Sunday, May 15, 2022


It’s Sunday. Let’s go to church.

Pearly Young, 77, was killed today in #Buffalo shopping for groceries. 

For 25 years she ran a pantry where every Saturday she fed people in Central Park. Every. Saturday. 

She loved singing, dancing, & being with family. 

She was mother, grandma, & missionary. Gone too soon.

This memorial comes from a tweet by Madison Carter, a journalist who is originally from Buffalo but now works in Atlanta. She was headed back to Buffalo to assist with local coverage of the horrific event that unfolded yesterday at a Buffalo grocery store. 

Buffalo's worst mass shooting takes 10 lives, leaves 3 wounded; attack called 'a racially motivated hate crime' , Lou Michel, Ben Tsujimoto, Maki Becker for The Buffalo News

Of the 13 people shot, 11 were Black and two were white, Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said. Most of the victims' identities weren't released as of late Saturday night. However, sources told The News that one of the dead was Aaron Salter, a recently retired Buffalo police officer working as a security guard at the store, while another is Ruth Whitfield, the mother of former Buffalo Fire Commissioner Garnell Whitfield.

The shooter was allegedly radicalized by online materials easily available to anyone. It appears it wasn’t all that difficult to assemble military gear and weapons, either. With white supremacist hate speech churning through his head, he drove to a shopping area in a predominantly Black neighborhood.

Officials say a gunman’s attack that killed ten was a racially motivated hate crime Emma Bowman, Bobby Allyn for NPR

A racist screed posted online detailed the plan of attack.

The 180-page document is full of racist rants and appears to embrace "the great replacement" white supremacist conspiracy theory that claims that an elite cabal of Jews, corporate leaders and politicians are intentionally diluting the white population through permissive immigration and by promoting diversity.

What’s that? I said we were going to church?

Indeed. Yesterday’s news is the gospel of American white supremacy and unfettered gun access. And here comes the sermon.

All of this matters in Howard County, Maryland. I see white people on social media claiming such events have nothing to do with us here. But the same ingredients that poisoned and activated yesterday’s shooter are just as available here.

Students give testimony documenting racism in our schools.

You ignore it.

Advocates present factual evidence that school policing disproportionately harms Black and Brown students.

You deny it.

Members of the Howard County community speak out and work for diversity, equity, and inclusion.

You call it “race-baiting.”

When you refuse to face the truth of systemic racism in our community, you are providing cover for it. “It isn’t really happening,” is really, “Don’t look over there.”

Don’t read the books. Don’t have the conversations. Don’t listen to people who are different than you are. Don’t respect teachers and advocates and community leaders who make the case for facing the truth.

Deny them. Censure them. Silence them.

But in the dark corners of the internet and in this community the hate keeps drip, drip, dripping like poison , while you say, “Don't look.”

Open your eyes, my brothers and sisters. 


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