Monday, February 18, 2013

Bang Bang Crazy, Part 6


A week after the Aurora, Colorado shootings I wrote a piece about gun violence.

I never intended it to be an ongoing series.

But then there was another mass shooting.

And so I wrote a follow up.

And then there was another mass shooting. And another follow up.

And another after that.

And another.

And here we are, a year and six essays later and I can't see where it ends or how many more installments I'll have to write.

The only thing for certain is that there will indeed be more entries in this series – and in fact I’ve already started writing part seven.

Tens of thousands of people have read these posts - or at least pieces of them - and left hundreds of comments here on Stonekettle Station. They've shared some or all of the series across Twitter and Facebook and Tumblr and on the various blogs and forums they haunt. I've gotten email, boy, have I gotten email, some in support, some in vehement disagreement, some threatening violence or even legal action (beats me, I'm still waiting to hear from their lawyers). Not a day goes by that I don't get messages from people I've never met pointing me toward reports of more violence, or the NRA's latest hysteria, or even examples of how guns save lives and enrich the perennial American experience. People that I know personally and have been good friends with for many, many years have completely lost their minds over this issue, and they forward me one panicked chain-email after another describing in 24pt bold underlined italic font how the “gun grabbers” are destroying America. I've lost friends. I've lost readers (and gained a few too). I've been asked to speak in front of a number of different groups and I've accepted a few offers to do so. I hear from gun lovers and gun haters and I've been called everything from a "typical America hating liberal" for what I've written here to a "murdering Bush conservative" because I happen to be a veteran and gun owner myself, from a "true American patriot" to a "fucking Nazi traitor" with stops at every point in between.

Not even Jesus and Abortion can get Americans, Left and Right, riled up to the level of frothy insanity the way guns can.

And it's not just the gun nuts you know.

It's not just the gun nuts who are bang bang crazy.

Nor is it just the gun grabbers either.

And it's not just those hardcore yellow-eyed fanatics who have elevated the Constitution to Holy Writ and the Second Amendment to divine license.

It's the other folks too, the ones I’m about to piss right off.

Seems there’s plenty of bang bang crazy to go around.

Apparently it just depends on the target of gun violence:

- Just another ruse by the conservatives in an effort to show the public that minorities are not to be trusted in a position of authority. Even those that deceive the public with their selfless contribution to country and state..

- Poor guy never got to tell his side of the story. They took him out, before the real truth could come out. R.I.P.

- It was a single shot from a sniper ... Why you think they set the cabin on fire . There was no intentions on letting him surrender period !!!!!.

- Just the First Battle of America's beginning Class War primarily between the ultra arrogant government Bully Class and the Working Class.

- The First Battle in America's Second Civil War, a Class War, has been fought and there are casualties. [he] had been in a Higher Class and was crushed down into a lower Class. After five years he realized that his life was ruined. He declared War on the Upper Class. Like most Class Wars this War will be a War of No Quarter and No Mercy.

- What killing rampage? It was all a hoax..

- Hope they don't kill him to keep him from talking. Cops and the military have a history of doing that.

These comments are of course talking about the violent death of Christopher Dorner, ex-navy officer, ex-cop, serial killer, domestic terrorist, who held Southern California at gunpoint for the last week.

On February 12th, Dorner died in a burning cabin in the San Bernardino Mountains - exactly how he died is still under investigation as I write this. Initial reports indicate that he was shot in the head, whether by his own hand or somebody else’s has yet to be determined. But, he didn’t burn to death as some would like to have it. I don’t know if that makes it better or not, but it seems to me that “burned to death by renegade police” is martyr country, “shot himself in the head to avoid arrest” isn’t.  Others may certainly see it differently – and obviously do.

However he died, a significant number of people are suddenly willing to promote Christopher Dorner to hero status.

He stood up to an oppressive government! He fought to the death with honor and courage and dignity! He fired the opening shots of a new civil war, rich against poor, black against white, freedom against The Man, downtrodden against elite, the oppressed against the tyrants!

If these people spontaneously break into a rousing hard rock rendition of The Hero of Canton (The Man They Call Jayne) I won’t be even vaguely surprised at this point.

Good grief, have we Americans truly fallen so far that this is the kind of guy we look up to?

Suddenly a mind boggling conglomeration of lefties and righties and various conspiracy nutters are coalescing around the idea that somehow Christopher Dorner is some kind of hero.

Honestly, how is that possible?

- Where did you get all this info on the people he is suppose to have killed??? Oh yeah, The LAPD, ones directly associated with Dorner's wrongful termination for whistle blowing!!! I was like you the first day, mad as heck he could justify killing the daughter but then I started looking around and realized chances are he never killed anyone except cops that shot at him first...

Well, yeah, except for that part were Dorner himself said he’d “have to kill to clear his name.”

Or the part where he was identified by numerous video cameras and witnesses which included the various people he assaulted, car jacked, tied up, and shot at.

Or the fact that even his own mother and sisters have reason to believe it was him and that he did everything the police say he did.

But yeah, you, Random Outraged Person From the Internet, you know him better than they do. Right.

-  they keep saying he went down in a blazing gun battle??? Baloney!!!Dorner hit what he shot at if he had been able to shoot he would have killed a dozen of them...They burned his body up to most likely hide a torturous death. I think they got their hands on him, why else would they order the media out of there and also let all the evidence burn up???.

Except for that part where there was a major gun battle.

Or that part where Dorner didn’t hit everything he aimed at.

