“‘It’s alarming, especially in Newtown, Connecticut, which we always thought was the safest place in America,’ he said.”
This incident is HORRIFIC. But who mourns for dead black and brown children? Why should we regard the deaths of white children any differently than we do, say, the black and brown children dying, just as needlessly and in FAR greater numbers, by the power of remote-controlled American bombs?
Either all children’s deaths should be mourned or none of them should. America needs to make up its mind.
Furthermore, this incident, and many others like it, simply brings to our attention, or, more specifically, to white people’s attention (at least, those not examining their consciousness), that racism has deadly consequences for them, too. For, you see, if they were paying as close attention to white men as they were black and brown men, if they were gazing and surveying and being as suspicious of the presence of white men as they are of black and brown men, there would probably be loads less of these kinds of incidents.
But, I imagine that very few white people are looking at this PATTERN OF BEHAVIOR (and YES, it is a pattern, with LOADS of evidence to support that view) in that way. Likely, most white people are looking for an excuse to make this yet ANOTHER in a long series of “one-offs.” Anything to prevent white maleness from being (appropriately) pathologized. Because once whites realize that other whites are just as dangerous, IF NOT MORE, to whites as any other race, then how can they be safe ever again? And that notion scares so much shit out of them that they’d rather hold on to their racist delusions.
So worried about Hakeem and his bag of Skittles than you missed when Josh slipped in the side door with his machine gun. And your children have now paid the price of your casual, endemic bigotry.
You now have two choices: Wake up or continue to sleep. Only one of those choices is deadly.
A man in Ohio was arrested Saturday night after entering a showing of The Dark Knight Rises with a loaded gun, among other weapons.
According to police in North Ridgeville, Scott Smith, 37, had in his possession a satchel containing a Glock 9mm handgun, ammunition clips, and three knives. He had an additional knife strapped to his body.
Jeremiah Bullins, an off-duty police officer moonlighting as theater security, became suspicious after seeing Smith enter the Regal Cinema theater 30 minutes before the movie was scheduled to screen. He followed Smith into the theater and asked to search his bag.
"When Bullins asked why he carried the weapons into the theater, the man said, ‘No problem. I’ll put them in my car.’ But it was too late for that," Lt. Ray Arcuri told the Plain Dealer.
Smith, a married father of one, was booked into the Westlake jail. Arcuri said he is not legally permitted to carry a concealed weapon.
A search of his home was conducted Monday night, but no further details were released.
UPDATE: Westlake Police Department says an “thousands” of bullets, many weapons found in Smith’s North Ridgeville home.
(The real hero in this scenario: Satwant Singh Kaleka, 62, was the president of the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin, who was shot to death as he tried to tackle the gun-slinging killer.)
When James Holmes went up in that movie theater, shot almost 100 people, and killed 12, the mainstream media narrative was about how intelligent Holmes was and about his acceptance into some prestigious Ph.D. program. The media was looking for some way to excuse his behavior or at least present a justifiable reason for what he did in defense of Whiteness. “What set him off?” was the central question, as though there could be a legitimate, exculpatory reason for his terrorist acts or that, somehow, the victims might have been asking for it (if the victims fit a certain description, that is). The other major narrative that came out of the story were the Heroic Boyfriends of White Women, who jumped in front of bullets to save white womanhood. Another major narrative was about the victims who died, all of whom were white. A lesser narrative, and one the media tried their best to spin another way, was the white dude who jetted on his girlfriend and children, hopped in his vehicle, and fled the scene—leaving them to be saved by Jarell Brooks, a young African-American man.
In the case of the second massacre, Wade Michael Page went into a Sikh temple, likely unable to discern the difference between Sikhs and (“THE REAL ENEMY!”) Muslims (after all, they all wear beards and turbans and that makes them all the same in the Whiteness imagination), and shot the place up. If his victims WERE Muslim, America would have forgiven him; most of America believes Muslims, wherever they are, are enemies of the state and, therefore, deserve to be bombed and shot. Because 9/11 math is in full effect: 19 Muslim extremists = 1.57 billion Muslims.
Seven people were killed before Page was finally shot down himself. He was an avowed white supremacist (and the media uses the descriptor “white supremacist” as though tit only applies to a small number of backward people rather than the entire American ethos) who played in a white supremacist band, whose lyrics advocated the genocide of black people, gay people, and Jewish people (and there’s STILL no discussion about this racist, homophobic, Antisemitic music in the the media; if it was hip-hop though, the media wouldn’t be able to contain itself). He was tatted UP with White Supremacist symbols and, as of today, the media is still “trying to figure out the motive.” *Rolls eyes mad hard* The Little Rascals could have figured out the motive with just a Sherlock Holmes hat and a magnifying glass. It’s not fucking rocket science, but when it comes to Whiteness, everyone has agreed to play dumb and precious.
Very little has been said about the seven victims; they are, after all, only brown. Instead, the focus now is on the law enforcement officers who swooped in and saved the day. In almost every story that mentions the Sikh leader Satwant Singh Kaleka, the cop who took nine bullets is mentioned, too. Like they’re bookends. And they’re not. That cop was doing HIS JOB. Kaleka was being HEROIC. But in order for Whiteness to feel itself or be interested, it has to insert itself into the narrative with equal weight. And that’s because in a society infected with Whiteness, even when Whiteness is the cause of wanton death and destruction (which is often the case), it has to remain central and superior and righteous and heroic and pure.
*sound of disgust*
As Toni Morrison once said: Whiteness is “like a profound neurosis that nobody examines for what it is.”
Well, shit, I wish they would so that we can save ourselves from it.