Two years ago, on May 25th, George Floyd was murdered. We were outraged, along with the community, about the killing of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Dave McAtee, Dreasjon Reed, and many others who have suffered the violence and injustices of a society where racism and other oppressions are embedded in our institutions and systems. Equity cannot be achieved without significant soul searching, self-awareness, and activism; and where deliberate and measured public policy changes are brought forward and implemented.
The past 12 days have been extremely difficult for all of us with the mass shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York. The horrific racist attack perpetrated by a white male shooter who shot thirteen people resulted in 10 deaths and three injuries – 11 of the 13 people shot were Black – by a shooter who described himself as a white supremacist.
On Tuesday, in Uvalde, Texas, an 18-year-old man who could legally purchase firearms shot his grandmother and drove to an elementary school where he gunned down 19 children and two adults.
We are in anguish, angry, and filled with grief, for the victims, their families, their communities, and our country over the hateful and evil actions that continue this senseless loss of lives. We know that the impact of these traumatic and violent events is far-reaching and devastating to individuals, families, and whole communities. Everyone and this is not debatable, has the fundamental human right to live in community – in their homes – in their schools – in their place of worship – at their grocery store – anywhere – without the fear of being terrorized or murdered and to have equitable opportunities and resources to realize their full potential.
The link between domestic violence and mass gun violence is real and cannot be ignored any longer. The majority of mass shootings have one thing in common – a history of domestic violence. As an organization working to end domestic and sexual violence, with a vision of a world where violence is unacceptable, we will continue to advocate for policies that address the lethal impact of the combination of firearms and domestic violence. We will raise our voices even louder, advocating for investment in prevention efforts, because there will be no end to the violence if there is no attempt to identify and mitigate its root causes.
Alexandra House will continue to expand our network of partners as well as our community outreach efforts to create a violence-free society where everyone is afforded their human rights and accountability and justice prevails. We urge Minnesotans to join us. If we can imagine a safer Minnesota, we can create it. We can all make change happen if we work together.
Connie Moore, Executive Director
Please see the resources compiled by the Minnesota Department of Health, as they could be helpful to you and others trying to cope with the trauma inflicted by the ever-present violence in our society.