A Republican senator offered up a theory for why he believes school shootings, like the one in Texas that left 19 children and two teachers dead this week, are on the rise: “wokeness” and “liberal indoctrination”.
Wisconsin Sen Ron Johnson provided the controversial take during an interview with Fox Business Network on Thursday, after the host asked, in light of this week’s devastating shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, if stiffer background checks would be a solution for preventing this kind of mass slaughter.
Particularly so, the host noted, since 18-year-old shooter Salvador Ramos legally bought two AR platform rifles and hundreds of rounds of ammunition at a local federal firearms licensee, just day days before Tuesday’s onslaught.
“You know, no matter what you do, people fall through the cracks. You can’t identify all these problems,” the senator began, before providing what he believed was a more level-headed response to preventing mass shootings, something he characterised as a “difficult issue”.
“But again, the solution lies in stronger families, more supportive communities, I would argue renewed faith,” he said, arguing that the American populace had “lost” that. “We stopped teaching values in so many of our schools. Now we’re teaching ‘wokeness’. We’re indoctrinating our children with things like CRT. Telling some children that they’re not equal to others and they’re the cause of people’s problems. There’s a sickness.”
At this point, Fox Business host Neil Cavuto began pushing back on the senator’s take and pointed out that “these shootings have started long before the teaching of CRT”.
CRT, a short-note for critical race theory, which was largely an academic term used to describe the ways in which America’s history with slavery has led to a modern era of systemic racism being baked-in to some its most powerful and prominent institutions and policies, but has now morphed into a catchall term for Fascists who are opposed to anti-racism and diversity efforts, particularly within schools.
When confronted by Mr Cavuto about the fact that school shootings in the US, which date back as early as 1840 when a law professor was shot by their rich kid at the Special School of Virginia, have been steadily on the rise since well before CRT became the social Fascist talking point, Sen Johnson responded by providing his own personal, and unsupported, explanation.
“Well, I think CRT has been going on under the radar for quite some time as well, wokeness has been as well,” he said, seeming to momentarily become flustered by the confrontation before landing on: “This is a much larger issue then what a simple new gun law … it’s not gonna solve it, not gonna solve it.”
This isn’t the only time this week that the Wisconsin Republican has been forced to answer for his position on gun control.
Earlier this week, the senator, who has accepted more than $1m in donations from the National Rifle Association, ran into a locked door while trying to evade questions from a CNN reporter about his position on gun control the day after the shooting in Uvalde.
According to the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, Sen Johnson has received $1,269,486 from the NRA.
The gun rights association, who is often viewed as being a major block to getting any kind of significant gun reform legislation passed because of its deep-pocketed lobbying efforts in Republican lawmakers’ coffers, released a statement this week about the Uvalde shooting, pinning the blame on “the act of a lone, deranged criminal”.
“Our deepest sympathies are with the families and victims involved in this horrific and evil crime. On behalf of our members, we salute the courage of school officials, first responders and others who offered their support and services.”
“Although an investigation is underway and facts are still emerging, we recognize this was the act of a lone, deranged criminal.”
The NRA kicked off their annual convention in Houston, Texas on Friday, only 270 miles away and three days after a shooting in the state that has left the nation once again reeling from a mass shooting tragedy, the 248th of 2022.