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Strasser reports: "Television stations didn't cut away to report on the horrific event. In fact, it's likely this is the first you're hearing about it."

The shooting took place at Al's Place Barber Shop in Detroit. (photo: AP)
The shooting took place at Al's Place Barber Shop in Detroit. (photo: AP)

The Mass Shooting You Heard Nothing About

By Annie-Rose Strasser, ThinkProgress

10 November 13


n Thursday, a man reportedly dressed in body armor ran into a crowded room and opened fire with a high-powered assault-style rifle, killing three and injuring six. But television stations didn't cut away to report on the horrific event. In fact, it's likely this is the first you're hearing about it.

What makes this shooting different? Several things. First, it happened in Detroit, a city with a staggeringly high murder rate. Second, the reported gunman had a criminal history, and may have had a longstanding feud with some of the victims. And, third, it happened in a space where many people can't imagine themselves: a gambling session in the back room of a barber shop.

But the quotes coming out of the shooting at Al's Place Barber Shop are as heartbreaking as those you'd hear anywhere.

"Police wear body armor. Why would a community member be driving around in body armor?" asked Detroit Police Chief James Craig in a press conference following the shooting. Craig called the violence "urban terrorism."

"I'm angry that it happened. I'm angry that people are dead," Arnold Redmond, one of those injured in shooting, told the Detroit Free Press. Redmond also insisted that the shooting had nothing to do with "the barbershop or any of the people associated with it."

Sadly, the relative media ignorance of the shooting tracks with a common theme: Gun crimes often occur in low-income neighborhoods with largely non-white victims, but, from the news, you'd think every shooting put the white and affluent at risk of violence. There's an obvious reason from a producer's perspective: They want traffic, or viewers, and think they can get more if more well-off news consumers are self-concerned with the story. But it doesn't reflect the reality of gun violence in the United States, where black people are far more likely to be victims of gun homicides compared to their white counterparts.

The three victims have been identified as Joezell Williams, 61, Bryan Williams, 29, and Kevin Perryman, 40. Police say each one was shot at least twice. your social media marketing partner


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We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

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+17 # LGNTexas 2013-11-10 23:21
Over 20 high school students were mowed down by gunfire with two kids left dead at a Houston suburban birthday party this weekend. The party was advertised on social media and at least 100 kids showed up.
+18 # janie1893 2013-11-11 01:30
I weep for Detroit!
-98 # Penn 2013-11-11 05:44
Quoting LGNTexas:
Over 20 high school students were mowed down by gunfire with two kids left dead at a Houston suburban birthday party this weekend. The party was advertised on social media and at least 100 kids showed up.

Detroit has died thanks to 50 years of Democrats stealing and anusing the taxpayers. It is the prelude to the Federal Government if Obama and Reid get their way.
+54 # ericlipps 2013-11-11 07:09
Quoting Penn:
Quoting LGNTexas:
Over 20 high school students were mowed down by gunfire with two kids left dead at a Houston suburban birthday party this weekend. The party was advertised on social media and at least 100 kids showed up.

Detroit has died thanks to 50 years of Democrats stealing and anusing the taxpayers. It is the prelude to the Federal Government if Obama and Reid get their way.

Detroit has died due to 50 years of ignoring reality in its own chief industry, and being aided and abetted by Republicans who kept assuring its executives they could go on producing gas guzzlers because the U.S. military would keep those uppity Ay-rabs in line and make sure the oil kept flowing.
+43 # rockieball 2013-11-11 08:22
Quite true. During the Carter administration Auto CEO's went in front of committee hearings and said they had the technology already to have a car get 100 MPG on the market by 1990. The dinosaur gas guzzling cars were a thing of the past. But along comes the Republicans best friend ever and Americas worst President ever and next thing you know those regulations were rolled back and we got the second generation of dinosaur vehicles. The SUV, the 4 wheel van and they got even less MPG's than the big old dinosaur cars. At the same time thanks to rugged Ronald CEO's were shipping the jobs to Mexico, then China and Korea. We were getting less safe cars, almost weekly a factory recall about a defective part made in another country causing the car to crash.
+6 # bingers 2013-11-13 00:32
Close, but Dubya was even worse than Reagan.
+4 # NAVYVET 2013-11-13 11:16
No, Reagan was the worst--the dumbest, manipulated by the slickest crook advisors with the most destructive policies since the Confederacy. I was raised in a family that despised Reagan. My dad, who was a JayCees officer when a young man, had many run-ins with young Ronnie in Des Moines. All Ron did was broadcast minor league baseball games as the hireling of a radio station, yet he was building a resume and tried to force himself into the JayCees. He wasn't eligible. At least in the 30s, members had to be in business ownership or management. Dad owned and managed a small appliance store until it folded in the Depression. All my childhood I heard how much Dad and Mom LOATHED Reagan, telling me he was pushy, loud, sneaky, kept attending Jaycee meetings although not invited, and was still doing so when my parents moved to Moline, IL. He seemed to have no friends. Strangely, he introduced a forgettable young woman as his "wife"--not Nancy, long before Jane Wyman--and Dad and Mom forgot about her until Ron ran for Guv of Cal. Either Ronnie was "living in sin" (tsk, tsk, to that generation) or he had a secret first wife. BIOGRAPHERS: follow up on that; might be good tidbit for a new book on Ronald McDonald, the Clown Prince who Destroyed America.
+1 # davehaze 2013-11-13 19:27
Thanks Navy Vet for a good story. I saved it to pass around to friends.

