Of all the thrilling news to come out of the 2018 midterm elections that secured Democratic control of the House in the next Congress, none was more sweet than the election of Lucy McBath of Georgia. Her victory against Rep. Karen Handel (R) was an incredible turn of events that began tragically in Florida in 2012.
McBath is the mother of Jordan Davis. He was the 17-year-old African American kid who was stopped at a Jacksonville, Fla., gas station on Nov. 23, 2012, when an argument over loud music turned deadly. Davis was murdered by Michael Dunn, a white man who shot the unarmed teen because Davis’s music was too loud. McBath turned her grief into activism.
When I met her in October 2016, McBath was the faith and community outreach leader at Everytown for Gun Safety and a surrogate for Hillary Clinton during her presidential campaign as one of the “Mothers of the Movement.” McBath was part of a conversation I moderated on “race, violence and access to the American Dream” at the Center for American Progress. Also on that panel was DeJuan Patterson, who was 17-years-old when he was shot in the head by a thief in the summer of 2005.
This latest episode of “Cape Up” is a replay of the podcast I did with McBath and Patterson about being survivors of gun violence. The conversation from 2016 is a deeply personal one between survivors. Between a grieving mother who lost her son to gun violence and a young man directly impacted by it.
Listen to the podcast to hear McBath and Patterson talk about gun violence and race and how the two intersect. Most important, listen to the pain that flows from both of them as they put their grief and trauma into the larger community trauma suffered by African Americans as a result. And as you listen, you’ll hear the passion that ultimately pushed McBath to run for Congress — and win.