After offering up some reasonable answers to conspiracy theorists and internet sleuths in my last piece, the tin foil hat brigade went nuts. Apparently, I am now part of the government conspiracy to cover up what is the worst mass shooting in modern American history. According to "internet experts," Townhall is in on it along with every member of the media, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD), the CIA, the FBI, and the hundreds of investigators who are working tirelessly to make any sense of this horrific act.
And, I’m a stooge for all of them.
I get it. I distrust the government when it comes to many things. I believe in the Deep State. I believe that ultimate power corrupts ultimately, and that the past administration “weaponized” the Deep State in attempts to stifle political opposition. I believe they collected data on their political opponents, and I believe these things because there has been solid evidence (like this from Katie Pavlich and this from Matt Vespa to name a couple) presented to support those beliefs put forth by reputable organizations and individuals. I distrust the mainstream media to accurately report on political matters, just as I distrust the FBI in political matters.
However, I find it implausible that a group of individuals inside the government apparatus concocted a scheme to senselessly murder 58 of their fellow countrymen and injure upwards of another 500. I also find it difficult to swallow the suggestion that any individual law enforcement officer or agency is playing any part in withholding evidence, covering it up, or that everyone else - including the media - are all going along with it. What purpose would that serve?
What I do find plausible is that internet con-artists continue to profit substantially by duping millions of people who click on outrageous headlines, because they have a hard time accepting that one deranged individual could mastermind and execute such a horrific attack.
It is not crazy for having difficulty believing that one person did this. It is not crazy to seek to know more. It certainly is not crazy to distrust your government.
But, before you click on the next headline with some mystery whodunnit title purporting to show you “The Real Truth” or “What We Know Now” or any other titillating headline, consider clicking on a fund for the victims instead.
Ask yourself a few things.
Here are some questions to ponder if you have found yourself suggesting things like, this is a huge government conspiracy, they are covering up/suppressing evidence, or this is a CIA/FBI/NSA/Soros/Bilderberg Group/Right Wing/Left Wing mission to destroy the country.
1. What is the motivation of the website from which I am getting information?
Is it to make money from clicks? Are they seeking to find the truth, even though it may take time? Are they stirring up dissension within our country or trying to easily dupe people for future nefariousness?
2. How did participants in this giant "government" conspiracy operate and benefit?
Let’s just assume for the sake of this question that “the government” includes the FBI and CIA, along with every Las Vegas police officer and Nevada State authorities, and that they are all in cahoots to have participated in the slaughter of 58 citizens.
How does each person involved personally benefit from participating? Where and when did they meet to plan such an event? How is it that not one person objected to this plan, out of the hundreds involved or potentially exposed to its details? How do they continue to communicate among this vast group yet remain undetected?
3. Setting aside the why, how is it possible that “the government” somehow managed to kill 58 and injure upwards of 500 people without raising an eyebrow?
According to accusers, our government is utterly incompetent to do anything efficiently or effectively. Either the government is sadistically brilliant beyond comprehension, or it is completely incapable of efficiently doing things, like delivering mail or running hospitals for veterans. Which is it?
4. What evidence do we have to conclude that the FBI is completely running the investigation or has “taken it over”?
How is it, according to conspiracy theorists, that the FBI is controlling (and covering up) every part of the investigation? The first officers on the scene were LVMPD, as was the SWAT Team and nearly every law enforcement first responder. We've seen the press conferences primarily led by by the LVMPD, rather than the FBI. Either the LVMPD is playing the predominant role, or the FBI is controlling every aspect. It can’t be both...so again, which is it?
5. What law requires investigators to immediately release every video in their possession for public consumption?
Why does this lack of disclosure suddenly amount to a giant cover up? Consider the following: How many hours of video would be produced in three days from 100 video cameras operating 24 hours per day? How many days would it take six people working eight hours per day to review this footage? What purpose would be served for releasing video before the investigation is concluded - other than identifying a person of interest?
6. Do things work as fast in real life as they do in an episode of CSI or a Bourne movie?
If you are reading this, you are likely doing so on a computer. Does your machine work like the ones in the movies or on shows like CSI? Are you able to readily access any and all information at the push of a button? Do you think the computers within the LVMPD or the FBI run any differently?
Why is it so hard to understand that an investigation of this size and magnitude takes an incredible amount of time, resources, and manpower?
Assuming the Las Vegas Police representatives are not lying and have indeed received 1,000 plausible leads, how many officers would it take (working a 40-hour week) to follow up on every lead - assuming that on average it takes four hours of investigative time for every lead? Please consider your answer in number of officers.
It's going to take some time for them to sort through these leads. Answers cannot be offered just because there is an impatient audience.
7. Could this really be a "false flag" sabotage of the Second Amendment?
In my career, I have worked with large numbers of law enforcement officers, (LEO’s). I personally don't know a single one of them that doesn’t love guns and the Second Amendment. If indeed this is an “inside job to destroy the Second Amendment,” then why would they be willing participants? How would they benefit? Who is paying them for their silence, and what is the price of that silence?
8. Why is it necessary that the shooter have military or law enforcement experience to do what he did?
How good of a marksman would one have to be in order to accurately rain fire on a target the size of several football fields covered with people? The crowd had limited escape routes, and the shooter used one or more weapons capable of firing several hundred rounds per minute for approximately ten minutes. He faced no resistance and maintained an excellent vantage point. Why is it so hard to believe that he could have done the damage that he did?
Give law enforcement a break.
Clearly, many of these questions are hypothetical and intended to make a point. Yes, there are important questions that have yet to be answered; and yes, we all want this investigation to conclude quickly. Imagine those who have been living this nightmare for more than a week with no break, no time to grieve, no time to soak it all in.
It is also looking more and more likely that we may never know some of the answers to some of our most pressing questions.
Right now, let’s give these LEO’s the benefit of the doubt and cut them some slack. We’d all be better served to focus on areas where we can make a real difference, instead of taking the click bait every time.