The recent terrorist attack at a Nashville Presbyterian School that killed 3 children and 3 adults sheds new light on extremism. No matter the motivation, the result is all too familiar to people in the US. With extremist rhetoric reaching levels we haven’t seen in decades, it’s no secret why we experience more domestic terrorist attacks than we do terrorism from foreign adversaries.
While the vast majority of hate-filled rage does, in fact, come from the far-right, it was only a matter of time before those victimized by hate groups and Christo-fascism lashed out in the same way anti-government extremists do. The goal of far-right extremists has always been to sow chaos and create an environment of rage and retaliation in an effort to foment a civil ethnic war in the United States. The attacks on the power grid are part of that reactionary plan.
The ethnic or racial makeup of mass shooters rarely makes a difference as we have seen Black extremists attack Jews based on the same anti-Semitic beliefs as neo-Nazis around the world. We’ve seen Black celebrities and Latino influencers echo the same rhetoric too. From Kanye West and Kyrie Irving to Alex Otaola and Nick Fuentes, the damage they do to drive hate and division manifests itself in many forms. Including retaliatory attacks.
Does it matter that Audrey Hale, the terrorist who attacked the Covenant School is trans? Not as much as the 6 innocent lives that were taken. When the demographics of domestic terrorists become more diverse, it points to a larger problem in US society. As more people begin to believe that murder is the solution to their problems, access to guns becomes the focus of much debate. And rightfully so. It’s far too easy to gain access to weapons of war.
The most important aspect of domestic terrorism is the level of hateful rhetoric that has become so normal. Particularly, after Elon Musk took over Twitter and made the unilateral decision to platform racists and bigots. Despite racial, cultural, and ethnic animus being prominent online since the advent of social media, Musk’s Twitter gave bigots the green light to spread hate while silencing those that try to counter it. Hateful ideas spreading unabated are why we’re here.
The failure of society at large to confront those in our immediate proximity who spread vicious beliefs helps bolster those malicious sentiments. Silence has never been an option and yet, we see it in the silence about the current administration’s border policies which are similar – and in some ways worse – than the policies implemented during previous administrations. Likewise, we see the silence around the record number of unarmed civilians killed by police.
The feigned outrage from so many in this country when Trump was in office compared to when Obama or Biden sat in the White House is astounding. It becomes increasingly obvious with each passing day that the inhumanity that festers in US society like a boil on a rat’s ass is acceptable. It seems that liberal America hated Trump more than his policies as they dare not criticize their dear leader in much the same fashion as bigoted Trump supporters won’t.
This brings us back to what happened in Nashville. The lack of action against those who are driving hate is arguably the main reason for what happened. Words have power. And whether a trans woman attacked a Christian school because of targeted rhetoric calling for the genocide of trans people or not, the idea that using weapons of war for whatever reason speaks to that rhetoric. Mass murder is but a symptom of a much larger problem. It’s time to stop ignoring it.
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