All Articles Tagged "gun violence"
When was the exact moment that the nation came to grips with the fact that gun violence is an indisputable erosion corroding our daily lives?
For some it was the senseless killing of Trayvon Martin and the reactors surrounding the verdict this past summer. Or perhaps the Sandy Hook massacre touched a nerve and woke up your slumbering consciousness.
Now we have a more recent revival in the form of the Navy Yard shooting in DC which again gripped the airwaves and our interests, leaving us wondering – Why?
There are so many questions that leave us desperate for answers but unfortunately there is no easy way out of this particular dilemma.
The right for all Americans to possess firearms has consistently given uncompromising power to citizens of all walks of life and helped detonate emotional bombs that have left thousands of scarred victims branded for a lifetime.
When and how do we fire back in retaliation with words and sensitive pleas to the organizations responsible for feeding the now global monstrosity?
The truth is that Americans have been paying the ultimate price for decades, but because those tragedies were regulated to a particular populace, we became desensitized and unyielding to the waging war happening so close but yet so conveniently far.
Now, we are confronted with the indelible truth that the roster of catastrophes plaguing mankind both at home and beyond is an issue we can no longer avoid or hide from because this time it’s personal. The bullets are now being deposited without any restraint or regard for each of our individual racial, geographical or economic stations. The fight has become bloated with vague references, that despite the best of intentions, seem to deviate from the forces that threaten to handicap our immaculately arranged disposition.
There is no easy way to steady the waves that bang against our erected existence but we’ve got to try to find a way to understand the champions of meditated tragedies and get the powers that be to slip out of their mental coma and revive their sense of duty and justice for all.
We have to come together and remove ourselves from the media onslaught and the press conferences that aim to give us a temporary reprieve but still leave us with gaping wounds and restless spirits.
We have to use the sophisticated tools at our disposal to enforce our stipulations when it comes to the fragility of human life and how we can’t allow regulated carelessness to predict the growing casualties that are symbolically littering our sidewalks every other day.
The United States of America has provided an opaque platform that a lot of countries marvel and envy but we are still unable to tackle the most formidable equation that could literally make the difference between life and death.
Inner city kids have adjusted to their familiar turmoil and their privileged counterparts are being forced to accommodate their new reality.
The unrelenting nightmare is seeping through like the plague and now that all bets are off, lets utilize the bullet points that come with our citizenship and stand up for justice, freedom, and the American way.
We have already established that we need to say no to drugs. So let’s say no to guns, or at least say yes, to finding a way to deactivate the formula presently initiated that is making it so tragically easy for the destruction of innocent lives.
It’s time for a change…and it’s going to ordinary folks like us to initiate it.
Are you ready?
For more information on gun violence, check out the new Moguldom Films documentary, Gunland. You can watch the trailer for the upcoming film below.
If you’d like to see this film, you can donate to the Kickstarter campaign here.
Unfortunately, police brutality and gun violence is not only trending on the web, but in society as well. In Waycross, Georgia, a family had to watch as police shot and killed Jack Lamar Roberson, an unarmed man who police are claiming had two weapons on him.
First Coast News reports that on Friday, October 4, Roberson’s fiancée, Alicia Herron, called 911 because she thought Roberson tried to commit suicide by overdosing on his diabetes medication. Although she called for EMS to come to their house, two police officers instead appeared on the scene. The police officers said they came instead of the ambulance because they received a report stating there was an attempted suicide and that the person in question was combative. When they arrived at the scene, they claim Roberson was confrontational and because of his supposed aggressive behavior, the two policemen in turn shot him.
Roberson’s mother, Diane Roberson, says police are lying about the circumstances surrounding her son’s death and that the family doesn’t even own a decent pair of knives. Herron also backs up that statement, saying when police arrived her fiancée had no weapons on him and consistently held his hands up.
“He didn’t have nothing in his hands at any time or period at all before they came, any time while they were here, anything,” she said. “They just came in and shot him. He didn’t say nothing, the police didn’t say nothing, anything, it was like a silent movie. You couldn’t hear anything, all you could hear were the gun shots go off and I seen them going into his body and he just fell down.”
