The Day After The Annapolis Shooting

There is no explaining the actions of a madman

The fire truck’s siren sounded different as it blew past me on Bestgate Road. There was desperation to it, a wildness in the truck’s path. We were maybe ½ a mile from 888 Bestgate Road.

Five people—Rob Hiaasen, John McNamara, Wendi Winters, Rebecca Smith, and Gerald Fischman—had been shot dead a few minutes earlier.

My wife was another ½ mile away in Anne Arundel Medical Center for a pregnancy checkup. We were on the phone with each other three times within ten minutes. When you’re wife sends you this pic it sets off a nerve.

I didn’t realize what had happened until I looked at the toxic swamp known as Twitter. I’d try to explain this feeling—this numbness that spreads over you in a moment of disbelief when you realize that someone you know may not be around any longer—but I can’t.

I immediately thought of Rick Hutzell. More importantly, his wife and kids. I met Rick and his family a decade earlier at the North County Chamber of Commerce’s Christmas party. It’s a small community chamber. The key word there is community. Several years later we were making fun of the picture I submitted as part of an Op-ed. He’s a good guy. He made it.

Less than 48 hours earlier I was in the parking lot of Severna Park Elementary talking to Rachael Pacella about local school board elections. I hadn’t met Rachel until that time, but she was diligent about doing her job. Very diligent. About a school board election. We’re not talking about a glamorous position, but it was important enough for her to cover a community topic. Rachael’s expected to make a full recovery after being shot.

The Capital-Gazette is not MSNBC. It is not Fox News. It is not CNN. It’s not even our local network affiliates. Unlike those big outfits where reporters try to sell books and intoxicate themselves on live TV during New Years’ Eve, The Capital-Gazette is your traditional hometown newspaper. It is a bastion—an icon—in Anne Arundel County.

While other hometown newspaper wilt away on the vine, The Capital-Gazette carries on. The people who work there are our friends, neighbors, and, to some, family members. You don’t find much in terms of journalism these days. You do at The Capital-Gazette.

Letters to the Editor are sometimes a topic of discussion at Cookie’s Kitchen in Pasadena. Our high school teams are celebrated in the first pages of the sports section. You won’t find any mention of LeBron. Our local college is the Naval Academy. They get plenty of coverage. You can also find lunchmeat special listed for non-chain grocery stores.

After processing it all, I turned on Fox News to hear Juan Williams ask a question about if this could be prevented with gun control. I immediately switched to music.

Some of my friends lost other friends. As my friend and local author Ronald Malfi explains in his Facebook post

My friend died today. She was murdered along with four other people while at work. A guy named Jarrod Warren Ramos entered her office building with a shotgun and did his thing. I spent hours worrying if my friend, Wendi Winters, a reporter for the Capital Gazette, was okay. And I realized that even if she was, there were still five people dead, and there were people out there just like me hoping that they were okay, too.

The shores of the Chesapeake Bay may be a little darker. Politicians will get their names in the paper. Wives, children, brothers and sisters will put their loved ones to rest. There will be plenty of questions but few answers.

You can review his defamation suits. You can analyze his prior death threats. You can attempt to bring politics into the mix. Simply put, there is no explaining the actions of a madman.

Comments
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a.2nd.civil.war.vet
a.2nd.civil.war.vet

@Jules*

I KNOW you'll agree with this!

Jules*
Jules*

The blog format evidently doesn't like numbering points. Anyway, I addressed and debunked all three of the "vet's" silly lies, even if they didn't get numbered one, two and three.

Jules*
Jules*

@a.2nd.civil.war.vet ---

  1. A scruffy dreadlocked black man in Boise came back to an apartment complex where he had recently been kicked out and stabbed some people, some of whom were refugees. No one in Boise identified him as "right wing" .

  2. Joey Gibson is identified by some as "alt-right", which is a meaningless invention to try to slime people who are anti-Left and to then invent a link between the invented identity and racism. But here are some of his quotes.::

" I have common ground with Moderates. But the liberals, the Antifas, that’s how they spread hate."

