Rep. Steve Scalise wounded in a shooting at GOP baseball team’s practice

Yesterday morning, the news broke on Twitter that there was a major shooting in Alexandria, Virginia. The shooting was at the Congressional baseball teams’ practice. The Republican team was trying to get their game together to defend their title (?) from last year, because 2016 was the first time the Republican team had won in eight years. Shots rang out, and Majority Whip Steve Scalise was shot in the hip. Four other people were wounded. Since Scalise – as a high-ranked member of Congress – has a security detail of Capitol Police, there was already law enforcement on site and the shooter was taken down after he unloaded something like 50 rounds.

The shooter was identified several hours later as James T. Hodgkinson, a 66-year-old white man, a Bernie Sanders supporter with a long history of alcohol abuse, violence and domestic abuse. Hodgkinson was wounded in the shootout with police, and he later died from his wounds. His social media is still being pored over, and he had a history of writing disturbing things about Trump and other Republicans. Despite his long rap sheet, he owned his guns legally. Bernie Sanders made a statement about the shooting – go here to see.

I understand from reading the comments in yesterday’s links post that some people think we didn’t cover the Alexandria shooting because the victims were Republicans. We understand how that might occur to people but want to assure you that’s not the case at all. If you’re familiar with our site, you know that we don’t cover those kinds of breaking-news stories as that’s not our focus, we’re a celebrity site and we cover politics that aren’t tragic and devastating. We didn’t cover the Gabby Giffords shooting, we never devoted a stand-alone post to the Pulse shooting (the one year anniversary of which just happened this week), we never wrote about the Sandy Hook massacre or the Boston terrorist attack or many other huge, breaking news tragedies that have happened over the years. The recent exception we made was the coverage of the Manchester and London terrorist attacks because there was a strong celebrity angle with Ariana Grande’s involvement (and even then, I was gutted and crying as I wrote those posts). But, for the most part, on these stories, we stay the hell away. Here are some of our reasons:

One, the first take is always the worst. You don’t want or need to read my hot-take on a crisis when the crisis is still unfolding.

Two, this site is not in the business of breaking-news real-news coverage. Please go to CNN or an actual news site. We cover celebrities, fashion, pop culture, media, gossip and (hopefully) thoughtful political commentary, if the politics involved aren’t completely tragic and devastating. I don’t want to add my hot-take because I don’t want to crowd out actual, important information about an unfolding event or, even worse, perpetuate misinformation about an event. If you need an escape from an unfolding tragedy, please come here and read about bangs trauma and how much I hate peplums and the color orange. If you want to figure out what’s happening during a shooting, go to CNN.

Three, I’m increasingly wary of performative social justice, in myself and others. This goes along with the first take being the worst take. In the first hours of a tragedy, I’m not going to perform my wokeness on social justice or gun control or the privilege of angry white dudes. It’s not the time, place or space for that. Give it 24 hours. Give it 48 hours. Then let’s have an honest discussion when all of the facts are in.

Photos courtesy of Getty.

 

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161 Responses to “Rep. Steve Scalise wounded in a shooting at GOP baseball team’s practice”

    • Ashamed 2 b a Fl girl says:

      +1, as always.

    • susanne says:

      I second this. Standing ovation from my couch.
      I totally get where you guys are coming from and respect the boundaries you’ve set for yourselves. It comes across as balanced to me, and I am so very grateful for the political posts as well.
      I am a bit disgusted that going after the privileged white men is what is bringing both sides together in Washington.

      • IlsaLund says:

        It is really disheartening isn’t it? Gabby Gifford, Sandy Hook, etc….But let someone go after the privileged white males…..

      • Luca76 says:

        I was thinking maybe this will be the thing that wakes someone up in the Republican Party about gun control. One of their own shaming them into common sense about gun control. Because that’s what gave us the Brady Bill which expired and didn’t go quite far enough but at least did something.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Will it bring both sides together? Not if the Republicans see it as another excuse to weaken gun control laws. Already, one of them said he’ll bring a gun onto the playing field next time. Because nothing says “gun control” like a weapon “accidentally” going off as the hitter slides into third base.

        It was disturbing how quickly the responses blaming “violent liberal rhetoric” emerged. A lot of us commenting here have likely underestimated the extent to which “liberal” has been used in the right wing as a deeply pejorative term for years. To us, it may define open-mindedness and tolerance; to them, it signals just as much anger and ideological rigidity as their own – only opposite. And their media use it that way.

        I’m saying this as someone who got an email from a friend, early in the week, said that in my providing factual knowledge about Russia, sanctions etc. I sounded “angry,” that she never heard of half these things, and that I must have gotten them from the “liberal media.” First she ever did this – well-off, educated Clinton voter married to a self-styled ‘libertarian’ Trump voter – and to me, it says the propaganda continues and battle lines are being drawn.

      • Imqrious2 says:

        Thank you, Kaiser, for your thoughtful piece. I agree with you completely. I come here for the escape, and for the interesting exchange of ideas from some very smart people. I love this site!

        WATP, a few min. Ago one Congressman (too lazy to go for the remote to rewind and see his name) said he will be carrying his gun EVERYWHERE, not just keeping it in his glove compartment in the car. OMG…WTF??? Are we going back to the Wild West with everyone armed and having shootouts in the street??? How about some REAL gun control?? How about background checks with a 1-2 week period before being able to take physical ownership? Where is any humanity and common sense???

      • ORIGINAL T.C. says:

        Perfect post is perfect. Thanks Kaiser.
        REgarding the gun control issue, I am now and will always be for gun control because it’s the best policy for the safety of the ENTIRE population. However, yesterday was the first time that I truly understood the pro-gun counter point. Those congressmen were shook, one was on the verge of tears with his lips shaking. His 2 minors sons had been there waiting in the cars. From their point of view, they were literally sitting ducks laying on the ground as one guy goes around taking them out one by one. They felt impotent and helpless. Men have problems when they are placed in a vulnerable position.

        The 2 security officers were only there because there was senior leadership there. They were the ONLY thing standing between a massacre. You can’t bum rush the shooter because he will now you down 100 feet away.

