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The red faction of the red-green alliance just cannot help itself. Even with the cautionary tale of the Paul Wellstone funeral, the left could not be decent for a day. School officials allowed the Brady gun-grabber group to organize a supposed vigil, without informing the student body and parents that they had done so. The Brady Campaign invited Senator Michael (I want to be president) Bennet (D-CO Silicon Valley), and U.S. Representative Jason Crow (D-CO-6 Silicon Valley). It started as the left expected, and then went sideways for them. The reaction of students and parents suggest a rebellion against their political and cultural overlords, and may yield results in the year ahead.
Kudos to MSN and USA Today for telling the truth in “Students walk out of Colorado school shooting vigil, saying their trauma was being politicized:”
The event Wednesday was primarily billed as a vigil to honor Kendrick Castillo, who was fatally shot in a rampage by two students at the STEM school here. Speakers at the school’s packed gymnasium, however, were mostly politicians and advocates pressing Congress for more restrictive gun laws.
After about 30 minutes, hundreds of students from the STEM School stormed out yelling “this is not for us,” “political stunt” and “we are people, not a statement.”
…Wednesday night, the traumatized shooting survivors who exited the rally thrust lighted cellphones into the air and chanted “mental health, mental health,” as their hands and voices shook in the cold rain. Angry students pushed and screamed at journalists, demanding to see photos they had taken.
Jason Crow is a freshman member of Congress and in a district that could be flipped back in 2020:
Crow defeated Republican incumbent Mike Coffman to win election to the United States House of Representatives in 2018.
Yet, he could not help himself. The crazy has set in. The masks have not just slipped, they have been proudly thrown away. Now the good people of Colorado, and every other state, can see clearly and choose accordingly.
What we know of the attack:
The attack was started by two people, one an 18-year-old male and the other a juvenile who police first thought was male. It later turned out that the second attacker was a 16-year-old girl who was transitioning from female to male identity:
Court records listed the defendant as Maya McKinney, but a defense attorney said his client uses male pronouns and is named Alec. The sheriff’s office initially identified him as a boy and later said the suspect was a girl.
The would-be mass-killers struck in two locations. The attack was stopped in each location by brave men. The heroes were a Marine veteran, working as armed security, and three students, one of whom gave his life for others.
The armed guard did not come in gun blazing, rather he confronted one of the attackers, who surrendered rather than committing suicide by cop. As USA Today reported on the Colorado school shooting:
[T]he guard, a former sheriff’s deputy and Marine who saw combat, ran to the sound of gunshots and took custody of the youth at gunpoint.
The other half of the attack was stopped by three unarmed students. Kendrick Castillo, age 18 and ready to graduate, charged the shooter. While the killer cut him down, he bought the time and triggered action by two other students, one of whom had already signed up to become a Marine. They subdued the killer, one of them taking two bullets in the process.
Here is what we know of the fallen hero, Kendrick Castillo, as his father, John Castillo told NBC News:
He also told NBC that he talked with Kendrick about what to do in a school shooting, advising him “you don’t have to be the hero.”
But his son, who wanted to study electrical engineering in college, insisted he would act. “You raised me this way. You raised me to be a good person. That’s what I’m doing,'” Castillo recalled.
So, the attackers were not the only ones with a plan. Kendrick Castillo had fixed in his mind what he would do if there was a shooter in his school. Having this fixed in his mind in advance, when the critical moment came, he charged. That made all the difference. That was what any sane and decent person would focus on in a gathering of the student body.
But the left is neither sane nor decent anymore. Or, rather, they are taken by their own morality and logic, which is now in open conflict with the population they wish to fundamentally transform. Like moths to a flame, they cannot help rushing to the aftermath of a shooting with gun-grabber demands. They cannot, more generally, grant that there might be a public space and time that is civil, rather than political.
A Tale of Two Funerals:
Weeks before the 2002 election, Senator Paul Wellstone, the long-time Minnesota Democrat, died in a plane crash. Walter Mondale stepped in to try to save the seat for his party. There was a memorial event, in a 20,000 seat venue, that turned into a partisan political rally. As Salon reported on the Wellstone memorial service:
Tonight’s event is officially a memorial service. The lighting inside the arena is eerily appropriate: The big incandescent bulbs on the arced ceiling have been turned off, leaving the upper decks in darkness while the dais below is illuminated by stage lights suspended above the court. The contrast creates the impression of a vast ghostly assembly. It’s as though the dead have come to honor the living, when in truth the living have come to honor the dead.
…The touching recollections are followed by sharply political speeches urging Wellstone’s supporters to channel their grief into electoral victory. The crowd repeatedly stands, stomps, and whoops. The roars escalate each time Walter Mondale, the former vice president who will replace Wellstone on the ballot, appears on the giant screens suspended above the stage. “Fritz! Fritz!” the assembly chants.
Minnesota was repulsed. They rejected Walter Mondale and elected a Republican, Norm Coleman. The voters had been favoring the dominant party candidate, and there should have been a good-will or sympathy vote. That goodwill and sympathy were presumed upon by people who could not distinguish between the civic and the political, and the shock likely changed the outcome of the 2002 Senate race in Minnesota:
At the time of his death, Wellstone was slightly ahead in the polls. After Mondale was chosen as the DFL candidate, he led 51% to 45% in a poll taken a few days before the election. Early on Election Day, Mondale was leading, but by nightfall Coleman pulled ahead, winning by 2.2 percentage points.
In 2018, a beloved popular singer, Aretha Franklin, died. Her very public funeral service in Detroit attracted cultural and political leaders, solidly leftist. It went sideways, as Al Sharpton used Aretha Franklin’s funeral to attack President Trump:
“Now I want y’all to help me correct President Trump to teach him what [respect] means,” he joked, much to the crowd’s delight. “And I say that because when word went out that Ms. Franklin passed, Trump said, ‘she used to work for me.’ No, she used to perform for you. She worked for us.”
Franklin died August 16 at age 76 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. Upon news of her death, Mr. Trump extended condolences to Franklin’s family and noted that the iconic singer worked for him “on numerous occasions” when she was contracted to perform at his hotels.
Perhaps because the Democrats retook the House, in the usual first-term mid-term correction, this was seen as a good move. Perhaps the California puppet-masters, who were very public, after the fact, in their campaign to flip Colorado from sage-brush conservative to hard secularist leftist, pulled the strings. Perhaps Senator Bennet and Congressman Crow are true believers.
Whatever the case, the voters are on notice and will render their judgment in 2020. Will they continue to buy the facade of “pragmatic progressivism,” or decide the pragmatism only extended to getting the left’s boot on the necks of Christians and gun owners? Will there a second “sagebrush” rebellion, this time against Silicon Valley social values and the red-green alliance?