Chris Mintz is an American hero. On Thursday, the 30-year-old Army veteran was shot seven times on his son’s birthday while protecting others from harm during the deadly shooting at Umpqua Community College. Despite the Right’s belief that one needs a gun to be a hero when faced with an active shooter, Mintz, who was unarmed, calmly walked toward self-identified conservative Republican Chris Harper-Mercer mid-rampage and attempted to reason with him.
When Mintz heard gunshots in the class next to his, he could have run away. He could have hidden. After all, he wasn’t armed. But, fortunately, some people don’t need a weapon to become the epitome of bravery. Mintz walked straight toward the shooter. According to Mintz’s cousin Ariana Earnhardt:
“The shooter was originally in the classroom next to his. He heard the gunshots so he told the people in his classroom to just be calm. He came and he met the shooter at the door. He was like you need to calm down. I guess he tried to talk to him and talk him out of it and he shot him.”
Mintz told the gunman that it was his son’s sixth birthday, and begged Harper-Mercer not to continue his assault. The gunman shot Mintz and move on to the next classroom. Mintz’s family says he was shot seven times, and that the attack left both of his legs broken. During surgery, doctors decided to leave one bullet that was lodged in the veteran’s leg in place — a reminder of the attack with which he will have to live for the rest of his life.
Derek Bourgeois, Mintz’s cousin, has started a fundraiser to assist with Mintz’s medical expenses — one which has gone viral and may even be outpacing the hatefest that was the fundraising for the Indiana pizzeria whose owners almost became millionaires thanks to “Christians” rewarding them financially for announcing that they intended to violate the LGBT community’s civil rights by denying service.
“During the shooting both of his legs were broken and he is going to have to go through a ton of physical therapy,” Bourgeois writes, explaining that he is fulfilling a request from numerous people who want to help. “While Chris is not the type of person to ask for it, he is going to need all of the help he can get while he recovers!”
In less than a day, $300,000 was raised to help the heroic man recover — a number slightly higher than Memories’ fundraiser in the same time frame.
If a couple backwoods bigots in Indiana can raise a million just for hating the “right people,” there is no reason that the American people can’t make this brave man, who thought of nothing but the safety of others, a goddamn millionaire.