Corkins, who lived in the suburb of Herndon, VA, is currently being held on charges of assault with a deadly weapon while the FBI interrogates him about his reason for firing a 9-mm handgun and wounding security guard Leo Johnson.
The AP reports Corkins had been volunteering at Washington, DC’s Center for the LGBT Community as recently as two weeks ago, when he was manning the front desk. ‘‘He always struck me as a kind, gentle and unassuming young man. I’m very surprised that he could be involved in something like this,’’ said Center director David Mariner.
While Corkin’s volunteer work and his malice toward the anti-LGBT lobbying group would suggest he’s gay, there has been no confirmation or public statement to that effect.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said President Obama, “expressed his concern for the individual injured in the shooting and his strong belief that this type of violence has no place in our society.” Republican contender Mitt Romney echoed the President’s condemnation of violence, and said his prayers were with the guard and his family.
Of course right-wing elements on the blogosphere haven’t paused a second to lay blame at the feet of LGBT groups and progressives.
Erick Erickson of RedState.com tweeted: “Two people have been shot at the Family Research Council in Washington, DC. If it were at a liberal group, it’d be all over the headlines.”
Gee, Erick, 4,930,000 Google hits and counting? We’d say that’s “all over the headlines.”
Anti-choice activist Andrew Bair: “Have any liberals blamed @SarahPalinUSA or @rushlimbaugh for the #FRC shooting yet? #newtone”"
AcuteMania’s headline on the story: “Gay Left-Wing Terrorist Attacks Christian Lobbying Group”
And from the neo-con Twitter blog Twitchy: “The Left screeches about new tone and civility, and shamelessly, and shamefully, blamed Sarah Palin for shootings due to the use of crosshairs in ads. However, the Family Research Council was actually put in crosshairs. [FRC is branded] a ‘hate group,’ because they believe in traditional marriage. The Left has targeted them over and over and fostered a climate of hate.”
Oh, there’s so much we could say right now, but we’d like to think that most reasonable people know that this isn’t about Left or Right. Whatever Corkins’ affiliations or ideology, he was a mentally disturbed man who acted in a way that no legitimate progressive group endorses. Just as we wouldn’t assume Wade Michael Page, who opened fire on innocent civilians at a Sikh temple last week, spoke for all (or any) anti-immigration groups.
On the FRC Facebook page, members of the LGBT community and its allies were quick to offer condolences and empathy:
Jen posted: “I am straight, Christian, and a very vocal advocate for LGBT equality. I don’t see eye-to-eye with this group on anything, but no one deserves to be violently harmed for their views. That man was a lunatic and in no way represents the majority of liberals or the LGBT community. My thoughts are with those affected by today’s horrific events.”
Christopher commented: “While our beliefs will always separate us, our humanity will always unite us. The gunman is not representative of the GLBT community and we condemn his violence.
A speedy recovery to the security guard.”
By their very actions, men like Corkins and Page are what The PolicyMic aptly describes as “too demented to have what one could call a coherent political ideology.”
Photo: Truth Wins Out