These are trying times we live in. There are signs of social unrest everywhere, but the random murder of Nia Wilson on a BART train was particularly disturbing. Sunday night Nia and her sister, Lahtifa Wilson, 26, were exiting a BART station in Oakland when they were attacked by knife-wielding John Cowell. The killer is a 27-year old violent felon currently on parole. There does not seem to be a motive. However, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out why a white man in America would attack defenseless African-American women at a subway station.

Nia Wilson died from her injuries. Not only did she have a name, but she had aspirations that may have taken her beyond Oakland.

She jumped at the chance to help others, one of her sisters said, offering pep talks to her sisters when they were down and performing the Heimlich maneuver on her aunt as she was choking at a recent family party. She loved to look pretty, even if it meant holding up everyone else until she picked out the perfect outfit for a late-night run to the grocery store.

At 18, Nia still had the bulk of her life ahead her and she had big plans — joining the Army or becoming a paramedic, or maybe a music producer would see her rap videos on YouTube and offer a record deal. But on Sunday night, Nia was attacked and killed by a man with a knife after stepping off a train with two of her sisters at an Oakland, Calif., transit station. One of her sisters, Lahtifa Wilson, 26, was also stabbed. She was taken to a hospital but later released.

Remnants of the Financial Crisis of 2008 still remain, and America is now a ticking time bomb. The John Cowell attack was likely a hate crime. There will likely be more random attacks, and marches, and protests and images of the Americans turning against one another. However, Nia Wilson should never be forgotten. She had a name. She had dreams that will now go unfulfilled.


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