        So there focus is protecting themselves from harm and not worrying that the greater population will be at risk from them if they all were carrying guns everywhere. And they don’t stop and think that perhaps outlawing rifles that can shoot 100 rounds would be a sensible compromise. Or going to a total gun-free society. But I get their concern even though it is selfish.

      • Meghan M says:

        Things like that rarely happen in Europe. Why? Because of gun control. That’s really all you need to know if you wonder if it works. People even tried to stop the London terrorists by using bottles, chairs etc. Impossible if they had had rifles.

      • DystopianDance says:

        I can’t let go of how two men gave their lives (one a US servicemen) while protecting 2 young American girls of faith- this wasn’t addressed until 3 days after by the POTEC. So this baseball tragedy is complicated for me personally. I don’t condone violence at all, but I feel alone in noticing what gets attention and what does not. I don’t need Celebitchy to “break news”, but to be the voice of a sanity during this confusing phase of “democracy”.

    • Snazzy says:

      Thank you Kaiser. Stand with you 100%

      “If you need an escape from an unfolding tragedy, please come here and read about bangs trauma and how much I hate peplums and the color orange” … if you could just add my hatred for spray tans and kitten heels and the site would be complete :)

    • Olenna says:

      Ditto. Excellent post, Kaiser. What I read in yesterday’s complaints was unrepentant trolling. The complainers didn’t want to understand why this tragic incident wasn’t immediately covered. One had the nerve to come back with a childish, nasty retort to a CBr’s reasonable response.

    • Ceire says:

      This is your site, and you’re absolutely free to set the boundaries that you choose. You shouldn’t feel the need to explain that, but thanks for clarifying anyway.

      I know I need all the safe spaces online that I can get. I’ve been known to spend an hour reading reviews of make up and beauty stuff, or looking at celeb fashion, or whatever, because actual news sources are so troubling. Seems frivolous, but it’s so necessary.

    • Otaku fairy says:

      Yes. Excellent job. They handled that well and I honestly can’t believe anyone would chastise them for not covering it the first day. Who would even go there?

    • bettyrose says:

      Excellent post, Kaiser! Just sending my support. I don’t post as often these days, but I still read the site daily. I love the CB writers and the community of commenters. I love that this is a place to come for escapism where we can still respectfully discuss the current issues that weigh heavily on all our minds.

  1. Larelyn says:

    Thank you for providing a safe haven for many of us.

    I personally prefer the one day delay – it gives me time to research events and determine my own opinions before checking in with the squad.

    I have found my people, and they is us.

  2. IlsaLund says:

    Excellent post. Why anyone would suggest bias because the shooting involved Republicans is bizarre. This is a celebrity gossip site not a news site. Thanks Celebitchy for making this a haven in the midst of all the crazy going on.

  3. Lolo86lf says:

    I agree with Mr. Bernie Sanders, violence is unacceptable in our society no matter if it’s perpetrated on Democrats or Republicans or any other party out there. It always seemed to me the writers of this website waited for violent events like this shoot out to unfold before they started to post about them. So those people who think that Celebitchy is biased against Republicans being attacked are in my opinion wrong.

  4. Alex says:

    Well stated. The attack was condemned on both sides yesterday.
    However the irony is not lost on me that yesterday they were supposed to hold a vote on whether to make it easier to purchase silencers. And that this particular Congressman voted to allow people to open carry in parks.

    • lightpurple says:

      He also was one of those key in the AHCA position that gun shot wounds are preexisting conditions for which insurers can refuse a person coverage.

    • SusanneToo says:

      This is why it is important that our elections be free, fair and without any taint of tampering, whether by gerrymandering, hacking, or obstruction. Politicians need to be removed at the ballot box, not by violence.

      • Alex says:

        I agree with that. But I’m not going to fall over myself for these guys when they offer parents of dead children sympathy while making it easier for their attackers to continue to purchase guns.
        Plus the GOP does everything they can to suppress the vote. Not an equal playing field

      • QQ says:

        You don’t see me Alex, but my Church Fan is up as I cosign with a STRONG HALLEELLOOOOOO, cause that’s where I’m at, This person described himself in public and in print as: “David Duke without the baggage”.. And a Black man took a shot protecting him So TBH I have NOTHING in my purse for their thoughts and prayers and calls for Unity… Kids being killed in school didn’t move anything in them… this moves next to nothing in me

      • hmmm says:

        Agreed @QQ- sorry, not sorry for a flaming white supremacist. They’ll maintain their delusions and things will get worse, not better.

        It was one of Bernie’s radicals that did the deed. But he won’t address THAT or THEM. He’s encouraged and enabled what they are today.

      • Kitten says:

        Bernie addressed it. What more do you want from him?

        I mean come on..let’s be fair here. This isn’t Bernie’s fault and labeling the guy as a “Bernie radical” overlooks the fact that he was likely a mentally ill man who used Sanders as a cover for his aggressions. I don’t mind criticisms of Sanders (in fact, I welcome them) but tying this unhinged man to Bernie is playing right into the Violent Radical Left Wing fantasy perpetuated by the Right.

      • jwoolman says:

        Hmmmm- no, Bernie Sanders is not responsible for the shooter. Neither Bernie nor Hillary nor Jill Stein nor the stoned Libertarian ever advocated violence during their campaigns or elsewhere. Never. The violence was already inside the shooter, just look at his background. The shooter’s attraction to Bernie and Jill Stein did not give him any encouragement for violence. They simply did not talk that way at all. Neither did Hillary. And mockery of a President doesn’t make normal people decide to go shoot up a bunch of baseball-playing Congressmen in his Party. People can’t stand Trump but they aren’t asking for his assassination. Griffin’s stunt was universally condemned. We wouldn’t mind if he died in jail…. although I’m willing to settle for a nice retirement asap far far away from the Oval Office.

