Nasim Najafi Aghdam, the woman who allegedly shot three people at YouTube’s headquarters in San Bruno, CA, on Tuesday afternoon before killing herself, does in some ways break from what we’ve come to expect of mass shooters in America. She was a 39-year-old woman of Iranian descent who published videos in English, Turkish, and Farsi on the video site, was angry when her revenue from her YouTube channel fell, and used a handgun, not an assault rifle to carry out her attack. She also posted about her work with animal rights’ groups, was a vegan, and reportedly protested the military’s use of pigs in training exercises with PETA.
So it seems inevitable that conservatives are tickled pink to have the heat taken off the National Rifle Association, white male gunmen, and banning AR-15s for one hot second. Leading this charge? Donald Trump Jr.
He started the action off by tweeting:
But he didn’t stop there, of course. As the always eagle-eyed Ashley Feinberg flagged on Wednesday morning, the Trump child looking most likely to go to prison was up late liking up a storm of tweets that trumpeted Aghdam as a “left-wing” activist who didn’t eat meat.
“That sure fucks up the narrative,” one tweet Don Jr. very much liked, from a writer at the right-wing outlet PJMedia, read.
Trump Jr. was also retweeting messages pushing the narrative that this shooter’s identify somehow exonerates an evil organization that works to get guns in as many American hands as possible.
It should go without saying that this is horseshit, conveniently spun out of another act of gun violence (but yes, tell me again how liberals calling for gun control are “politicizing a tragedy”). There is no one-size-fits-all profile of a mass shooter, although they are overwhelmingly male and very often white. We also know that only around 10% of shootings take place in “gun-free zones” like the YouTube offices, that domestic violence is frequently a warning sign before acts of gun violence, and that the shooter’s gun or guns were most likely obtained legally before using to kill people.
Vegans with guns are a problem. Angry white men with guns are a problem. But no combination of characteristics can negate the fact that the guns themselves are the biggest problem.