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USA | Mar 30, 2023

Audrey Hale… yet another killing spree in America reveals deep-seated problems

Al Edwards

Al Edwards / Our Today

Reading Time: 4 minutes
A still image from surveillance video shows what the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department describe as mass shooting suspect Audrey Elizabeth Hale, 28, entering The Covenant School carrying weapons in Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. March 27, 2023. (File Photo: Metropolitan Nashville Police Department/Handout via REUTERS)

This past Monday (March 26) saw yet another shooting leading to death at school in the United States (US).

The President came on TV, gave a speech and looked very sombre.

Then it was a return to life as usual until the next mass shooting by an emotionally disturbed person, draws the ire of people.


America is the pre-eminent country in the world. The first to put a man on the moon, invent the internet, pioneer driver-less cars, the home of the free and brave.

Yet, it cannot come up with a prescription for the darkness in its soul that leads to maladjusted people purchasing guns and going into public places and shooting people.

It is said that Second Amendment rights must be preserved and that all Americans have the right to bear arms. But at what cost?

Audrey Elizabeth Hale, 28, who is the suspect of deadly mass shooting at the Covenant School in Nashville, is seen in an undated handout image released on March 27, 2023. (File Photo: Metropolitan Nashville Police Department/Handout via REUTERS)

The fight for independence has been over centuries ago and America is no longer a militia state. It now has the most impressive military the world has even seen and there is no call for citizens reaching for guns in their closets t take on enemies of the state.

The real enemy today is the mental and emotional break-down of primarily young Americans who feel they can no longer cope. This is a real emergency that America must confront, not the banning of TikTok.

The case of Audrey Hale and the killing of six people at the Covenant School in Nashville is a case of history repeating itself.


A carefully planned attack by a shy introvert who is transgender, self-identifying as “he”. Like all the others before her, she showed no remorse, had no pity. It is said that she suffered from an emotional disorder.

This is symptomatic of a malaise that lies deep within the American psyche and remains unaddressed.

This is at least the 18th school shooting in America this year and we are only in March. Why isn’t anything being done to stop these senseless killings? Everyone sends their thoughts and prayers and then forgets. Politicians say there is nothing that can be done. Has America come to this?

Students from the Covenant School hold hands after getting off a bus to meet their parents at the reunification site following a mass shooting at the school in Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. March 27, 2023. (File Photo: Mark Zaleski/USA Today Network via REUTERS)

We in the English-speaking Caribbean – Jamaica in particular – more often than not take our cue from North America. These kinds of killings have not yet become a part of Caribbean life but if not monitored these heinous shootings could begin becoming a regular feature.

The ubiquitous nature of social media which now means anyone can say whatever they want unfiltered makes the prospect of contending with this phenomenon all the more likely. It is the medium favoured by these “dark” souls.

The 28 year-old Audrey Hale was allowed to buy high-powered assault guns like she was purchasing  a cartoon of milk or a packet of Skittles. No one thought to enquire what was the purpose of buying these weapons. And that is the root of the problem. A notion is put ahead of the safety of citizens.


According to Gun Violence Archive, mass shootings in the U.S. are on the rise with 647 people killed last year and 131 so far this year. Last year gun-related deaths came to 44,290, a 31 per cent increase on the prior year.

So why are these killings on the increase?

Some of us in the Caribbean move to the US in search of a better life, greater prospects, the American dream.

But what is happening today sees many people in America being overwhelmed by financial, family, relationship and work problems. Some now blame “toxic masculinity”  for these shootings. People are literally going “off their heads” and out of control.


It must be terrifying to send your children to school knowing they could be a victim of a killing spree by a deranged shooter. Can a society really prosper with this kind of calamity happening on a regular basis?

This darkness is not at the edge of town, it’s infiltrating and taking over the town. It is a grim reality. An unchecked barbarian, a peculiar American wickedness and evil.

US President Joe Biden was absolutely right when he said: “We have to do more to stop gun violence. It’s ripping our communities apart, ripping at the very soul of the nation. So I call on Congress, again, to pass my assault weapon ban. It’s about time that we began to make some more progress.”

Let’s hope his words don’t yet again go unheeded.


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