        Trump, in contrast, indeed repeatedly promoted violence during his campaign. He offered to pay legal fees for anybody beating up nonviolent protesters. He earned himself and his campaign a few serious talks with the Secret Service when he casually suggested that “Second Amendment people” might be able to deal with a potential President Hillary Clinton and any of her potential Supreme Court nominations (that’s code for shooting them). I saw the reaction of rally attendees sitting in back of him when he said it, they knew exactly what he was proposing. Trump did not discourage the chanters at his rallies when they went beyond the “lock her up” chants to shouting that Hillary should be killed in various ways. I saw his youngest son react in shock when he heard someone chanting that way at one of his dad’s rallies. (Good work, Melania. The kid has a working brain and heart.) Trump has engaged in repeated hate speech against whole groups, and harassment by schoolyard bullies and their adult counterparts definitely surged during his campaign and after the election (with direct mention of his name) against women, brown and black people, anybody “looking Muslim” as well as immigrants, refugees, or even just bilingual Americans chatting in a language other than English in a checkout line. Non-Muslim women who were just covering their hair on a bad hair day have been harassed as “Muslims”. People have been killed while told to “go home” if they looked “foreign” or while defending those who are harassed.

        So if this guy had been a Trump fan, yes Trump would share some of the responsibility for helping to create and expand a culture of violence against “the others” because he normalized such hatred and violence and a feeling of being under siege. But still the violence would have been inside the shooter all along and there is no guarantee that it wouldn’t have erupted even if Trump was a normal candidate who didn’t threaten his opponent and other people and encourage violent attacks. A person has to be highly disturbed in the first place to do this, which is why we were warning Trump to cool it because a certain number of anybody’s supporters are going to be in that category and the last thing you want to do is make them feel as though they are supported by the community and the potential next POTUS in such violence.

      • hmmm says:

        I don’t buy the “mentally ill” defence. There is nothing to suggest that. Why does he get an excuse when the others don’t?

        Indeed, there are Bernie radicals as there are Trump radicals, IMO. I see little difference between them and the Trump bots. They are on the fringe but don’t define the Left anymore than the wackos on the Right define all conservatives . It doesn’t matter if it fits the radical Right’s narrative- it’s all vile fodder to them, anything and everything.

        I don’t believe Bernie is responsible for the shooter. But he never tamped down on the radicals and he could have told them to knock it off with their aggressive behavior.

      • jwoolman says:

        Hmmm- in the US, we have a clear pattern with assassins of celebrities/politicians and mass shooters. They are not normal. There is something deeply wrong with them. They have delusions about themselves and their target. Whether it meets the legal definition of insanity is not the point. It’s not about whether or not they can tell right from wrong. They are not responding to stresses in their own lives in a normal manner and are an inherent danger to the rest of us. They are different from paid assassins who work for other criminals or people who kill as part of military or paramilitary groups.

        I think the shooter wanted to die. He didn’t seem to have an exit plan and just kept shooting until he was taken down himself. He saw armed security and that might have been an attraction. This is also a common pattern here – hence the phrase “suicide by cop”. Guys seem especially susceptible to wanting to go out in a blaze of glory after taking a lot of people (family or strangers) with them.

      • Kitten says:

        Jwoolman-Thank you. You articulated my thoughts perfectly. I don’t know…maybe I’m oversensitive about this because my BF is a Sanders-supporter and Stein-voter and he’s NOT some crazy Bernie Bro. I also hate the in-fighting on the Left right now because while we fight amongst each other, the GOP is uniting and lining up to take away our healthcare, destroy the environment, tank the economy, and deprive the marginalized members of our society their very basic rights.

        Regardless, I appreciate the discussion here.

    • IlsaLund says:

      And the GOP also rolled back the Obama legislation regarding the mentally ill having access to weapons.
      http://www.newsweek.com/trump-set-overturn-guns-mental-health-regulation-557237

      Sometimes we reap what we sow.

      • Belle Epoch says:

        YES to all of the above! This guy is very pro-gun and boasted about his A+ Status with the NRA.

        I’m curious why he had 2 armed bodyguards and why they were not successful in protecting him. After he was shot they went into action. I don’t know the details but the guy was not a sniper a mile away.

      • SusanneToo says:

        I made that exact comment on DM yesterday and got chastised for it. LOL.

      • Kitten says:

        JFC you posted on the DM? Brave woman.

        Truthfully, this is one of the few forums where we can acknowledge this without getting screamed at by the Right. This shooting was a gift to them, like the Kathy Griffin photo and they are milking this tragedy for all that it’s worth.

        What happened yesterday morning was awful AND it is a reminder that the GOP cares not for the safety and well-being of Americans.

      • lightpurple says:

        @Belle Epoch, he had a security detail because he is Majority Whip. The whip always gets security but from Capitol Police, not Secret Service. The shooter came at them sniper style and hid behind structures, using a high-powered weapon. Had those officers not been there, more would have been shot and many killed. But, if the NRA scenario of everyone having a gun were in play, many of them would have been shot by their own hysterical shooting and crossfire.

      • SusanneToo says:

        Mr. Scalise was one of trump’s earliest supporters, like sessions. Also spoke to a White Supremacist group during a campaign and later claimed he did not know they were a hate group. Of course not.
        Certainly not reasons to get shot, but it’s good to know one’s background.

      • jwoolman says:

        I think they were just all caught by surprise. This hasn’t happened before and they’ve been doing this Repubs vs Dems charity ball game for years. Only two people can’t really effectively watch for the appearance of someone like the shooter.

        It does mean that whenever a group of Congressional people are gathered, they need to step up security and have enough people watching in all directions. It would help if they would declare such gatherings a no-weapon zone so they would have the authority to keep out anybody with a weapon like this shooter was openly carrying. We really can’t afford the disruption if a group of Members of Congress are killed or injured at once, even if they are mostly heartless Republicans… This is why I thought it was incredibly stupid when they dispatched two busloads of Senators to the White House for some pointless briefing (Trump made a brief appearance to say hello and then vanished). The briefing should have been done in Congress, where they are set up to minimize such situations. An accident or attack could have taken out half or almost all the Senate at once.

      • vaultdweller101 says:

        I think the ultimate take-away here is that Republicans have always seen themselves as so far removed from gun violence, it may as well as take place in a movie.

        They thought they were immune from the violence they’ve been encouraging. Now they know.

    • anon says:

      You think that law would have prevented the murderer? Look at Chicago, look at Oakland: these are cities with the most stringent gun laws, but they have a violence epidemic. I’m socially liberal, but am against even more gun laws. All it does is makes it even more expensive for the poor to be able to defend themselves.

