Marines behind inflammatory picture under investigation
The picture was shared just days after a mass shooting on Sunday that left 50 dead at an LGBT nightclub in Orlando called Pulse. The person who shared the photo captioned it with, “Too soon?” the Marine Corps Times reported – a question that tends to answer itself.
Both the person in the photo and the person who shared it are active-duty Marines in the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force in California, just outside of San Diego. First Lieutenant Thomas Gray, a spokesman for IMEF, told the Marine Corps Times, “We cannot discuss details of an ongoing investigation, but I can tell you the command is taking this incident seriously.”
The image was posted to “Camp MENdleton resale,” a closed Facebook group with over 25,000 members – all of whom are male Marines.
Michael Moss, founder of the group, told the press, “We do not tolerate hate speech,” while claiming to have removed the image as soon as it was reported. In addition, the person who first posted the picture was banned from the group.
While the Marine Corps will not release the names of the people involved unless they are charged, they assured the public that the picture does not represent them as a group, saying in a statement:
“This type of behavior and mindset will not be allowed, and it is not consistent with the core values of honor, courage and commitment that are demonstrated by the vast majority of Marines on a daily basis.”