2 min read

Open Letter to Inmate 157103

Open Letter to Inmate 157103
Photo by Ye Jinghan / Unsplash

We know what you did. The 200 mile drive wasn’t accidental and a leisurely drive to visit old friends in Buffalo. These were not friends. You saw them as other. Non-beings. You had murder on your breath and in your heart on May 14, 2022. You came to eliminate total strangers you determined inferior, and a problem to be solved. A massacre ending the precious lives of people cut from the same cloth as you. Made by the same Creator and stamped with the same God-image.

We know what you did, and what you did is evil.

The media will use political jargon and throw out terms like gun control, mental health, Right-Wing-Extremism, and a hate crime. Often a diversion to the victims and the communities covered in blood. But right now we remember those you put in the grave. The mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, friends, and neighbors mourning in Buffalo, New York. Those God-stamped-image-bearers you took from the world because of not dealing with your own pain.

I want you to remember a genuine hero Aaron Salter Jr. the grocery store security guard who confronted your evil and lost his life. A bravery we’ll remember long after your coward act. How about the children and grandchildren of Ruth Whitfield, the eighty-eight year old grandmother of eight, and Celestine Chaney, a mother, who lost their lives when shopping for fruits and vegetables and supplies for Sunday dinner? Their legacies will last much longer than yours. You can't fathom the power of the love of a mother and grandmother.

Do you have anything to say to the families of the other ten killed and wounded by your racist-trigger-finger? No, we’d rather not let you speak. You’ve done enough.

We know what you did, and what you did was evil.

So evil we won’t speak your name and give you the satisfaction. Fifteen minutes of hate-driven fame is not for you. We’ll instead take the strategy of a police officer at the jail where you wallow in your sin:

“As far as we’re concerned, he is inmate control number 157103.”

Number 157103, may God have mercy on your soul.

-RJP