      • hmmm says:

        If the entire nation doesn’t have strict gun laws, what do you think happens then? Duh.

      • jwoolman says:

        The real issue here was lack of sufficient security of Secret Service caliber, which for understandable reasons they didn’t think was necessary. But since open carry is legal in Virginia – they do need a no-weapon zone around such areas as well so they could stop someone carrying such a weapon and prevent him from getting close enough to do damage.

      • Eden75 says:

        There are many countries with strict gun laws and while they do have gun violence it is not near as prevalent as it is in the US. Gun laws don’t stop it completely, that’s just basic logic, but incidents such as mass shootings do not happen near as often.

        Just to open some eyes in case people are not aware, this shooting was one of 154 mass shootings in the US, THIS YEAR ALONE. Does that not strike anyone as insane? I’m Canadian and we haven’t had 154 mass shootings, EVER. If you think Canadians aren’t all for their guns, then you don’t know us well. There are roughly 30 guns per every 100 people here, which puts us about 12 of the list of countries. the US has 112 per every 100 people. Maybe because I am not an American, this seems crazy; gun crazy to the extreme. The next closest country on the list is Serbia, with 58.

        I know that it is a constitutional right to bare arms but that doesn’t mean that I will ever understand it. I grew up taught that guns have only one purpose and that if I didn’t intend to kill with it, don’t pick it up. I was taught how to handle a gun, the do’s and don’ts of maintenance and storage and how to shoot. I’m good at it, I enjoy shooting targets but I do not own a gun. Never have, never will.

        When sh*t like this happens, political leanings do not matter. It’s times like this when people need to step back and take a long hard look at the whole picture. This man obviously had issues, this is not Bernie’s fault, this is not the Rep’s or Dem’s fault. I do believe that it is time for the US to seriously look at it’s gun laws and create a federal law in regards to them.

  5. “people can discuss entertainment stories and current events in a lighthearted, safe environment”

    Thank you so much, Celebitchy!! And my family thanks you for saving my post-#45 sanity…seriously…

    • Kitten says:

      Same.

      I rely on this forum; the bloggers, the commenters SO much. I would be losing my mind if I didn’t have you guys.

      • BengalCat2000 says:

        Right there with y’all. I dont comment very often but I check in every day. I can always rely on this forum for intelligence, wit and honesty. Thank you ❤

      • PlainJane says:

        Right there with BengalCat2000! I rarely comment, but spend time here every day chortling at the hilarity that frequently ensues! Plus, I love the thoughtful commentary from posters world wide. This site is a breath of fresh air that I love visiting on the regular!

      • B n A fn says:

        Thank you Kaiser for allowing us to come here to “shoot the breeze” with people mostly of like minds. I know this is the only site I leave comments on. I hate going to sites and read the commenters arguing with each other. I find on here the commenters treat the others with respect even if they don’t agree on a subject matter. Once in a while we will notice someone trying to start an argument but will generally get ignore. There is no grammar police or I’m smarter than you or your opinion does not matter, those are the things why I love coming here.

        When things will become me uncomfortable it’s generally when the subject is Brad and Angelina.

    • Ktae87 says:

      This is where I come for my sanity. Some days I feel like a blue dot in a sea of red. I live in a very conservative spot of California. I don’t post often, but I definitely read the stories and commentary everyday. I feel like I know my fellow celebitches as if they were they girlfriends I have drinks with every week. Kitten, QQ, Lightpurple, Bluhare, Sixer, Shambles, etc. There are more of you, and the commentary you bring every day has been my saving grace.

      Kaiser, your post is spot on. I’ve always appreciated the care you’ve taken in what you do and not post about. Much love and many thanks.

    • hoopjumper says:

      Exactly. I have read this site regularly for about five years. It has been a very valuable source of entertainment and education (both from the writers and from the commenters) during that time. It has become even more important to me in light of the current political situation. I don’t think an explanation was needed (your website and all that) but I appreciate very much the respect for your readers which you showed in offering it. Thank you.

  6. Ashley says:

    Couldn’t have said it better,Kaiser. I honestly don’t need those post,this site is the perfect balance of what I love in a site,it’s what keeping me sane during this difficult time. I hope the man who got injured will have a speedy recovery and that the republicans will start doing something about gun control.

  7. lightpurple says:

    Standing ovation, Kaiser.

    Prayers for all those harmed in yesterday’s shootings, both in Alexandria and San Francisco. Also for those in the tragic fire in London.

    With is history of violence, Hodgkinson should never have had legal access to a gun, especially not the high powered one he had – and he appears to have had it LEGALLY. What is also getting lost in the coverage is that he hated Hillary Clinton as much as he hated Trump – this was not a “typical liberal” as many of the alt-right are trying to portray him. We, as a society, need to address the atrociously high levels of gun violence in our nation. I pray that this motivates Congress to do something finally but sadly, I don’t think it will. These same people knew and worked with Gabby Giffords and did nothing.

    • SusanneToo says:

      I’m glad you added that he was also a HRC hater. That’s not being mentioned as far as I’ve heard, allowing the youknowwhos to go to town.

    • Esmom says:

      What a day yesterday. I wonder about Congress, too. Seeing Paul Ryan’s fiery speech made my blood boil. I don’t know why I would be at all surprised that his only expression of outrage about a shooting would come only when members of his own party in Congress were the targets.

      And seeing Joe Barton start crying on the PBS Newshour also left me incredulous and beyond pissed off. It was really hard to muster any sympathy for the guy when he and his GOP colleagues have had none for anyone affected by the heinous gun problem in our country, including Gabby Giffords, as you said. I was shocked and disappointed that Judy Woodruff was so soft on him.

      • lightpurple says:

        I’m convinced that Paul Ryan is not human. Very invasion of the body snatchers with that one.

      • jwoolman says:

        It’s very common to react strongly to such events only when you have a personal connection, otherwise we would be paralyzed by grief 24/7. The guy shot in the hip was the Majority Whip and so would be very closely working with Ryan. He probably knew the others more or less also. Having that connection makes it real in a way that such events happening to people you don’t know never will. It also reminds you of your own mortality, since these were people just like him and he could have been on that field himself. A fun event that has gone on for years without incident has become a security problem.

