Is gun violence is really about Race?

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Anton Chekhov, the great Russian author and scenario-writer said: “ If in the first act  you have hung a gun on the wall, then in the following act it should be fired” It means that if one has a gun, he will use it for sure one day.

But let me begin with introducing  a few cases:

  1. In December 2013 police shot and killed a student at the Catholic University of San Antonio (Texas). An officer stopped 23-year-old Robert Reedus for speeding and careless driving. After being stopped, the men began to argue, then to fight and the police officer shot Reedus several times. The student died from his injuries on the spot.

  1. A sheriff’s deputy of Santa Rosa mistakenly thought he saw a teen carrying an assault rifle on a California street this week and shot him dead, authorities said.   It was discovered that the police took up arms against the teen when he was only carrying a plastic replica of a Kalashnikov.

Case 3.The 26-year-old  Kazakhstan citizen Kirill Denyakin was reportedly shot several times by a US police officer on April 23 for banging on the door at the scene of an alleged house burglary in Portsmouth. Crime experts say the suspected American officer, who mistakenly took Denyakin for a thief, made eleven shots at the tragic scene. Following the shooting, the Kazakh Embassy issued a diplomatic note to the US State Department, “expressing Kazakhstan’s serious concern with the incident and a demand of a comprehensive and transparent investigation,”.

Case 4: Finally, the murder of 18-year-old Michael Brown in the American city of Ferguson, Missouri, sparking protests from local residents.

Of course, I have not had the opportunity to view the facts in the last 30-50  years. But in my humble opinion, these case have nothing to do with the race issue. That is, the problem is not skin color, profession, nationality, ethnicity. The problem is that some police exceed their authority. And when there is a question – to shoot or not, many of them choose – shoot. In these 4 cases American citizens of all races, and a citizen of Kazakhstan were shot not because they were from  Kazakhstan or America, but because the officers did not control of their behavior  that is extremely dangerous for the whole society as according to the law they may carry and use firearm.

5 Comments on “Is gun violence is really about Race?”

    1. Armen, this is the phrase from the letter of Chekhov to the writer Alexander Lazarev-Georgia, 1889.

  1. OK, I have read that this phrase was born from their correspondence when Chekhov was in Yalta and Stanislavski was in Moscow some time in 1988 while they were discussing the performance of Nemirovich Danchenko (“Chayki”). And this was found in the letters of Stanislavski with the original like: “If you have a rifle, hanging on the wall in the first act, it should fire in the last act”. Maybe he was repeating Chekhov – I could expect it from Stanislavski.

  2. Sholpan,

    You raised thoughtful issues and cases about indiscriminate shooting by police officers in America, which is extremely dangerous not only for black but for all of the country. I think the major question is, who regulates police actions to ensure they are fair to all?

  3. The quote you used in this blog was very powerful. It’s sad to think about but it is true, the majority of the time a weapon is being fired by police or a private citizen it is done so because someone or something is mistaken to be a threat. Do you believe guns should be banned then? Or how would you recommend we fix the problem?

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