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Shooting at the Family Research Council’s Headquarters (Updated)

Jim Burroway

August 15th, 2012

Washington, D.C. police have a suspect in custody following a shooting this morning at the Family Research Council. According to a statement from FRC president Tony Perkins, “The police are investigating this incident.  Our first concern is with our colleague who was shot today.  Our concern is for him and his family.”

Police arrived at the scene at 10:50 a.m. local time and closed the 800 block of G Street NW. The victim, a guard at FRC, was conscious and breathing according to a police spokesperson. The Washington Post reports that a Tweet from the D.C. firefighters’ union’s says that the guard was shot in the arm. Politico reports that he was transported to a local hospital.

Police have not yet released the identity of the suspect. A source at FRC told Fox News that the suspect “made statements regarding their policies, and then opened fire with a gun striking a security guard.” Multiple news outlets say that the FBI is investigating, which could mean that they are looking whether the incident qualifies as an act of domestic terrorism. (Update: The Washington Post clarifies the FBI’s role: “Because the FRC’s offices are housed inside a federally owned building, the FBI is also responding.” Metro Weekly confirms that the FRC rents space in a federaly owned building.)

Update: It should go without saying, but times like these demand that it be said anyway. We do not know the motivation of the shooter, but if the shooter is sane and competent, it is then probably a safe assumption that he didn’t single out the FRC because he liked the group’s mission and wanted to deliver cupcakes. Violent backlashes against political and social causes– no, not causes, people — are always reprehensible, and they are reprehensible without reservation or exceptions.

I am reminded of this 1963 quote from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction.” For those inclined toward prayer, we ask that you pray for the security guard and for all the others who were targeted and are now undoubtedly shaken up by today’s events. For those not inclined toward prayer, we ask that you keep them in your thoughts.

Update: From the Washington Examiner:

A man walked into the lobby at about 10:45 a.m. and was confronted by the security guard as per the organization’s policy, D.C. police Chief Cathy Lanier said. The man opened fire, and the guard was hit in the arm before he and other security guards tackled the shooter,” Lanier said.

“As far as I’m concerned, the security officer here is a hero,” Lanier said. “The persona never made it past him.”

A suspect was taken into custody, and the man was uninjured, Lanier said.

Comments

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Regan DuCasse
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Regardless how many gay people have been murdered, abused by a parent, teacher, police officer…or court system.
No matter how difficult justice has eluded the victims, or frustrated us in courts, legislatures and the White House…
The spirit of response, has essentially been non violent, and non reciprocal.
If our response is passionate, angry, pained, frustrated, we are looked on as if none of these are legitimate, or tolerant or needed.

As if it is wrong to shout AT injustice, or rage AT violence, or shed tears.
As if gay people are not human, and human emotions will give us away as such.

None of our detractors has ever really appreciated just how much patience, compassion, non violence and respect for the law we’ve employed.
Even when we couldn’t bury our dead in peace, nor grieve for gay children as if it was the gay community that killed them.

This shooting is literally a rare anomoly. No fatalities, no mass casualties. I have wondered so long, why this never happened sooner, nor how certain kinds of grief didn’t turn to reciprocal madness.

I can understand why it’s never happened, but Tony Perkins and his ilk won’t.
Because even a gay person crying out for reason, and justice, is looked on with condescension, and as if there is no anguish there. And protest on the part of gay people, is unreasonable.

We’ve NEVER tolerated violence. At worst, glitter bombs, shouting matches, stealing lawn signs. Perhaps even angry diatribes at fast food counter persons.
We will denounce this, and the ONE responsible, will be found and held accountable.

Despite this, the only tragedy is that it’s come to this. But no tragedy in the sense WE have endured tragedy, did not occur.

Blake
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Jeeze-o-pete… the propagandists are going to have a field day with this. I’m glad to see the FBI investigate this as an act of terrorism (because that’s what it is if the news report holds up), but they really should be proactive about countering the propaganda that’s going to come out. Remember how the propagandists crowed a rock through a door?