    • bluhare says:

      Seeing as you mentioned the London fire, I hope no one here was near or harmed by it. Or lost anyone in it. That was a horrific thing to see.

    • Sixer says:

      Thanks for mentioning the fire, my lovely. West London is where I was born and brought up. I don’t have any words and I feel as though it’s almost some kind of last straw. My country is completely broken and I don’t know how we are going to mend it.

      Kaiser – all the backing from me.

    • hmmm says:

      The shooter is a Bernie radical.

    • anon says:

      Sadly, there are very few liberal voices left in the DNC. It’s all extreme left voices and the shooter was very representative of the newly emerging and powerful wing of the DNC.

      • SusanneToo says:

        The shooter was a Berniebro extremist. They hate Democrats. Don’t you remember their performance at the Democratic Convention? Even Bernie himself couldn’t calm their Hillary hatred. Stop trying to push the RW agenda.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        Where do you get this idea about the make-up of the DNC? The shooter hardly represents the DNC. That is a really cheap statement to make, especially when it doesn’t have root in fact.

      • SusanneToo says:

        And let me clarify: when I say Berniebro extremist, I’m emphasizing the word extremist. These people left Bernie behind and set off on their own agenda. They want a burn it down revolution if you can believe Susan S. This wasn’t Bernie’s fault. It’s not the Democrats fault. No matter how often you show up to play the trumptroll, it won’t make it so.

      • jwoolman says:

        The DNC isn’t a bunch of extreme lefties. They’re mostly hardly a bit left of center and many are not even that. We have very narrow politics here.

        You are going to find some extremists and unstable people in any political group. The shooter was first attracted to Bernie because 1) he wasn’t Hillary and 2) he represented change even though he and Hillary weren’t all that far apart on policies. When Bernie did not get the nomination, he moved on to Jill Stein, the Green, for a protest vote since he didn’t like Hillary or Trump. Some extremists among Bernie’s supporters went to Trump as their new representative of change, showing that the attraction doesn’t always have much to do with policies.

        This guy could just as easily have shifted from Bernie to Trump. Maybe then he would have chosen to visit the Dems instead. Maybe not though, might have depended on whether there was security there since I do believe he wanted to be shot dead. He may not have cared whether he was shooting Dems or Repubs. He might well have been mad at the Democrats also because they didn’t nominate Bernie.

      • Annetommy says:

        Really? Doesn’t seem that way to me. The vast majority of the hate comes from POTUS and Pals.

  8. Kate says:

    Men, domestic violence and guns. The holy trinity.

    • Crumpet says:

      I disagree. One of the congressman’s detail was a woman who pulled herself back off the ground after being shot so she could continue to return fire. My take from this is: Women can be every bit the warrior a man can be. And the only reason this wasn’t a flat out massacre, is there were trained gun carriers on the scene.

      Let us have our guns if we are trained to use them properly, and so many of these other shooting massacres would have had a different outcome.

      • Aims says:

        First of all, I share bernie’s sadness and disgust over this latest gun massacre . My political standing is identical to mr. Sanders and am sickened by this violence . Anyone who knows and understand Bernie’s views know that this is the opposite of his message . He shouldn’t be blamed for a madman.

        As far as the gun debate goes , I don’t believe that if we are all loaded with guns , somehow violence will be stopped . Guns are in the hands of some very sick people who do very disgusting things. I don’t know a lot about the screening process regarding guns, but I believe there should be a psychological test as well . At my work , it only takes 2 hours to get a gun. That’s the background check . 2 hours ! !! The vast majority of gun owners are responsible , trained owners , but it the few out there who are very sick that can be lethal . I just can’t stress it enough . We needs some serious psychological testing to see who should be able to own a weapon that can kill.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        They were more than “trained gun carriers, they were police officers. To think that every single person with a gun would be trained to that high degree — with annual updates and physicals and gun checks — is ridiculous. In addition, many innocent people are wounded by stray police gunfire. Finally, it’s doubtful that every “trained gun carrier” would have taken an oath to put his or her life on the line to protect others. They’re more likely to be selective, assuming they can even THINK in those crisis situations. It’s insulting to the police officers who put their lives on the line to suggest that every schlub who can buy a gun without passing strict background checks and training could behave the way they did. Might as well pull in the same schlubs to give you open-heart surgery.

      • littlemissnaughty says:

        I don’t understand this argument at all. You really think 1 bn guns in your country would make things better? Would it? Fighting fire with fire never works. WHEN has it ever worked? In theory it sounds nice but there are so many factors that go into a situation like this. What does “trained properly” mean? I live in Germany where owning guns is extremely rare and subject to a ton of restrictions. I have a friend who was in the military and participates in tournaments so he owns guns and has to practice at least once a month or he loses his license. He told me that IF he was allowed to carry a gun he wouldn’t. Because he is in no shape – despite his training – to discharge a gun in an attack situation in a hysterical crowd. Recipe for disaster. His words, not mine.

        I’m absolutely biased because as I said, guns are extremely rare here and I see no downside to that. That’s a “freedom” we don’t need. But that’s a cultural thing I guess. Nobody will ever convince me that the situation in the US is worth the so-called freedom of owning a firearm.

      • Lady D says:

        I share your view, littlemissnaughty. We have rigid gun control here in Canada, too. A lot of people have shot guns for hunting, but other than that, a licensed gun carrier is rare and I prefer it that way. This however, in no way changes my stance on the fact that restraining orders against violent offenders should come with a gun and lessons.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        A woman serving as a police officer has nothing to do with the fact that domestic violence perpetrators are far more often men and that these men far too often can get guns.

        Police are not “warriors.” Only people fight in war are “warriors.” The minute the US considers its domestic police force to be soldier-combatants, there is no more civil society but an armed battle zone. Good luck with that.

      • jwoolman says:

        The woman was a trained police officer acting to defend.

        It seems extraordinarily rare in the US for mass shooters to be female. Disturbed women may kill themselves and their children (drowning seems popular), but they don’t seem as prone to firing on a crowd of strangers. We have so many mass shootings in the US (more than 150 far in 2017), there must be statistics on that.

      • mayamae says:

        You’re right crumpet, things would have been different if the players were carrying. More people would be dead. They would have shot each other as well as the security detail.

