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Incoming: Blaming Everything But Guns

Trump blamed this weekend's white supremacist terror attack and mass shooting on everything but guns. The death toll from El Paso rises to 22. This is your BuzzFeed News newsletter, Aug. 6.

Posted on August 6, 2019, at 7:10 a.m. ET

Trump blamed this weekend's white supremacist terror attack and mass shooting on everything but guns

The president's first substantial remarks since the attacks over the weekend cited mental health issues, video games, and the internet for the massacres. His speech was an example of how he conditions people with a relentless barrage of tweets, rallies, and official statements that stoke racial division and fear of immigrants — then adopts the language of outrage in the wake of disasters to make it appear as though he is above the very fray he helped create.

What we saw Monday was what Trump derides as a "teleprompter deal," a planned speech he says people find boring. The real Trump is not a voice of reconciliation, of unity, of love. It's one of a relentless us vs. them mentality.

In an apparent swipe at Trump's division, former president Barack Obama spoke out about the shootings and called on Americans to reject political leaders who spew racist, hateful, and dehumanizing rhetoric.

Meanwhile, people continue to die from the attacks — the death toll from the El Paso shooting rose from 20 to 22 yesterday. Here's what we know about the victims of that shooting, and what we know about those who died in Dayton.

Keeping Track

👉 The Dayton shooter was the lead singer of a "pornogrind" metal band.

👉Pressure is on Congress to address gun violence, but if recent history is any guide, it will not.

👉Of the many Democrats running for president, only one has won tougher gun laws in the aftermath of a mass shooting in his state: John Hickenlooper.

👉Online trolls went back to their standard playbook to spread false information during the El Paso terror attack and Dayton mass shooting.

👉Mexico has declared the El Paso mass shooting an act of "terrorism against Mexicans" and has vowed to take legal action.

👉So many people were shot in Chicago this weekend, a hospital had to briefly stop taking patients.

Mark Ralston / AFP / Getty Images


Protests in Hong Kong turned chaotic as police fired tear gas and a car rammed protesters' barricade. Storefronts were shuttered across the city as residents took off from work in opposition to a controversial bill proposed by the government that would permit extraditions to China, which has been suspended but not withdrawn.

New York City’s Health Department is warning the public that contact with the criminal justice system poses a public health risk. “The data show that involvement with the criminal justice system – even brief contact with the police or indirect exposure – is associated with lasting harm to people’s physical and mental health,” Health Commissioner Oxiris Barbot said.

YouTube terminated the account of a 14-year-old star over her anti-gay video. Soph had accumulated nearly a million followers through racist and anti-Muslim videos before her last video, a 12-minute anti-gay rant titled “Pride and Prejudice."

A massive database of video game journalists, YouTubers, and streamers leaked after it was discovered last week. The Entertainment Software Association, which runs the E3 video game expo, was storing the names, addresses, emails, and phone numbers of over 2,000 attendees on a public page on their website. Harassment against those included on the list appears to have already begun.

The man who sent explosive packages to prominent Democrats and critics of Trump has been sentenced to 20 years in prison. Attorneys for Cesar Sayoc said he was radicalized by Trump's rhetoric.

Here's how people are coming together after the mass shootings

There are many ways we support each other. Standing together is one.

John Minchillo / AP

Mourners gather at the scene of the shooting in Dayton on Aug. 4.

Jose Luis Gonzalez / Reuters

A couple wearing a Mexican flag and the US flag take part in a rally against hate in El Paso on Aug. 4.

Jose Luis Gonzalez / Reuters

A man takes part in El Paso's rally against hate on Aug. 4.

Bryan Woolston / Reuters

A mourner holds a candle during a vigil in Dayton on Aug. 4.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.