There could not have been a dry eye anywhere in Madison during the late-night news Wednesday. I have watched many a tragic story unfold over the airwaves in my lifetime, but learning that 11-year-old Anisa Scott will be taken off life support following a driveby shooting just rips my heart. The anguish and heartache the family shared tonight with an entire city have brought us all together. But now what happens from our shared experience of grief over a glaring example of having too many guns on our streets?
The shooting of Anisa happened in the area of East Washington and Lexington Avenues at around 11:45 A.M. Tuesday. Police said shots were fired from one vehicle to another, and believe the girl was riding in the car of the intended target.
What happened with the shooting itself is despicable enough, and the hell the family needed to go through to even learn of such a tragedy is one thing. To then need to make the decision of removing life support from a child is something that I can not even begin to fathom how anyone processes. The absolute hell that these loved ones are going through along with their strength to speak to us in front of Children’s Hosptial has moved a city to tears.
But we also must be moved to action.
What this family is going through should make us mad as hell about what is happening on our streets—and now to a bright smiling young girl. There is a killer somewhere loose on the streets tonight who thought it was within his right to aim a deadly weapon at a driver of another car and pull the trigger. How anyone becomes so removed from morals and any sense of even the most basic connections of humanity is more than I can ponder. How others can not report the killer to the police is unconscionable.
This sweet kid will be removed from life support at 11:11 A.M. Thursday because she was shot on the 11th, and is 11 years old, her grandmother told reporters. I know most of us watching the news wanted to somehow reach into our television screen and hug her and somehow make it all not true.
But gun violence is deadly and all too real. It does not happen ‘over there’ or ‘to other people’. It happens all the time and all too close to our communities. We must get serious about it, or there will be more grandmothers who will need to share with us what hell feels like.
To the loved ones of Anisa there are no words of comfort. And thoughts and prayers are a piss-poor response. If we really care for this family we will demand in voices loud enough so no can miss hearing them that we MUST have gun control measures enacted so bright smiling kids are not killed. Some angry old man ranting about his interpretation of the Second Amendment IS NOT more important than the hope that was extinguished when Anisa was shot in the head from a gun.
Enough is simply enough.