Wednesday, 2 December 2015

White Male Pro-Life Terrorism

Anybody who has watched a single episode of "Criminal Minds," or read a news story about serial killers knows the profile. White male between the ages of 18 and 55. Childhood bed-wetter. Criminal escalation through animal torture, arson, increasing violence against women. Then, murder.

Now a profile of the Prolife Terrorist is emerging.

White male between 18 and 55? Check.

Bed wetter? Jury's out.

Animal abuser? Check.

Violence against women? Check.

New wrinkle: Vandalism against abortion clinics? Check. Both Dr George Tiller's murderer, Scott Roeder, and the recent Colorado Planned Parenthood murderer, Robert Dear, glued locks shut on women's clinics.

Here's a thought-provoking article about "white male terrorism", which, while long on white entitlement and rage, is rather short on the "male" part.

Another based on court documents submitted by an ex-partner of Dear's is rather more forthcoming about the "male rage," misogyny, and religion parts.

By January 1993, she had had enough. In a sworn affidavit as part of her divorce case, Ms. Micheau [the ex] described Mr. Dear as a serial philanderer and a problem gambler, a man who kicked her, beat her head against the floor and fathered two children with other women while they were together. He found excuses for his transgressions, she said, in his idiosyncratic views on Christian eschatology and the nature of salvation.

“He claims to be a Christian and is extremely evangelistic, but does not follow the Bible in his actions,” Ms. Micheau said in the court document. “He says that as long as he believes he will be saved, he can do whatever he pleases. He is obsessed with the world coming to an end.”
In short, these are men motivated by rage and religion.

And oddly, or not, both the rage and the religion are focussed on women.

So, not surprisingly, but critically, they are finally mobilized by the relentless, violent, misogynist rhetoric from right-wing nutbars, who in the United States are terrifyingly mainstream, represented by Fox News and every Republican presidential candidate, perhaps most notably Carly Fiorina, who not only clings to her lies about the discredited Planned Parenthood videos, but who is now attacking the "left" for suggesting she played a role in the Colorado massacre.

Also among the terrorism enablers and mobilizers are every anti-choice individual and organization that repeats the hateful lies that demonize abortion providers and the people who need them.

And now this kind of terrorism has a name: stochastic terrorism*. (This piece is from 2011, but the term is cropping up again now in light of the most recent example in Colorado.)
Stochastic terrorism is the use of mass communications to incite random actors to carry out violent or terrorist acts that are statistically predictable but individually unpredictable. In short, remote-control murder by lone wolf.
Here is Valerie Tarico on the Colorado murders.
The formula is perversely brilliant:
1. A public figure with access to the airwaves or pulpit demonizes a person or group of persons.
2. With repetition, the targeted person or group is gradually dehumanized, depicted as loathsome and dangerous— arousing a combustible combination of fear and moral disgust.
3. Violent images and metaphors, jokes about violence, analogies to past “purges” against reviled groups, use of righteous religious language — all of these typically stop just short of an explicit call to arms.
4. When violence erupts, the public figures who have incited the violence condemn it — claiming no one could possibly have foreseen the “tragedy.”
Use of terms like "Nazi," "genocide," "holocaust," and "slavery" abounds, in addition to the usual "killing," "murder," and "dismemberment."

Here's the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform's (yep, that's the name, though I call them the Fetal Gore Porn Gang) "Genocide Awareness Project", a gory duplicitous display trucked around to university and college campuses, as "a powerful way to compel thought and dialogue."

Its spokesthingy, Jonathan van Maren, wrote a beaut of a piece at LieShite, denying any responsibility on the "pro-life movement's" part, while simultaneously demonstrating how stochastic terrorism works.

Joyce Arthur, of Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada, gives his brain-fart a thorough fisking here.

“We will not allow Planned Parenthood and the abortion movement to climb atop a ‘moral high ground’ created from the chopped-up body parts of human beings they have dismembered…”

You’re inciting violence, right there. Also, please stop erasing women and the fact that they need abortion care, which is why abortion providers are there, to protect women’s lives.

I share this blogger's question: Why aren't the inciters of crime -- the radicalizing mobilizers -- prosecuted?

Or as is said in another context: Let's shut down their churches, dismantle their funding networks, block their websites, arrest the ringleaders, and discredit their parrots and followers.

White male prolife terrorism. It's real and way more likely -- seven times more likely -- to kill us than any other religious fundamentalist terrorism.

[Reality note: I said much of this about Bill O'Reilly after he successfully incited the assassination of Dr Tiller. So.]

* Of course, in Canada, we had another recent and vivid display of stochastic terrorism. The mindless, relentless repetition of "jihadi terrorists" hiding behind niqabs at citizenship ceremonies backfired spectacularly on the loathesome Conservatives, but resulted in some real violence and terror for Muslim Canadians.


choice joyce said...

Spokesthingy, haha!
It is so blindingly obvious that their rhetoric and lies are triggers for pro-life violence as in Colorado. But they can only see one thing: feti. Blind fanaticism.

fern hill said...

"Spokesthingy" is an old Frank Magazine, when it was still a print thingy, coinage.

And as I write this, there have been three more mass shootings TODAY in the US. Dunno yet how many were White Male Terrorists. One shooting was at a clinic in Houston, TX.

Beijing York said...

The last episode of The Good Wife was chilling in how the anti-choice fanatics cling to free speech as an excuse to bombard social media with propaganda.

e.a.f. said...

at the rate Americans have these mass shootings I wouldn't be too worried about any terrorist from abroad. The Americans are doing a fine job of killing each other. No need for help from others. The way Americans and some Canadians carry on you'd think it was the end of the world. If these people would worry as much about children in poverty as they do about a fetus, the child poverty rate in Canada and the U.S.A. would be much lower.

GS Ruddin said...

Great article. Let's call it WHITE MALE CHRISTIAN TERRORISM. Its religiously guided!

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