The Maryland Sniper and terrorism

October 26th, 2002 – 4:25 pm
Tagged as: Uncategorized

“The response of some to the capture of the Maryland sniper, John Allen Williams, a.k.a .John Allen Muhammad, illustrates an idea that has been preoccupying me of late: the relationship (if any) between ideology and truth. Ideology of any sort inevitably distorts the mental processes, and a writer – that is, a serious writer, and especially one who has certain vivid opinions – must be constantly on guard against this insidious deterioration. Since 9/11, and our forced march to war in the Middle East, what has struck me most has been a rapid degeneration of the public dialogue, including news coverage as well as published commentary.”

In case you’ve been living under a rock this past week (or have just given up trying to watch the news these days because you’re sick of the word “sniper”) they finally caught the gunman who had gone on a killing spree in Maryland and northern Virginia the past few weeks. Various news reporters and commentators have decided to focus on the suspect’s conversion to Islam a decade ago, using it as evidence that he’s a terrorist. In his latest column, Justin Raimondo of has a lot to say about those who have decided to go this route.

Oh, and as an aside, though I’ve linked to Raimondo’s columns a couple of times now, I don’t necessarily agree with what he has to say on a lot of issues (and I think he tends to go off on long rants unrelated to his main point). I am hardly a liberatarian, even if I do share their opinions on some topics. However, just because our ideological beliefs may be different, that doesn’t mean I don’t agree with what he has to say some of the time.

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