The Right Is Attacking the Survivors of the Florida School Massacre

And Donald Trump Jr. is cheering on the conspiracy theories.

Manish Swarup/AP

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Former GOP congressman Jack Kingston on Tuesday doubled-down on his inflammatory allegations that a group of school shooting survivors pushing for tougher gun laws are simply being used by left-wing political groups. Appearing on CNN, the Georgia Republican suggested that billionaire George Soros and other liberal activists had “hijacked” the “sorrow” of survivors of the Parkland, Florida, massacre, who in recent days have been helping organize a series of pro-gun-control protests.

“Do we really think, and I say this sincerely, that 17-year-olds on their own are going to plan a nationwide rally?” Kingston said on CNN Tuesday. “I would say to you very plainly that organized groups that are out there like George Soros are always ready to take up the charge, and it’s kind of like instant rally and instant protest.”

Bill O’Reilly also accused the media with applying “extreme peer pressure” on the teenage survivors to promote gun control.

Their remarks coincide with right-wing media stories attacking the credibility of the Florida students who have called for stronger gun laws in the wake of last week’s shooting that left 17 people dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. David Hogg, a Stoneman Douglas senior who criticized the NRA on TV news shows over the weekend, has been the target of conspiracy theories involving his father’s former career at the FBI.

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump’s eldest son raised eyebrows by “liking” the conspiracy theory on Twitter:

https://twitter.com/OANN/status/965764807222792194

Last week, the FBI acknowledged that it had failed to follow-up on a tip it had received earlier this year about the suspected shooter. President Trump then sparked outrage when he suggested that had the FBI not devoted resources to investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election, the bureau would have been able to prevent the shooting.

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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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