In 2015, conservative extremist Robert Dear entered a Planned Parenthood facility in Colorado Springs with an assault rifle, ranting about “baby body parts.” After an hour’s-long stand off, Dear was taken into custody, babbling about Obama and “no more baby body parts.”
Dear’s ranting was in reference to the Project Veritas sting videos, a series of deceptively edited videos they produced earlier that year with the intent to incriminate Planned Parenthood in illegal activity. The so-called illegal activity, the made up nonsense that Planned Parenthood was harvesting aborted fetal body parts for resale – which has always been illegal – a claim that right-wing conservative media fell for hook, line and sinker, which promoted the videos nonstop. Eventually, Congress investigated the bogus claims, and Planned Parenthood was proven to have done nothing illegal.
Project Veritas has proven time and again to be ambulance chasing hacks who have no idea how to conduct actual investigative journalism. They are no better than the National Enquirer of journalism. No matter how many times they have been proven wrong, they continue to embarrass themselves, and many conservatives continue to fall for their BS, believing them to be a legitimate journalistic organization, when in reality, all they are is propaganda.
Long after the anti-abortion rhetoric that lead to Project Veritas’s slanderous videos against Planned Parenthood, they continued to deny any culpability in the anti-abortion violence they helped to create.
Dear was not the first to respond violently to anti-abortion rhetoric. He was a part of a pattern of stochastic terrorism that is a result of violent rhetoric . Right-wing media had been using this type of rhetoric decades prior to Dear. There have been plenty of acts of violence, including murder in response to such rhetoric. It was just a matter of time that one mentally unstable crackpot would be willing to take up arms against the tyranny of freedom in response to the Project Veritas videos.
And when that happens, responsible parties continue to deny any culpability that their rhetoric may have played a role in the ensuing violence. According to Media Matters, The Daily Wire’s Matt Walsh is one of the worst in this respect.
The Daily Wire's Matt Walsh, one of the most virulently anti-LGBTQ pundits on the right, announced that he was organizing an intimidation campaign against hospitals that provide gender-affirming care for trans youth.
Walsh addressed the issue on his show days later, accusing the Boston Children's hospital of lying about the threats they'd received and dismissing his connection to stochastic terrorism.
"When they claim that threats are coming in - that they're being threatened,- you can never take that claim at face value," Walsh said. "Of course, they're not above simply lying, and what's more, we know what they consider a threat to be.
"What was the word of the day that we learned yesterday? It was, uh, sto - stochastic terrorism is what it is. So, we already know that any criticism is an act of terrorism."
Of course, Matt Walsh would never lie. He’s the one with integrity here. He has no motive for being dishonest. Big donor money has nothing to do with it. He’s just so concerned about innocent children being “groomed” to be drag queens and perverts by other drag queens and perverts.
It’s no secret that pedophilia in the Catholic church and the Christian church are the real scandals. Scandals that have been ignored and/or downplayed by individuals like Matt Walsh and Ben Shapiro. Consumers of their “news media,” The Daily Wire – which is not really news at all, but an entertainment media that engages in little more than propaganda, conspiracy baiting, and hatred of gay and trans people – are constantly told that LGBTQ people are a threat to society, and hospitals that provide care are sexually mutilating children. These conservative pundits have fear-mongered endlessly about drag queens.
Media Matters notes that Ben Shapiro has taken the same stance as Carlson and Walsh. Lie, and make up shit about people you hate – that they’re all pedophiles and child groomers – and when a mentally-deranged individual ( always a conservative ) responds with violence, deny any responsibility, and blame it on both the left and the victims.
Referring to the media writ large, Shapiro said, "if you note that gender-affirming care is an awful euphemism for torturing children - if you note this - then this means that you're engaged in what they call "stochastic terrorism."
"No one should wonder about what Boston Children's Hospital is doing, mutilating children," Shapiro said. "No one should ask questions about that. This makes you akin to a terrorist."
If Shapiro and his type were “simply asking questions,” wondering “about what Boston Children’s Hospital was doing,” no one would have a problem. All they had to do was talk to people on staff at the hospital. This is how you find things out. But they were not interested in talking to anyone. They were not interested in asking questions or finding things out. Their only interest is false accusations, smearing and scapegoating an entire group of people as pedophiles simply because they don’t think they have a right to exist. They view trans and gay people as degenerates, as a disease, a cancer that should be eradicated. They have confirmed as much in their rhetoric:
This is what they all want: Matt Walsh, Ben Shapiro, Tucker Carlson. The fact that such people ( especially trans ) exist, is a trigger point to these hate-filled bigots. They want them dead. And the death of those five club patrons was a direct result of this type of rhetoric. The above tweet proves it without a doubt. They can deny it and say their rhetoric is taken out of context all they want. Their rhetoric speaks for itself.
