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Schoolboy shoots 19 children, two adults in Texas school

COMMENT: An 18-year-old shoots 19 little children in a school in Texas. Almost every other day there is a shooting in America, mostly of schoolchildren by schoolchildren. This year alone there were 27 school shootings so far. Anybody can buy a gun in the country. At times kids receive guns as birthday gifts from their parents! Racist shooting also claims lives at regular intervals. The gun culture in the US is a corollary to the false sense of citizens' freedom and political patronage to private arms industry, also a pillar of American power and economy.

Aside from this, it is rarely that a civilian shooting takes place - or has been successful - in self-defence, if that is the argument for acquisition of guns by individuals, say, anywhere in the world. There has not been a technical study or survey on the operational advantage of possessing a firearm for self-defence, in order to justify possession by civilians.

UVALDE CITY (Texas), May 25: Nineteen (19) children and two adults died in a shooting at a primary school in Uvalde city in south Texas on Tuesday. The incident took place at Robb Elementary School for children aged 7 to 10 years. The 18-year old gunman was shot soon after by a border policeman who was around at the time.

Two other cops from a border patrol station nearby who also rushed to the scene were badly injured in the shootout that followed. One of the adults killed was a teacher named Eva Mireles. According to Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott, the shooter, Salvador Ramos, who is a high school student in the neighbourhood, came in a vehicle to the school.

The shooter, in a body armour, was carrying an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and high-capacity magazines. He had shot dead his grandmother before killing the children. The police did not provide further details about that. According to school officials, the shooting began at 11:32 am local time on Tuesday.

The Robb Elementary School in Uvalde is a Hispanic school enrolling 500 pupils, 135 km west of the city of San Antonio, the second most populous city in Texas.

President Joe Biden said, "As a nation we have to ask when in God's name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby?" He ordered flags to be flown at half-staff through Saturday in mourning.

A helpless President of the most powerful country lamented, "What struck me was these kinds of mass shootings rarely happen anywhere else in the world. Why?"

On May 14, another 18-year-old had shot dead 10 people at a grocery store in a predominantly Black neighbourhood in Buffalo, New York, in what has been described as a racist attack. Of 13 people shot at, 11 were Black and two were White.

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