The news this morning went from bad to worse. As soon as I woke up and logged on to my social media accounts I was bombarded with stories about the tragic deaths at the hands of a madman in Orlando. First the number of victims was 20; then it more than doubled to 50. Nothing about this was good news. It didn’t make a difference if it was some right-wing extremist looking to kill gay people for Jesus or a Muslim extremist looking to kill them for Muhammed; the whole thing stunk of religion and intolerance.
As details of the crime come out it looks more and more like an American was radicalized. Well isn’t that just fantastic? The right will have a field day over this, gloating about how those darned Muslims Obama lets in the country are to blame, even though the shooter was born in New York. On the left, we’ll be outraged about the assault rifle and point to the fact that the shooter’s father said he wasn’t religious; he just doesn’t like gays.
In the end, religion is the issue. That was never more obvious than when Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick tweeted this at 7 AM on the morning of the worst mass-shooting in our history:
Very nice, Dan. After social media went crazy about this ridiculously insensitive post, Patrick deleted it and replaced it with some benign verse, as if to say, “oops…I didn’t see the whole mass shooting thing that would have been the first thing someone in my position would have been alerted to this morning.” Patrick isn’t answering queries from thousands of Twitter users wanting to know if he would have tweeted the same had the shooter been a Christian. (Update: His staff claims it was pre-scheduled. Sure it was.)
If you consider that one of the things right-wingers love to worry about is the infiltration of our government by Islamic fundamentalists, you have to wonder how something like this passes muster. This man just basically applauded a public mass murder by blaming the victims. He placed the blame for a slaughter we will never forget on the people who were shot because they were born different from him. He denigrated an entire group of Americans because his religion is intolerant and bigoted.
This is the lieutenant governor of one of our largest and most influential states, yet nobody has called for the culling of white Christians from the Lone Star State. See the double standard?
At the end of the day, regardless of your beliefs, one thing will be abundantly clear: religion plus guns equals death. Maybe we should outlaw both.
Featured image via Twitter