the 9 victims of your latest senseless and apparently racially motivated killings at a prayer meeting in S Carolina. There is something like gloom and confusion dislocating everything. So, instead of waiting to blog on Tuesday as usual I am posting extra today.
It would be bad enough if this were an isolated incident but it is not. Neither gun crime nor killings of black people by white are rare enough in your country, the world’s most powerful democracy. But like a lot of seemingly intractable problems, may I suggest that straightforward solutions often pack a punch.
Firstly, categorising these types of crimes as terrorism might rocket them up the priority list where they belong.
Secondly there needs to be an increased and enormously heavy premium in the criminal system for crimes committed on the basis of hate to counteract the subdural poison insinuating that black lives are more expendable than white.
Thirdly – and in some ways most importantly - it is time – it is past time – it is way beyond time when you absolutely have to get to grips with gun control.
Here in the UK we are not devoid of racism (I can personally attest to that). We also have all the usual nasty attitudes of one group against another. We also have violence and crime. HOWEVER, with rare exceptions, we do not have the miserable litany of weak inadequate disturbed individuals randomly blowing away large numbers of valuable lives on a regular basis year in year out.
It is not possible to get rid of or anticipate people with evil intentions. It is possible to control guns.
Come on America
Yours in fellowship