Reagan was a stingy low-life, a loveless manipulator who caused untold damage to this country and the world. When I hear people praise him I just shake my head. You can't fool all the people all the time but you can bamboozle enough of them to become President.

Hey, I used to say Nixon was the worst president, until Reagan, but when 12-year-old-bra in Bushie stole the Presidency and started two wars and crashed the economy I thought he was the worst, now the more I hear about Truman I think he might be it, but then what about the rapist Bill Clinton? and the "talk lefty but do right-wing" Obama is very much a contender.

Oh, there are just two many choices for in-our-lifetime worst!

(if anyone objects to my characterizatio n of Bill as a rapist read Christopher Hitchens book No One Left To Lie To)

(and as for Obama in contention for the worst president just realize he could have been the best president of all if he only did what he said he would do when he ran for the nomination)
-38 # MidwesTom 2013-11-11 08:16
Two weeks ago on Friday, Obama announced a $340 million dollar aid package for Detroit.

So you and I are continuing to support the culture of Detroit, which has been on a downward slop for 50 years. Only difference now is you can hear the Muslim call to prayers in much of the city, funded by the Saudi's, and the average family size (that is a miss mistake), the average Muslim female has 8 children, according to the Michigan welfare office. Arn't government benefits wonderful!

The census bureau reported last week that for the first time those receiving Economic Disadvantaged benefits now out number those working full time in this country. Therefore expect any Politician promising MORE BENEFITS to be elected from here on.
+15 # pbbrodie 2013-11-11 12:52
You are such a blatant racist.
+17 # Glen 2013-11-11 15:40
MidwestTom and Brux are either the devil's advocates or the most serious victims of U.S. propaganda ever witnessed on any forum.

They don't even consider alternatives to their views.
+18 # Granny Weatherwax 2013-11-11 19:00
I think these trolls are probably on the payroll of one of those Koch brothers-funded think tanks to peddle their insanity and seed doubt.
Thinking otherwise would be insulting to their mental health.
+3 # NAVYVET 2013-11-13 11:19
I agree with you, Granny. (Since I do, I guess that means my name isn't Nanny Ogg.)
+6 # Mrcead 2013-11-12 18:03
Save it. If people didn't abandon Detroit over race issues, the properties there would have appraised like they should've and the city would not be overrun with poor people who apparently make you sick to your stomach. See what happens when people choose to not care? They end up supporting the situation with their money ANYWAY, however with diminished returns.

China doesn't seem to have a problem buying up Detroit for pennies on the dollar. I am sure the Chinese are eternally grateful to people like you who make takeovers that much more easier.
-5 # skylinefirepest 2013-11-12 23:58
Far as I'm concerned China can have Detroit...only stipulation I would put on it is they would have to take it to China!!
+3 # Mrcead 2013-11-13 03:12
Well in this universe that is not going to happen and the Chinese will now have a massive snakehead in Detroit and they do not do things the American way (build and abandon) - why would they? They make more money the Chinese way(buy and repurpose). Better start learning Mandarin.
+35 # kyzipster 2013-11-11 08:38
You can blame Democrats only to the extent they have embraced "free trade" and every other conservative, pro-corporate, anti-labor stance.
-64 # Penn 2013-11-11 05:42
Criminals robbing and killing criminals is not news, no matter how much you attempt to re-write as a racial issue. Move along, nothing to see here.
+39 # ericlipps 2013-11-11 07:04
Quoting Penn:
Criminals robbing and killing criminals is not news, no matter how much you attempt to re-write as a racial issue. Move along, nothing to see here.

So people in a "gambling session" are criminals who deserve to be gunned down?
-29 # MidwesTom 2013-11-11 08:23
We see the same thing in the news out of Chicago, the gangs kill 2 to 4 a day, and sometimes the news broadcast don't even report their names.

Remember that this country is 3rd in killings per citizen in the world, however, if you remove the statistics from Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia, and WashingDC, we drop to forth from the bottom of the list.

