Originally published January 21, 2017 at 12:45 pm Updated January 21, 2017 at 8:19 pm
A man suffering from a gunshot wound is helped away from the scene in Red Square. (Johnny Andrews/The Seattle Times)
Police say the man who fired the gun Friday night at the University of Washington claimed he had been assaulted by the man he shot, and that he believed he was a white supremacist. Friends of the critically injured man, say he is no racist.
By Steve Miletich and Susan Kelleher
Seattle Times staff reporters
The man who surrendered to police in connection with the University of Washington shooting Friday night was released after telling investigators he fired in self-defense during a campus protest, according to two law-enforcement officials briefed on the case.
No details about any confrontation between him and the critically wounded man were available Saturday. But one of the law-enforcement officials said the man who fired the gun claimed he had been assaulted before shooting the other man, whom he believed to be some type of white supremacist.
The injured man, 34, was in critical condition Saturday at Harborview Medical Center, following surgery. His name was not released.
The shooting, which occurred during a protest of a Friday-night speech at Kane Hall by Breitbart News Network editor and provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, remains under investigation.
Two people who said they are friends with the wounded man disputed the characterization of him as a supremacist. One said his friend supported Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential primary, and both said he sports an anti-hate tattoo that consists of a black swastika surrounded by a red circle with a slash through it.
Max Vohra of Seattle, who has known the man for seven years, said his friend got the tattoo more than a decade ago “when he was living in California, and had to deal with a lot of racists in the punk scene.” The idea for the tattoo, Vohra said, came from a NOFX song called “The Brews,” which references “anti-swastika tattoos.”
Friday night we’ll be drinkin’ Manaschevitz
Going out to terrorize Goyem
Stompin’ Shagitz, screwin’ shicksas
As long as we’re home by Saturday morning
‘Cause hey! We’re the brews
Sporting anti-swastika tattoos
Oi oi, we’re the boys
Orthodox hassidic O.G. Ois
Orthopedic doctor martens good for
Waffle making, kicking through the shins
Reputation gained through intimidation
Pacifism no longer tradition
Cause hey we’re the Brews
Sportin’ anti swastika tattoos
Oi Oi we’re the Brews
The fairfax ghetto boys skinhead Hebrews
We’ve got the might, psycho mashuganas
We can’t lose a fight as we are the chosen ones
Chutzpah driven, we battle then we feast
We celebrate and separate our milk plates from our meat
And here’s a different song by NOFX, a (mostly) white punk group:
The white man call himself civilized,
Cause he know how to take over,
The white man come to pillage my village,
Now he tell me I have to bend over.
Oh yeah, kill all the white man,
Oh yeah, kill all the white man.
NOFX’s “Kill All the White Man” shouldn’t be confused with the similar but earlier “Kill the White People” by Eddie Murphy:
We sing of freedom and ooh equality.
But we really don’t care we just want money money money.
We want to drive in a big black limosine.
Get so high off ganja we can’t even see.
And then we kill the white people. Ooh we gunna make them hurt.
Kill the white people. Yea. Ooh but buy my record first ooh.
When you go in the record store. We gunna wait outside.
We gunna hit them in the head with a bat and make them cry.
But ’till we kill the white people.
Yea but buy my record first.
After that musical interlude, back to the Seattle Times:
Daniel Herrera, who has worked and socialized with the man for three years, said he’s never seen his friend be aggressive.
“He has always been of the mind to be compassionate, empathetic and to educate. That’s his goal,” Herrera said.
UW police offered few details Saturday, saying in a news release that no suspects were being sought, and that the man who said he fired the gun was released pending investigation.
Update: The guy who was shot has had his condition upgraded from critical to serious, so that’s good news.
The shootee is a Wobbly, a member of the famously leftist and brawling Industrial Workers of the World union.
On the evening of Friday, January 20th, a comrade of ours was shot in the stomach in the most public place on the University of Washington’s campus in Seattle – a place called “Red Square” for the color of its bricks rather than its politics.
This Fellow Worker (what members of the IWW call ourselves) and Defender (for GDC members) is a longtime anti-fascist and dedicated activist, a member of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) and the General Defense Committee of the IWW. …
How do we respond? We are building an expanded anti-authoritarian, anti-capitalist, anti-racist, anti-sexist, and anti-fascist presence in Seattle, and this person was spearheading that effort.