Thursday, September 02, 2010

Argh. I wanna Fisk this, but I also don't.

Okay. So you probably heard about the idiot who committed suicide-by-cop yesterday in the Discovery Channel building. It was another of your typical whackjobs, someone who was so desperate for attention that they made up a cause (at least, that's what I interpret) and then went out with guns and alleged bombs and threatened the lives of innocent folks. All to be taken down by cops when they had a good shot.

(And I sincerely hope the fool is having a lot of 'splainin' to do on the Other Side.)

Anyway, my most politically-motivated colleague poked his head in the door this moment to comment:

him: "You heard about the guy who held people at Discovery channel hostage?"
me: "Yeah. He was a whackjob."
him:"Apparently he was an environmentalist."
Me:"Yeah. He was a whackjob. He was opposed to the shows they had about big families."
Him: "But he was an environmentalist. He was on the left! You usually expect those shooter types to be right-wingers with guns."

And I was in the middle of working on something, and I didn't feel like getting dragged into his own personal spiral of pointiness, so I just grunted and reiterated that the guy was a whackjob.

But, two thoughts hit me after my colleague left:

First: I don't agree with his assessment. I would argue that you either can't find a political alliance, or that there would be an equal distribution of people who ally with the "left" or the "right" in these things. The Unabomber was more left than right, IMHO. The guy who killed all those students at Virgina Tech was, as far as I can tell, unallied. Most of the workplace shooters probably are unallied. Even the guy who flew his plane into that federal building in Austin wasn't really truly right or left - he had weird ideas coming from the extremes of either side.

And second, and more importantly: It's not a matter of politics, dammit. When someone gets to the point of thinking killing other innocent people is okay to advance their agenda, they have gone beyond the bounds of politics and I think whatever side they ally with should disown them and agree that they are, as I said, whackjobs.

The ONLY reasons for shooting someone, IMHO, are (a) armed combatants (soldiers) in wartime, (b) self-defense where you might be killed, maimed, or raped if you do not resist or, (c) defending someone who is weaker and may be killed, maimed, or raped by the wrongdoer if you do not do something to protect them. That's IT.

(And the cop in this case fulfilled condition c. And good shot.)

Hostage-takers are nothing more than terrorists. They are not promoting a cause, they are not advancing anything. Most of them are severely damaged human beings who, if they can be captured alive, probably need years of therapy and medication in an in-patient setting before they can even have any consideration of returning to freedom.

So I don't know. I'm irked by the dude's comments. Though I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

But this is just part of the "cold civil war" that I believe is going on in the country.

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