America’s most entertaining conspiracy crazy has already come out with his theory about the Washington, D.C. Navy yard shooting. It’s a fake. Of course, to Alex Jones everything that might stir up public support for some – any – kind of gun control was somehow cooked up by the evil government. He said the same about the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. He said it about the Sandy Hook shootings. He said it about the Boston Marathon bombing. Oh, and the government has a weather machine, which they used to send a tornado into Moore, Oklahoma. If you want to read a list of all the things Alex Jones has been wrong about, my colleague Nathaniel Downes put together a handy guide recently. It’s kind of quaint how Jones keeps making basically the same predictions again and again and is Wrong. Every. Time.
And today’s tragedy in D.C. is just another chance for Jones to whip up his anti-government, hysterical paranoia. Like the other recent shootings, he claims this one was a government set-up, a “false flag” as the CTers call it. The description for Monday’s Alex Jones Show reads, in part:
“On this Monday, September 16 edition of the Alex Jones Show, Alex covers the Navy Yard shooting in Washington D.C. as gun control legislation remains stalled in Congress and the political agenda of the gun grabbers is in sore need of a propaganda infusion to get off dead center. Terry Holcomb of Open Carry and Rachel Malone of Texas Firearms Freedom are in-studio to talk with Alex…”
Ah, the “gun grabbers” are at it again, eh Alex? Because the idea of a disgruntled employee snapping and opening fire at his workplace is just so far-fetched. Jones has obviously never heard of Occam’s Razor or, if he has, doesn’t understand how it works: it’s kind of sciencey and philosophical so it’s probably much too complex for Jones to grasp. But if we apply it to this tragedy, we come up with the conclusion that the man who shot 12 people was just another guy who went off the rails and decided, rather than accept responsibility for his own life, to take it out on innocents.
But simplicity is never enough for Alex Jones. He first took to Twitter to muse…
“Who will the Navy yard shooting be blamed on? Terrorist? Tea Partier? Leftist? Lone nut?”
Gotta get those conspiracy nuts salivating, right? Later, on his radio show, Jones compared this shooting to other events that he believes to be false flags, concluding that this, too, had to be added to his list. At the time of his broadcast authorities believed there were two shooters. That only added to the probability of Jones being correct, he thought:
“…when you have multiple shooters like this, it has patsy written all over it.”
Um, okay. Logic never was one of Jones’ strong suits. Paranoia, on the other hand, is. Not only does he believe that the government somehow set this up to further the “Obama Second Amendment offensive,” he ponders on Twitter:
Oh noes! Poor Alex Jones and Infowars, they might be blamed for this. That is a whole ‘nother level of self-importance: the mixture of arrogance and paranoia on display in just that one small paragraph is indicative of what Jones thinks of himself and his website. It is doubtful that the media will blame you or your website, Alex. Unless you exhort your listeners to go out and shoot up their workplace – you don’t do that, do you? Maybe it’s time for a little introspection. What am I thinking? Jones can’t even spell it, much less engage in it.
To the right-wing in this country, there is no tragedy too horrible for them to exploit as they push their paranoid conspiracy theories. People dying is just an excuse for them to whip up their crazed base. With the NRA - and their lap-dogs like Jones – leading the pack, gun crazies will now begin to howl about how this latest shooting will make it easier for the gub’mint to come take their guns. You’ll see those memes all over Facebook, the ones that say, “Try to take them” or “You’re not getting my guns!” Because that’s the only thing that matters to them. Not 12 families who must now cope with the loss of a loved one. Not the city of Washington, D.C. which now has to deal with the aftermath. Not the rest of us in America, even those of us who are sane gun owners (like myself), who are left thinking tonight that it can happen anywhere – no place is safe. When will we find a balance between rights and responsibilities when it comes to guns? When will the insanity stop?