Dec 7, 2015 (San Diego) We had a mass shooting the other day in San Bernardino, which has been called terrorism. It is not the first, or sadly the last, mass shooting we are likely to have this year.
According to shooting tracker we have had a total of 353 shootings, with 462 killed and 1, 312 injured. We are averaging more than 1 mass shooting a day, most of which receive local coverage, at best. Yet, every time we have a mass incident that receives national attention, we have two camps emerge this fast. The lets regulate guns, becuase the problem is the wide availability of guns, and the don’t take my guns away from me and the Second Amendment cannot be touched. Oh and why don’t we talk mental health?
Nobody is asking what should be the obvious question. WHY? Why is it that people are drawn to self radicalization, or are so desperate to take a gun and go shoot up their workplace, friends, school, neighborhood, mall, movie theater, you know the places as well as I do. Nobody is asking this because then we would be forced to look at ourselves as a society.
There is another pattern at play and that is what we call terrorism. Authorities are very reluctant to use the term. This is especially the case when a mass shooting seems to have political undertones, but those political undertones come from within the nation. The shooting in Colorado at a Planned Parenthood clinic has obvious political undertones, and it is intended to terrorize, and to change a policy. In this case it is an anti abortion activists, that was not well known until now, but who glued in the past the locks of a clinic. We also know from the statements made that he did fit the mold of an anti-government activist.
Robert Lewis Dear, 57, engaged in an act that actually fits the definition that the FBI uses for terrorism. There might be good reasons not to charge him with it, legally. They probably have to do with his state of mind and a fear that overcharging might let him walk, but if it walks as a duck, and it quacks like a duck, well it is not a swan.
When Dylann Roof went into a church and gunned down parishioners, nine of them, at a church in Charlestown on June 17, 2015, he was inspired by another radical ideology that has taken root in the United States. This is white supremacy taken to an extreme form. Roof wanted to get a race war going. While hate crime charges were filed by the Federal Government, they never added terrorism to it. It did fit the actual definition used by the FBI, but I suppose this was also a political decision by prosecutors.
It is easy to call Tashfeeq Malik a self radicalized terrorist. She does fit the classic standard of the femme fatale that was not born in the United States, ergo she is part of the other. The government has a hell of a time using the terrorism standard equally with home grown, right wing inspired, self radicalized, terrorists.
Yet, this only explains 3 of the shootings There is a fourth one that happened in Chattanooga earlier in the year that might be self radicalization from outside the country. That still leaves us with a lot of other mass shootings. A lot of shooting that have no terror motivation behind them.
So here is the question that none dares ask. What is going on in our society that is leading to these many shootings? It is not the number of weapons in circulation. That is just a facile answer that avoids the real question. Why are people so alienated from their society, or from family, or workers, that they decide to take that step? Some may be truly mental health disasters, but that is also a facile answer.
We as a society need to ask that question. We need to look at ourselves and honestly ask what the hell is going on?
Gun control talk might make our political elites feel better, and don’t get me wrong, there are some measures that need to be taken…in that regard, but this goes well beyond gun control. It also goes well beyond mental health, the other talking point that is usually used by the other side in the now familiar dance that leads to no action. So enough with the dance, and we need to ask, why are we having these many mass shootings?
One necessary step though is that our authorities need to lose their fear of calling internal terrorism such. Dylann Roof and Robert Lewis Dear are just as much terrorist actors as Tashfeen Malik and Syed Rizwan Farook. The causes that inspired them are different, but all of them are terrorist acts. The ideologies that inspired them are also death cults and just as nihilistic as well.
It is not me saying this. This is the FBI’s definition of what fits the bill as internal terrorism:
Domestic terrorism” means activities with the following three characteristics:
Involve acts dangerous to human life that violate federal or state law;
Appear intended (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination. or kidnapping; and
Occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the U.S.
The shooting at the Planned Parenthood clinic was intended to change policy and stop abortions nationwide. Roof intended to start a race war, and also change policy, and seriously coerce people. If what he intended to do is not terrorism, really we need to revise this. Becuase this is not a square peg going into a round hole. The peg is round and the hole is round.
As to the corporate media. They are also part of the problem. It is not the job of media to speculate and tell us what to think really depending on what last name is carried by the shooters, or skin color. The media did not call Charlestown terrorism, and while it dutifully reported that Roof was charged with hate crimes, it was not banner breaking news.
I do not expect them to call Dear a terrorist either. People have noticed this. It is extremely obvious. The media was fast to jump into banner headlines of MUSLIM TERRORISM. This is unhelpful and can and will tear communities apart by seeding distrust and hate. Why not use WHITE TERRORIST ON THE LOSE IN COLORADO? We know the answer.
We at Reporting San Diego did not do more or less than report the facts as they came out from the FBI during the investigation. We did not jump into the bandwagon of calling this a muslim terrorist act. We believe that it is irresponsible, but we are now asking the question, why are we having more mass shootings in a year than days in the year? And yes, at this time we are indeed waiting, with some fear mind you, for the next… mass shooting day.
Crime is at the lowest levels since the 1960s but mass shootings are though the roof, and some are indeed terrorism, and some are right wing inspired, self radicalized internal terrorism. In the 1970s we had a left wing terrorism movement in the United States, back then it was the Weathermen, and the Symbionese liberation army. The latter had a shootout with the Los Angeles Police over 40 years ago, and they were considered a terrorist organization. It is time that many of our current right wing extreme groups are called such.
Oh and as a bonus, where is the wanted poster from that long ago.