A sheriff in Carter County, Oklahoma issued a public letter urging citizens to arm themselves following a mass shooting in San Bernardino, California. See Example(s)
Collected via e-mail, December 2015
On 2 December 2015, fourteen people were killed during a mass shooting in San Bernardino, California. The shooters were identified as an American-born San Bernardino County employee named Sayed Farook and his Pakistani-born wife, Tashfeen Malik.
Investigation of the shooting and clarification of its perpetrators’ motives remained unclear into mid-December 2015. On 14 December 2015, the Facebook page “Carter County Sheriff’s Office” (in Ardmore, Oklahoma) published a scanned, undated copy of a letter advocating that citizens arm themselves against possible future attacks:
The text of the letter stated that:
Because of the recent attack in San Bernardino California and across our nation, Radical Islam is bringing the fight to our homeland and killing innocent citizens. As you know, the world is becoming more violent towards Americans. As your Sheriff of Carter County, I am joining other sheriffs across the country urging you as citizens of this county to exercise your 2nd Ammendment [sic] right to bear arms. I urge you as citizens to apply and follow the guidelines and laws to obtain your permit to carry a handgun. Times are changing and we live in a more violent world. It may come a time that you as citizens may be called upon to defend the citizens of this county against all enemies foreign and domestic that want to do us harm or kill us. By no means do I want to scare anyone, but the attacks are real. God bless each and every one of you and God Bless our county and the United States of America.
Reactions expressed via comments posted in response to that letter were mixed. Some readers firmly supported Sheriff Milton Anthony’s response to the shooting:
Milton Anthony we will forever respect you as a sheriff for that. I will stand with you
Awesome! Way to go Oklahoma!
I urge all Americans to get prepaired to protect yourself.
This will become the norm for all of us very soon….
MARK MY WORDS
Other readers were unsettled by numerous points the sheriff made in his letter and voiced their opinions about them:
Hurdurdur… Gerns… Hurdurdur… Pew pew pew… Hurdurdur… Bald eagle… Hurdurdur… ‘MERICA!!!!
This is islamophobic trash.
I am sad to say fascism has arrived in America.
This man is nuts; trying to scare everyone to death. We are in more danger from Okie nutjobs than from Isis.
Sheriff, why didn’t your letter mention anything about the PP [Planned Parenthood] attack, the school shootings, and the movie theater shootings, all committed by white males. It is rather clear that you and those who follow you are going to racially and religiously profile people. What will you do when one of your nutty followers kills an innocent Sikh person because they are too stupid to know that they are not Muslim? Do you have ties to the KKK, or Neo Nazis?
How the letter was received is a subjective issue, but Carter County Oklahoma Sheriff Milton Anthony did indeed write and disseminate a letter to local residents urging them to consider obtaining firearms in response to the San Bernardino mass shooting.