American Culture: School Shootings, Racism and the Politics of Injustice

Broward County Sheriff visits 15 year old hero, shooting victim Anthony Borges. via @browardsheriff on Twitter
Broward County Sheriff visits 15 year old hero, shooting victim Anthony Borges. via @browardsheriff on Twitter

The Parkland Shooting. Another horrific incident of mass violence and murder committed in one of America’s public institutions of learning. School shootings have grown like an incurable cancer in white America. The dynamics and nuances of this truth is a hidden fact less spoken about or specifically addressed by media. Until now. Why? It is no secret that school shootings are usually perpetrated by Caucasian males. These incidents are habitually coined as “sad events” underscored by commentary detailing how the offender has some form of “mental illness” in addition to the ongoing debate surrounding gun control.
If the perpetrators of school shootings in America were of color or Muslim, the narrative would, of course, be completely different – that is, those committing school shootings would be labeled terrorists, thugs and/or gang members. But alas – the endemic racism and injustice that so permeates American society and culture, the reality of which is painstakingly nauseating and depressing, once again has blotted out and skewed the truth.
The truth is that Americans of every race and ethnicity can tell you about the Caucasian Parkland victims and survivors, and how well spoken they are. We have all viewed their conversations with their local law enforcement, politicians and even the President of the United States. Missing from this ongoing coverage are faces and voices of the many minorities and their families who have also been victims of school shootings, including Parkland.
But let’s take the reality of this cancer of mass murdering outside the schoolhouses and into America’s society and culture. We want to play the race and ethnic cards, because this is where it all begins. A rose by any other name is still a rose. Well, mass shootings are acts of terrorists. American citizens are terrorized. Yet white America now faces a portion of what minorities in this country, especially African-Americans, have experienced for centuries.
Racism in America continues to affect every aspect of American life and tragedies are not excluded. When one takes a minute to ponder and analyze racism in the United States whether active or passive, institutionalized or individualized, the ugly truth continues to rear its head. This is why virtually any American you speak to regarding the Parkland shooting cannot tell you who 15 year-old Anthony Borges is. He was shot 5 times protecting 20 of his classmates as he tried to keep the door barricaded to save their lives. He has undergone surgery and has several more ahead of him after being shot in the back, both legs, and upper thigh. Although there have been some articles written about the young hero, it pales in comparison to the CNN, Headline News, Fox News, and local news coverage we have been inundated with, in addition to the various forms of social media.
Our point here is not to minimize the victims of Parkland, but to give recognition to the long-offending culture in this country that excuses and overlooks the thousands of victims every year across the color spectrum, not just “white”. We want to give voice to the voiceless, and aid to the oppressed and the weak. It is the duty of every God-fearing human being. Life is sacred. This does not apply to one particular racial group, but every living being. Unfortunately, one of the many maladies affecting American culture is the disease of racism and hatred that continues to allow injustice and falsehood to replace justice and truth as the reality for particular groups as the powers-that-be facilitate their own ignorance and arrogance: we must change this status quo that allows what is now American culture to continue its destructive cycle of racism in all components. May God Almighty help us!