Let’s play party-games with Marx – The Island
Two more school shootings
by Vijaya Chandrasoma
The love affair of Americans with guns, mostly white Republicans living in the “southern slave states,” continues unabated. Gun violence aside, which kills more than 35,000 Americans a year, the school shootings, the murders of the future of the nation, of our children, are depressingly regular. According to a Washington Post database, “about 27,000 students on K-12 campuses in 22 states were exposed to gun violence in 2021,” and there were more school shootings, 30 in 2021 than ‘in any other year of this century. Needless to say, the vast majority of these shootings occur in Republican-controlled “Red States”.
There were two school shootings in the United States last week. Both took place on November 30. These brutal murders will grab the headlines for a few days and then inevitably disappear in a cloud of “thoughts and prayers”.
Promises by politicians to restrict sales of military-style weapons are made after every tragedy. Other basic precautions, such as a waiting period of at least two weeks before purchase, background checks, are popular with over 70% of the population.
However, those promises were quickly forgotten, faced with opposition from a large majority of Republican congressmen who took up residence in the deep pockets and supported by the Russians of the National Rifle Association. And the threat of violence by Trump’s white supremacists like the resurgent KKK, the Proud Boys and the Oathkeepers. The base.
The 30th shooting took place on the night of November 30, when Jadon Hardiman, 18, of Jackson, Tennessee, killed one man and injured two others in the gymnasium at Humboldt High School, during a basketball game. No student was involved in this altercation between adults which led to the shooting.
Perhaps this tragedy cannot technically be included in the list of school shootings because no students were involved. It was just another Tuesday night in America, just another shootout, just another round in one of America’s major national sports. And I’m not talking about basketball.
Earlier today, another far more gruesome tragedy occurred in Michigan, when a 15-year-old white Oxford High School student Ethan Crumbley was allowed to carry a gun around the compound. school, came out of the bathroom armed with a semi-automatic handgun and killed four classmates, injuring seven others, including a teacher.
This school slaughter, the 29th such shooting for the year, was tragic enough. But the timeline leading up to the murders is even more astounding.
Friday November 26. The shooter’s father, James Crumbley, accompanied by his son Ethan, purchases a 9mm Sig Sauer, acclaimed as one of the top five 9mm pistols in the world today. Designated as a “Conceal and Carry” weapon, it is used by law enforcement and military organizations around the world and is freely available to the public. No waiting period. No background check, over the counter, no questions asked. Easy, like buying a can of beans at Walmart.
The gun was purchased by Crumbley as a Christmas present for his 15-year-old son. Santa has certainly arrived early for the Crumbleys this year. Unfortunately, there would be no more Christmas for his four victims.
Later that same day, the shooter posted an Instagram of himself holding the semi-automatic handgun, writing: “Just got my new beauty today. Sig Sauer 9mm. I will answer “.
Saturday November 27. The shooter’s mother, Jennifer Crumbley, writes on social media that it is a “mom-son day testing her Christmas present”.
Monday, November 29. An Oxford high school teacher reports to school officials that she saw Ethan searching for ammunition online with his cell phone during class. Ethan said in a meeting with the school counselor that “sport shooting is a family pastime.” School staff call her mother, leave a voicemail, and send her an email, leaving the details of the incident to her. They evoke no response from him. She later wrote in a text to her son: “Lol (Laughing out loud). I am not mad at you. You have to learn not to get caught ”.
The same night, Ethan recorded a video in which “he discusses the murder of students”, according to the deputy of the Sheriff of Oxford, Tim Willis.
Tuesday November 30. A teacher finds a note on Ethan’s desk, which alarms him enough to take a photo, which she shows to the school counselors and the dean. The note was the drawing of a handgun and the words, “Thoughts will not stop.” Help me. ”A bullet with the words“ blood everywhere ”is also depicted above a person who appears to have been shot. The note also reads:“ my life is useless ”and“ the world is dead ”.
Ethan was immediately removed from the class and questioned on the note. He says the design is part of a video game he’s designing; he hopes to pursue a career as a video game designer. This was, surprisingly, seen as a credible reason, requiring no further action.
Ethan’s parents are summoned and the note is shown. Ethan’s explanation for pursuing a career in video game design, confirmed by his parents, is accepted, and he is deemed not to present a risk of harming others. Parents resisted the school’s request to bring Ethan home for the day, due to his homework. They were told to ask Ethan to consult within 48 hours and allowed to leave, leaving the shooter at school.
Despite all of this evidence, school officials did not verify the contents of Ethan’s backpack that contained the lethal weapon.
