The mayor of Garland, Texas, where two gunmen were killed attempting to storm an anti-Islam event on Sunday, criticized the event’s organizers on Tuesday by saying they had “invited” the attack.
Mayor Douglas Athas told the Dallas Morning News that he wished anti-Islam activist and conspiracy theorist Pam Geller had taken her business elsewhere.
“Certainly in hindsight, we as a community would be better off if she hadn’t [held it in Garland],” Athas told the newspaper.
“Her actions put my police officers, my citizens and others at risk. Her program invited an incendiary reaction,” he said, according to the paper.
Along with other high-profile activists such as Dutch politician Geert Wilders, Geller was hosting a contest of cartoons depicting the Muslim Prophet Muhammad.
“She picked my community, which does not support in any shape, passion or form, her ideology,” the mayor told the Morning News.
“But at the end of the day, we did our jobs,” he added. “We protected her freedoms and her life.”