'Lovesick' is not how you describe the Maryland shooter, the internet says

Jaelyn Willey (Courtesy of the Willey family via AP)

On Tuesday, the lives of several families changed forever. Austin Rollins, 17, opened fire inside Great Mills High School with a semi-automatic handgun shooting Jaelynn Willey, 16, and a 14-year-old boy.

The victim’s families want the Maryland shooter to come to justice, and this starts with the way the media is referring to him. An ABC News headline (since changed) about the shooting did not sit well with the online community and survivors. The publication referred to him a “Lovesick teenager,” enraging several people online.

Despite the horrific tragedy, some media outlets seemed to sympathize with the shooter, even headlining articles calling him “not a troublemaker,” CBS reports.

People on Twitter condemned the way these media outlets referred to the killer.


Twitter user Emily C. Singer went into detail on why she thinks the headline is troublesome, sharing that she had a similar experience.


“He’s abusive,” Twitter user Ashley Alese Edwards attempted to correct the ABC headline.




This is exactly how domestic abusive is normalized — by rationalizing the shooter’s violent actions because he was ‘heartbroken.'” tweeted Edwards. “The end of a relationship is not an excuse or a justification for attempting to murder your former partner.”

Still others weighed in, saying the shooter was an abuser and the murder was domestic violence.

 


 

Time magazine also referenced the shooter as “lovesick” in a headline on Twitter.

 

Police said that the shooter and one of his victims, Jaelynn Willey, had been dating and recently ended the relationship. 

“All indications suggest the shooting was not a random act of violence,” police said in a statement.

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