The victims, a great loss; the killer, no loss at all

The identities of the victims of the Atlanta spa shootings have been published, and they are revealing. Note that the murderer has been claiming that he was afflicted with a sex addiction, and that he was lashing out at all those temptresses working in Asian sex palaces. It seems that that isn’t even close to describing the situation (although, also, it would not justify his actions at all if they were houses of prostitution). What comes out of the account is that these were … women working at a spa, giving massages and pedicures and such, and they were 50, 44, 63, 51, 74, and 69 years old. One of the victims was a 33 year old client and recent mother who had come in with her husband to treat herself to a massage. One victim was a handyman who did work around the building.

Previous accounts allowed the killer to define the narrative, portraying the dead as faceless sex workers who were less important than the white guy with the gun — the kind of standard portrayal you see in video games or cop shows. The people he killed were mothers and grandmothers and hard-working people trying to better themselves and their families (as are many sex workers, never forget), and what he did was to cold-bloodedly slaughter people who served in their community.

This is the information the news ought to deliver first, before they tell the killer’s story, in which he is only going to dehumanize the human beings he killed. Oh, and hey, maybe video games and cop shows ought to be telling their stories more from the perspective of the usually expendable mobs that exist only to be gunned down.


  1. Larry says

    I saw a very heart-warming story about this tragedy, if such a thing is possible. One of the sons had made an appeal on a fund-me site, asking for $20000 to help he and his younger brother bury their mother, one of the victims, and to rent a small apartment to live in. Instead of $20K, a very generous group of people, donated over $2 million in just a day, instead.

    There are good people out there. Unfortunately, the uber-shits get all the TV time.

  2. larrylyons says

    Perhaps it would be best not to even acknowledge the ass who committed this crime. Until he is proven innocent (as if), only refer to him using a very humiliating name, such as Dickless. Don’t let him control any part of the narrative. Erase his presence from the web and social media. Don’t give him the reward of attention.

  3. microraptor says

    Notice that the husband of the lone white woman who was a victim was Mexican and cops arrested him and treated him like a suspect, cuffing him so tightly that his wrists were bruised and not even telling him what had happened to his wife (whom they refused to believe was actually married to him).

    The sheer level of racism that’s been on display by the police during this case has been disgusting.

  4. PaulBC says

    call me mark@4 Sorry if I’m missing sarcasm. I don’t recognize your name so it’s unclear.

    That is my least favorite catch phrase in these situations, bumping “thoughts and prayers” to second. What if there are no freaking helpers? And who are they helping anyway? I had to read One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich back in high school. It was such a downer, and now I just wonder why I didn’t think of that. Right, put on a happy face. Today is the first day of the rest of your life. Accentuate the positive. Cause a helper is just an an enemy you haven’t persuaded yet, right?

  5. lotharloo says

    Let’s not let the police off the hook. “They were sex workers” was their way of discrediting the victims and trying to buy sympathy for the murders. It was the equivalent of “but was found [insert drug] in the [possession/blood] of the unarmed black victim!”

  6. davidc1 says

    There is a bit in todays Guardian about all the world wide abuse Asians are suffering at the moment ,starts off with a white woman in Australia
    telling a Chinese woman to go back where she came from .

  7. brightmoon says

    This made me so angry! Racism ,sexism and slander . But he’s a white boy from a good Christian fundie family so he had to get those evil Asian Covid sluts . I hope the families sue the papers who wrote such libelous things about these women! But they probably won’t win .

  8. unclefrogy says

    you know as bad as it is my thoughts went right to “sexual slavery” when I heard the news of massage parlor killing and sexual addiction at first but real news and information began to “leak out” and the story does not match the breaking news hype.
    So they were real spa’s after all not disguised whore houses. The victims were not young women and part of a different industry entirely . Anyone want to take a bet that the killer never even went there and if he had that they refused to give him his “happy ending” because they were in the health and beauty business not the sex trade. so he came back a killed them?
    he was acting out his racist fantasy beliefs like the guy looking for the basement in the MacD’s
    uncle frogy

  9. Tethys says

    I hope the families hire a lawyer and file a civil case against the police for their misogyracist sex workers/hapless sex addict press briefing. The (very white male) police officer who made that statement has been replaced as press officer on the case.

  10. bargearse says


    Anyone want to take a bet that the killer never even went there and if he had that they refused to give him his “happy ending” because they were in the health and beauty business not the sex trade. so he came back a killed them?

    No way I’d take that bet, that was my first thought when the victims identities started to come out. This guy thought sex was owed to him and didn’t react well to finding out it wasn’t.