News we wish never happened

Jun 13, 2016

"Like in Charleston, a sanctuary violated," reflects Sasha Chavkin at the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, sharing Richard Kim's apropos ode to gay bars like Pulse, where nearly 50 were reported killed and more than 50 were injured by a mass shooting this weekend. "Gay bars are therapy for people who can’t afford therapy; temples for people who lost their religion," Kim writes, later explaining on Twitter, "I have no special insights into #Orlando. I only have my love of gay bars, so I wrote that." The Verge's Casey Newton shares, "I’ve spent so many Saturday nights in places just like this. This world is a horror."

Here's what we know: called "the worst mass shooting in American history," 49 people are dead and several more are in critical condition after 29-year-old Omar Mateen went on a shooting rampage in a popular gay nightclub where "the music was so loud it was difficult, at first, to distinguish the shots from the pulsing beat."  Journalist Shanoor Seervai reacts, "Devastating intolerance: on the night of #PrideParade the worst mass shooting slaughter in US history at a gay club." At the Winnipeg Free PressMelissa Martin admits,  "I keep trying to formulate a Tweet, so as not to let it pass in silence, but coming up empty. Waking up to horror." According to reports, Mateen was "offended by men kissing" and claimed allegiance to the Islamic State while praising the Boston Marathon bombers. "He pledged 'allegiance' to ISIS but let's not give ISIS too much credit here. Unlikely to be the real reason," argues Cato Institute's A. Trevor Thrall. But as for the primary takeaway from Twitter, perhaps Will Willitts with the Australian Financial Review tweets it best: "50 mowed down in their prime; 3 yrs ago we thot Newtown massacre of 20 kids was the worst."

As for Mateen, we know his ex-wife tells authorities "He beat me" and ... He was a security guard in Fort Pierce, Florida, and worked for a time at St. Lucie County courthouse. "Pulse clubgoers said they saw the gunman there before, perhaps as many as a dozen times," details Matt Pearce at the LA Times. He was also investigated for false claim of ties to Boston Marathon bombers. "Which is more suspicious, knowing the Boston bombers or falsely claiming you knew them?" wonders Jim Geraghty at the National Review. His actions set off increased alarm surrounding gay festivities this past weekend, culminating in the rest of a man with weapons who said he was going to yesterday's L.A. gay pride parade. "REMINDER: we are lucky there was not a second massacre today in West Hollywood today," concludes Dante Atkins. "This is how serious police taking threat to LA Pride parade," points out LAT's Shelby Grad.

Meanwhile, nearly every politician and political candidate in existence weighed in on the tragedy, but the one that caused the greatest stir was how Donald Trump addressed terrorism, immigration, and national securityThe Washington Post also seems to think that Trump suggested President Obama was involved with Orlando shooting during a Fox News interview. GQ's Mark Byrne warns, "here's the link but don't read it if you want to be productive." But that's WaPo's take, and plenty disagreed: "I’m no Donald Trump fan, but I think this headline is reading wayyyyyyyy too much into his statement," points out Resurgent's Erick Erickson. "No, Donald Trump did not say he thought Obama was involved in the Orlando shooting. Taking clickbait BS too far," McClatchy's Kate Irby similarly complains. Just spitballing here, but this latest report perhaps might have something to do with why Trump just revoked the Post's press credentials. "Welcome! @WashingtonPost joins @buzzfeednews@politico@HuffingtonPost among news orgs banned by Trump from events," greets BuzzFeed's Borzou Daragahi.

About the author

Writes the @MuckRackDaily & runs #muckedup chat. Creator of #100helpfuldays. I can haz media tips?

Signup for the Muck Rack Daily email

A digest of journalism, written by journalists, delivered to your inbox daily.