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View Diary: White privilege and Sandy Hook (490 comments)

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  •  I Think that "All of the Above" (9+ / 0-)

    May be the closest answer.

    I do not disagree with your thesis that white privilege is a part of the Sandy Hook story.  I think it's a factor in the (for now) relatively serious attempts to have a discussion about increased handgun regulation, to be sure.  I also think it's a key element of the renewed (for the first time in more than 30 years) discussion of mental illness in terms that are accurate; i.e. that we have failed them.  Were Adam Lanza nonwhite nobody would care about his mental illness; as you rightfully point out we'd be discussing yet again all those "Black on Black" murders.  Certainly, despite the many efforts of communities plagued with gun violence to establish reasonable limits on guns and access to guns this past 20 years there has not been a serious national conversation about gun control despite some urban areas being, at times (because the myth is that it is constant and it's just that, a myth) battlegrounds.

    So you are right that white privilege plays a role.

    But I don't know that it is the only reason, or even the primary reason, that the national reaction to Sandy Hook is what it is.  I think that is as much connected to two other things as anything else:  (a) that these were not just children, not just young children, but children which virtually every adult considers babies--and they all died not from a single well-placed shot, but from being literally physically brutalized with wanton, over-the-top, out-of-control shooting from a single shooter, as if they were in a war zone; and (b) by all reports, Sandy Hook did "everything right." There was security at the school. It was an "idyllic community" despite the high percentage of gun ownership. And it mattered not one whit.  IMO, events like that so fundamentally shake the false sense of "control" that we think we have over life, us being All That, and all, that the event grows in psychological magnitude to become almost overwhelming.

    That being said, thank you for writing this diary, which was brave at a minimum.  I'm sorry you're getting such grief for it in the comments--but as far as that goes, welcome to the world of trying to talk about ugly racial truths here at Daily Kos.

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