While it is horrendous that Rep. Steve Scalise was shot, a story has emerged about the shooting that took place in Virginia earlier this week that will, after he hopefully recover from his injuries, help him heal from his own unpleasant past.
Steve Scalise, the House Majority Whip who was shot by a gunman who attacked a congressional baseball practice on Wednesday, has kept company with racists. He was forced to apologize for speaking at an international conference of white supremacists, and reportedly referred to himself as “David Duke without the baggage.” Following Scalise’s shooting, Duke praised him for “defending white civil rights.”
Scalise has also been described as one of the most anti-LGBTQ politicians in Washington. He’s voted against LBGTQ rights over and over again. He also authored Louisiana’s ban on same-sex marriage. Like many of his ilk, he said he was only trying to protect “traditional” marriage.
It turns out that Scalise was rescued from almost certain death from the gunman by a black, queer police officer who was part of Scalise's security detail named Crystal Griner, who disregarding her own safety, engaged in a terrifying gun battle with the shooter. Griner was reportedly shot in the ankle during the exchange but ultimately prevailed causing enough damage to the shooter, James Hodgkinson, who later died from his injuries. Continued the Deadspin story:
Crystal Griner, a Capitol Police officer, was one of two special agents on Scalise’s security detail yesterday who helped take down shooter James Hodgkinson. People at the scene said that the two officers prevented an all-out “massacre” on the field that day, engaging in a firefight with Hodgkinson before killing him.
It appears at the time of writing that Scalise, who was gravely injured during the shooting, will make a recovery, which is of course very good news. Hopefully when he is well enough he will have a chance to speak with Griner who selflessly went to battle to save his life and perhaps realize that they are not so different after all.