The Georgia WAND family sends our heartfelt condolences and support to the people of First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, TX, where a gunman killed 25 people and a developing fetus.
As mass shootings increase, and white shooters are yet to be held accountable for terrorism, we must come to understand the the intersection of gun violence, sexism, women’s internalized misogyny, systemic racism, state violence, Islamaphobia, corporate power, and war.
We must create public policy to fund programs that educate people on a hyper-local level regarding how to respond to violence and the intersections that cause it. We must heal communities affected by violence. We must educate and humanize perpetrators of violence. We must regulate and watchdog gun use and ownership and other forms of violence on the federal level. We must practice breaking down white supremist/ imperialist/ chauvinist/ heterosexist/ Islamaphobic structures and build in their place values of peace, connection, vulnerability, shared outcomes, community, and justice. We must start in our own lives, starting with our habits and diurnal mores, and understand horrific things we don’t even think about but accept.
Changing society is local. Our communities need healing. We must stop feeding our collective demons. As women, gender non conforming people, and our allies, we must work to heal ourselves and the whole. We must continue showing up; we must create collective solutions that are innovative not punitive. We must look beyond the “enemy” paradigm and see one another in our shared humanity. We must push every envelope within reach and then move forward to reach for more, to create justice, equity, peace, and healing in our society. We must build solidarity all around us; and we must fight for liberation.