Rick Perry called the terrorist shooting at Emanuel AME church an “accident” while complaining about Obama’s suggestion that unrestricted availability of guns is not a fabulous idea.

The former Texas governor was asked about the mass shooting at Emanuel AME church during an interview with the conservative NewsmaxTV. A spokesman for Perry later clarified that the Republican presidential candidate meant to say “incident,” but the soundbyte drew immediate attention and backlash.

Hi, just an ordinary citizen here, but I think “incident” is a pretty callous word to use too. That was no incident, that was a racist mass murder.

In addition to steering the conversation away from race and terrorism, Perry also accused Barack Obama of trying to take firearms away from the American people by pushing for stricter gun laws in the wake of mass shootings like the one in Charleston.

“This is the MO of this administration, any time there is an accident like this, the president is clear. He doesn’t like for Americans to have guns and so he uses every opportunity, this being another one, to basically go parrot that message,” Perry said.

Right. Obama probably told Roof to kill those people, just so that he could be harsh about guns. Let’s not forget, this is America, where the right of white men – not black anyone, don’t be silly – to have all the guns they want is way more important than the right of black people to go on living.


  1. says

    Classy. He steers the conversation away from race and terrorism when this attack meets every criterion of domestic terrorism, and the perpetrator himself said that it was his intent to start a race war.

    A friend of mine on facebook asked the question, “do you all think that the 2nd amendment should be repealed or revised? why or why not?” It started an interesting, yet bizarre conversation. Everyone who was pro-2nd adopted the assumption that without that amendment, the USA would be an “unarmed society” at the mercy of the armed government. I had to point out that we could undo the 2nd amendment and still have recreational/subsistence shooting/hunting, and yet also have reasonable gun regulations, and everyone could be happy (and safer).

    This instant leap into hyperbole has been a characteristic of gun debates for too long. And I say this as a gun owner (I grew up in Texas, after all) who enjoys target shooting, albeit one who longs for some real measure of regulation. The insistence on extremes is hurting us all. Obama is not the Great Satan for simply pointing out, again, that we have racial problems and gun violence problems, which are two facts apparent to absolutely everyone. In fact, this reminds me of certain recent accusations flung around facebook and FtB. People should be able to question something in an honest way, and to think about its implications, without immediately being branded the Worst Possible Person In The World.

  2. ali says

    The proof is in the pudding. Countries with stricter gun control laws have less shootings and gun-related crimes.Go figure…..

  3. Jenora Feuer says

    And yet countries which don’t have something similar to the second amendment and which have much stronger restrictions on guns than the U.S. still seem to have not devolved into government tyrannies.

    Must be yet more of that ‘American Exceptionalism’. Just like with health care.

  4. Garrett says

    This story really annoyed me because it highlights the media’s focus on gaffes. Yes, Rick Perry misspoke, and he should have to correct himself, but for a presidential candidate, I think this part is much more important:

    “This is the MO of this administration, any time there is an accident like this, the president is clear. He doesn’t like for Americans to have guns and so he uses every opportunity, this being another one, to basically go parrot that message,”

    It’s just completely untrue and raising panic about “Obama taking all the guns!”. But the media can’t report on his obvious lying and fearmongering because that would be choosing sides. And we all know that journalistic ethics requires us to never do such a thing. If the GOP says the sky is purple, then the ethical thing to do is to report that others claim the sky is blue.

  5. Al Dente says

    Recently I was involved in a discussion with some gundamentalists about gun control. One of them brought out the claim that guns in the hands of citizens are all that’s keeping the government from establishing a tyranny. History tells us what happens when armed citizenry takes on the army.

    In 1943 about a thousand Jews in the Warsaw ghetto tried to stop shipments of Jews to labor and extermination camps. The Jews were armed with rifles, pistols, molotov cocktails and a few machine guns either captured from the Germans or given by the Polish Underground. An SS Panzergrenadier brigade was sent to deal with the Jews. The SS, using flamethrowers and APCs, went block by block, burning buildings and reducing the ghetto to rubble. About seven thousand Jews died during the fighting, mainly by burning to death or smoke inhalation. The Germans claimed to have suffered 100 casualties (17 dead and 83 wounded) but the Polish Underground put the casualties at closer to 300. Afterwards some 50,000 Jews were sent to the camps.

    Dedicated civilians armed with small arms do not prevail over trained, well armed soldiers.

  6. Morgan says

    “This is the MO of this administration, any time there is an accident like this, the president is clear. He doesn’t like for Americans to have guns and so he uses every opportunity, this being another one, to basically go parrot that message,” Perry said.

    I see this around both guns and abortion and I can never understand how it’s supposed to work (though I realize the likely answer is precisely that it’s not supposed to work). People think a lack of gun control contributes to conditions where more and worse tragedies and crimes involving guns take place. A crime or tragedy takes place. Those people point out that, hey, this kind of confirms what we’ve been saying, and if you’re wondering “how could this happen” and “what can we do about this”, maybe consider what we’ve been saying all along? And somehow this is unacceptable, politicising the issue, etc. It’s unseemly to actually use things that happen as evidence in support of your arguments which predicted they’d happen. The only time you’re supposed to say what to do about guns is when no one’s recently been killed by one, which is to say, a) when no one’s paying attention, and b) effectively never, given the rates.

    Same with abortion: when there’s a story about some unnecessary death or suffering, pointing out the relevance of the arguments you’ve been making all along is horrible exploitation of tragedy, etc. Yet I don’t recall ever seeing this around, say, road deaths, or bridge collapses. If there’s a terrible accident involving a drunk driver, you’re allowed to say “we need better education/enforcement here”. If a bridge collapses or a ferry sinks or a plane crashes, you’re expected to say “we need to look at what caused this and fix it”, even if what you’ll say caused it is something you’ve been clamouring about for years.

  7. says

    Unsurprisingly, more opportunist scum are crawling out from under their rocks:

    NRA board member Charles Cotton blamed Clementa Pinckney, a victim of the shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, for his own death. He also blamed Pinckney, the pastor of Emanuel AME and a state senator, for the deaths of the other eight people killed.
    Cotton wrote that “Eight of his church members who might be alive if he had expressly allowed members to carry handguns in church are dead. Innocent people died because of his position on a political issue.”

  8. says

    The claims that Obama was behind the massacre, so he’d have an excuse to take your precious guns, started pretty much instantly. These days there’s a split between those who believe in the old fashioned “Shooter was a brainwashed Manchurian candidate” concept, and those that believe the massacre didn’t happen at all, that it was entirely faked. Just like Sandy Hook.

    I’ve seen my fair share of comments from American gun kooks over the years that imply they think all us foreigners in places like Canada live in dictatorships, since we don’t have guns to threaten them with. Yeah, no one in Canada owns those 10 million guns some estimates claim are in private hands.

    Americans don’t know their own history. The Native peoples at various times engaged in armed resistance. In the end it did them no good. And they were probably better organised and skilled than Joe Militia and his friends, who think they’ll win their version of Red Dawn.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *