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The Tennessee Conservative [By Adelia Kirchner] –
Five months after The Covenant School shooting back in March of this year, regular Tennesseans and activists alike have been left to wonder what exactly the shooter’s writings and drawings contained.
“The fear, as expressed by school officials, Covenant School parents, the media and LGBT activists,” Donohue said, “is that the public may learn the real reasons why [the shooter] did what she did.”
“In other words,” he continued, “if she made vicious anti-Christian remarks, they don’t want to deal with the fallout.”
Some have questioned the ethics behind keeping these writings, also deemed a “manifesto,” a secret from the public, especially given how quickly the public was informed by authorities about the racist motivations behind several other mass shootings including those that took place last year in Jacksonville, Florida and Buffalo, New York.
“On Aug. 26, a white racist shot and killed three black people in Jacksonville, Florida. We know all about his bigotry,” stated Donohue. “So why are we still being kept in the dark about the anti-Christian bigotry of a transgender person?”
Donohue is not the only one to express this concern. In August, GOP Presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy called for release of the “manifesto” and also made note of the double standard applied to other mass shootings around the country.
“The right answer is to speak the truth, and the path to truth runs to transparency from the government,” Ramaswamy stated during an August 2nd press conference addressing the lack of transparency surrounding the shooter’s writings.
Currently The Covenant School shooter’s writings are tied up in the legal system, with multiple parties suing for the release of the documents and Covenant School parents fighting back.
Tennessee’s statute of victims’ rights does not give individuals the authority to veto other laws, i.e. those concerning what is and is not public record.
However, in June the shooter’s parents did transfer ownership of the “manifesto” over to Covenant School families in an effort to block the release.
“There’s nothing really to indicate that there would be this ability for victims to veto the release of otherwise public records and…in this case, crime records,” Deborah Fisher with the Tennessee Coalition for Open Government told The New York Post.
Both Fisher and Tennessee Firearms Association Attorney John Harris, say that since the shooter’s writings were collected as evidence by the Metro Nashville Police, they are in fact, subject to the Tennessee Public Records Act.
“Typically, when a police department seizes evidence, it’s always owned by, possessed by documents generated from third parties, and so transferring that ownership from A to B shouldn’t make a difference in an open records case,” Harris has stated.
About the Author: Adelia Kirchner is a Tennessee resident and reporter for the Tennessee Conservative. Currently the host of Subtle Rampage Podcast, she has also worked for the South Dakota State Legislature and interned for Senator Bill Hagerty’s Office in Nashville, Tennessee. You can reach Adelia at email@example.com.