Since the shooting in Las Vegas, millions of dollars in donations have poured in. A GoFundMe by the Clark County sheriff, for example, has raised over $10 million already, with a $15 million goal.
So at first glance, the following tweet by Donald Trump seems natural – compassion after a disaster is, after all, expected of leadership.
There are, however, a few issues with this. It appears Donald Trump may be making this statement purely to bask in the adulation of his fans who take statements at face value.
First, as reported by USA Today, it’s not at all clear where the money is coming from:
‘”Happy to announce we are awarding $1M to Las Vegas – in order to help local law enforcement working OT to respond to last Sunday’s tragedy,” Trump said in his post.
‘The president did not specify whether the money would come from federal grants or his personal holdings, nor how the $1 million might be distributed.’
Second, Donald Trump has a track record of saying he’ll make a donation to a charitable cause – and then never following through. He knows that many people will see his statement, but won’t follow up or pay attention to fact-checking, and thus a myth that he actually donated will begin to circulate, when in reality it was a lie from the start. Or, if he does donate, he’ll just figure out a way to steal the money back from the charity.
Plus, there is the additional point of fact that it is Republicans who are owned by the NRA and refuse to act on common sense gun reforms, expanding background checks, limiting magazine sizes, and stiffening penalties for illegally selling weapons.
Republicans love to say that criminals will still have guns – they neglect to mention the origin of almost all illegal weapons is legal. “Look at Chicago!” they cry, neglecting the short train ride it takes to buy a gun outside of city limits. “Criminals will still have guns!” they argue, forgetting that almost all gun crimes result in the gun being taken off the street, and that buyback programs with stricter gun control have had marvelous success in other countries.
There are solutions to this problem, and science can prove it – which is why Republicans have banned research on gun violence in the United States. Yes, seriously.
Donald’s tweet immediately caused a frenzy on social media:
It will be interesting to see where the money comes from, and if any money comes at all.
Featured image via Darren McCollester/Getty Images