According to the Athens Banner-Herald, the police officers have been put on administrative leave as of now while the Georgia Bureau of Investigations looks into the shooting, at the Waycross Police Department’s request.
Sounds like there are a lot of missing pieces to this story, primarily where are those knives in question. What do you think about this case?
Not all jokes or headlines are funny! Yesterday, Philadelphia Fox News Anchor Joyce Evans found that out the hard way when she tweeted:
Thought “Breaking Bad” was hot last Sunday? @FOX29philly See who’s breakin’ bad in SW Philly leavin’ 6 people SHOT – Tonite at Ten!
— Joyce Evans (@JoyceEvansFox29) October 7, 2013
The tweet landed Evans in hot water with her comparison of the hit television show with a 23-year-old being pronounced dead and six others, wounded. The Daily News reported: Joyce Evans believed her tweet advertised the news story as real life drama opposed to “Breaking Bad’s” fictional story line. To clean up her mess, she tweeted:
Last tweet NOT AST ALL A JOKE. Very real life drama was the point as oppose to one that end on tv. That was my point
— Joyce Evans (@JoyceEvansFox29) October 7, 2013
Twitter followers responded wagging their fingers at Joyce Evans’ desensitized presentation of Southwest Philadelphia’s gun violence.
“I don’t think people missed your point as much as they didn’t agree to how you presented it.”
“Gun crime and potentially fatal circumstances aren’t something you should be jokingly referencing.”
Despite all the criticism she received, Joyce clearly does not feel she was wrong, as her Twitter timeline is full of explanations to people who “missed” her point. We can understand she wanted news viewers to tune in for the report, but trying to align similarities between a scripted show and the very serious issue of gun violence in our communities is not a good look, considering how many people already don’t take this issue seriously. Evans has set a tone that gun violence is as fictional as a television show.
Do you think Joyce Evans’ comparison was wrong?
Rarely a week goes by that we aren’t sharing news of a child being hit by a stray bullet or retelling the details of a gun landing in the hands of the wrong person and the result being unspeakable violence. And far too often those tales come from the city of Chicago.
Everyone knows the who, what, where, and when as it relates to Chicago gun violence, but few have explored the why, which is where a new documentary, “Gunland” comes into the picture. Produced by Moguldom Films, the upcoming documentary:
“peers into the lives of urban youth through a raw and realistic lens. It shows how a community ravaged by gun violence causes kids to be afraid to walk the streets, go to school, and to play.
“‘Gunland’ invites viewers to witness firsthand how these young people cope with the increased violence in their communities and the toll that losing a friend or family member can have on their lives.”
It’s very hard to combat a problem if you don’t understand it’s origin. While it’s easy to throw out “gun control” as a solution to gun violence, we all know that’s just a band-aid on the issue plaguing African American communities in Chicago. This documentary is a first step to begin peeling back the layers of understanding, which is why your support is so necessary.
Check out the trailer for the film below and make sure you head over to their Kickstarter page to donate and make this project a reality.
Headlines about Chicago, Illinois, blare the staggering numbers of young people killed by gun violence. The city’s youth have seen dead bodies on the street and guns falling out of their classmates’ backpacks at school. Children are being shot while playing in the park, or even while seated in the backseat of their parents’ car. Gun violence plagues this mid-western city and murders among black youth aged 15-24 is at an all-time high.
In a new documentary by Moguldom Films, a group of filmmakers goes deep into the youth culture of Chi-town and explores why having a gun — and not ambition — makes you “the man.”
Check out the trailer for the film in the video below and make sure to follow Gunland on social media (Facebook.com/GUNLANDfilm) and stay up on all future documentaries coming from Moguldom Films (Facebook.com/MoguldomFilms, @MoguldomFilms, Instagram.com/MoguldomFilms)
What do you think?
8-year-old Donald Maiden Jr. was playing with friends outside of his Dallas, Texas apartment complex when a bullet struck him in the face around 7:00 pm Tuesday night, CBS Dallas reports. Witnesses say that after being shot, little Donald hit the ground, then jumped up and ran into his apartment.
