Revealed: Leaked memo shows the Republican Party's vile strategy to respond to mass shootings with lies
In the wake of the most recent mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, congressional Republicans have been circulating a “memo,” on how to discuss gun violence. The Tampa Bay Times obtained this memo and report that while not shocking to most people here, the depth of cynicism and craven hypocrisy on the part of Republicans knows no bottom. According to the Times, the memo discusses the general rhetorical tricks of handling questions about closing existing gun law loopholes instead of creating more robust gun laws. But it also discusses how to very specifically move the conversations away from white supremacy and the role that right-wing propaganda seems to be playing in most domestic terrorist scenarios like the recent El Paso shootings, where the gunman told authorities that he wanted to kill Mexicans.
If asked, the memo suggests that the first thing to do is to “steer the conversation away from white nationalism to an argument that implies both sides are to blame.” Subsequently, Republicans are directed to point out, falsely, that many of the mass shootings in recent years were carried out by “left-leaning” individuals. They specifically point to “El Paso shooter, the recent Colorado shooters, the Congressional baseball shooter, Congresswoman Giffords’ shooter and Antifa.” The El Paso mention is a classic right-wing typo, they meant the Dayton shooting—the right wing in our country does have a level of incompetence that one might call its brand.
Did you know that all of those shooters were “left leaning?” I bet you didn’t. Cause they weren’t. The man that shot Arizona’s Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and a dozen other people January of 2011, while registered as a Democrat, showed motives all over the map, referencing everyone from Hillary Clinton to Adolf Hitler, and according to people around him, a general obsession with Giffords herself. The Colorado shooters seem to have been motivated, more than anything, by anger over bullying and a perverse sense of revenge.
The most recent Dayton, Ohio, shooting has been the big news story for the right wing of this country because Donald Trump tweeted and told reporters that the shooter was a “fan” of Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.
President Trump on Dayton shooter: "He was a fan of Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, nothing to do with Trump.… https://t.co/cJ9ca2nmpk— CBS News (@CBS News)1565185549.0
However, while the Dayton shooter may have had left “leanings,” politically, he also had a very specific history of violent fantasy not at all connected to one political ideology or another. Either way, the fact remains that domestic white nationalist terrorism is still the biggest problem when it comes to mass shooting gun violence in our country. As FBI Director Christopher McKay told a Senate Judiciary Committee last month, the majority of 2019’s domestic terrorist arrests were “motivated by some version of what you might call white supremacist violence." The need for the Republican Party to sit on their hands to protect their gun money, dovetails nicely with their need to appeal almost exclusively to white nationalists and the people who hate being called white nationalists, but espouse most of the same positions and beliefs of white nationalists.