The worst mass shooting in US history took place at a country music festival in Las Vegas, and a President who has been quick to label other attacks terrorism has refused to call the actions of the white shooter domestic terrorism.
In a statement provided to PoliticusUSA, via the White House, Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said, “The President has been briefed on the horrific tragedy in Las Vegas. We are monitoring the situation closely and offer our full support to state and local officials. All of those affected are in our thoughts and prayers.”
Trump who is quick to use the word terrorism when the attack involves someone who isn’t white avoided mention of the word on Twitter:
My warmest condolences and sympathies to the victims and families of the terrible Las Vegas shooting. God bless you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 2, 2017
This behavior is reminiscent of how Trump refused to call the white supremacist who murdered a woman in Charlottesville, a terrorist. Apparently, in Trump’s mind, violent white people can’t be domestic terrorists.
Mass shootings such as this one are acts of domestic terrorism. There is a mentality in the United States that we need to distinguish between mass shootings and terrorism. As if a mass shooter does not intend to cause terror. The real motive behind this designation is to protect the NRA and gun lobby. The shooter was confirmed by police to be 64 year old Stephen Paddock. Police are looking for another person who was involved in the attack.
According to CBS News, investigators have ruled out foreign terrorism:
— Paula Reid (@PaulaReidCBS) October 2, 2017
The death toll of 50 and the number of injured which is estimated to stand at over 200 is expected to rise.
Look at this video of people fleeing Mandalay Bay:
It is time to stop using terms like lone wolf shooter and mass shooting to describe the acts that are carried out by usually white domestic terrorists.
The White House’s statement was completely inadequate. Telling the American people, it was a horrific tragedy was pointless. What is needed is leadership to confront the very US problem of guns being used in domestic terror attacks.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association