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Rob Slane: None of the theories about the Orlando massacre stack up


It truly is in keeping with our narcissistic, must-have-it-now culture that it takes about an hour after a mass killing for politicians and the media to give us the reasons, motives and lessons to be learnt from the atrocity. It’s ISIS! It’s terrorism! It’s guns! It’s homophobia! Yet if we have learnt anything in the aftermath of the Orlando killings, it should be this:

  1. Maybe best to wait at least a few days before pronouncing with certainty on the motives of the people who do these things
  2. Maybe best steadfastly to ignore everything the media and politicians say about it, since they know nothing, make stuff up, and propose so-called solutions which are often populist, usually draconian, and mostly foolish.

For the first few hours after the attack, a perfect storm of competing narratives arose, and also a perfect storm of politicians and media queuing up to tell us what we must do to prevent it in the future.

So we had the possible future Ego-in-Chief, Donald Trump, calling for President Obama to resign because he failed to describe this as an act of “Islamic terrorism”. Then we had the current Fraud-in-Chief, Mr Obama, describing it as an “act of terror and hate” and calling for urgent gun control. And then there was the probable future Sociopath-in-Chief, Hillary Clinton, calling for both gun control and greater protection of the LGBT community. As an aside, Mrs Clinton also trotted out that dumbest of modern slogans, “this type of hate has no place in America.” Well it just did, Mrs Clinton, didn’t it? And no doubt it will again.

ISIS, terrorism, guns or homophobia? Which was it? Actually, none of them. First let’s deal with the idea that there was an ISIS connection. The grounds for this claim seem to have been that Omar Mateen was an attendee at the local Islamic Center of Fort Pierce, and that he also allegedly made a call to the police while holding hostages, pledging allegiance to the Islamic State. However, what makes this explanation particularly far-fetched, other than the fact that there is no actual evidence linking him with the so-called Caliphate in Syria and Iraq, is that back in 2013, according to co-workers, he hadclaimed to be a member of Hezbollah. Now either Mr Mateen made a dramatic transition from Shia Muslim in 2013 to hardcore Sunni Salafism justthree years later, or he apparently didn’t understand the difference. To put it in context, it’s a bit like someone back in the days of the Northern Irish troubles going into a club to massacre people and pledging allegiance to the IRA, only for it to turn out that three years earlier he was claiming to be a member of the UDA. Hmm?

Of course, ISIS apparently claimed Mateen as one of their own, but they would, wouldn’t they? They claim every such attack as one of their own, despite the probability of their leadership having heard of Omar Mateen before last weekend being about the same as the chances of them having heard of you or I.

Which leads us on to the second red herring, that it was an “act of terror”. Back in the day, everybody understood terrorism to mean something along the following lines: an act of violence committed by a person or persons belonging to an organisation with very clearly stated political goals, with the violence being perpetrated in order to advance those goals. In other words, there would need to be some tangible connection and even membership of the group to warrant the use of the word terrorism.

These days, someone can attack a person at random in the street, but providing they shout out certain slogans as they do so, it will be called an act of terrorism. It is not. It is a deranged or delusional person carrying out an evil act, and nothing more. So why the use of the word terrorism? Simply because the elites that rule over us want us to feel like there’s terror, terror everywhere. Keeps us in a state of perpetual fear you see, all the better to manipulate us. It works. No doubt some mass attacks are acts of terrorism, but the Orlando massacre was not one of them.

Then there are the guns. This attack surely shows the need to tighten control and introduce tough laws, doesn’t it? The most obvious fallacy in this theory is that many societies, such as our own in the past, and Switzerland today, have had an armed populace, yet it wasn’t until relatively recently that we started to see massacres of this nature, mainly in the US. You’d almost think there might be far wider problems with a toxic culture, other than just the gun thing. But the other big problem with the gun theory in the Orlando case is that there were already sufficient gun laws to prevent Mateen owning one legally. He was known to have abused substances (steroids), he had a known history of domestic violence, and he had been diagnosed as bi-polar – all things that meant he couldn’t legally own a gun. But he apparently had one anyway.

The other theory – “homophobia” – was one of the clear favourite explanations to begin with, and predictably many in the media, the political classes and indeed millions of people treated it as if it were exactly that. At least they did until the bombshell came: Omar Mateen had been a fairly regular visitor to the Pulse nightclub, and had used gay dating apps. Suddenly the idea that this was a “homophobic” killing didn’t quite hold up, and a new theory began to emerge. The BBC, for instance, ran a report on whether what they called “internalised homophobia” was to blame. Or rather it’s not “internalised homophobia” that is to blame, but rather society’s attitudes towards homosexuality:

Both Weber and Meyer say educating society as a whole is crucial to enabling people to avoid developing internalised homophobia and its potentially damaging effects.”

It’s worth digesting that piece. Unbelievable as it might seem, a week which began with us being told this was a “hate crime” committed by someone apparently motivated by “homophobia”, could well end with Mateen being treated as a victim of society’s intolerance! Not likely? Don’t underestimate the collective insanity of our times.

So if it wasn’t ISIS, it wasn’t terrorism, it wasn’t the guns, and it wasn’t “homophobia”, what exactly was it? Frankly, I have no idea what motivated Mateen to commit such a crime. How could I, any more than Trump, Obama and Clinton do? I suspect that there is a great deal of truth in Peter Hitchens’s observation that in most if not all of these sorts of incidents, the killer is found to have been taking illegal or prescription drugs. I also suspect that the culture in the US is now so terminally sick, and the mental state of huge numbers of people who live in this toxic culture so unhealthy that the real wonder is that there are not more of these atrocities.

One other issue is worth mentioning. There are a good many people out there who think we are not being told the whole truth about this event, or indeed about many other similar events. For example, they point to some witness reports claiming that there was more than one shooter. Also, they reasonably question the idea that one person could have walked into a nightclub with that much ammunition, and killed that many people single-handedly, since it would have involved reloading several times, giving the crowd many opportunities to overpower him. These are good points, and I’m not sure I know enough to fully explain them away.

Nonetheless, what I do know is that this incident, just like every one of these similar incidents, is used by the Adult-Toddlers (Toddults) who lead us to advance their cause, keep us in a state of permanent anxiety, and chip away further at our freedoms. But since the President and the two characters who want his job were all stupendously wrong with their explanations of the motive and cause of this shooting, perhaps it’s just best if we ignore them in future.

(Image: Day Donaldson)

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Rob Slane
Rob Slane
Rob is married to Alina, and they live with their six children in Salisbury. He blogs regularly at

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