Chelsea Clinton was confronted by angry people at a vigil for the 49 people killed in the terrorist shooting in New Zealand on Friday.
Clinton joined a crowd in New York City on Friday to honor and memorialize the victims of the shooting in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand on Friday. There, angry students confronted the author and activist, blaming her "rhetoric" for the prevalence of violent attacks. In a viral video circulating social media, students told Clinton that her remarks on congresswoman Ilhan Omar helped stoke these attacks.
"This right here is the result of a massacre stoked by people like you and the words that you put out into the world," one student said in the video. "I want you to know that and I want you to feel that deep inside. The 49 people died because of the rhetoric you put out there."
Woman blames @ChelseaClinton’s rhetoric for the New Zealand Mosque massacre.
The account this video originated on has since been deleted.March 16, 2019
Other students gathered around and snapped their fingers in approval of the words. Clinton put her hands at her heart and apologized to the students that felt her comments were wrong. Clinton was among the many prominent voices denouncing Omar for her remarks on Israel, which were deemed anti-Semitic by many U.S. political figures.
"I am so sorry that you feel that way," Clinton told the students. "It certainly was never my intention. I do believe that words matter. I believe we have to show solidarity with each other."
"What does 'I'm sorry you feel that way mean?" another student snapped.
Omar, a freshman Democratic representative of Minnesota and practicing Muslim, stirred up controversy last month when she criticized Israel's treatment of Palestinians, saying that lobbyists paid U.S. officials to support Israeli policies. Prominent voices on both sides of the political spectrum accused Omar of outright anti-Semitism.
As the video of Clinton's confrontation circulated on Friday and Saturday, people on both sides of the spectrum came to defend her as well. Tweets poured in from figures like Donald Trump Jr. and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, to name a few. In the process, they doubled down on their criticism of Omar.
It’s sickening to see people blame @ChelseaClinton for the NZ attacks because she spoke out against anti-Semitism. We should all be condemning anti-Semitism & all forms of hate. Chelsea should be praised for speaking up. Anyone who doesn’t understand this is part of the problem.— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) March 16, 2019
"It's sickening to see people blame [Chelsea Clinton] for the NZ attacks because she spoke out against anti-Semitism," the president's eldest son tweeted on Twitter on Saturday morning. "We should all be condemning anti-Semitism [and] all forms of hate. Chelsea should be praised for speaking up. Anyone who doesn't understand this is part of the problem."
"Blaming Chelsea Clinton for NZ massacre is as dumb as blaming [Donald Trump] for it, or blaming Bernie Sanders for assassination attempt of [Steve Scalise]," added Huckabee. "It's the shooter's fault. Period. No one 'MADE' him do it."