Some of the most unwelcome responses to the Paris terror attacks

Some of the most unwelcome responses to the Paris terror attacks

In the aftermath of the Paris terror attacks in which 129 people died and hundreds more were injured, people have responded in a multitude of ways.

People have been gathering at vigils in Paris and across the world to pay their respect to the victims and show their defiance to their killers, while individuals expressed their feelings via music, art, or other demonstrations of solidarity.

Unfortunately, not everyone has responded so thoughtfully.

Rob Lowe

Emotions were obviously running high on Friday night as the attacks unfolded, but Hollywood actor Rob Lowe was criticised for this tweet that seemed to suggest Europe's open borders had allowed the attack to take place, at a time when the refugee crisis continues unabated.

He later tweeted:

Newt Gingrich

Many people shared a Donald Trump tweet posted during the Charlie Hebdo attacks in January, believing that it was related to Friday's terror.

Former US speaker and presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich did however tweet the exact same pro-gun sentiment while the attacks took place.

Trump got there in the end though as well, telling a rally on Saturday:

When you look at Paris, you know, toughest gun laws in the world, nobody had guns but the bad guys, nobody. Nobody had guns. And they were just shooting them one by one, and then they broke in and had a big shootout and ultimately killed the terrorists. And I will tell you what, you can say what you want, but if they had guns, if our people had guns, if they were allowed to carry, it would have been a much, much different situation.

This comment was greeted by cheering and applause in Beaumont, Texas.


There is a time and a place for sweeping political assessments, and that time is not while hundreds of people are being held hostage in a theatre.

Judith Miller

The New York-based journalist and author was also guilty of conflating two issues in the immediate aftermath of the terror attacks.

She later tweeted:

Sam Bailey

If your social media posts are being picked up by Britain First, then perhaps you are on the wrong side of the argument, as X Factor contestant Sam Bailey found.

She later deleted the tweet and said she had received death threats as a result of it.

Stop the War

Stop the War, which Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was chair of up until a couple of months ago, was accused of victim-blaming in an opinion piece that said US policy was responsible for the events in Paris. The article was later deleted and replaced with a more measured statement, but a cached version of the article can still be read.

Ben Carson

Ben Carson is the creationist neurosurgeon leading the Republican race for US president. In one of his most bizarre interviews during the campaign yet, Carson, who has never held elected office, claimed that in light of the Paris attacks, he would bar refugees from entering the US because of his "frontal lobes" (really). He also said China was involved in the Syrian civil war and could not, or did not, name a single leader of a country the US could form an international coalition with.

Robert Bentley

Staying in America, the governor of Alabama responded to the attacks by ruling that the state would "refuse" Syrian refugees:

I will not place Alabamians at even the slightest, possible risk of an attack on our people.

Michigan governor Rick Snyder announced a similar move, despite more conciliatory language:

Michigan is a welcoming state and we are proud of our rich history of immigration. But our first priority is protecting the safety of our residents.

More: Paris terror attacks aftermath: where we stand now

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