Parkland Mom Says Marjorie Taylor Greene Won't Disavow Shooting Conspiracies Publicly

Republican representative from Georgia, Marjorie Taylor Greene, has refused to publicly disavow conspiracy theories surrounding the Parkland and Sandy Hook school shootings, a Parkland victim's mother told MSNBC on Sunday.

Linda Beigel Schulman—whose teacher son Scott Beigel died during the 2018 mass shooting in Parkland, Florida—said she had a "friendly and cordial" conversation with Greene on Saturday to discuss the congresswoman's past endorsement of disinformation regarding school shootings.

"My first question to congresswoman Greene was: 'Do you really believe that Parkland and Sandy Hook were false flags and staged?'" Schulman said. "Her answer to me was unequivocally 'No, I do not.'"

Schulman said she "very much wanted" to take Greene on her word, until she invited the congresswoman to make her stance public through a joint appearance on MSNBC the following day.

"I said 'You know what, if that's really, really what you believe, then come on air and tell the public just that.'" said Schulman. "Well her statement is clear, because here I am with you, and she's not here right now."

"Truth is power, and if congresswoman Greene believes that Parkland and Sandy Hook were in fact real events, she would be willing to say that publicly, and her failure tells me that for congresswoman Greene, politics trumps truth, because lies and conspiracy theories are more important to her than honesty," she continued.

Beigel was one of 17 killed during the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on February 14, 2018. The 35-year-old geography teacher was shot dead as he ushered students to safety inside a classroom. Schulman said Rep. Greene has "no right to negate Scott's heroism" or "demean Scott's memory with her conspiracy theories."

"I would like congresswoman Greene, especially after our conversation, to publicly disavow her comments, and apologize to those from Parkland and Sandy Hook, who she has hurt and devastated with her words," Schulman said.

When contacted by Newsweek to clarify Greene's stance on the Parkland and Sandy Hook shootings, the congresswoman's spokesperson Nick Dyer said by email: "The assertation that Rep. Greene believes that those two tragedies are anything other than mad men committing horrific acts is absolutely ridiculous."

Why is a Marjorie Taylor Greene only willing to say that Parkland was real in private?

Why is she not willing to come out in public denounce her previous statements that Parkland and Sandy Hook were fake?

Shame on you @mtgreenee
You are a coward

— David Hogg (He / Him) (@davidhogg111) February 1, 2021

A staunch supporter of former President Donald Trump who has aligned herself with the QAnon conspiracy theory, Greene has faced increasing criticism and calls to resign over her past Facebook activity. The congresswoman was found to have previously endorsed conspiracy theories claiming the Parkland and Sandy Hook shootings were staged. At one point, she wrote a Facebook post claiming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi requests school shootings in order to garner public support for stricter gun control laws.

Over the past week, videos of Greene accosting Parkland survivor David Hogg prior to her career in Congress surfaced on social media. The future congresswoman could be seen interrogating Hogg over the shooting that killed his classmates and his gun control advocacy.

On Monday, Hogg reacted to Schulman's interview by calling Greene a "coward," a term the Georgia representative used to describe the young Parkland survivor during the confrontation.

"Why is she not willing to come out in public [and] denounce her previous statements that Parkland and Sandy Hook were fake?" Hogg tweeted.

Last week, the parents of two children killed in the December 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, criticized Greene's placement on the House Committee on Education and Labor, which oversees school safety.

Greene's start in Congress was mired in controversy in light of her past social media conduct, apparent endorsement of radical conspiracy theories, and unwavering support for the election fraud claims that fuelled last month's Capitol insurrection.

Update 2/1/21, 12:50 p.m. ET: This article was updated to include a response from Rep. Greene's spokesman.

marjorie taylor greene arrives capitol hill
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) arrives to the Hyatt Regency hotel on Capitol Hill on November 12, 2020. Greene has faced criticism for her past endorsement of conspiracy theories surrounding the Parkland and Sandy Hook mass shootings. Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images