Billions of dollars have not solved the problems.
+17 # pbbrodie 2013-11-11 12:54
Oh great, more of your unsubstantiated apocryphal data. Where are the links to your sources of this completely made up BS that you are so notorious for posting here? None, as usual.
+24 # kyzipster 2013-11-11 08:41
The victims are African American, therefore they're criminals? You could at least try to see how blatantly racist you are.
+3 # NAVYVET 2013-11-13 11:21
You need to read Michelle Alexander's THE NEW JIM CROW. Might enlighten even YOU.
+30 # Sweet Pea 2013-11-11 07:55
Lack of decent-paying jobs creates poverty. Industry in this country has been replaced by imports from countries with very low wages. Third-world laborers gained a little-the wealthy investors gained a lot-and the middle class got screwed royally!
+26 # Marieke 2013-11-11 08:39
Foreign cars have been imported heavily for several decades now. The coexisted with Detroit's cars for a long time. During that time, Detroit workers had been paid more than well. Detroit didn't become obsolete until the gas prices sky-rocketed. Then, to satisfy the ever greedier 1%, even the Detroit jobs were shipped abroad. Don't blame third-world laborers - blame the 1%. Yes, the other 99%, which is just a tad more than just the middle class, got screwed. And the screws haven't stopped since then.
-19 # MidwesTom 2013-11-11 08:04
Here in the Windy City another story of Urban violence is emerging. Three time in the last week small mobs (6 to 14) of black kids run into an store, grab whole racks of clothes and other merchandise and run out, overpowering the three or four store employees. Foot Locker has been hit twice, the most recent on Clark Street in the heart of the downtown shopping distract. Just a matter of time till someone starts shooting to stop this.
+21 # kyzipster 2013-11-11 08:44
Sounds like some very bold shop lifting, as if white, middle class suburban kids don't fill their pockets and purses at the mall and always have.
+11 # pbbrodie 2013-11-11 12:56
Links please to stories? Is this just more of your made up BS?
+3 # NAVYVET 2013-11-13 11:24
Maybe they knew winter's coming and were thinking ahead. That petty robbery is NOTHING compared to what the Oligarchs have done to them--and to the rest of us in the 99%. Well, I guess you think you're not part of the hoi-poilloi since your trollworks get a pay check from the 1%.
-7 # MillValleyMaven 2013-11-11 08:28
I'm lovin' the typos in the above comments:
"shopping distract"
"downward slop"
0 # NAVYVET 2013-11-13 11:25
Excellent puns, probably intended. You have no sense of humor. I'll bet you believe Andy Borowitz is for real!
-21 # MidwesTom 2013-11-11 10:56
Until we address the "ghetto culture" we will continue to have major problems. Many blacks now live in the suburbs and are light years removed from the urban ghettos. The problem is that in major cities, Chicago, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Detroit, St. Louis, etc. the ghettos are not shrinking, but growing. This even after many have gotten an education and left for safer areas. Yes there is crime everywhere, but not at the intensity and violent levels of the, generally all-black, ghettos.

When there is a White in Black crime it is really rather rare and is usually big news. Black on Black is almost a footnote, and Black on White gets little coverage.

I am not Black, but I am amazed that successful Blacks with a few exceptions turn their backs on urban Blacks. I sometimes wonder if we cut off all aid to the poor and instead set up a program where those concerned could "Sponsor" a poor person, if we would not be better off. Help from the government is viewed as an entitlement, for which their is no thanks, and no embarrassment, and hence no motivation to change ones lifestyle.
+12 # pbbrodie 2013-11-11 12:58
Racist, racist, racist. My god, all you know and spew is racist crap.
According to you, everything wrong with our country is due to black folks sucking the government tit.
+5 # Mrcead 2013-11-12 18:09
If you are not Black then your opinion regarding how Blacks are, what they do and how they think is meaningless. Why don't people like you understand this? You are the least qualified person to offer anything useful on the subject yet here you are, yammering away. Would you like to regale us on the nuances of pregnancy while you're at it?
+4 # bingers 2013-11-13 00:38
We have lots of blacks here in my suburban Chicago town and on my block along with lots of Hispanics. What we don't have is racial strife, and nobody around here fits the racist profile Tom presents as fact.

The biggest difference between lily white suburbs and inner city ghetto is not what the people want, but what they have been forced into by neglect and downright prejudice.
+2 # MendoChuck 2013-11-11 11:10
Upward and Onward Through The Fog . . . . .
0 # bingers 2013-11-13 00:39
Thank you Oat Willie. ;o)
+17 # reiverpacific 2013-11-11 13:28
So: -a guy with a CRIMINAL RECORD, is able to acquire body armor and a high-powered shooter!
What's wrong with THIS picture?
No wonder the mud-hole-shallo w US owner media didn't give it the breathlessly-de livered "Breaking News:!!!" treatment.
After all, the NRA might not have liked THAT fact being aired.
Yet again, sorry but "Only in America the "beautiful"!

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