        You’re argument is old and tired, and sponsored by the NRA. The solution is always more guns, bigger guns, guns that can fire more ammunition at a quicker pace.

        And you are arguing against a point that was never made. Who said women can’t be warriors? You’re acting like we are back in the 1950′s and no one but you realizes that women can be cops and soldiers.

  9. Esmom says:

    Aw, Kaiser, I feel bad that you felt the need to defend yourself from the trolls yesterday. But I love what you wrote, thank you. “Performative social justice” is why I’ve been having a harder and harder time with FB for a while now.

    When I stumbled across Celebitchy over 10 years ago, I knew immediately it was different — smarter and more thoughtful along with being humorous and insightful — than some of the other blogs I had read. I’ve never looked back and I thank you and your team for creating such a supportive community of readers. You do an amazing job.

  10. Shambles says:

    Thanks for this thoughtful post, Kaiser.

    My honest answer:

    I’m really upset with Hodgekinson, not only because he inflicted violence on other humans, but because he played right into the hands of the GOP. Let’s be real here. He made them into martyrs, and there are already members of the GOP using this as an excuse to say, “I really hope democrats will tone down the rhetoric and finger-pointing,” as if that’s the reason this happened, not because this man was an extremely disturbed individual.

    • Esmom says:

      Shambles, this is what I was agitated about all day yesterday, too. We discussed this a little bit in regards to Kathy Griffin’s stunt. The internet yesterday was full of people screaming about how democrats and/or liberals have encouraged and incited violence. Never mind that Trump actually said someone, “second amendment people,” should do something about Hillary. It was sickening to see unfold.

    • JulP says:

      What’s interesting to me is that the focal point of the coverage of Hodgekinson has been that he was a Bernie supporter – not, as was noted above, that he (a perpetrator of domestic violence who pointed a gun in someone’s face several years ago) was only able to obtain a gun and carry out this act of violence thanks to the lax gun control laws in this country. Yet when a Republican or white nationalist is involved in a mass shooting (like Dylan Roof or Robert Dear), the Republicans are either silent or blame mental illness (which they plan to do nothing about). I have never seen the Republicans take responsibility for their divisive, dangerous lies and rhetoric that drive people to violence, but they are quick to blame liberals for someone like Hodgekinson.

      Dems and the MSM need to start talking about the fact that the Republican ideology itself is divisive and dangerous. They are the problem, not liberals (who have always condemned violence and want to enact sensible gun control). Republican policies these days are *based on* their divisiveness (e.g., the transgender bathroom bill in NC, or the Muslim ban). The Republicans can only get people to vote for them if they divide and create fear. If we continue to allow them to do that freely, we’re going to see a lot more violence.

      That was a bit rambling, but I’m just so frustrated that Republicans are always allowed to play the victim when they are the ones responsible for the mess we’re in.

      • Esmom says:

        Yes, amen to everything you said. I’m listening to Joe Biden on Fresh Air right now and he’s saying something similar, about how much Congress has changed since Obama was elected and the GOP vowed to make him a one-term president.

        He recognizes Citizens United as a main factor in driving the hateful agenda of the far right and bringing it into the mainstream. I love listening to him, but at the same time I’ve never felt so helpless and hopeless.

      • fiorucci says:

        JULp thanks for pointing that out. It’s not exactly curious though. A domestic violence man shooting a politician is less interesting (and more sad, because guns and wife beaters are hugely connected) than a Bernie bro vs republicans. Bernie bro shooting a gop congressman is exciting and new. Since only the shooter died they can really have fun with this story too, less worry about saying something terribly insensitive. They haven’t learned much since they helped trumps campaign with the free advertising.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Thanks.

      And as someone on Twitter (so many opinions, so little time) pointed out, the Republicans push Second Amendment ‘gun rights’ so that Americans can defend themselves against a tyrannical government…but they never seem to think that the tyrants could be *them.*

      It confirms my own opinion that the “gun rights” argument has long been built around the white man’s fear of slave uprising and the “tyrannical government” means the Yankees.

      So twisted when today’s African-American cops are wounded protecting politicians who care very little about their protectors’ rights and safety.

    • jwoolman says:

      The Congressional Democrats are polite. It’s the rest of us that are driving Trump crazy. Mock on!

      One Republican actually said something about see, this is the problem with town meetings! As if this means they can avoid the town meetings they find so disturbing. Someone needs to tell the Republicans that they are not running away from armed constituents, just angry ones. And they’re even running from people who voted for them.

      The blame-the-mean-Democrats stuff is just intended to deflect from the investigation and to get everybody to shut up and pass their secret legislation. I don’t know how any of them justify this to themselves. It doesn’t seem normal at all. They’re supposed to read and debate and hear from constituents etc. before a vote. Or am I misremembering from long ago?

  11. kaye says:

    APPLAUDS THIS POST LOUDLY.

    Shocking that it took a white man in power getting shot to make other white men in power care about white men in power who get shot.

    Also–the republican response to this makes me think of those kids on soccer teams that are taught to fall down dramatically to get their opponents fouled–where was this outcry when nooses with Obama figures were being hung or when their dear leader was talking about punching people or shooting people? seriously, they protest too much.

  12. Barrett says:

    I get confused honestly on what’s covered for Drump on here and what’s not. Thanks for acknowledging and discussing rather than ignoring.

  13. Tiffany says:

    I am send all the positive thoughts and optimistic recovery to Officers Crystal Griner and David Bailey and the friends and families of these total badasses. They are the true heroes in this situation.

  14. Who ARE These People? says:

    Nothing but respect for you, Kaiser, and the Celebitchy policy as a whole. Was wondering how you would approach this event and support your approach 100%. I think someone was lurking in the background resentful of all the ‘flaming liberal bias’ on this … celebrity blog?!!! … and just waited for an opening. The lines between trustworthy news outlets and all the rest have become far too blurry over the past few years. We were warned, and probably it was inevitable, but here we are.

    By the way, due to the normal changes of aging, older adults have a particularly hard time with context and sourcing of information. This is probably making everything worse for that voting demographic. I’ve seen it in the older not-conservative-in-middle-age people I know … getting “information” from all kinds of strange and ridiculous right-wing newsletters that have no business landing in their inboxes. This goes well beyond Breitbart et al.

