The View's Rosie O'Donnell makes controversial remarks on Ottawa shootings
Rosie O'Donnell is seen in this undated image taken from video.
Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, October 23, 2014 2:24PM EDT
TORONTO -- "The View" co-host Rosie O'Donnell is drawing criticism online for remarks about Wednesday's deadly shooting in Ottawa.
Thursday's episode of the chat show kicked off with the panellists discussing the attack on Parliament Hill and the killing of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo of Hamilton as he stood guard at the National War Memorial.
The Ottawa shootings came just two days after two Canadian soldiers were run over -- one of them fatally -- in Quebec by a man with jihadist sympathies.
As "The View" panellists discussed whether Wednesday's shootings were an act of terrorism, O'Donnell said "most of these shooters have severe mental illness" and then expressed support for a controversial tweet about the shooting from model Chrissy Teigen, who used the tragedy in Ottawa to make a point about U.S. gun control.
On Wednesday, Teigen tweeted: "active shooting in Canada, or as we call it in america, wednesday." Shen then clarified in a follow-up tweet: "Sorry you don't understand that is a knock at America and our issues with gun control. No one is minimizing the Ottawa shooting."
"I thought it was brilliant and on-point, but some people thought it was insensitive," O'Donnell said of Teigen's tweet.
"Timing is everything," responded ABC News anchor Amy Robach, who was on the panel. "And I think when you tweet something like that in the middle of an active shooting, people are afraid, people are running for their lives and a man is dead."
Co-host Nicolle Wallace also challenged O'Donnell, saying: "I know it's important to you that mental health is always raised as a possible, unaddressed cause. It's also possible that he was an evil terrorist, OK? So I don't want that to get lost.
"The Canadian government has classified this as a terrorist attack. The definition of terrorism is arbitrary violence and death rendered on innocent people who are just doing their jobs."
"I get it," replied O'Donnell. "But 86 people a day are killed in America with guns, and you know what? That is terrorism here."
O'Donnell then further backed up Teigen's tweet.
"I think she's saying: I'm an American, I live here. I see two people shot this week in Canada and the entire country of Canada is in mourning. However, in America this happens on a daily day basis and we don't even pay attention anymore."
On Twitter, some users expressed anger over O'Donnell's remarks.
"What Rosie O Donnell did was spit in the face of the victims in the Ottawa attack yesterday," wrote a user with the handle @Kayluvsredwings.
"So saddened and horrified at the statements @Rosie talked about the attacks on Canada. Disgusting and hurtful," wrote user @driciafury.
Said @angelaleighwood: "Rosie O'donnell is insensitive and just plain ignorant about the Canadian shooting yesterday."