Let’s Face Facts: School Shootings Are Inextricably Linked To White Male Privilege
By: Solomon Jones
In the 22 school shootings, this year where deaths or injuries occurred and suspects have been identified, the majority of suspects have been white males in suburban or rural environments.
Until America is willing to confront that truth, we won’t be able to stop school shootings, and that’s going to cost more lives.
If America were willing to profile white males the same way it does males of color, maybe things would be different.
Of course, the white male privilege protects would-be school shooters from such scrutiny. And sadly, the role of privilege is not new.
In 2004 the Secret Service and the Department of Education-found that 76 percent of schools attackers were white males. Almost two-thirds of them came from two-parent families. Despite these advantages—or maybe because of them—the attackers had a hard time dealing with failure.
“In one case, the shooter was a former student who was laid off because he didn’t have a high school diploma. He blamed a teacher who failed him in a senior-year course, so he returned to the school, killed the teacher and two students, and held over 60 students hostage for 10 hours.
That report was written 14 years ago, and the characteristics it describes still apply to many school shooters.
So why has America failed to intervene in the lives of young, white men who fit the school shooter profile?
The answer, in my view, is privilege, and America’s unwillingness to look at would-be shooters the way they see the rest of us – as a group.
Lawyer and critical race theorist Dr. Tim Golden explains it this way: A school shooting in a place like North Philly would be blamed on drugs or gang violence. There would be calls for more police and tougher tactics. But school shootings in suburbs are met with calls to protect gun rights.
Why? Because the shooters in suburban schools are white guys with privilege.
But I believe the shootings could be stopped if suburban schools used the same tactics that are used in city school systems.
Take Philadelphia for example. We’ve had metal detectors in schools for more than 20 years. We’ve had school police officers for 40. We don’t have shootings in our schools.
I doubt we’ll see such common-sense measures in the suburban schools attended by would-be mass shooters because that would impact their privilege.
But if we really want to stop school shootings, we must do something, because privilege should never trump lives.
Stacey Abrams Wins Democratic Primary In Georgia
NYT- On Tuesday, Georgia Democrats selected the first black woman to be a major party nominee for governor in the United States. Stacey Abrams was chosen, a liberal former State House leader, who will test just how much the state’s traditionally conservative politics are shifting.
By handily defeating Stacey Evans, also a former state legislator, Ms. Abrams also became Georgia’s first black nominee for governor, a prize that has eluded earlier generations of African-American candidates in the state. The general election is sure to draw intense national attention as Georgia voters determine whether a black woman can win in the Deep South, a region that has not had an African-American governor since Reconstruction.
She will face either Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, the top Republican vote-getter Tuesday, or Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Mr. Cagle and Mr. Kemp will vie for their party’s nomination in a July runoff.
R. Kelly Sued For Alleged Sexual Assault
A 20-year-old woman has filed suit against singer R. Kelly, claiming he unlawfully gave her alcohol, assaulted her and gave her a sexually transmitted disease.