‘You’re not welcome here!’ DeSantis booed at vigil for Jacksonville shooting victims

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was booed at a prayer vigil for victims of a racially motivated shooting, with some attendees attributing his policies to the incidence.

Event Overview: DeSantis attended a prayer vigil for the victims of a racially motivated shooting in Jacksonville.
* The governor and his wife were among those commemorating the victims, although not everyone present welcomed their attendance.
* As DeSantis tried to speak at the event, he was interrupted by boos and cries of “You’re not welcome here.”
* Several attendees accused his policies, including loosened gun laws and curbed Black history education, of contributing to the incident.

Officials’ Response: Despite the heckling, DeSantis mentioned plans to bolster security at a nearby historically Black school.
* Due to growing disapproval from the crowd, DeSantis had to stop speaking and Jacksonville councilwoman Ju’Coby Pittman took over.
* On Monday following the vigil, DeSantis’ office directed funds towards campus security at Edward Waters University and the family support of the victims.

About the Shooting: The vigil was for three Black community members killed in a racial attack at a Dollar General.
* The shooter was identified as white gunman Ryan Palmeter, who left behind “manifestos” revealing hatred for Black people, before he killed himself.
* The Department of Justice is investigating the shooting as a hate crime and racially-motivated violent extremism.

Criticism: The shooting has led to scrutiny of the governor’s policies.
* In April, DeSantis signed a permitless carry bill into law, which has since been criticized by the Jacksonville branch of the NAACP following the weekend’s shooting.
* DeSantis has also faced backlash for suppressing diversity initiatives and teaching of Black history in public schools due to concerns of “woke indoctrination.”

View original article on NPR

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