On Dallas

[Content Note: Mass shooting; guns; death.]

Last night in Dallas, during what had been a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest, an unknown number of shooters (but as many as four) which are thought to have assumed triangulated and elevated positions, opened fire with what are believed to be assault rifles. The details of the attack, including who the shooters are and why they made the attack, are still emerging. One of the suspects is reportedly dead, following a standoff after he cornered himself in a parking garage.

What we do know for sure is that 11 police officers were shot, and five of them have died. Four were Dallas police officers and one was a DART officer. We are still waiting for the identities of the victims to be disclosed.

My sincerest condolences to their families, friends, fellow officers, and community.

One civilian was also shot in the leg, and is undergoing surgery.

This is just unfathomable. I am really angry and really sad and really troubled. It's so upsetting that a peaceful protest, during which protesters and police were taking pictures with each other, was utterly shattered by this heinous violence.

There is a lot more I want to say, but I don't want to speculate. I'm sure there will be more to say once further details are available. At the moment, I will just share some news articles detailing what is known so far.

As always, let's keep this an image-free thread. Thanks.

New York Times: 5 Dallas Police Officers Killed by Snipers at Protest.

Dallas Morning News: 5 Officers Slain, 7 Wounded, 1 Suspect Dead After Shooting at Dallas Rally.

Guardian: Live Updates.

UPDATE 1: The Dallas police chief is now saying there was only one gunman, who acted alone, and he was killed when police used a robot to detonate a bomb that was apparently in the possession or proximity of the suspect.

UPDATE 2: Also per Dallas Police Chief David Brown: "The suspect said he was upset about Black Lives Matter. He said he was upset about the recent shootings, he was upset at white people. The suspect said he wanted to kill white people, especially white officers. The suspect said that he was not affiliated with any groups and he stated that he did this alone." No identifying information about the gunman has been released.

UPDATE 3: The gunman has been identified as a 25-year-old Black man named Micah Xavier Johnson from Mesquite, Texas.

UPDATE 4: Mark Hughes, the Black man who was identified as a "person of interest" last night, and whose picture was widely circulated by police and the media, and who had nothing to do with the shooting, is now receiving death threats. I have to tell you: When I saw his picture last night, my first instinct was that it was the NY Post's "Bag Men" cover all over again. And so it was. I desperately hope that Hughes will be safe, and that he will receive the apology he deserves, as publicly as his picture was distributed.

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