We know what their motive is: hatred and bigotry of LGBTQ. They have no interest in exposing societies actual pedophiles: “The criminal sexual abuse of children and teenagers by ordained clergymen.” ( Freedom From Religion Foundation ).
To refute Shapiro’s excuse of “just asking questions” would make sense, if it weren’t so ridiculous. As I’ve already noted, Shapiro and his lackeys at the Daily Wire we’re not asking questions. They were ( and continue ) to use irresponsible rhetoric such as “torture” in connection to a children’s hospital; using rhetoric such as “pedophiles,” “child groomers,” “child abusing demons,” “promoting the mutilation of healthy kids,” in connection to a subset of people they disapprove of. They know exactly what they’re doing. And it’s deliberate. ‘Don’t blame us! Our words couldn’t possibly have anything to do with anti-trans violence!’
Anyone who claims to be outraged by children being exposed to sexualization by adults would be talking about the daily news reports of Christian clergy who take sexual advantage of minors. But on their nightly broadcasts the Matt Walsh’s, Ben Shapiro’s, and the Tucker Carlson’s, remain silent. Instead they want you to be afraid of drag queens who read stories to children.
"Many such peddlers of fear and disinformation about LGBTQ people - including the Daily Wire's Matt Walsh, his boss Ben Shapiro, and Candace Owens - took to Twitter in the wake of the shooting to attack 'the left' and 'Democrats' for drawing the obvious link between months of heightened anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and homophobic and transphobic murders. The attack, which killed five people and injured 25, took place on the eve of the Transgender Day of Remembrance...
"Since early 2021, ( Chaya ) Raichik has posted a stream of transphobic and homophobic messages on platforms including Twitter, Facebook, Substack, and far-right favorite, Gab, under the pseudonym "Libs of TikTok." Her typical operating procedure involves spotlighting LGBTQ users of the platform TikTok, especially trans people, and targeting them individually for mockery and abuse...
"Hospitals and medical workers across the country have been subject to harassment and death threats after being targeted in posts from Raichik and others, including Matt Walsh..."
( Southern Poverty Law Center )
The shooting at the Q night club did not happen in a vacuum. It did not happen by chance. It was not an isolated event. It happened because these people were targeted for abuse and harassment, which will inevitably lead to death threats. As the writer of the article I cited above, pointed out, it was the end result of violent rhetoric – deliberate lies that gay and trans people in general are depraved individuals who sexually prey on the innocent, while the activities of actual child sex “groomers” and traffickers – i.e., the Christian patriarchy – is never talked about.
It was the end result that could only lead to one conclusion: an unhinged individual who believed that LGBTQ people in general are child predators. It’s no surprise that it happened. It was just a matter of time.
On Monday evening, Fox News host, Tucker Carlson, condemned the shooting, focusing on the suspect's reported history of making bomb threats in 2021. Three minutes into his nearly 15 minute monologue, however, Carlson's show displayed a graphic reading "Stop Sexualizing Kids!" On Tuesday evening, Carlson hosted a guest who said shootings would continue to happen "until we end this evil agenda that is attacking children."
Alejandra Caraballo, a clinical instructor at Harvard Law School's Cyber Law Clinic, said that repetitive messaging from Carlson and others has opened a door for violence against LGBTQ people.
"The way they soften up the support for this kind of violence is essentially by making it seem morally justified in the minds of people who believe this," she said. "The way they do this is by constantly painting LGBTQ people as pedophiles and groomers, and so people feel morally justified in carrying out this violence..."
Sarah Jane Ellis, president and CEO of the LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD, said the on-going demonization of LGBTQ people by conservative media figures, has taken it's toll.
"No one is holding them accountable for all of the misinformation they're spreading, but then we need to prove we're not what they say we are," she said...
"This is an 'In Case Of Emergency Break Glass' moment for social media," Caraballo said. "This is priming some very violent people to do some shocking acts of violence, and this is all being pushed on social media and on Fox News, on Tucker Carlson."
This is what they want. And it’s working.
Just as Dear was not the first of his type, the Q club shooter will not be the last. Unfortunately, others like him, radicalized by violent anti-LGBTQ rhetoric, will answer the call, and the right will go through the usual song and dance, self-righteously proclaiming their innocence.
Sources: Media Matters, Southern Poverty Law Center, NBC News.