Violence in the Bay: "What the hell is wrong with us?”

photo VD: Milagro Orellana.

By Alberto Barrera

U.S – A recent mass shooting that charged 10 lifes, including the attacker's, reflects daily violence in cities in the San Francisco Bay Area and has raised concern among residents, especially the authorities and the Governor of California, Gavin Newsom, although the epidemic is suffered by the whole country.

Saint Joseph, california city – On Wednesday 26 May Samuel Cassidy, a white man from 57 years, arrived early at his job and at 6:30 in the morning he activated his weapons in two buildings of the train terminal (VTA for its acronym in English) from the same city, killing eight of his companions and left at least two wounded, one died later and he committed suicide. They found him dead on a chair, I had three guns and 32 chargers.

There was no explanation for the worst-ever carnage in the history of mass crimes in the beautiful and touristic San Francisco Bay area.. It was later learned by relatives and his ex-wife that Cassidy had a violent history and was not comfortable at her job.. The criminal act brought pain and mourning among the families of the victims and concern among residents in that and other sectors of the area..

Violence in neighborhoods and cities of the Golden State has increased, generating unrest among the inhabitants of the area, who suspiciously view the arms race among the citizens of Northern California.

But this is not the first case. Almost ago 28 years, the 2 July 1993, the corpulent Gian Luigi Ferri of 55 years - a failed stockbroker-, walked into a skyscraper in San Francisco, the guards did not suspect, and calmly went to the floor 34 where he wielded two pistols and with a briefcase full of ammunition he entered the Pettit Law Office & Martin where he attacked four people he did not know. “Possibly enraged by a complaint from 10 years with the law firm, Ferri then razed three floors of the sleek downtown skyscraper during 15 minutes, shooting lawyers, secretaries and a client without saying a word. Feeling trapped by the police on a closed staircase, he finally crowned his mission of revenge by firing a bullet in his own head ", published the following day the Los Angeles Times.

Minutes before committing the mass crime in San José the last week of May, Cassidy set her house on fire and when the police searched her they found a dozen pistols, rifles, several Molotov cocktails and some 25,000 reply. Also in the surroundings of the railway terminal buildings they found at least one explosive device.

The free use of weapons with facilities to buy them is a constant in most states.

California Governor, Gavin Newsom, he wondered in dismay at the massacre in San José and the increasing violence in the United States: "What the hell is wrong with us? When are we going to stop this problem?”.
And he added forcefully “When are we going to put down our weapons?, both in the literal and figurative sense?”, Alluding to the existence of a tenure control law, carrying and use of weapons, so that it is not too permissive.

Governor of California, Gavin Newsom. photo VD: Courtesy.

In several cities of the Bay, violent incidents have increased in the 2021. The chief of the Oakland police - one of the most affected by the rough wave -, LeRonne Armstrong, told the Hispanic channel Telemundo that they have a low budget and there is a shortage of officers in the corporation.
Gun violence peaked in the city, because the homicide rate increased by 100% compared to last year, registering 52 homicides so far this year, said the television report.

In mid-April local media reported that a protest that began peacefully in Oakland ended in violence with fires., several damaged cars and numerous broken windows. At the march the names of Daunte Wright - a young man from 20 years he was shot dead by a cop in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota— and Adam Toledo, a hispanic child of 13 years shot by a white cop in Chicago.

photo VD: Milagro Orellana.

The 12 May CBS SF reported that Oakland police were investigating a shooting in which a man died of a gunshot wound. Gun violence continued that weekend with two homicides and nearly a dozen shootings in 36 hours.
The site www.oaklandside.org reported that in the 2020 there was 102 murders of which 84 were committed with firearms. It was the most violent year in Oakland since 2012 when they registered 127 crimes, most from gunshot wounds.

The information said that “the toll of gun violence has been felt primarily by Oakland's black communities.. Fifty-four black Oaklanders lost their lives last year from a gunshot wound. ". He added that the average age of shooting victims was 31 years.

The media has reported violent incidents in other Bay Area cities, although many residents seem unaware. In normal days and in which a few years ago little or nothing happened, today it is common to find out that there was a shooting in a shopping center, one killed when confronting the police, racist attacks against Asians and for which communities have organized in their defense or also domestic violence.

An armed country
After the increase in bloody events in various parts of the country, like the death of 10 people in march in a supermarket in Boulder, Colorado; A few days earlier, another eight died in a massage parlor in the state of Giorgia or the armed attack by three men on a group of people who were participating in a private concert in a Florida shopping center, which caused three deaths and at least six injuries in the state. Alarms have gone off, because private registries assure that so far this year there have been more than 240 shootings, a hundred more than last year in the same period.

President Joe Biden, urged Congress to make decisions and pass stricter gun control laws. Weapons are freely sold and some 30 States are more permissive in the commercialization of arms, which is considered a right of defense of the population.

A few days ago a federal judge revoked the ban on assault weapons, that has been in force in California for a few 30 years, arguing that it is a "failed experiment" that violates the right granted by the constitution to citizens to bear arms. These types of weapons are dangerous and are used disproportionately in mass shootings or against security forces..

Governor Newsom said that decision is "a direct threat to public safety and the lives of innocent Californians.".
According to newspaper reports in August 2019, and that they cite “The Small Arms Survey” -a study prepared by the Institute for Higher International Studies of the University of Geneva, Switzerland- in the United States the number of guns per 100 people amounts to 120 and compare them to those of the European Union (EU), where the 15 weapons for every hundred inhabitants.

Unable to find up-to-date official statistics on how many people die - or commit suicide- to bullets in this country, but the newspaper El Mundo de España published in October 2015 that conservative groups that are in favor of the right to have and bear arms, they calculated 32 a thousand deaths a year of which some 20 a thousand were suicides, 600 were considered accidents and a little more than 11 thousand murders.

photo VD: Milagro Orellana,

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