The last time we had the biggest-ever mass shooting, I wrote this argument that “phobia” is the exact wrong word to describe the decisions our society has made about which lives matter.
We collectively decided that policy should support white male power.
We collectively decided that white male power is defined by subjugation of all non-white-male people.
We collectively decided that firearms are a peachy way to express this political identity defined by subjugation of others.
We collectively decided to ignore Everests of evidence linking domestic violence against women and children to mass shootings, evidence proving that lax gun laws are a desperate public health threat, evidence that our cultural dehumanization of people of color, immigrants, LGBTQ people, women, and children leads directly to their increased likelihood of senseless death.
We must collectively decide to affirm the dignity of all by establishing the unequivocal right to safe congregation, to safe schools, to not getting shot by terrorists of any race or ideology. And this older white dude is a terrorist. People who harm or kill others, on behalf of no government, in order to reinforce their own power are terrorists. Correct names help us understand how inadequately we respond. How terrible our failures. Every god damn time.
I don’t care who this asshole was targeting or why he did it. He may have been just pissed about gambling debt, rather than pissed about threats to his masculinity (oh wait).
I care, more than ever, about our failure to decide to make it harder for him and his brethren to terrorize us.