Gun violence: tragedies built on mountain of complexity

Another massacre has stabbed the nation in its heart. The wound is deep.

El Paso, Texas, has fallen victim to the insanity of gun violence. Twenty people are dead; 26 are injured. A 21-year-old Allen, Texas, resident is under arrest and will face charges of capital murder.

What motivated the shooter to do what he did?

Police have found a screed written by someone. It is fervently anti-immigrant. Its contents border on a form of white supremacy. Police are saying that if it’s proven the young man in custody wrote the screed he will be charged with a hate crime.

We now are entering the world of “domestic terrorism,” which is what this tragedy is sounding like.

Don’t you remember when these crimes provoked debate about accessing guns, about the proliferation of firearms, about how Congress and the president fail continually to enact laws that keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have them?

Those issues remain on the table. Now they are joined by the issue of hate, of angry political rhetoric that some suggest spurs these hateful actions. They join the threat of international terrorism, which occasionally becomes the focus of these crimes when they’re committed by those angered by foreign policy decisions related to our nation’s ongoing war against terrorists.

It is boggling my mind. However, the El Paso massacre is looking more and more like an act of domestic terror.

My hope at this very moment is that the Texas Rangers, the FBI, El Paso County and municipal police investigators can get answers for us in short order so we can sort out the motive.

If it is as many of us suspect, then we need to launch a full-out, frontal attack on those who would terrorize fellow Americans in such a heinous manner.

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