    • hmmm says:

      Russian trolls continue apace.

    • Esmom says:

      Good point, WATP. Back in the early 2000s I can’t tell you how many emails my mom would forward (she doesn’t do social media, thankfully) to me and my sister and brother in law that came mostly from a couple of her right wing nut friends. She’d mindlessly forward them as factual with some comment about how outraged she was. Finally my BIL and I started responding with Snopes entires or other sources to debunk what she sent.

      I’m not sure she learned her lesson at all regarding fact checking but she did stop sending them. And in fact by withdrawing from sharing them from another viewpoint, she retreated further into her echo chamber. It’s really sad and I blame Fox News especially for exploiting that tendency.

  15. adastraperaspera says:

    Thank you for this thoughtful post. This shooting, like the other mass shootings that took place yesterday, is horrible and unacceptable in a civil society. I dream of a world without weapons. I dream of a country with full healthcare for all so that mental illness can be diagnosed and treated properly. I dream of a world where men will heal each other of toxic masculinity and live peacefully with women, children and nature.

  16. Rapunzel says:

    I do not believe in violence, even for the worst people. Scalise is a racist jerk, but I hope he’s okay.

    That being said, this is the result of Republicans demonizing everyone who doesn’t agree with them. Hell, just last see Eric Trump was calling everyone against his father “not even human”. That attitude is only going to create the us vs. them mentality that leads to violence.

    But sure, GOP, it’s all the liberals’ fault.

  17. AR says:

    Thank you. I come to your site daily fro a bit of light-hearted media before the chaos and disaster of CNN and BBC etc.. start posting for the day (your twitter feeds are fab too!) I’ve been following for 9 years and I check your website daily through the work week. Keep up the wonderful work.

  18. The fox-tards or whatever the thing is people call them were quick to blame the entire democrat party for the shooting. My friend who I could see years down the road being a political figure (he went to school for political science) said it can’t be democrats fault because one it was one man who did it with his own agenda and two he was mentally unstable and Trump made it easier for anyone really to get their hands on fire arms, especially the military or police only should be having grade. How can we blame democrats who clearly want gun control laws to go into affect because they see mental illness is a problem in America when it’s the republicans who just think everyone should have a gun? What will it take for republicans to see the big picture? I swear some of them are so blind and ignorant it scares me.

    • SusanneToo says:

      Sorry to be a downer, but this sitting around the campfire, holding hands and singing Kumbaya is temporary. Massacres of multiple people haven’t swayed them and this won’t either. Just this morning, I saw one of the Repubs who was there lamenting, “If I’d only had a gun with me …”

      • hogtowngooner says:

        “If I’d only had my gun with me…”

        To me, this is a huge part of the problem in the gun debate. Millions of pro-gun morons seem to fancy themselves as some kind of John Rambo or Navy SEAL, who can kill-shot a moving target in an enormously stressful and chaotic situation. There’s a reason police and military are trained to do this – because it’s really, really difficult. These idiots have watched too many action movies and live in this altered reality movie that they are the star of. And it prevents a real debate on the facts of how horrible the gun problem is in the US.

      • Lightpurple says:

        Several of them have said they will now carry. One of them said that he’ll now carry the gun he keeps loaded in his car’s glovebox. Because responsible gun owners always store their guns in the glovebox fully loaded.

      • jwoolman says:

        I foresee Darwin Awards for some Members of Congress in
        future if they really start carrying loaded guns around.

    • hmmm says:

      Republicans see the big picture but don’t care. It’s all about them and power. Guns are power, too; they’ll never give them up. Guns are largely for the weak-minded- it’s their Viagra.

  19. Cee says:

    Thank you. We don’t need more hate, violence and sadness. I for one enjoy coming here to laugh and b!tch at inconsecuential news like Bendy’s new Mercedes contract and Melania’s refusal to hold her husband’s hand.

  20. Oh Please says:

    TBH I’m tired of having politics shoved in my face from websites that I go to for reading CELEBRITY NEWS. I get enough of Emporer Baby Fists from other places I don’t need it from a website I go to, to find out if Beyoncé gave birth yet or not. Go start a political blog you’d be good at it.

    • Kate says:

      There are still a lot of celebrities article today. Bey, the Clooneys, the Lizard… For my part, I don’t see the big deal with Cumberbatch and detest all things Kardashian (except receipit day) so I just skip them. You can try to do the same.

    • Maria F. says:

      this is for oh please:

      I find these comments strange. Who is forcing you to come to this blog? Who is forcing you to read the political posts? The blog is not yours. If you do not like it, save your clicks and look for one more to your taste.

      Criticizing the owner of this blog is futile and unnecessary, she owns nothing to you personally.

      • Oh Please says:

        Did I ever say she did? Nothing I said was critical. I was simply stating my OPINION. I find a lot of celebrity blogs are straying away from what THEY CLAIM their purpose is. Kaiser said in her own words that this is a blog for celebrity news did she not? Did she not say Manchester was covered because of ties to Ariana Grande? Also who said I actually read them? You don’t need to open the post to see it’s there. To me Emporer Baby Fists and any politician for that matter are not celebrities. I don’t even think Arnold Schwarzenegger got this much attention when he was governor of California and he is an actual legitimate celebrity in my book.

      • Kitten says:

        Oh Please-Um you realize that the President of the United States IS a celebrity, right? You get that he was a reality TV show host and entertainer? You don’t have to think he’s a celebrity, but that doesn’t change the very real fact that he is one.

        Also, for someone who claims to have no interest in these posts, you sure seem invested in coming back to read the replies.

        I have to admit, I find comments like yours so bizarre. But I would never make the effort to type up several responses to voice my unhappiness about the content of a blog post because that seems like a huge waste of time. Just move on and leave this forum to the people who enjoy discussing politics because for every person like you who wants to read about Bey’s babies or whatever there are ten people like us, who are heavily invested in the fate of our country.

      • Ann says:

        If Beyonce ran for Congress and won, is your opinion that the site should then stop covering Beyonce? That goes for any other celebrity – George Clooney has shown a fairly serious interest in politics. Is it hands off if he ever runs and wins?

