You would think that a Republican Governor of a deep-red coal mining state three days into a statewide teachers’ strike would know better than to joke about school shootings less than two weeks after one of the most deadly mass school shootings in the nation’s history, but you would be over-estimating Governor Jim Justice of West Virginia if you did.
Jess Spring, a PE teacher at a middle school in Berkeley County, West Virginia, attended Governor Justice’s speech at Spring Mills High School on Monday and was shocked by the Republican politician’s opening line.
“Okay everybody, nobody’s going to shoot at me or anything, are you?” Gov. Jim Justice (R) quizzed the crowd.
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After getting a response from the audience that perhaps didn’t quite give him the confidence that they wouldn’t, he continued with a slightly less aggressive demand.
“Okay, you don’t have to promise,” he said.
Luckily, Spring managed to catch the moment on video as proof of the cluelessness of the Governor and posted it on her Facebook page, Talking Points Memo reports.
With every teacher in the state on strike and all 680 of West Virginia’s public schools closed as a result of the educators’ demands for higher pay and more generous benefits, one would think that Governor Justice would be choosing his words carefully at this point, but in a state that puts education at the bottom of their priorities list, it’s not surprising in the least.