Family Research Council president speaks out on shooting
Exclusive: FRC President Tony Perkins on attack at D.C. headquarters
- Duration 8:28
- Date Aug 16, 2012
Exclusive: FRC President Tony Perkins on attack at D.C. headquarters
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Fox News alert brand new reaction to the shooting at the family research council council headquarters in Washington DC yesterday.
Just minutes ago the suspected gunman made an appearance before a federal judge the 28 year old suspect is Floyd -- be cork in it's.
He walked into the FRC headquarters.
And reportedly said quote I don't like your politics.
-- something to that effect according to police before he shot a security guard.
Despite being injured that same security guard then wrestled the gunman to the ground.
That's security -- name is Leo Johnson and he is being hailed across the country today as a hero as he recovers in the hospital.
The FBI investigating this incident now as possible domestic terrorism.
Meantime the debate is now intensifying within conservative circles and actually beyond about an RC family research council.
Having been labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center and identified as such by others more recently.
May have contributed.
To this attack.
Joining us now for Fox News Channel exclusive is Tony Perkins president of the family research council Tony welcome back to the program.
Hey Megyn good to be with you this afternoon our condolences on what happened at the FRC yesterday and on the injury to.
This guard Leo.
We understand that he's doing all right is that true.
Galileo is doing it doing well alive and I how I want to express my appreciation to those literally from around the world that in fact.
Communicated with us that they were praying and they were concerned for Leo and for our entire team.
Yeah I was -- Leo last night about midnight when he came out of surgery and let me just.
Leo is not a uniformed armed security guard and -- they've been described as security guard is actually our buildings operation manager and the kind of wears a double hat of the security guard he's unarmed.
In what happened as you describe this man comes in.
And has a gun Leo despite being wounded on arms the man and holds them until others can come in the police can come so.
It truly was -- -- Heroic effort as we know now that the intention of this man.
We're we're clearly evil and to do massive damage here and a -- He had he entered the facility with a nine millimeter handgun -- two additional bags of ammo on him.
They also he also reportedly had fifteen sandwiches from chick fillet on him -- -- get to the implications of that -- -- moment but it does appear Tony.
That he meant to inflict serious damage with in the walls of your facility.
Is that what you believe is well.
Well intimacy and let me be very clear here that Floyd -- -- -- was responsible for the wounding of one of our colleagues among my friends yesterday your family research council.
But I believe he was given a license to do that by a -- such as the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Who as you pointed error alert earlier labeled us a hate group because we defend the family and we stand for traditional orthodox christianity.
And I -- I'm gonna tell you Megan there's no room for that.
-- a in a society that such as ours that is governed by a constitution.
And where we shape our walls.
Through elections in through public policy debates.
-- and I think it's time for people to realize what the Southern Poverty Law Center is doing with their reckless labeling of organizations that they disagree with.
I know that you actually you were unhappy with that designation and you asked.
For a debate.
With that with the Southern Poverty Law Center is my understanding about that label.
What was their response.
Just what you're getting for me.
Silence they didn't say anything because here's India here's a treatment and they don't want to debate that's what this is all about it's about marginalizing and ultimately silencing those they disagree with.
It's not just us they did it -- They actually did this up in the state of Minnesota with a parents group that was defending a policy that the school board had adopted.
SP LC comes in file suit against the school board the parents defended.
And they slap a label of a hate group on them so that it marginalized as them and of course the media repeats that every time they talk about these groups.
That that marginalize.
-- individuals and groups.
And in it opens up for people who are not right to that are imbalanced like.
-- -- who comes in and and we literally had the intent of killing people here yesterday.
And and I'm not saying that the Southern Poverty Law Center is responsible for the shooting.
-- is as responsible for the shooting they are responsible for creating an environment that led to yesterday issues.
You know I I wanna say that we invited the Southern Poverty Law Center come on as well they they declined as of as of this point at least.
But but -- you make the link because you know the Southern Poverty Law Center came out with that label back in 2010.
And this is the first time anything like this has happened and we have crazy and evil and awful individuals in this society.
Who are prone to violence.
So you know is it fair even though you may not like the charge.
By the popular -- -- is it fair to -- to engage in any linkage.
I think if this would have happened a week after that label came out I think you're right I think it would have been -- appropriate to make that linkage.
But this has been over two years now and we what we've seen is an escalation of that term used every time.
Whether it's same sex marriage or some other policy and of course that's been in the news in the last two weeks with chick filet.
They of the whole chick -- appreciation day and mr.
-- support for traditional marriage.
And then that there was a series of reports that have been circulating around the country that chick filet supports the family research council a hate group.
Ditka a certified hate group I should say by the southern poverty -- -- that appeared in stories all across America.
Now -- say chick -- gave us about a thousand dollars a few years ago they clearly have not been.
The sole support of the family research council we certainly invite their support as other groups.
Who's other individuals.
Whose rights we stand for and defend.
But that it was clearly part of -- well let me say.
Based upon the evidence would suggest that that is part of the contribution of what led.
-- and to do what he did yesterday as you pointed out he had fifteen chick filet.
-- -- is in his backpack along with fifty rounds of ammunition.
That's not to generally what you walk out to have a picnic lunch -- And I wanna point out too that that there has been a joint statement issued by 25.
Lesbian and gay bisexual transgendered leaders.
Through glad saying that they they were saddened to hear of this news of the shooting.
That their hearts go out to the victim's family and is co workers and talked about how regardless of what the motive was here they rejecting condemn such violence wishing him a swift.
And -- I appreciate that we have had a number of civil conversations with those on the other side of the issues that we work on.
And I appreciate them speaking out clearly.
Against such violence it's there's no room for that of the society such as ours if we want to have differences of opinion that's fine.
But let's let's debate the issues let's let all the facts be on the table.
And let's shape our public policy accordingly let's not use intimidation must not use acts of terrorism to try and silence portions of our.
Our public do you think this was an act of domestic terrorism as the FBI is now investigating.
Well -- may actually I spent about five years working with the State Department anti terrorism back in the ninety's in training foreign police officers and anti terrorism some somewhat familiar with what terrorism is terrorism is designed to intimidate.
And to drive people back and make -- fear fearful.
Well that I I believe would describe what they tried to do here yesterday at the family research council and by extension.
Two traditional values supporters Christians across the nation.
But I want to tell you.
It's not gonna work we're not going anywhere we are more committed today than we were yesterday.
To defending and advancing faith family and freedom here in our nation's capital will continue to be a voice for people across the nation.
Who share these concerns in these values.
Tony Perkins thank you so much for being here.
Thanks -- all the best to Leo Johnson -- We're taking your thoughts.