NEWTOWN, Conn. — The mother of a 6-year-old boy who was killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School is asking NBC News to not broadcast Megyn Kelly‘s interview with Alex Jones, who has repeatedly claimed that the mass shooting at the Newtown school is a hoax.
Nicole Hockley – co-founder and managing director of Sandy Hook Promise – made the request Tuesday in a letter to NBC News Chairman Andrew Lack.
The Sandy Hook Promise, a Newtown-based gun violence prevention organization, also removed Kelly as the emcee for its annual Promise Champions Gala, which will take place Wednesday in Washington.
A firestorm erupted Monday after news broke of Kelly's sit-down interview with the "InfoWars" host, which is set to air this weekend on her new show "Sunday Night."
"That Jones could posit that what happened in Newtown was a hoax is beyond reprehensible; it is indefensible. It dishonors the lives of the 20 children and six adults who died on Dec. 14, 2012. The exposure that Jones will receive as a result of the broadcast will enrich him further and invigorate him and his supporters," Hockley said in her letter.
"There is undeniable evidence that whenever conspiracy theorists are given a platform or voice, it bolsters them."
Some of the hoaxers become dangerous, harassing families of victims, and sending hate mail and death threats, she said.
"Listening to Jones' comments in the last 24 hours, it is obvious he is basking in the platform he has already been given due to the outcry and is baiting you to air the show. Please - don't make this about him. Make this about the people he and his followers harm," Hockley said in her letter.
For her part, Kelly said she was disappointed to not take part in the Sandy Hook Promise event.
“I understand and respect the decision of the event organizers,” Kelly said on Twitter. “I find Alex Jones’s suggestion that Sandy Hook was ‘a hoax’ as personally revolting as every other rational person does.”
Kelly also defended her decision to do the interview. “President Trump, by praising and citing him, appearing on his show, and giving him White House press credentials, has helped elevate Jones, to the alarm of many,” Kelly said. “Our goal in sitting down with him was to shine a light — as journalists are supposed to do — on this influential figure, and yes — to discuss the considerable falsehoods he has promoted with near impunity.”
Jones has called the shooting "completely fake" and a "manufactured" event that "clearly used actors."
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