Former Texas congressman Ron Paul is working on major damage control after posting a controversial tweet Monday about the death of former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle. The tweet, posted at 12:05pm read: “Chris Kyle’s death seems to confirm that ‘he who lives by the sword dies by the sword.’ Treating PTSD at a firing range doesn’t make sense.”Kyle, an elite SEAL sniper for 10 years, and Chad Littlefield, were shot and killed at a Texas gun range on Saturday. Initial reports indicate that Kyle was there to help ex-Marine Eddie Routh work through post-traumatic stress, before Routh allegedly turned a gun on both of them.
The post has been retweeted over 800 times, and has brought in hundreds of tweets in response, which were mainly negative. Former Marine and Medal of honour recipient Dakota Meyer responded directly to Paul on Twitter, saying, “Hey @ronpaul have you lost you mind? That sword protected your freedom. Guess since I live by it I deserve to get murdered as well?
There’s quite a backlash towards Paul from military servicemembers, a group which supported him with the most campaign donations in 2008. Paul, who served as a doctor in the Air Force, later backtracked and offered an apology through his Facebook page:
“As a veteran, I certainly recognise that this weekend’s violence and killing of Chris Kyle were a tragic and sad event. My condolences and prayers go out to Mr. Kyle’s family. Unconstitutional and unnecessary wars have endless unintended consequences. A policy of non-violence, as Christ preached, would have prevented this and similar tragedies. -REP”
Chris Kyle’s death seems to confirm that “he who lives by the sword dies by the sword.” Treating PTSD at a firing range doesn’t make sense
— Ron Paul (@RonPaul) February 4, 2013
— Dakota Meyer (@Dakota_Meyer) February 4, 2013
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