If I am murdered, know I saw it coming. I suspected it, feared it, obsessed over it even. Never had the privilege of being oblivious and carefree. Sure, I could assume it’ll never be me, but my demographics don’t allow for such folly. I can’t sit here as a woman, a black woman, a black Muslim woman and never consider that I may find my way into someone’s crosshairs. Macabre, I know, but denying it wouldn’t make it any better. So know I was vigilant and aware, and that still wasn’t enough. Know I discussed it with friends, to buy a gun or not. “I’d have to keep it away from my kids. Would it even be worth it if I have to keep it so far away and locked up? Could I even get to it in time?“ These are the things we discuss. And pepper spray, we talk about that too. (FYI, it’s better to buy foam than traditional liquid. Foam won’t blow back into your face. A friend taught me that last night.) These are the things we discuss.
If I am murdered, know the person who did it couldn’t see me. Could only see hate and fear of his (or her) own weakness. Certainly, he wouldn’t know that I’m really funny and super chill. Wouldn’t know that I have a husband who adores me and kids who need my everything. Wouldn’t know that between the two of us, I’m not the one who is the threat. All he’d know was that I’m one of “them,” different and therefore deserving of death.
If I am murdered, know that I never became numb. Every murder before mine was painful and real. Nabra Hassanen could have been my niece, Charleena Lyles could have been my sister, those killed and injured in the Finsbury Park Mosque attack could have been my friends. It’s never just a sad story. They’re all real, all of them: Ricky John Best, Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche, Azzeddine Soufiane, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Ibrahima Barry, Abdelkrim Hassane, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Cynthia Marie Graham Hurd, Susie Jackson, Ethel Lee Lance, Depayne Middleton-Doctor, Clementa C. Pinckney, Tywanza Sanders, Daniel Simmons, Sharonda Coleman, Myra Thompson, Philando Castile, Alton Sterling, Rekia Boyd, Katherine Johnston, Deah Barakat, Yusor Abu-Salha, Razan Abu-Salha, Korryn Gaines, Sandra Bland, Mohamedtaha Omar, Adam Mekki, Muhannad Tairab, Ben Keita, the 49 killed at Pulse Night Club, Walter Scott, Tamir Rice, Sean Bell, Aiyana Jones, Eric Garner, and… and… and. I could never list them all. What a shame that I could never list them all.
If I am murdered, know that I didn’t let fear stop me. Cautious but undeterred, I walked this earth like I owned it (because I do). I walked this earth like I have great, great, great grands who took lashes for my freedom, who sneaked and planned and disobeyed and ran and risked and died for my freedom. I walked this earth like I owe something to those who lie beneath it. And most importantly, I walked this earth like I believe in the protection and qadr (decree) of Allah (swt). So as long as I am able, as long as I am alive and have no hashtags associated with my name, I will laugh and love, push and pursue, smile and sing as though my spirit is immortal.
I can’t stop thinking about the Bas boys all sitting around with the Wild World colouring book: Kyle colouring everything in with mismatching bright colours, Will getting cross with Woody because ‘why can’t you just colour inside the lines?’ whilst Charlie happily finishes the join-the-dots, and Dan can’t even decide what colours to use
Would you happen to have a timeline of of Dylann and the days leading up to the shooing?
(sorry this took a while for me to reply to!!) i couldn’t find an exact timeline so i put this together for u, hopefully it’s somewhat helpful!! i couldn’t find any definitive information about the day’s before the shooting and i have heard conflicting things so i chose to leave that out, if i find anything i’ll post it, or if anyone knows feel free to add to this post!! sorry if this isn’t what u wanted
Before the shooting -
December 22nd, 2014: Roof drove from Columbia to Charleston, where he passed by the Emanuel AME church before touring the Boone Hall Plantation
February 9th, 2015: Roof created his website, ‘lastrhodesian.com’
February 23rd, 2015: A 13-second call to the Emanuel AME church was made from Roof’s home
February 24th, 2015: Roof traveled to Charleston again, once more stopping near the Emanuel AME church
February 28th, 2015: Roof was arrested at the Columbiana Centre in Columbia after being reported by staff for acting strange, he was then found to be in possession of narcotics and received a misdemeanour charge and was banned from the mall for a year
March 13th, 2015: Roof was investigated for loitering in his car near a park in downtown Columbia. A fororearm grip for an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle and six unloaded magazines were found in his car and he was arrested
April 16th, 2015: Roof completed the purchase for his Glock pistol that he used during the shooting
April 25th & May 9th, 2015: Roof travelled to Charleston again visiting more plantations and stopping at the Emanuel AME church (during this time Roof purchased more than 100 rounds of ammunition)
April 26th, 2015: Roof was arrested for trespassing on at the Columbiana Centre in Columbia
The day of the shooting -
June 17th, 2015: Roof entered the Emanuel AME church at around 8pm. After spending around an hour at the bible study, Roof opened fire at 9:05pm, killing Rev. Clementa Pinckney, Rev. Sharonda Singleton, Dr. Daniel L. Simmons, Ethel Lee Lance, Cynthia Hurd, Myra Thompson, Depayne Middleton-Doctor and Tywanza Sanders.
June 18th, 2015: At 10:44am Roof is captured in a traffic stop in Shelby, North Carolina