Another Day in the Death of America


"It was just another day in America. And as befits an unremarkable Saturday, ten children and teens were killed by gunfire. Far from being considered newsworthy, these everyday fatalities are simply a banal fact of death. They are the white noise set sufficiently low to allow the country to go about its business undisturbed. "

The youngest was nine; the oldest was nineteen. White, black and Latino, they fell in suburbs, hamlets and ghettos. None made the national news. There was no outrage about their passing. Saturday, 23 november 2013 was just another day in the death of America, where on average seven children and teens are killed by guns daily. 

Younge picked this day at random, searched for their families and tells their stories. The nine-year-old who opened the door and was shot in the head by his mother's ex-boyfriend. The eleven-year-old killed by his friend at a sleepover in rural Michigan. The eighteen-year-old gang member, on Chicago's South Side, shot in a stairwell just days after being released from prison. Through ten moving chapters - one for each child - Younge explores the way these children lived and lost their short lives. He finds out who they were, who they wanted to be, the environments they inhabited, and what that context might tell us about society at large. 

What emerges is a searing portrait of the vulnerability of childhood and youth in contemporary America.