Louisville sent a message to U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell tonight. This was mine:
Shooters sometimes have manifestos. The white nationalist and racist ones almost always do.
Well, I have one.
I believe the blood on the tile floors of elementary schools,
The blood on the parking lots of malls,
The blood on the sticky floor of a movie theater,
The blood on the sidewalks and in the stores and in the concert halls
Is more than just the blood of children, students, mothers, sisters, fathers and brothers
It’s a stain marking our own failure and shame.
I believe the red in the American flag, which has stood for the sacrifice of American heroes
Now represents that blood, of children and the innocent, on the cold floors of schools and theaters.
I believe the white in our flag now represents the surrender of our elected leaders
And the truce they reached with the NRA and FOX and others who pay them to ignore this blood.
As a lawyer, I believe, and I know our Constitution doesn’t require us to endure this slaughter.
I believe those who have surrendered and sold the lives of the innocent dead for money in their campaign chests
Are known, and those names should be said aloud. Chief among them is Mitch McConnell. And Matt Bevin, who said in 2016 that the streets would run with blood if Donald Trump lost and who has actually made it easier to carry a weapon of war. Say their names.
I believe a man who would fill his pockets with NRA cash should be expected to protect his financiers, not his constituents.
I believe a man who built his career lying about those who tell the truth about guns won’t be convinced, he can only be defeated.
I believe nothing will change as long as that same man supports and defends a racist, treasonous, dangerous president who preaches hate and violence. I believe the shooters when they tell me that’s why they shot.
But, I believe we will win. Not mere political victories, although win those we must. I believe the pen is mightier than the sword and is mightier even than the assault weapon. I believe your voice, today and tomorrow and the day after and the day after that, is mightier, too.
I believe the time has long passed when we should expect men and women, who have showed us who they are — that they are loyal to hate, loyal to greed, loyal only to their own power — to stop the bloodshed. I believe their time is passing.
I believe, sadly, there will be more blood before their time has finally passed. I believe it’s our job — to save the lives of those who will be next, tonight, tomorrow, next week — to replace the representatives who represent death itself with those who will save lives.
I believe this is what Louisville wants. I believe this is what Kentucky wants. I believe this is what America wants. And I believe it’s time. •
Marc Murphy is a Louisville trial attorney, the editorial cartoonist for the Courier Journal and a contributor to LEO.