Greene references gun incident at her Georgia high school

Marjorie Taylor Greene pictured in her senior year in the 1992 South Forsyth County High School yearbook. SOURCE: Forsyth County Schools
Marjorie Taylor Greene pictured in her senior year in the 1992 South Forsyth County High School yearbook. SOURCE: Forsyth County Schools

As beleaguered northwest Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene defended herself Thursday on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives, she referred to a 1990 hostage situation at a Forsyth County high school to explain her position on gun rights.

In her speech, Greene, who has promoted lies about everything from space lasers controlled by Jews to mass school shootings and 9/11, seemed to reference a 2019 incident when she accosted gun control activist David Hogg on a street near the U.S. Capitol.

Hogg, who was 19 at the time, survived the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., and was in Washington to support legislation allowing police to confiscate firearms from people deemed to be mentally unstable. “David, why are you supporting red-flag laws that attack our Second Amendment rights?” Greene asked as she trailed him in a scene captured on video.

On Thursday, she said on the House floor ahead of a vote to strip her committee assignments, and thus much of her power, that she had survived her own trauma at school.

“I understand how terrible it is because when I was 16 years old in 11th grade my school was a gun-free school zone and one of my schoolmates brought guns to school and took our entire school hostage,” she told her fellow representatives.

“And that happened right down the hall from my classroom,” she continued. “I know the fear that David Hogg had that day. I know the fear that these kids have.”

Greene appeared to be referencing a September 1990 standoff at South Forsyth County High School when an armed student held hostages he had gathered from two classrooms.

Greene was enrolled at the school at the time but wasn’t among the hostages, a Forsyth County Schools spokeswoman said, adding that she could not confirm whether Greene attended that day.

”To our knowledge, she was not in either classroom,” said the spokeswoman, Jennifer Caracciolo. She said she had spoken with a retired teacher who was among the hostages in the hours-long standoff.

The rest of the students in the school, which held about 1,000 at the time, were evacuated and bused to a nearby elementary school.

One Atlanta Journal-Constitution report months after the incident said a high school sophomore was indicted on 90 felony counts of kidnapping and aggravated assault after taking 40 classmates hostage with a small arsenal of weapons. In May 1991, the 17-year-old was sentenced to eight years in prison after a guilty plea a couple of months earlier. The AJC reported then that he had held nine schoolmates hostage for five hours. He testified that he hadn’t wanted to hurt anyone and hoped the police would kill him.

ExploreFrom 1990: Hostages’ fear diminished as teen discussed troubles

Greene on Thursday seemed to be explaining her position on firearms policy.

“I truly believe that children at school should never be left unprotected. I believe they should be just as protected as we were with 30,000 National Guardsmen,” she said, in an apparent reference to the aftermath of the Jan. 6 mob attack on the U.S. Capitol. “Our children are our future and they’re our most precious resource,” she said, adding, “I also want to tell you 9/11 absolutely happened.”

Greene has cited the hostage incident in the past to explain her views. She says she would make overturning the 1996 federal statute barring guns in school zones a top priority in Congress. She favors arming some — though not all — teachers and administrators, but she thinks armed security is a better answer.

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