How fortunate the right wing must feel that some obliging Muslim terrorists* came along and massacred over a dozen people. They must feel they can turn the spotlight back on those awful terrible brown folks with the non-Christian beliefs, and get everyone to ignore the terrorists they themselves breed.
I’m not forgetting.
In fact, we’re going to have a bit of a linkfest right here to explore their fuckery.
How to Understand White Male Terrorism by Max Berger
I have come to believe the fears of white Americans are really just reflections of the things that white supremacy and empire have done to others. White America has not been terrorized by people of color; we have terrorized people of color. Black wealth is not based on stealing from white people; white wealth is based on stealing from black people. Instead of confronting the reality of our history and what our country has become for most people, too many Americans would rather kill those mourning their dead and send orphans and widows to a hellscape we created — all in order to preserve the myths of whiteness, masculinity, and empire.
I have to imagine the white men who commit these egregious acts of terror do so out of a silent, personal fear that the myths of whiteness and masculinity engender in themselves. The dehumanization white supremacists perpetrate on others has to be, in part, a projection of the dehumanization they feel themselves. The sad men that hang out on 4chan plotting the destruction of innocent others don’t believe they can be the strong, virile, white male dominators they are prescribed to be. No one who feels good about themselves talks as much as Donald Trump does about how he is a “winner” and other people are “losers.” No one who is confident of their humanity would deny acceptance to a 5-year-old orphan refugee.
And yet, these white, American men are taught they must be silent in considering their fear, because to even admit they feel it would be to undo the myths of whiteness and masculinity they cling to.
The most powerful demographic in this country are taking their guns, going out in broad daylight, and killing us off, one by one.
Call them terrorists.
This is what terrorism looks like.
On The Stories We Tell by Chris Brecheen
There’s a story our society tells when an atrocity is committed (and “atrocity” is the right word, not “tragedy”). As we grab for the answer, if we find something strange and different like a religion or an ethnicity that doesn’t belong, then we blame that. Code words pop up like “terrorism,” “immigration,” “thug,” and tell us exactly who has committed these atrocities.
When the offender is white though, these ways of slipping them quietly into other groups that explain their penchant for committing terrible actions breaks down. And that is when we turn to mental illness as the story we tell. “Mental illness,” or whatever euphemism (“deeply troubled” “crazy” “insane”) you might prefer. The problem is that even when these things are true, they are still irrelevant and focusing on them both harms others and pulls the scrutiny from where it belongs.
Republicans in the U.S Senate Thursday evening voted down several Democratic bills that would have blocked felons, the mentally ill, and suspected terrorists from being allowed continued access to guns.
By a vote of 45-54, Senate Republicans blocked a bill that would have banned anyone on the terror watch list from being able to buy a gun. that bill failed in almost an exclusively party-line vote, with one Democrat and one Republican crossing the aisle.
And in defiance of well over 80 percent of the American public, GOP lawmakers voted against strengthening background checks by closing the gun show loophole. That bill failed, 50-48.
Republican Senators also voted against legislation that would strengthen treatment for those with mental illness and substance abuse issues.
Moving on to terrorism strictly aimed at abortion providers (or those perceived as such), we have direct evidence that the religious right is, itself, inciting terrorism. Don’t let them turn around and claim it’s always some lone wolf. They open the gates and invite the wolves right in, and point them to the flocks they want attacked.
Inside the Army of God Manual by Kathryn Elizabeth
All of the parts of the manual that I have were at one point readily available on the Army of God website. I’m not going to link you to the website because I have a policy against linking to terror groups. Today and tomorrow I’m going to publish excerpts that are still available on the Army of God website as of the time I’m writing this. These are materials that were readily available for Dear to access. After that, I’m going to publish excerpts from my archives. It’s still possible to find those archived documents without too much trouble, however because they do include detailed how-to instructions for making bombs and incendiary devices I’m not going to provide links or publish those portions of the manual that could provide others with the information necessary to carry out a terror attack.
The reason for this series is because I believe it’s important for the general public to understand that this isn’t lone wolf terrorism. Just like Al Qaeda and ISIS publish online “terrorism starter kits” that enable others to take up the cause without contact with the main group, the Army of God website provides plenty to inspire would-be terrorists.
The excerpts that I’m posting today show that Army of God not only anticipated, they encourage “lone ranger” terrorists like Dear. As you read this, keep in mind that Robert Dear was not only aware of Army of God, he described them as “heroes.”
Evangelist Calls On Christians To Assassinate Abortion Providers by Michael Stone
Popular Facebook evangelist Joshua Feuerstein calls on Christians to “punish Planned Parenthood” and make abortion providers fear for their life.
Feuerstein may be an ignorant and ugly religious zealot, but with over 1.8 million Facebook followers his influence should not be underestimated. And while it is unclear whether or not the Christian terrorist behind the recent attack on Planned Parenthood was directly influenced by Feuerstein’s dangerous call to action, there can be no doubt that the video feeds and encourages the dangerous climate that makes terrorist acts against Planned Parenthood not only likely, but inevitable.
The PP Shootings: How the System Is Designed by Captain Cassidy
I long ago stopped calling these extremists “pro-life.” A guy who thinks it’s a great idea to go shoot up a women’s clinic is not “pro-life,” whatever delusions he’s internalized or made up for himself. What he is instead is a “forced-birther.” (The term is not original to me, nor is it particularly new.) He wants to force pregnant women to give birth whether they want to or not, whether they consent or not to this medical risk and to this use of their bodies. Such a person sees the violation of a pregnant woman’s body and will as secondary to the greater good he has taken upon himself to adjudicate; he will force her to do what he thinks is right because he knows better than she does what is right for her–and of course because his opinion weighs more than hers does. And if she won’t listen to him, then fine, he’ll use violence to force her to comply with his demands.
The shooter in this case ended up killing three people and wounding many others–but clearly hoped to terrorize countless thousands of other women into avoiding clinics like the one he attacked. And he’s not alone. Anti-abortion terrorism is a homegrown American cottage industry at this point. Just as many fundagelical men use rape threats to force compliance when their overreach is denied, forced-birthers reach for violence when their lies, manipulations, and distortions don’t seem to be doing the trick.
And apparently “Jesus” approves fully of what his minions are doing while shrieking his name.
*Meaning the dead couple who allegedly committed the murders was Muslim, and may have been radicalized. But since the dude targeted his coworkers, I’m going to withhold judgement for the nonce as to whether this was actual inspired-by-fundamentalist-Islam terrorism, or just your basic American workplace violence variety of terrorism. It may have been a strange hybrid. Hopefully the media’s antics in the dead couple’s home doesn’t preclude us from ever finding out.