We learned early this year trauma surgeons in Chicago are overwhelmed by the number of victims of black gun violence. [Inundated with gunshot victims, Chicago doctors and nurses face ‘compassion fatigue’, Chicago Tribune, April 24, 2017]
The levels of black violence in Chicago would be shocking, if they weren’t repeated in city after city across America. In Philadelphia, 80 percent of firearm victims trauma surgeons see are black, compared to just six percent being whites.[Trauma surgeons show ‘profound’ racial disparity in Philadelphia gun violence:Authors say studies point to the need for more research on root causes of urban violence, Science Daily, March 8, 2017]:
“This racial/ethnic disparity is the ‘elephant in the room’ of firearm injury epidemiology,” Beard said. In the new essay, she and Sims argue for more research and scientific resources to explain this disparity, which they suggest may be rooted in structural inequality and other social factors that are amenable to policy interventions.
“We as trauma surgeons need to work with our surgical associations and members of government to advocate for more research funding to determine the root causes of this important public health problem — and to start identifying effective prevention strategies,” Beard said.
The ‘elephant in the room’ is blacks and their inability to engage in peaceful conflict resolutions without resorting to using a gun for offensive purposes. Lack of impulse control, higher testosterone, lack of future time-orientation, lower IQ… these help explain the so-called “disparity.”
In roughly 60 percent black New Orleans, America’s beloved “Chocolate City,”2,966 black people were shot by other blacks between the years 2007 – 2013.
The truth of lynching. Interesting segue, right?
You’ve seen acomparisonof black homicides in Detroit over a ten-year span to lynching in America; you’ve seen acomparisonof black homicides in Baltimore over a seven-year span to lynching in America.
But first, a quick refresher.
Though Oprah Winfrey, who donated $13 million to the building of National Museum of African American History and Culture(NMAAHC), claimed “millions of black people were lynched,” it turns out only 3,446 blacks were lynched between 1882-1968:
From 1882-1968, 4,743 lynchings occurred in the United States. Of these people that were lynched 3,446 were black. The blacks lynched accounted for 72.7% of the people lynched.
Out of the 4,743 people lynched only 1,297 white people were lynched. That is only 27.3%. Many of the whites lynched were lynched for helping the black or being anti lynching and even for domestic crimes.
Over a span of 86 years, 3,446 blacks were lynched (the vast, vast majority of whom had committed crimes… “punishment must be unusual or else it serves no purpose”).
Between the years 2007 and 2013 (only two year after Hurricane Katrina displaced tens of thousands of blacks to Houston and other cities across America), 2,966 black people were shot by other blacks in New Orleans. It was this out-burst of violence prompting the NOLA For Life campaign to kickoff, designed solely with convincing black males to stop killing/shooting one another.
Black on black crime is the cherry on top of the ‘Chocolate City’….
Despite the positive press of ‘midnight basketball’ games put on by the NOLA For Life non-profit, homicides and nonfatal shootings are rising dramatically in the ‘Chocolate City’… perhaps the poster child for illustrating black lives don’t matter to other blacks.
We could easily break down homicides in New Orleans, showing black on black (and black on white) violence is the primary reason people perceive the city to be dangerous. Let it be known New Orleans has a higher rate of homicide and nonfatal shootings than even Chicago (both fueled by blacks, which criminologists never report).
But back to the number:2,966 black people were shot by other blacks between the years 2007 – 2013 in New Orleans. [In New Orleans’ violent streets, 10 minutes often determine who lives and dies, New Orleans Times Picayune, July 12, 2016]:
The line separating these two groups often times makes little sense. Take the cases of John Matthews and David Ducros.
Six years ago Matthews was shot 17 times in his New Orleans East home in an attempt to prevent him from testifying against drug kingpin Telly Hankton.
This April, Ducros was shot once in the leg outside a convenience store in Gentilly.
Matthews survived to testify at the trial that sent Hankton to prison for life. Ducros was pronounced dead just a few hours after being shot.
So why do some gunshot victims live, while others die? The question is more than an academic exercise in a city where hundreds are shot every year, but where most of the public’s attention is drawn to the fatal tally – not the many who survive and are often scarred for life.
The answer of who lives and who dies depends on a variety of factors including the type of weapon used, where the bullet enters the body and what it does once inside.
In many cases, survival depends on how quickly the victim is treated, both on the scene and in the emergency room. A few extra minutes of unchecked bleeding from a major artery can be fatal.
Those factors are in the hands of a coordinated team of paramedics, trauma surgeons and nurses trained in techniques honed by military personnel on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, and tested daily in a city with one of the highest murder rates in the country.
*****At any given moment,there are up to 12 ambulances on the streets, patrolling the city. This is the tip of the spear in the battle to save the victims of gun violence – New Orleans Emergency Medical Services.
Once a 911 call goes out alerting police of a shooting, paramedics typically wait for the code 4 signal from the responding officers. This tells them the crime scene is secured, that there is no active shooter in sight. That’s when the clock starts ticking.
“Over the past 15 years or so, war military medicine has changed how we deal with a lot of these critically injured trauma patients, from the initial, what we call the platinum 10 minutes, to the golden hour,” EMS Director Jeffrey Elder said. “We’ve taken a lot of that and applied that in civilian medicine.”
Before Russell Russo became a doctor, he was untouched by the violence that plagues many city neighborhoods. “It’s just something that comes on the news that you switch off because you’re tired of hearing about it.”
That changed when he began work at the trauma center in 2007.
“My first night as an intern we had 16 gunshot wounds. I remember that Saturday like it was yesterday,” Russo said, recalling the image of blood-drenched stretchers scattered across the ambulance bay. “After that it was like, this is just the way it is and the way it’s always going to be.”
Most victims of gun violence are now taken to University Medical Center, home to one of two state-designated Level I trauma centers. The other is in Shreveport.
UMC provides emergency surgical care 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Following the golden hour rule, its official coverage area is any place within a 60-minute drive, which incorporates parts of 11 parishes.
When patients are first rolled into the UMC trauma center, they are sent to room 4, where their injuries are evaluated. Trauma surgeon Dr. John Hunt said the scene resembles a pit stop at the Indianapolis 500. But instead of mechanics scrambling to change tires, refuel the car and make any mechanical fixes, a team of surgeons and nurses assess the patient’s condition – most importantly, their circulation and breathing.
A full diagnostic evaluation at a physician’s office might take an hour. At UMC’s trauma center, it’s done in minutes. If the patient is in cardiac arrest, surgeons can have the chest open within three minutes of arrival, and in the operating room within six minutes, trauma surgeon Dr. Lance Stuke said.
Working as a trauma surgeon gives a person a special perspective on gun violence, Stuke said, and a unique opportunity to question those involved. When a patient comes in with a gunshot wound – for the second, third or fourth time – Stuke said he often asks them why they keep returning to the same friends, the same lifestyle and the same neighborhood that repeatedly results in their being shot.
“Most of them just say, ‘Well, it’s where I live. It’s who I hang out with. So what else am I going to do?’ I try not to judge because if you got judgmental in this job, you would hate the world pretty quickly,” Stuke said.
Hunt estimates that about 15 percent of his gunshot patients are repeat customers.
Over seven years,2,966 black people were shot by other blacks in New Orleans.
Over 86 years, 3,446 were blacklynched, the vast, vast majority executed for committing crimes.
Are we still pretending black lives matter?
Somehow this is the fault of statues to dead white men in New Orleans, be they Confederate generals or Andrew Jackson…