In the wake of any deadly school shooting, there is a frustratingly familiar public debate about the root causes of such violence that typically ends with a stalemate between sides and no real action to prevent future massacres.
That narrative was disrupted this week, however, when a transgender shooter killed six people — including three young children — at a private Christian school in Nashville, Tennessee.
Some trans activists and groups issued statements sympathizing with, if not excusing, the shooter’s deadly rampage.
Others, like activist Eli Erlick, seemed to pin the blame on the fact that America allows Christian schools to exist in the first place.
“As we learn more, it’s clear the Nashville Covenant School is a right-wing institution in which Audrey Hale and many others were abused,” Erlick claimed.
Going on to obliquely criticize conservative efforts to strip inappropriate content from curricula, the trans activist declared: “They try destroying public schools any chance they get, but here we are.”
Leaving little doubt about the movement’s radical agenda, another trans activist, Veronica Ripley, retweeted Erlick assertion and added that “the conservative love affair with radical unregulated religious ‘schools’ should come to an end.”
Although Erlick took exception to a Daily Mail headline portraying the argument as a call to “ban” such schools, an attempted clarification only left critics with more concerns.
This isn’t what I said at all @DailyMail. Regulating religious schools, firing pastors that abuse students, mandating queer and trans curriculum, and providing free mental healthcare could help prevent tragedies like these in the future. https://t.co/slyK8oOGod pic.twitter.com/p2kfhCHjXV
— Eli Erlick (@EliErlick) March 28, 2023
Among the steps that Erlick believes are necessary to properly regulate religious schools is “mandating queer and trans curriculum,” which would essentially strip such institutions from being able to operate according to their convictions.
In another apparent attempt to shield the shooter — and by extension, the trans movement — from scrutiny in connection with the massacre, some activists are pushing back against calls to release a manifesto the shooter left behind.
As Children of Lesbians and Gays Everywhere Executive Director Jordan Budd argued: “It should not be published. The focus should be on how this was able to happen in the first place. There should not be such easy access to deadly weaponry.”