Some Black Americans Buying Guns: ‘I’d Rather Go To Trial Than Go To The Cemetery’

Some Black Americans Buying Guns: 'I'd Rather Go To Trial Than Go To The Cemetery'

Demonstrators pose for photos with their guns during an open carry rally on Aug. 15 in Richmond, Va. The open carry rally is organized by an activist group known as BLM757 in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and the Second Amendment. Editor’s note: NPR will be continuing this conversation about Being Black in America online and on air. Bruce Tomlin, a 63-year-old truck driver from New Mexico, said he was never really a "gun person." Then he saw a video of three white men following and fatally shooting Ahmaud Arbery while he was jogging. "The man is trying to get away and they’re just gunning him down in the street like he was a dog," Tomlin said about watching the video of Arbery. "It’s made me hypervigilant. It has made me nervous. I’ll even admit to being a little bit scared sometimes." So he bought a gun. And he’s planning on buying more. "I just feel like in my viewpoint, every Black person in America, especially Black males, needs to have some type of protection with them as often as [they] can, because I think the political climate [is] getting to the point where it’s just going to be a lot of violence coming our way," Tomlin said. "I just feel safer now having a gun. And I didn’t always feel that way. I’ve never been the world’s biggest fan of guns, but I just don’t feel safe without one." In early June, NPR reached out to […]

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