Here is a link to the story in the Seattle Times. The suspect apparently pulled up beside a patrol car on Halloween night and opened fire on two officers, killing one and wounding the other. Premediated murder. He was also apparently involved in a bombing also against police offices earlier in the month. And the clue that tied to the two crimes together? A small U.S. flag was left at both crime scenes.
When police raided this guy’s apartment, there was a confrontation and he tried to shoot at the arresting officers. He was, very appropriately, shot by three officers. He survived and is in the hospital. A search of the suspects apartment “turned up bomb-making materials, improvised explosive devices and two rifles, including a "military-style assault rifle" similar to the type of weapon police believe was used to kill Brenton and wound his rookie partner, Officer Britt Sweeney. More hazardous material was found later Saturday, and at 8 p.m. residents in Monfort's building were evacuated briefly, according to Tukwila police dispatch.”
(Note: This is about five miles from where I work. Also in the same area is the truck plant where Gary Ridgway, the Green River Killer used to work and and Lake Sammamish State Park, which is where Ted Bundy first learned how to lure young women into his beat up Volkswagon bug. About 25 miles down the road in Tacoma is where the D.C. sniper bought his rifle used to kill a number of people while he was hidden in the truck of his car, modified specifically for that purpose and where he killed one of his first victims.)
This event won’t even make the national news, because it is such “small potatoes.” After all, it was only a single policeman that was killed by a lone nutjob. Nothing to see here, no conclusions to be drawn. This comes right on the heels of the horrific killings at an Army base in Texas and several killings in Orlando at a business complex.
The atmosphere in the country right now is just heavy with the potential for violence. Lots and lots of angry people being egged on by their favorite radio or television “entertainer”, easy access to guns, the disintegration of all social restraint, all are contributing to this potential. In the eyes of many, it is now acceptable to take out their anger and frustration by killing people. I can’t believe that many on the right are still spouting off with implications of violence and killing. Michelle Bachmann spoke of people coming to Washington D.C. to confront lawmakers, using the following language:
"I'd love to have every one of your viewers to join me so we can go up and down through the halls, find members of Congress, look at the whites of their eyes and say, 'Don't take away my healthcare.'"
"The American people realize this is it. Just like that brand new Michael Jackson movie came out, ‘This Is It.’ This is it for freedom. If you believe in liberty, and if you’re rejecting tyranny, this is it. Dr. Mark Levin wrote a seminal book that really swept this country called Liberty and Tyranny. And that’s what this debate is about next week. Liberty and tyranny."
The last time I heard the words “the whites of their eyes” and “tyranny” used together, it was about the Revolutionary War. This was, no doubt, intentional by Bachmann. But she is using references to taking up arms against an oppressive government (which at that time was Britain). She is purposely trying to stir up the anger of people at the very government of which she is a part, and insinuating that violence is acceptable.
This is not going to end well. There are already too many angry nuts out there with guns who are more than willing to go out and kill Americans against whom they hold a grudge, real or perceived. This is why many of us rational people were aghast when people starting bringing loaded guns to town hall meetings where President Obama was speaking. Legal or not, that is an insane thing to do. There is no upside.
This is not going to end well. It may not even end at all. This may now be the normal condition of this country. And that scares me a lot.