“He hit the ground when the guy shot him. Then, he got up and ran to the house and asked his mom for water, and his mom saw all the blood coming out,” said DJ’s grandmother, Sharon Locklin.
“His jaw was just hanging off and all of his little friends were crying,” one onlooker told reporters.
“He was talking, but you could barely understand him,” said Justin Yancey, another witness to the shooting.
DJ’s babysitter revealed that when he made his way into the house, his family was hysterical.
“When he ran in, I just screamed. His mouth was just hanging off and it was just a big hole. just threw him on the couch and laid him in my arms and put pressure on his mouth with the towel,” said DJ’s mother, Latamarin Locklin.
His shooter was identified as 46-year-old Brian Cloninger, who has been arrested and charged with injury to a child. His bond has been set at $2.2 million. His motive for shooting little DJ is unclear, but neighbors say that they saw him sitting in his vehicle in the parking lot of the Maiden family’s apartment complex prior to the shooting.
“I just don’t know why this would happen. I’ve never experienced anything like this. I don’t know why someone would just target an innocent child like this.” Locklin told reporters.
DJ remains in a medically induced coma with his jaw wired shut, a sight that his father, Donald Maiden Sr., says that he wasn’t ready for.
“When I first saw him in ICU, I started crying Donald Sr. I just put my head down in his bed and was holding his hand at the same time. And he opened his eyes. And when I raised back up I looked and there were tears rolling down his eyes and it gave me a little bit of spirit in my heart. It was joy, I guess he was kind of happy to know I was there.”
While Dallas police continue to investigate the circumstances surround the shooting, DJ faces a series of surgeries. He is however, expected to be okay.
“Everything’s just too much. I just want him to get better and recover. And law enforcement can deal with everything else,” DJ’s mother said.
We send our prayers to the Locklin and Maiden families.
Watch CBS Dallas’ full report on the next page.
A celebratory weekend has ended in tragedy as two Brooklyn parents mourn the loss of their one-year-old son, Antiq Hennis. Little Antiq was hit by a stray bullet on Sunday evening as he lay nestled in his stroller while on a Brooklyn street with his parents, the New York Daily News reports.
According to police, it is believed that the intended target of the shooting was the child’s father.
“He was screaming ‘My baby got shot.’ He was going crazy. The baby was breathing, but his eyes were closed. It’s crazy. They just will start shooting,” said 22-year-old Gina Gamboa, who encountered the child’s father shortly the shooting occurred.
Antiq was immediately rushed to Brookdale Hospital, where he died around 9:00 PM.
“He just started walking. He was vibrant. He was full of life. I can’t believe it,” the child’s great-uncle, Chris Dobson.
According to witnesses, four shots were fired, but Antiq was the only person hit during the shooting.
“They shot at him and ended up shooting the baby,” Dobson said.
Bishop Willie Billips, Brooklyn pastor and community activist, who accompanied the bereaved parents as they made the official identification of the child’s body, expressed outrage over the senseless murder.
“I’m furious about what I’ve just seen. I’m outraged. A 1-year-old baby lying on the bed? It’s horrible. What do you say? It brought me to tears. To see young parents suffer — for what?,” asked Billips.
So far, no arrests have been made in relation to the shooting, but Brownsville residents told CBS reporters that the community will be rallying together to ensure little Antiq’s killer is brought to justice.
Watching the news nowadays can be so depressing that I might as well pick up a copy of the obituaries. No matter where we turn, there always seems to be death around us – particularly incidents that involve gun violence. According to statistics, homicide rates by firearm in the United States are 19.5 times higher than rates in other high-income countries around the world. That, my friends, is a pretty scary thought.
It’s quite sad and very disturbing to hear news of senseless crimes that claim the lives of innocent people. How many mass shootings can you remember occurring over the past decades, or years for that matter? Just in the last three years alone, there have been a reported 12 that include the December 2012 incident at Sandy Hook Elementary that claimed the lives of 28 people – 20 of which were children. Such craziness has had the public in an uproar calling for stronger restrictions on guns and while I am apart of this number, I can’t help but think about the thousands of other stories happening across the country that make up part of the statistic, but are not getting the same type of attention.