"We won’t let any extremists speak. We’ll let moderates speak. It’s a big part of the goal. We have 10 speakers now, and out of them, we have one white male speaking. There’s guy named Jake Von Ott, with Identity Europa, we tried not to let him in. There’s nothing we can do about [him attending]. We don’t want him there. We made signs saying we don’t support Identity Europa. I’ve literally disowned white supremacists [in his videos]. It’s getting old. We will not let them in. We’re not going to let the flags in. I give you my word, it’s a promise."

I give him credit for correctly identifying Antifa as Liberal, or Leftist. Anyone who believes they are actually fighting fascism is dumb enough to believe the rest of the crap we see so often. Again, it's not the label that matters. People who only identify groups by what they say instead of by their actions deserve to be called stupid. Antifa uses fascist tactics to try to shout down or intimidate or silence people who are not fascists, counting on gullibility and ignorance to make some people think they are fighting the good fight.

Gibson has been the target of several violence-prone Leftist "protest" groups as well as white supremacist groups. So now we are supposed to blame him, and call him "alt-right" as if that actually means anything other than being a dog whistle for haters of the Right, because he represents an attitude of inclusiveness and moderation and tolerance and has prayer meetings, when violent thugs crash his events?

Oh, that's right---just like it was an indictment of Trump when thugs crashed his rallies. What it is, is, an admission that some ideas must be silenced because if they become popular enough the Left will suffer. In a similar way, you are nothing more than a noise machine trying to drown out actual political discourse and the exchange of ideas.

  1. No one but Politico identified the loser with a gun in Alabama as a "Trump supporter" and his decision to take a gun to an open borders rally did not appear to be related to or prompted by anything to do with Trump.

Three swings, three misses, and a whole long string of errors. Gotta take a break from those Hate Goggles, guy, and get a life.

a.2nd.civil.war.vet
a.2nd.civil.war.vet

The right doesn't have a violence problem? Trump supporter pulled a gun on peaceful protesters in Alabama, a right wing nut job stabbed 9 refugees in Boise, Idaho and an alt-right rally for candidate Joey GIbson turned into a riot when they started beating up protesters. Many Proud Boys and white nationalists arrested.

That was Yesterday.

Jules*
Jules*

@a.2nd.civil.war.vet : "...By not running a candidate the GOP is saying we really don't care enough about you to make it worth it...." Say you. Would it have been your contributions to the Illionois GOP that would have been wasted on a campaign sure to be won by the opponent? An opponent, by the way, who is a moderate Democrat and a decent representative for the district? You decide how to spend your money, they decide how to spend theirs. Get over it. You think it means something, fine. Take that bone into the corner and chew on it for a while if you find it so satisfying. The thing is, there is only one person in the world who cares what you think, and that is you.

I looked up a couple of your other names. John Abarr is running as a Democrat. Patrick Little was kicked out of the state GOP convention. Corey Stewart seems to get you people all wound up because he supported protection of the Civil War monuments and criticized those who claimed all the violence in Charlottesville was due to white supremacists. I already knew Duke was a jerk. But what I never found was GOP support for racist beliefs.

You need to remember that when you try to condemn an entire party because in some areas there are enough people with radical or offensive ideas to support someone you don't like you are exposing your own party to the same kind of criticism. When you try to slime the entire party because it has not met your standards of condemnation of people you think should be condemned, you should step back and look at the vile and even dangerous rhetoric from the Left that has been tolerated and even encouraged by the Dem party and many in the prior administration. Were you howling at the moon when Eric Holder refused to prosecute the New Black Panthers for openly advertising a large bounty for anyone who would kill George Zimmerman? Were you pounding the table in rage when the president wouldn't even condemn incitement of murder for hire? Did you flood the DNC with demands that they DENOUNCE the NBP?

I didn't think so. Your selective outrage is transparent.

There is no reason to go on with this because you are merely proving the adage that it is never worth wrestling with a pig, because to do so you have to get as dirty as the pig---but mostly because the pig likes it.

You have your cherished collection of hatreds, bigotries, complaints, whines, objections, and general assortment of things that make you happy. So enjoy them. When you view the world through Hate Goggles, as you do, there will always be things you can snout up to justify your need to hate. Go for it. Wallow in your negativity and hate and misery. Maybe you can go back into your corner and play with yourself some more------you did seem to love your little word game, judging from the tittering coming from over there.

But you have nothing to offer to anyone with any real ideas, nothing to bring to the table but your curated collection of grievances and complaints. It is tiresome,