Mark F.
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Horrible, but I’m glad nobody was killed. A “get well soon” bouquet or card for the gentlemen would be a nice gesture for anyone so inclined.

TampaZeke
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

“Darkness cannot drive away darkness, only light. Hate multiplies hate…” was actually a quote of the Buddha 2600 years before MLK Jr. He also said most of the words attributed to Jesus but he said them 600 years earlier.

Timothy Kincaid
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Zeke,

I doubt Jesus was familiar with the words of the Buddha or was plagiarizing. But I do believe that great spiritual leaders have, over the history of humanity, often called out the same message.

The sad sad truth is that they had to. Repeatedly. In diverse cultures and over centuries.

Blake
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Ugh… WND’s headline is “Shooting Erupts at Family Research Council”

just wait until they get news of the motive… I hope hope hope the shooter was there for other reasons than our issues.

Priya Lynn
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Jesus was a fabrication and the writers attributed words of philosophers from Buddha to Aesop to him.

jerry
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

I am sorry that the security guard was injured for any reason. The man was simply doing a job he was hired to do. My question is why an organization that claims to be one promoting family values needs a security guard. It doesn’t appear to me that they are any values decent people will accept.

jerry
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Thank you, Priya Lynn.

Ryan
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Thankfully, no one was killed. There’s been far too many shootings, lately. As for Fischer, Porno Pete, etc al making hay out of this; well of course, they will. It’s what they do. It’s all they have. We can really only pity them at this point.

Chuck
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

*shakes head*

We’re on a downward spiral.

Chuck
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Someone should start a kick-starter to help pay for this guy’s hospital bills or something.

Joseph Singer
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Or it could be a publicity stunt cooked up by FRC. I wouldn’t put it past them.

TampaZeke
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Priya Lynn is right.

And actually Timothy, not to wander too off topic but the people of Palestine and Egypt were VERY aware of the Buddha’s words in the first centuries BCE and CE thanks to the Greeks who had largely converted to Buddhism by that time. It was the Greeks who were responsible for depicting the Buddha in statuary, complete with the top knot of Apollo. Christianity is very clearly a melding of Buddhist philosophy with the Horace myth of Egypt. “Jesus” was almost certainly metaphorical. Even his disciples names were taken directly from the names of the Buddha’s disciples.

Andrew
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Man, it just feels like people all over are being pushed to the breaking point. The lack of decency in political discourse – and let’s be frank, it’s by vast majority coming from the right – has agitated anyone with a couple of loose screws… but all of us have to live in the wake of it.

Blake
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Woah Zeke, you might want to double check history on that one.

Timothy Kincaid
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Priya Lynn, Zeke, Blake,

Let’s get back on track, okay? Obviously there are a number of opinions about the historicity of Jesus (though I’d not heard that one before) and we could go on for ever on that, but let’s not do that here.

Truthspew
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

[Truthspew’s comments were beyond the pale and in gross violation of our comments policy. He has been placed on moderation. – JB]

Ryan
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Truthspew, you’re either a despicable troll or someone who needs psychiatric help. Either way, please go away. In other news, NOM has wasted no time lying about the FRC, claiming the shooting happened because the SPLC called them a hate group and the only reason it did that was because the FRC opposes “traditional marriage”. Even though NOM itself opposes gay marriage and is not labeled a hate group. There’s literally nothing they won’t lie about.

Ryan
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

Thanks for putting truthspew’s deleted comment back in as a blank space. Without it, I looked like s raving loon. :)

Timothy Kincaid
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

ooops… sorry, Ryan, I didn’t see your response when I deleted his message. There was no raving loonness about your response.

pax58
August 15th, 2012 | LINK

It is a reminder that we live in a very divided country right now and that some very unstable people, regardless of political views, are reacting with physcially harm to those with whom they disagree. Thanks for a well written response, we may not be able to control how those who oppose our very existence “use” this tragedy, but our community’s united condemnation of this action will be the most important thing in the long run.

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