In a Facebook post, a self-described anti-gun college professor allegedly called for a mass shooting leaving no survivors at the headquarters of the National Rifle Association in Virginia.
The NRA is the most high-visibility gun rights/Second Amendment lobbying organization in the U.S.
As a result of the posting about storming the NRA central offices with weapons, the Facebook user in question, James Pearce, who is reportedly an adjunct professor at Southern State Community College in Ohio, is supposedly under investigation by law enforcement authorities, including the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, according to the Highland County Press.
“The [Ohio] Attorney General advised [SSCC Vice President Nicole] Roades to take no action until the Feds had completed an investigation,” the Press noted.
SSCC has four campus locations, with its home campus located in Hillsboro, Ohio, in Highland County.
In a follow-up post today, Prof. Pearce — whose Facebook page is labeled as a “hate free zone” — insisted that his remarks were meant to be sarcastic.
The controversial June 13 post, authored the day after the horrific terrorist attack at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando and which recently surfaced in the media, reads as follows.
“Look, there’s only one solution. A bunch of us anti-gun types are going to have to arm ourselves, storm the NRA headquarters in Fairfax, VA, and make sure there are no survivors. This action might also require coordinated hits at remote sites, like Washington lobbyists. Then and only then will we see some legislative action on assault weapons. Have a nice day.”
A PR representative at the college told Campus Reform that “it is the college’s policy not to comment on individual personnel matters” but that generally, the educational institution follows a protocol to alert authorities about any threats. She also drew a distinction between a report and an investigation.
“When asked if Pearce would continue to teach during the investigation, [the PR rep] stated, ‘Certainly any criminal prosecution and findings could be a consideration for employment decisions in any matter of criminal conduct.’”
In additional comments that may have been subsequently deleted, Prof. Pearce also explained on Facebook, according to the Personal Liberty website, that his proposal about the NRA mass shooting was supposed to be a joke and that “Facebook needs something like a ‘sarcasm punctuation mark’” for less-literate users. He also apologized for his foolish mistake that “may have planted an idea” into the head of an unbalanced person.
“At this stage, we’re not sure what’s more disturbing — the fact that someone entrusted with a teaching position called for a bloody, armed uprising against the NRA and Washington lobbyists, or the fact that this so-called ‘educator’ was actually stupid enough to put the threat (even if said in jest) in writing,” Truth Revolt wondered.
Ohio Professor Offers Gun-Control Solution: "Storm NRA HQ & Make Sure There Are No Survivors" https://t.co/YPZukK1Jb3— zerohedge (@zerohedge) July 7, 2016
As of this writing, James Pearce’s name does not appear on the college’s staff directory web page.
Separately, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, a Connecticut Democrat who led the recent 15-hour filibuster that nonetheless resulted in four gun control bills being voted down by his colleagues, claims that the NRA “is dangerously out of step with the American public” when it comes to guns.
“The NRA is creating no room for compromise, and the American people are demanding compromise,” he declared in a Vanity Fair interview. He also praised presumptive presidential nominee Hillary Clinton for making gun control “a defining issue of her campaign.”
A 40 percent year-over-year spike in legal gun purchases has occurred in the month of June based on FBI background checks of gun sales, Fortune reports; these stats don’t account for multiple purchases at the same time from licensed dealers, however. “Events like [Orlando] generally contribute to increased gun sales for two likely reasons: people are scared and want to defend themselves, and that’s when politicians reignite the gun control debate.” Florida background checks, in particular, also recorded an all-time high in June, as well as spiking nationally, Bloomberg noted.
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