Opinion: The anguish of Astroworld hangs over the city of Houston

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On the morning of November 6, nevertheless, I woke as much as the tragic news of a crowd surge that claimed the lives of nine people and injured a whole lot extra. I could not wrap my thoughts round how this might have occurred.
Simply two days earlier than the pageant broke out into chaos, I stood with Scott, the Houston police chief and different neighborhood officers at the unveiling of a basketball court the rapper helped renovate in Sunnyside, a traditionally black neighborhood the place he grew up. I watched as followers erupted into deafening screams when Scott ran onto the courtroom to share a number of phrases.

The saying, “Life can activate a dime,” is one which has repeatedly come to thoughts all through this pandemic. The mass casualty incident at Astroworld proved as soon as once more how shortly issues can change in what might seem to be the blink of a watch. What was purported to be a enjoyable live performance will now inevitably go away hundreds of younger folks traumatized after experiencing and witnessing unimaginable ache and anguish.

Whereas investigators in Houston are nonetheless working to find out all doable causes of loss of life and damage, there’s already loads of finger-pointing as folks attempt to perceive who was answerable for this unfathomable episode. I do not need to pose as an armchair knowledgeable and speculate on what ought to have been accomplished in another way.

What I do know is that these deaths mustn’t have occurred. Going ahead, we have to rethink problems with security and crowd management and ensure an incident like this by no means occurs once more.

Houston is hurting proper now and a unhappiness looms over the town. Greater than ever, we have to rally collectively and supply our fellow neighbors the power and assist they want in these darkish instances.

Because the councilwoman of District D, which incorporates Sunnyside, I do know this tragedy has little question affected this proud and tight-knit neighborhood, which embraced Scott as a hometown hero. Like different neighborhoods, Sunnyside has seen mindless violence and needed to grapple with the fact that our youth are dying a lot too quickly. What occurred at Astroworld, not directly, evokes a senselessness that feels all too acquainted.

What occurred final week will weigh on my coronary heart — and the hearts of numerous others — for a very long time. However the metropolis of Houston is resilient, and I do know this neighborhood can come collectively.

Might all of the victims relaxation in peace and should the households and other people whose lives are without end modified discover consolation.

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