Whenever the right-wing media echo chamber and political hype machine gets hysterically overworked about an issue, violence tends to follow. Take for instance, when they all lost their collective minds over the fake and roundly debunked Planned Parenthood videos; arsons at health clinics and a mass shooting quickly followed.
So unfortunately it is no surprise that violence has followed the right-wing’s collective freak out over President Obama’s reasonable and much-needed expansion of background checks for firearm purchases. A still unnamed man in Redding, California living in an apartment complex began randomly shooting at people. Witnesses said that the man was ranting and screaming about President Obama’s gun actions, running inside and outside apartments, firing indiscriminately.
“We heard the five shots — everyone was screaming,” said resident David Rice. “He came out screaming ‘Obama! Obama! Obama!’ (Police) told him to come out with (his) hands up, and he kept telling them ‘No, no, no.’”
Neighbor Cathy Lunsford had a scarier interaction with the deranged man, who grabbed her and pulled her into his apartment. “As soon as he shut the door, he hugged me and he kissed me on the forehead,” said Lunsford, who was forced to watch as he shot at people. “He was aiming at a guy, and then he just got sloppy — he was shooting everywhere.”
As if the racial disparities in police response couldn’t be any clearer in this nation, law enforcement responders fired non-lethal beanbags at an active white shooter, while twelve-year-old Tamir Rice was instantly gunned down. They then allowed this man to enter and exit his apartment, which had a letter from the NRA taped to the window, ten times with his weapon drawn before an officer finally shot him dead.
To put the cherry of irony on this cake of white privilege, the man had prior felony convictions and a history of mental issues but still somehow had a firearm. Nothing could have more accurately illustrated just why President Obama’s gun reforms were needed, how recklessly lax the NRA-written gun laws truly are, and how deeply race plays a role in determining the response of police officers in our nation.
Watch the local news report here:
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.