After fatal shooting, political enemies point to Alec Baldwin

Details are still emerging about how Alec Baldwin accidentally shot and killed a cinematographer on a filming set in New Mexico, but some political observers have quickly blamed one of Hollywood’s most notorious liberals.

Right-wing pundits and politicians have long been irritated by Baldwin’s criticism of former President Donald Trump and his parody of the president on “Saturday Night Live.” They wasted no time concentrating on the actor who pulled the trigger. The hashtag #AlecForPrison (# AlecAPrisión) skyrocketed on Twitter.

A few hours from the shooting, Ohio Republican Senate candidate JD Vance asked Twitter to let Trump go back to the social network that vetoed him after the uprising on Capitol Hill. “We need tweets about Alec Baldwin,” Vance wrote.

By Monday, Trump’s eldest son was selling $ 28 T-shirts on his website with the slogan “Guns don’t kill people, Alec Baldwin kills people.” The post was later removed.

Gun violence has divided America for a long time, but the fact that some observers seemed to revel in Baldwin’s role in the shooting added a political dimension to the tragedy. CNN host Jake Tapper on Sunday called Hutchins’ death “heartbreaking for normal people.”

“But there is something in our politics right now that is pulling people away from our shared humanity,” Tapper said.

Court documents provided some details about the death of Halyna Hutchins on the set of “Rust” near Santa Fe, New Mexico. Authorities have said that assistant director Dave Halls handed the gun to Baldwin and announced “cold pistol,” indicating that the gun was safe to use.

In an affidavit released Sunday night, the film’s director, Joel Souza, said Baldwin was rehearsing a scene in which he pulled a revolver from its holster and pointed it at the camera, behind which were Hutchins and Souza. The director, who was injured by the shooting, said the scene did not require the use of live bullets.

It is not yet clear where the weapons handling protocol failed. Souza said the weapons in the film were usually checked by gunsmith Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and then again by Halls.

At least two people have expressed doubts about Halls’ safety record.

In an emailed statement to The Associated Press, a producer of the film “Freedom’s Path” confirmed Monday that Halls was fired from the 2019 production after a crew member sustained a minor injury “when a gun went off unexpectedly.” . The producer, who asked not to be named, wrote that Halls “was immediately removed from the set.” Production did not resume until Halls left.

Props creator Maggie Goll said Sunday that she filed an internal complaint in 2019 over concerns about Halls’ behavior on the set of the Hulu series “Into the Dark.” Goll said Halls ignored safety protocols for weapons and pyrotechnics and tried to continue filming after the supervising pyrotechnic, who was diabetic, lost consciousness on set.

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Neither Gutiérrez-Reed nor Halls have responded to requests for comment about the shooting.

In the affidavit, cameraman Reid Russell said that Baldwin had been careful with guns. Russell wasn’t sure if the gun was checked before handing it over to Baldwin.

After Hutchins’ death, many in the movie industry have argued that real guns should be replaced entirely with computer-generated effects.

“There should have been no loaded gun on set,” actor Riley Keough wrote on Instagram. “We don’t need real weapons, we can make replicas and we have CGI. In my opinion, that is the problem here. Not Alec Baldwin ”.

And yet, as director Gigi Saul Guerrero observed, Baldwin has been the “face of this tragic story.” The 63-year-old actor, a staunch supporter of gun law reforms, has been widely ridiculed by the far right on social media.

“Literally not a single thing Alec Baldwin has said about Donald Trump and his supporters is going to age well,” tweeted conservative commentator Candace Owens.

Federal Rep. Lauren Boebert, a Colorado Republican, quoted a tweet from Baldwin last year supporting Black Lives Matter protesters in which the actor said he was going to make T-shirts that said, “My hands are up. Please don’t shoot me! ” Boebert wrote: “Alec Baldwin, are they still available? I ask on behalf of a film producer ”.

Boebert received widespread criticism. Actor George Takei said Boebert “had no soul.” Actress Rosanna Arquette wrote: “This was a horrible and tragic accident. Ms. Boebart and you should be ashamed of politicizing it. ” But Boebert stayed true to his tweet.

“You crazy people with verified Twitter accounts want to take away our right to defend ourselves with a firearm and you don’t know ANYTHING about basic gun safety!” Boebert wrote. “If it was a conservative celebrity, they would be asking for his head.”

The film’s chief electrician, Serge Svetnoy, blamed the producers for Hutchins’ death in an emotional Facebook post on Sunday. Svetnoy attributed the accident to “negligence and lack of professionalism” among those who handled guns on set, and claimed the producers hired an inexperienced gunsmith.

“I’m sure we had professionals in every department except one: the department that was responsible for weapons,” Svetnoy wrote. “The person who should have checked this weapon before bringing it on set didn’t. And the death of a human being is the result!".

A spokesperson for the film’s production company, Rust Movie Productions LLC, has said it is cooperating with authorities and conducting an internal review. The company said it halted production on the film, but said it could be resumed in the future.

Baldwin has also said that he is cooperating with the police investigation and described the shooting as a “tragic accident.”

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