This final and unbelievable verdict from the head of the Oxford Community School District, after the investigation before the shooting, was that “there was no reason for discipline”. A verdict almost immediately deemed blatant criminal and resulted in another shootout. A shooting that could have been avoided had an obviously unbalanced and murderous teenager been immediately taken out of school after the evidence uncovered during the investigation before the shooting.
As a psychology professor at Westchester Community College attested in a letter to the New York Times: “As a clinical psychologist who has assessed dozens of emotionally distressed students who may have posed a danger to their fellow students, I finds the story of Oxford High School administrators allowing Ethan Crumbley to return to the classroom deeply unsettling ”.
Ethan Crumbley has now been indicted as an adult on 24 counts, including four counts of first degree murder and one count of terrorism causing death. He pleaded not guilty to all charges and refused bail.
The parents, James and Jennifer Crumbley, have been charged with four counts of manslaughter. They left their home after the shooting and went into hiding. As they did not report to authorities on Friday night, they were arrested after a police manhunt that ended in the basement of a warehouse in Detroit. They pleaded not guilty to all charges and were each held on $ 500,000 bond.
It’s a never-ending theme, but if it was a black or Latino child, he would have been detained, based on the evidence uncovered by the investigation, until the arrival of the forces of the order. When they found the gun in his backpack, along with evidence of the bloody drawings and videos, he was reportedly immediately arrested and thrown in jail on various charges. His black or Latino parents would not even have been summoned. Why? The evidence against their son had been conclusive enough, if only for the color of his skin. Or, more exactly, because he was not white.
We all remember how, in August 2020, Kyle Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old from Antioch, Ill., Was driven across the state to Kenosha, Wis., By his army-armed mother. an AR 15 assault rifle, to “protect the property of people threatened during the Black Lives Matter protests.” People he had never met, people who had never sought the protection of a vigilante. The riots had broken out after the gruesome murder of George Floyd and the shooting of Jacob Blake, an African American who was shot seven times by a Kenosha police officer, and remains paralyzed for life.
Rittenhouse used his deadly AR 15 assault rifle to kill two protesters, injuring a third, on the grounds that it was “protecting property”. After the murder, he casually drove past a law enforcement vehicle, whose officers, intuitively knowing that killing causes dehydration, threw water bottles at him to quench his murderous thirst. He was allowed to return home to Antioch that night and was not arrested until a week later.
In the recently concluded lawsuit against him, Kyle was acquitted of all charges and remains a free man today.
So there is hope for Ethan Crumbley, given the current U.S. justice system, with courts heavily weighted by Republican judges appointed by Trump, in thousands of district and federal courts. Oddly enough, Bruce Schroeder, the judge who presided over Rittenhouse’s trial was appointed in 1983 by a Democratic governor. After his behavior of repeated and vicious reprimand of the prosecution in the Rittenhouse trial, it was evident that Schroeder had switched sides. A comedian commented that he should have worn a KKK balaclava at trial, instead of a judge’s robes. Unfortunately, a completely believable piece of satire.
Ethan may also be lucky, as Rittenhouse did. He can also have his trial heard before one of the aforementioned thousands of white supremacist judges. He can be released with a punch to the wrist, free to pursue his chosen career as a “video game designer”, or more likely, a serial killer.
Again, tackling an ad nauseam repeating theme, if a 17-year-old black or Latino kid had behaved like Rittenhouse did in Kenosha, he would have been shot in minutes by a hail of police bullets.
December has dawned and Christmas is in the air. It is the season of peace on earth, of universal goodness expressed by goodwill towards all, and of renewed feelings of brotherhood and love. It is the month of office parties and Christmas bonuses, of the exchange of gifts; to wait for the arrival of Santa Claus, hoping that he found you nice, not mean. This is the time when many families celebrate their accomplishments and the merry events of the year with Christmas cards, with beautiful photos of their families.
My favorite, so far, is the Christmas card from Republican Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie. He posted a Christmas group photo of his in-laws, each posing proudly with a military-style assault rifle.
This vile family photograph, likely designed by the National Rifle Association, was on public display just days after the Oxford and Tennessee shootings. No doubt a preventive defense against any general outcry in the face of these shootings. A photograph that will bring together the approval of his Kentuckian voters, his re-election assured. The tacit, albeit cheerful, approval of his fellow Republican Congressmen across the country can be taken for granted.
And further displaying the Republican spirit of Christmas, Massie tweeted the photo with the caption: “Merry Christmas! ps. Santa, please bring ammo.