For the students, teachers, and staff of Houston-area Santa Fe High School, their morning began like any other day, but it ended in tragedy as 10 individuals (9 students and 1 teacher) were murdered by a shooter and several others were injured and/or traumatized. The alleged perpetrator is currently in police custody and several individuals are hospitalized. Santa Fe and the surrounding Houston metropolitan area are shocked and mourning the senseless, violent deaths of its residence and the world is reeling from yet another mass shooting.
Autistic Women & Nonbinary Network stands in solidarity with those impacted by the Santa Fe shooting and grieves the unnecessary loss of ten valuable lives to gun violence. We condemn the divisive and bigoted words, actions, and policies of those who cultivate and spew hatred, thus fueling violence.
Additionally, we acknowledge that speculation about whether the alleged shooter has a diagnosis of autism, a psychiatric condition, or cognitive impairment are both ableist and insensitive and urge the media as well as the public to refrain from doing so. AWN will continue to add our voices to the chorus of youth and adult advocates, community groups, and others demanding justice and gun reform.
The time is now; expressions of thoughts and prayers should be secondary to the global cry for change. No more blood should have to be spilled before our leaders heed the voice of the people and make efforts to protect our schools and our communities from senseless gun violence.