How Many More Children Have To Be Murdered for Shareholder Profit?
Annabell Rodriguez and Xavier Lopez are worth more than money
I met my future wife when I was twelve years old.
By the end of the seventh grade, we were in love — whatever that means in a prepubescent soul — and I kissed her on the cheek that summer.
A decade later we were married at the age of 22, and thirteen years later, we had our first little baby, a boy named Concord. Life together has been a wonderful dream, an immense and undeserved blessing that we will never take for granted. It’s the sort of life I wish for everyone.
It’s the sort of life that Annabell Rodriguez and Xavier Lopez will never know.
Annabell and Xavier were ten-year-old sweethearts who died when bullets shredded through their little bodies during the Uvalde school shooting.
They were boyfriend and girlfriend, and their final text to each other was “I love you.”
Ancient Romans like Cicero used to ask themselves a question: Qui bono?
Who profits from the murder of Annabell and Xavier and the 20,000+ other people who were murdered by guns in America last year?
I grew up in Canada, where gun laws are sensible and people don’t massacre each other by the thousands each month. Canadians own millions of guns, they just know the truth: Rifles for deer… shotguns for birds… handguns for humans.
Who profits from selling handguns, machine guns, and semi-automatic military-grade weapons?
The answer is embarrassing, even pathetic:
Annabell and Xavier were murdered so that a handful of extremely rich shareholders could make an extra dollar in their stock portfolio this year.
America’s most popular murder rifle of choice, the AR-15, is manufactured by America Outdoor Brands and Smith & Wesson, which are owned by elite shareholders and executives and a board that has no problem bankrolling the NRA and lobby-bribing members of Congress to block all sensible gun-murder-prevention laws.
Both companies are owned by Blackrock and Vanguard — a pair of $10+ trillion institutional investment predators — which means if you have a pension or own an S&P 500 index fund, you also almost certainly profited from Annabell and Xavier’s murder.
On March 30th, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln declared a National Day of Repentance, calling Americans to unity and peace in the midst of a deeply divided country.
Repentance means to turn around.
America needs to turn around:
To ban assault-style weapons.
To implement sensible checks and balances.
To divest of gun stocks.
We cannot call ourselves good and moral people and knowingly continue to profit from murder.
A few more dollars of shareholder profit isn’t worth the death of ten-year-old sweethearts, who will now be buried side-by-side in Hillcrest Cemetery in Uvalde, Texas.
Jared A. Brock is an award-winning biographer, PBS documentarian, and the cell-free founder of the popular futurist blog Surviving Tomorrow, where he provides thoughtful people with contrarian perspectives on the corporatist anti-culture. His writing has appeared in Esquire, The Guardian, Smithsonian, USA Today, and TIME Magazine, and he has traveled to more than forty countries including North Korea. Join 21,000+ people who follow him on Medium, Twitter, and Substack.