AP Photo/David Zalubowski
The STEM School Highlands Ranch shooting was fresh in everyone’s memories. Students, families, and teachers were trying to process what happened. They no doubt thought a vigil would help, would allow them to mourn as a community.
What they walked into, however, was a gun control rally.
To their credit, the students pushed back. As well they should.
Now, the group who thought this stunt was a good idea has apologized.
Muellenberg explained that the Team Enough group viewed the St. Andrew vigil as a more intimate, smaller service centered on the STEM families, while they envisioned theirs as one geared for the community at large. They weren’t expecting many STEM students or their families to attend, figuring this close to the tragedy, many would prefer the smaller St. Andrew vigil, she said.
She said her team tried every contact they had for STEM families, asking if any wanted to speak.
“The ones we did get in touch were very much emphatic ‘No, thank yous,’ which we totally understand,” she said.
The national Brady United organization issued an apology Thursday morning, saying the vigil was supposed to be about supporting the community.
“Brady has always been and always will be supportive of individuals and communities who have experienced the horrors of gun violence,” the organization said in a statement. “We are deeply sorry any part of this vigil did not provide the support, caring and sense of community we sought to foster and facilitate and which we know is so crucial to communities who suffer the trauma of gun violence.”
Except, they’re not.
This behavior is typical in the aftermath of shootings. Brady and groups like it routinely try to make everything about gun control and not about the survivors. These groups’ thinking, if you want to call it that, is that these students are natural allies for them. They’ll appreciate the supposed need for gun control since they just survived something horrific.
These groups have been allowed to get away with it until now.
You see, in the battle for gun rights, we’ve all been expected to fight with one hand tied behind our backs. Anti-gun groups could go anywhere and say anything at any time. A mass shooting could still be unfolding and they’d talk about the need for gun control before the bodies are even cold.
Meanwhile, Second Amendment supporters are expected to wait a respectful amount of time before saying anything. A tragedy happens, and a week later a pro-gun group has a rally for something unconnected? We’re insensitive.
Anti-Gunners turn a vigil for the victims of a mass shooting into an anti-gun rally and get a pass. Their time is up.
The student who was killed in this shooting, Kendrick Castillo, is a hero. He charged the attacker, buying his classmates time to escape. He saved lives. But instead of talking about Kendrick and how he represents the very best of humanity, we get a Brady group seeking to politicize it and cram their version of a “solution” down people’s throats.
More likely they’re sorry that they got called out on this nonsense for the first time ever.