OPINION | Phil Paleologos: Paintball Shootings Aimed at Curbing Gun Violence
It's bad enough for cities to have to deal with traditional gun violence. Now they have to deal "paintball wars," too.
According to CBS News, there have been more than 200 paintball shootings reported in the last week. Atlanta, Detroit, Greensboro, and Milwaukee are all areas impacted by this phenomenon, where 65 incidents have been reported in four days.
It seems that there’s a rapper, who goes by the name 21 Savage, who started a movement called “guns down, paintballs up,” as way to curb gun violence. This idea seems to have backfired, and may have inadvertently begun this new type of "gun" violence.
“Last month, T'Rhigi Diggs was sleeping in the back of his mother's car when he was fatally shot by a real gun, two days after his third birthday. Police say he was killed by a middle school student who fired a handgun at people shooting paintballs from a car,” CBS reports.
"My baby's strong really strong, my baby fight for his life almost 45 minutes before the ambulance got here," said Roshonda Craig, T'Rhigi Craig's mother.
21 Savage even paid for the toddler’s funeral.
Sgt. Melissa Franckowiak says even though paintball guns may be considered toys, they're still dangerous.
"If they're shooting it directly at people, they're going to be arrested," she said.
Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.