Controversy of the Day

The Orlando shooter was Muslim. How much does it matter?

omar mateen muslim

A photo of the Orlando shooter, Omar Mateen, that has been released to the media. (Wikimedia Commons)

As more information begins to surface after the shooting in Orlando--the worst mass shooting in US history--officials are sharing more about shooter Omar Mateen's background. Additional evidence is coming to light regarding Mateen's ties to the Islamic State (ISIS).

Officials are saying that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) investigated Mateen twice before but couldn't definitively confirm he was a terrorist. In 2013 the FBI investigated Mateen after he had made some "inflammatory comments" to a coworker that alluded to terrorism.

It's also been reported that Mateen called 911 prior to the attack and supposedly declared allegiance to ISIS. Hours after the attack ISIS used an encrypted phone app to declare that they were responsible for the attack and that Mateen was one of their fighters. Despite this claim, the FBI doesn't believe ISIS had specifically trained Mateen.

As a result of Mateen's Islamic ties, a lot of anti-Muslim hate has been spurred.

While this mass shooting may have been motivated by the shooter's allegiance to ISIS, many are pointing out that other tragic mass shootings like Charleston and Newtown and Aurora were at the hands of white, non-Muslim shooters.

You can donate to help Orlando massacre victims and their families here.

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The Orlando shooter was Muslim. How much does it matter?

Sydney Moorhead

Sydney is a recent graduate of UC Santa Cruz with a degree in English-language literature. She served as a City on a Hill Press editor and an editorial intern at Good Times Weekly. She currently resides in Orange County, where she does her best not to spend all her money at the ridiculous number of malls. She loves watching Bravo reality shows and eating vegan food that isn’t too expensive (so, never).

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