It would make sense to claim that, in the United States’ increasingly polarized society, political polarization is the root cause for the obvious increase in domestic terrorism. Is that any shock to you?
The headlines circulating in the mainstream media about the Parkland shooting, the Florida pipe bombs, the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting, and the Thousand Oaks shooting are just a few that plague the security and way of life of millions of Americans. It is essential to analyze a deadly epidemic threatening the way that we co-inhabit in our society.
It may seem like such incidents are just beginning to take center stage, but such events have been on the rise for a while. Grim stories of the Thousand Oaks shooting at the Borderline Bar & Grill in California, where a former marine killed 12 people, act as reminders of the Orlando shooting at the Pulse nightclub, where a gunman killed 49 people in 2016. Furthermore, survivors from the Las Vegas shooting in 2017 were in the bar at Thousand Oaks, reliving yet another mass shooting. In other words, we are living in an age where people are surviving multiple mass shootings as if they are the new norm.
On an international comparison of gun related killings, the United States surpasses other first world countries, as well as being number one in gun owning countries. As of November 12, according to Gun Violence Archive, a total of 308 mass shooting incidents have occurred in the United States.
As the NRA steadily buys out more politicians to promote their agenda, it has befallen the current administration to either soothe or ignite the flow of domestic terrorism.
Contrary to popular belief, the face of domestic terrorism doesn’t look like the stories coming from our international counterparts, like the Paris massacre that took place in 2015. The face of domestic terrorism takes the form of loyal patriarchy hooded by the confederate flag with a mission to preserve a “purer” way of American life. This illness stems from a Eurocentric point of view mixed with the perfect amount of white supremacy and intolerance, to make the perfect cocktail of racism. The perpetrators of this assault against society have beliefs rooted in fascist concepts, and mask themselves with supposed civility through radical alt-right groups. However, there is nothing civil about the abhorrent hate speech they write about and encourage in their internet safe havens.
Ultimately, the lack of permanent condemnation from the Donald J. Trump administration serves as a justification to their behavior. In an age where investigations and aligning oneself to their responsibility to serve the country, not just one specific administration, are labeled witch hunts at the expense of integrity, this reflects the immoral disposition of the current administration.
It is imperative that we keep our officials accountable on their tolerance and message of hate.