  21. Felicia says:

    The continual sickening stories of people in the US being shot by some nutjob with a gun depress the hell out of me. The willful blindness of politicians about how those urges? psychopathic tendancies? momentary madness? drunken rages? et al are enabled by toadying to a powerful lobby group disgusts me.

    It’s pretty horrible to say, but maybe this getting up close and personal in a way that someone else’s kids being shot down at school wasn’t might finally make some of the political class see that the “them” can also be “us”. “Collateral damage” isn’t quite so impersonal when you’re the victim of it.

  22. HoustonGrl says:

    Kaiser, I’ve been a fan of your writing for years, and I can genuinely say that you’ve helped me grow as a person through your thoughtful, clever, amusing, sincere writing.

  23. Elysium1973 says:

    I got into the 1000th argument with my dad, who is a major fan/viewer of Fox News about this issue last night. I went downstairs and, as usual, Fox News was on full blast. It started with “I hope to God those assholes on Fox News are not politicizing this tragedy. That’s disgusting”. And he responded with “well the guy asked if they were republicans before he started shooting”. Then the yelling began. At one point he said “well, we all know that you want all old, fat white men dead” (he is also a slightly chubby 70 year old white man). It got ugly fast. My mom and sister (who are middle of the road and not near as into politics as my dad and me) were in the middle and my sister brought up the whole issue with gun control and we could all agree on that. It’s so frustrating, because I adore my dad (he’s a physician and I’m a physician assistant and he’s been my mentor) and socially he’s very liberal. He’s pro gay marriage, pro choice, pro gun control, etc. It’s mostly the economic side that he skews right. The last several months have been a nightmare because we can’t stop fighting over politics and Fox News. I just closed on my first house so thankfully it’s coming to an end, but it’s been a major strain on our relationship. It makes me hate Trump, Fox News, and all their bullshit that much more. I’ve been so incredibly grateful to have this site and to read the post and comments here. Thank you, CB, for being a safe haven.

    • Kitten says:

      Ugh you have my sympathies. So awful…almost like you’re losing a loved one, in a sense.
      Not to be hyperbolic, but that’s sort of what it feels like when you see a beloved family member being brainwashed by Fox News. Stay strong and keep fighting the good fight. I hope your dad snaps out of it, sooner rather than later.

    • Plibersek says:

      Tell your dad not to worry about old white guys dying off. There’re plenty of young white guys who’ll be taking their place. 😉

    • jwoolman says:

      You can tell your dad the shooter did not ask if they were Democrats or Republicans. Someone in the group was talking with a runner, a younger guy in running clothes who asked him that question. No connection with the shooter, who was older and in regular clothing. The story just got garbled somewhere along the way.

      The shooter also didn’t like either Trump or Hillary. He seemed to shift to Jill Stein when Bernie didn’t get nominated. So he might very well have been angry with both the Democrats and the Republicans. I think he wanted to die, so he might have been attracted by the two police officers who were there to protect the Majority Whip (who was shot in the hip).

  24. mazzie says:

    I appreciate the hard boundaries set here. As for what happened yesterday, I will withhold my opinion.

  25. CynicalCeleste says:

    Solid post, well said.

  26. Plibersek says:

    I was watching the reports yesterday and was annoyed by how they laboured the point about the shooter being a Sanders volunteer. Eventually I was like “Yeah, I got it the first twenty times you said it.”

  27. Magnoliarose says:

    Great post. I think this blog is well written and consistent. I like the mixture of celebrity and politics. These are strange times and people need an outlet. Trump permeates everything and everyone has an opinion about it.

  28. Elgin Marbles says:

    I would like to add to the irony of this shooting. Steve Scalise once said he was “David Duke without the baggage.” He also is opposed to same sex marriage and LGTBQ rights. One of the officers who rescued him is an African American lesbian who has a wife.

    Also, the media has almost completely ignored the shooting at the UPS facility in SF – there were four fatalities there.

    Finally, thanks Kaiser – well said.

  29. Lori says:

    I read some of the comments that were written, and found them distasteful. News about tragedies is not what I read Celebitchy for. Trump is sort of an exception since he has been a celebrity for ages. I wish you didnt feel the need to give in to them. Many probably thought the same as me, and didnt comment their opinion- just as I didnt.

  30. Veronica says:

    Honestly, you shouldn’t have to apologize for the content you put on your privately owned site. People looking to a celebrity gossip site for indepth, unbiased political news are foolish by definition.

  31. Tiff says:

    Is it irony that the congressman that once referred to himself as “David Duke without The baggage,” was saved by two Black police officers?

  32. Lady Rain says:

    Great post, bravo! Celebitchy is my refuge.

  33. susanne says:

    I, for one, will not stop talking about racism until it’s no longer an issue in our society. I don’t yell or name-call, and I value the discussions here because they tend to be well-reasoned and focused on making things better, rather than lashing out.

  34. Kate says:

    We’ll quit talking about white people when they quit stealing from us, raping us, locking us up and killing us.

  35. SusanneToo says:

    There are, at this very moment, fourteen celebrity threads posted today. And we’re not even to the links thread yet. The only celeb threads I’ve peeked at are Clooney and BC and avoided the rest. You could do the same with the political threads, all four of them.
    And, BTW, trump and his criminal administration have a greater impact on the world than a celeb’s foibles, as fun as they might be.

  36. pinetree13 says:

    I used to come here for the Celebrity coverage but I’ve grown bored with that over the years. Now I come here first for the latest 45 happenings because I love the funny and brilliant things the other commentators come up with on those posts (and I still read the odd celebrity story too of course)

  37. third ginger says:

    As I indicated yesterday, I am fortunate to have family and friends with whom I can talk politics, but for many on CB, this is not the case. CB provides them and others a valuable forum. Woman [and man] cannot live by gossip alone. At 64, I can only argue about “cute boys” for so long. Best to all.

  38. Harold says:

    Thoughts and prayers to all those wounded. Hopefully, both sides can ratchet down the rhetoric a bit.

  39. Harold says:

    @Kate – I think you have it backwards, ma’am. Check the statistics.

  40. Lady Rain says:

    I think Kate makes a valid point.

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