Ned Peppers would not close for another hour, and the crowd inside the bar and on the outdoor patio early Sunday morning was lively. The line to get inside stretched around the block, and the revelers were black and white, men and women, spanning at least two generations. One was the mother of a newborn, another was a nutrition trainer. Within seconds, both would be dead, along with seven others.
Among the victims killed in the barrage of gunfire outside Ned Peppers, a popular spot in Dayton, Ohio, was the gunman’s sister, a 22-year-old college student described as “bubbly” and “outgoing.” Investigators had not determined on Sunday evening whether the gunman, armed with a military-style rifle and clad in protective armor, had specifically targeted his sister or anyone else in the crowd.
The massacre outside Ned Peppers came only about 13 hours after a gunman stormed into a Walmart store in El Paso and opened fire, killing 20 people and wounding at least 26 others as he stalked the aisles. The store is near the bicultural city’s border with Mexico, in an area heavily trafficked on weekends by El Paso residents and Mexican citizens alike.
There is something profoundly broken in the United States, but we already knew that.
I have no clue how to fix it, but we are destroying ourselves.