This disturbed man killed 49 people with a Sig Sauer automatic pistol shooting 30 rounds a minute and so many people got everything so wrong about him and what happened. Toxic masculinity, shame, unworthiness, revenge, trained to kill and operate lethal weapons, placed on a watch list and questioned twice by the FBI and passed over. The man was trained by a global security outfit called G4S, he wanted to be a cop and hung out with NYPD officers, his father was connected to the CIA via Afghanistan. He drank and did drugs at the club Pulse and had sex with men from the club. He is clearly not an Isis/Daesh fighter, but a disturbed individual who decided to kill a club full of defenseless people over his own issues and tacked on the ISIS/Daesh tag at the end.
Congress in response offered up the typical, Democrats offering a bill that Republicans said was too restrictive while the Republican bill was weak and ineffective. Somewhat atypical was a large group of Democrats staging a sit-in to denounce the never-ending non-activity and non-job-doing of taxpayer paid Congressional representatives. It was theatre since no work was done or bills passed. Perhaps these Democrats could’ve actually put up a fight and done something more. ANYTHING more. But the country is paralyzed by the death grip of the NRA on the private parts of its so-called elected leaders.
This killer had sex with other men and really in all cultures, people do have sex with each other, all the time, but apparently the problems are with the relationship stuff, the open behavior and affection and all that good stuff of a relationship and not the hidden, macho manly or predatory kind. In Afghanistan, American soldiers had to stand by and do nothing while Afghan warlords had young boy toys in their employ as sex hostages. The Orlando killer was trained and employed by the British global security firm G4S. That’s how this killer found employment at a U.S. sensitive facilities, not as an Isis/Daesh sleeper agent.
So now that the sex thing is set aside, and the terrorist thing is proven false, it’s really the guns isn’t it? This man beat his wife, was strict, jealous and authoritarian and used his manlihood as a rationale, disguise and weapon. His wife’s family came to rescue her and that’s when he became alone in his own toxic masculinity that imploded. So what do you do but go get guns you have clearance to have, even though you had been targeted by the FBI and had a restraining order against you. It’s the guns, stupid. Always the guns and according to the Republicans and NRA, even potential terrorists, even members of these dreaded sleeper cells can go out and purchase a Sig Sauer or an AR-15, because it’s their constitutional right to shoot 30 rounds a minute in a room full of defenseless people. Perhaps the Republicans and the NRA know that the term “potential terrorists”, in this country of ‘America’, includes Christian and White Supremacist groups. We always need to consider that racist white supremacist vote after all.
One “good” response has been Native, black, brown and Labor speakers and writers recounting American Episodes in History from Wounded Knee and 200 Lakota killed to Opelousas, Louisiana where 300 black sharecroppers were shot dead for attempting to vote. White folks, whatever your definition of white is, had the guns and used them against others, Natives, Mexicans, Black sharecroppers, Black protesters, college protesters, unionized workers, and now gays and LGBT. It is guns used by those with power against those who are perceived as enemies of the state and enemies of approved culture, meaning money, power and status quo Jim Crow. This killer lost what little power he had and lashed out against the defenseless, as he had his whole miserable, disturbed life. His answer was guns and more guns.
Alex Jacobs, Mohawk, is a visual artist and poet living in Santa Fe.