“I can’t help but feeling like the shooter was a martyr. And I know it’s not the right way to feel because nobody deserves to lose their lives,” Kalyn Chapman James says in the video posted Sunday on Facebook.
Kalyn Chapman James, the first African American to win the Miss Alabama title and a top-10 place getter in the 1994 Miss America pageant, made the controversial comments on a Facebook video.
The shooter, an army veteran who opened fire at a Black Lives Matter rally, said he was angered by the deaths of black men at the hands of police.
In a lengthy address to the camera, James said she “didn’t want to feel this way” but was also sick of black men being shot by cops.
“I’m dealing with a bit of guilt because I don’t feel sad for the officers that lost their lives, and I know that that’s not really my heart,” Ms Chapman James said.
“I value human life, and I want to feel sad for them, but I can’t help but [feel] like the shooter (Micah Johnson) was a martyr.
“And I know it’s not the right way to feel, because nobody deserves to lose their lives and I know that those police officers had families and people who loved them and that they didn’t deserve to die.
“But I’m so torn up in my heart about seeing these men, these black men, being gunned down in our community that I can’t help.
“I wasn’t surprised by what the shooter did to those cops, and I think a lot of us feel the same way.”
“I know that it’s not right, and I definitely don’t condone violence, but I’m sick of this.
“I’m sick of this, and something has to be done, period.”
She later told AL.com that she was “conflicted” about what was happening.