Kalyn Chapman James, who was crowned Miss Alabama in 1993, said in a Facebook live video that she decided to speak out about her conflicted feelings towards the incident in Dallas after much prayer.
“I am dealing with a bit of guilt because I don’t feel sad for the officers that lost their lives and I know that’s not really my heart,” she said in the video.
James said while she values human life and knows the officers had families, she can’t help but sympathize with Johnson, the lone gunman who killed five police officers and wounded nine others Thursday in downtown Dallas
“I can’t help but feeling like the shooter was a martyr,” she said. “And I know it’s not the right way to feel because nobody deserves to lose their lives, and I know those police officers had familie.”
James, an Ala. native who lives in Miami, said she believes that many people feel the same way.
“I am so torn up in my heart about seeing these men, these black men being gunned down in our community,” she said. “I wasn’t surprised by what the shooter did to those cops, and I think a lot of us feel the same way.”
James told AL.com in a statement, that she does not condone violence or killing, but that she stands by the comments she made in the Sunday Facebook Live post.
‘The fact that my opinion was considered newsworthy makes me feel like speaking up was exactly what I should do, because I can voice what so many people are feeling and dealing with and they should know they are not alone,” James said in a statement to AL.com.