On December 14, 2012 Adam Lanza, of Newtown, Connecticut, shot and killed his mother, then drove to Sandy Hook Elementary School where he killed twenty children and six staff members, before killing himself.
Americans, watching the horrific aftermath on the national news, cried along with forlorn parents who had dropped their children at school only hours earlier, and now would never enjoy their company again. Although most of us had never heard of Newtown, we wept as a nation at this latest tragic link in the recent chain of mass shootings, which had gripped the country.
July 20, 2012—James Holmes enters a midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises and opens fire with a semi-automatic weapon; twelve people are killed and fifty-eight are wounded.
August 5, 2012—A white supremacist and former Army veteran shot six people to death inside a Sikh temple in suburban Milwaukee, Wisconsin, before killing himself.
August 14, 2012—Three people were killed at Texas A&M University when a 35-year-old man went on a shooting rampage; one of the dead was a police officer.
September 27, 2012—A 36-year-old man who had just been laid off from Accent Signage Systems in Minneapolis, Minnesota, entered his former workplace and shot five people to death, and wounded three others before killing himself.
October 21, 2012—45-year-old Radcliffe Frankin Haughton shot three women to death, including his wife, Zina Haughton, and injured four others at a spa in Brookfield, Wisconsin, before killing himself.
December 11, 2012—Supposedly motivated by his inability to purchase a sandwich shop, 22-year-old Jacob Tyler Roberts began shooting at random at Clackamas Town Center Mall in Portland, Oregon, killing two people and then himself.
At more than an event a month, I knew I wanted to address the trend in this blog. I was preparing to do just that when a fellow blogger posted the following video. Its the first of a four part series explaining how our government is trying to stage a Coup d'etat by faking the Sandy Hook incident to justify taking away our guns.
I'm not going to spend time attacking his argument, which seems based on a trivial response to an off camera joke & the fact that someone practiced their statement to the press in order to keep his emotions in check.
I'm not going to comment on how incredibly offensive it is to hear the narrator refer to newly distraught mothers & fathers as, "the alleged parents."
I don't have to address any of that. The fact that the narrator thinks that a sitting government can stage a Coup d'etat (which means to overthrow a sitting government) tells you all you need to know about his line of reasoning.
No, I wasn't there, I can't testify first hand that the shooting happened. However, I can rely, pretty solidly, on Occam's Razor which states, "If you have two equally likely solutions to a problem, choose the simplest." Even if more tragic, I find a lone boy on a rampage to be a far simpler explanation than the government using an entire small town and multiple news outlets to execute an elaborate hoax.
Still, the video started me thinking about conspiracy theories in general. Our history, or historical mythology, is full of ominous tales of shadowy organizations controlling destinies from behind the scenes. Some of the more "interesting" theories include the following.
- The Phantom Time Hypothesis - This is a conspiracy theory first postulated by Heribert Illig which states that the Early Middle Ages (614 - 911 AD) never occurred. In other words, all historical figures during this period, including Charlemagne, are outright fabrications and this is actually the year 1716.
- The Jewish Holocaust Was A Hoax - There are those, including Republican Congressional Candidate Art Jones, who believe no Jews were gassed by the Nazis and Israel perpetuates the hoax, "...to receive trillions of dollars worldwide as retribution for Holocaust gassings."
- The Moon Landing Was A Hoax - Supposedly, footage of Neil Armstrong's walk on the moon on July 20, 1969 was shown to the world through the lens of master film-maker Stanley Kubrick and was staged on the same Borehamwood, U.K., sound stage where Kubrick made his landmark film, 2001: A Space Odyssey.
- The US Government Authorized 911 Attacks - Yes, there are even those who believe we kill thousands of our own citizens to fabricate an excuse to invade the Middle East.
- The Trilateral Commission - This secret group, purportedly composed of past and present presidents, ambassadors, secretaries of state, senators and congressmen, Wall Street investors, NATO and pentagon military personnel, international bankers, etc... theoretically manipulates events to usher in a new world order.
Plus, while I understand certain key documents of the period from 614 to 911 AD may have been misfiled, denying the passage of 297 years of history seems illogical to me; Beowulf had to have been written at some point.
Yet, some of these theories are either denials of something evil, or extraordinary explanations of evil in the world.
When Joe loses his job, perhaps it helps to blame, "that stinkin' Trilateral Commission," for screwing up the economy.
Maybe some people find it easier to wage war against a 911 shadow conspiracy at home than against a zealous religious enemy half way around the world. Theoretically, every time they "expose" something about the 911 shadow conspiracy in a blog or leaflet, a battle has been won.
Perhaps, those who can't grasp the horror of mass graves full of tortured Jews, denying their existence is the only coping mechanism these people have.
If that's the case, then maybe the Sandy Hook shooting was simply too horrific for some to come to terms with. Perhaps, it's easier to imagine a shadow conspiracy lying to us than it is to digest the reality that twenty young children lost their lives for no reason.
The problem with that is, while we're arguing about whether, or not, the Sandy Hook shooting occurred, other shootings are taking place.
December 24, 2012—66-year-old William Spengler set his neighborhood on fire, then ambushed firefighters with an assault rifle, killing two and wounding two.
This month alone, the recent shooting at Lone Star College, during which three people were shot, was the sixth shooting to take place on or near a college campus since 2013 began.
It's easy to bury our heads in the sand and pretend someone's making it all up. However, that will keep us from figuring out why this is really happening and working together toward a solution.