Obviously when an occurrence like Sandy Hook or the Aurora movie theater shootings occurs, they catch us off guard. Your heart weeps for the parents who lost their children and others who won’t get the chance to say goodbye to loved ones. In times of tragedy, I can recall how quickly social media feeds like Facebook and Twitter filled with images of prayers and virtual ribbons to honor the deceased. Simple things like this can give us hope in a time when there is so much uncertainty and anger regarding the situation. But what about a word of encouragement for Shyla Rivera?
Four-year old Shyla was just one of four victims who lost their lives two weeks ago in Chicago due to senseless violence – and those were only random events that occurred within 24 hours. An astounding 33 more people ended up being shot that weekend bringing the total to 37 persons affected by gun violence. Does anyone else think this is crazy? And Chicago is not even considered the most dangerous city in America.
While I believe the discussion for gun control is much needed (especially in today’s society), I get so frustrated when its focus becomes solely centered around victims of mass shootings. Please don’t get me wrong, I have a heart and it aches thinking about the loss of life. But I also think about areas like Detroit, Chicago, Camden and my hometown of Baltimore, to name a few, that deal with the reality of gun violence on a daily basis. Each year, our communities lose thousands upon thousands of lives – with many victims literally caught in the crossfire. Do our innocent not count as well?
“Well it’s different” is what I tend to hear from some people when this topic comes up. Does society really overlook our death count to gun violence if it occurs in an area where it’s “expected?” Does that make it justified to skip over?
I honestly don’t expect for every incident of gun violence to get reported on mainstream news because it, unfortunately, happens way too often. And let’s face it, minorities being gunned down doesn’t sound like an eye-catching news hook compared to the random incidents of these mass shootings, as it would appear a good portion of society almost expects us to kill each other. But the harsh reality is this: the frequent incidents of gun violence in minority communities add up – whether reported or unknown. Even if victims don’t get the same attention as others, they still should be remembered or at least considered when the topic of gun control comes up.Even if our victims are not as news worthy or shocking to the system as others, they definitely still count in stats – and the numbers don’t lie.
Chicago Bishop Tavis Grant explains what a casket represents to youth cut down by gun violence in this clip from an upcoming documentary by Moguldom Films.
Watch the clip below and tell us what you think about the gun violence epidemic plaguing the city of Chicago.
While many magazines are dedicating their epic summer issues to all things fashion, EBONY has decided to do a noble thing and step out of the box by dedicating their issue to Trayvon Martin. They’re doing this by featuring famous fathers and sons on three different covers in hoodies, including Dwyane Wade and his sons Zaire and Zion, Spike Lee and his son Jackson, and Boris Kodjoe with his son Nicolas. They also have a special fourth cover for subscribers with Sybrina Fulton, Tracy Martin, and Sybrina’s son Jahvaris Fulton. The covers tie in to the overall theme, and the stories in the new issue will include everything from an interview with Tracy Martin, a profile of the Dream Defenders, information to help you understand “Trayvon’s Law,” which the Dream Defenders are fighting to get passed, a reflection from 17-year-old men on how they feel to be black in America, a poem for Travyon by Jill Scott, and a whole lot more. Here’s a statement Editor-in-Chief Amy Barnett put out regarding their new issue:
“As a mother of a young Black boy, the tragedy of Travyon Martin affected me deeply. We simply cannot allow the conversations on this issue to come to a standstill. As the leading source for an authoritative perspective on the African-American community, at EBONY we are committed to serving as a hub for Black America to explore solutions, and to giving readers the information and tools they need to help ensure a bright future for all of our children.”
Kudos to EBONY for taking a stand and creating a serious conversation on everything from “Stand Your Ground” laws to the topic of gun violence and more with their September issue. We’ll definitely have to pick this one up and support, and it drops today! Check out the other cover images on the next page and let us know what you think.