Or that part where there’s no evidence whatsoever to support the idea that “they” got “their” hands on “him.”

- Rest in peace DORNER.Wake up dum fuck small time cops.Get a life dum cops.

More than twenty jurisdictions and police departments were involved in the hunt for Dorner, which ones are “dum fuck small time cops” that need to get a life? (Also, if you can’t spell “dumb” I’d be careful using it to describe others, I’m just saying). They were all corrupt, right? Every one of those cops? Even the one that Dorner shot and killed while running into the wood? You know, the one who left behind a wife and two young children?

Funny isn’t it? After 9-11, cops and firefighters were heroes, and rightly so.  People across the country wore police T-shirts and sang their praises, and still do. I saw one in the store this morning.

How come the terrorists who felt completely justified in their actions on 9-11 aren’t heroes too? They had just as much complaint against the US as Chris Dorner did, probably more, racism, economic disenfranchisement, occupation, invasion, murdered relatives, how come they aren’t heroes too? Why isn’t a confederation of liberals and conservatives and angry libertarians protesting for their rights on the steps of the New York court house today?

Fickle sons of bitches, aren’t we?

- The $1 million dollar reward was for the capture and prosecution of this guy. From the sound of that, is seems that they had no intention of bringing him back alive. No prosecution, no reward. Sounds a little fishy, this guy must have had some low down on someone. I have never heard of a $1 million dollar reward for anyone since I've been around..

Oh, since you’ve been around, eh? Well, then, since you, Random Yahoo Commenter, haven’t heard of a million dollar reward before, well, obviously it must all be a conspiracy!

Except for that part where there are many, many rewards in that price range, say like that $2 Million dollar reward the FBI offered for Whitey Bulger, or the $5 Million they offer for those on the most wanted list, or the $25 Million they’re offering for Ayman al-Zawahiri.

Maybe you should get around a little more, before commenting, I’m just saying.

- LAPD said they didn't intentionally burn the cabin. Whats wrong with telling the truth. Even swinging dick knows the cabin was set ablaze intentionally!!

Well, sure, except for that part where maybe the truth could possibly be that instead of firing bullets into the cabin, the police fired a tear gas canister into the cabin. 

I mean, really, if they wanted to kill him, really kill him, why bother with the tear gas at all?

Now, I’ve only had twenty years of anti-terrorism and security experience but it seems to me that if the police really wanted Dorner dead, for certain, they’d have tossed in a grenade or two or three, instead of tear gas. 

Maybe, and here’s an idea, the police were sick and tired of being shot at.  

I dunno, maybe the police hoped to drive Dorner out of the cabin so that he could be taken alive without any more people other than Dorner getting killed. And maybe those tear gas burners were the best way to accomplish that.  Sure would be nice if tactical tear gas canisters didn’t require heat, but they do.  That’s just the way it is.  But, then again, I’m sure everybody on the CNN, Yahoo, and Fox News forums, and those protesting in front of the LA Mayor’s Office this morning, know that because they’re all obviously experts in special weapons tactics. 

But yeah, Random Person With All The Answers And No Actual Experience, you’re probably right, cops should have to just stand there and take rounds.

Sure. Good luck finding somebody to fill that job, because really, fuck you.

The simple truth of the matter is this, it isn’t TV.  Gary Sinese isn’t going to show up and offer some squinty eyed pithy platitude and the bad guy just curls up and admits everything. It just doesn’t work that way. Dorner was crazy mad, he was determined, and he was well aware of how this was going to go down. There was no way he didn’t. He was trained that way.

The police finally had Dorner cornered and they damned well weren’t going to let him escape.  Which is exactly correct. And you, the public, should be goddamned grateful that it worked out exactly that way, because it usually doesn’t.  They had Dorner cornered. They had him cornered by himself. No hostages. Hostage taking was something Dorner repeatedly demonstrated a willingness to do. Along with allowing innocent people to suffer the consequences of his rampage.

There was, and would be, no better time to end it without any further risk to the public. Something you’ll recall is a police officer’s sworn duty, to protect the public. 

Standard procedure in such a situation is to end it, with the suspect alive if possible, but end it nonetheless.  And end it without any further police or public lives lost. Period. And that is just exactly what happened. 

Again, ex-police officer Christopher Dorner knew exactly how that standoff was going to go down. There was no way he couldn’t have known. And he could have changed the outcome at any time, but he didn’t.

That’s completely and totally on him and nobody else.

- Notice how Dorner didn't kill any of the others he encountered. He could have made it if he had killed the cleaning ladies or that carjacking victum. He was no monster at all. He beef was entirely with the LAPD and anything spawn from it!!!

- I love you Dorner. I am going to find out where you are buried and bring roses and other special gifts. You stood for the weak and suffering when the odd man would have just walked away!!! Nothing good is coming for the LAPD in the future; strictly regarding this incident. I also pry for the cops who died while just doing their duty. But all others were fail game!!!

I love you Chris.

He didn’t kill anybody that didn’t have it coming. 

He was no monster at all. 

I pray for the cops who died just doing their duty, but all the others were fair game.

Fair game.

Right.  Except for that one little part where Dorner begin his campaign of retribution by killing Monica Quan and Keith Lawrence for no reason other than to take revenge on a cop he maybe had an imagined beef with.  I guess you forgot about that little detail.

Answer me this, in what bizarre fantasy land does the hero go around offing the innocent children of his enemies? What hero shoots a woman and her boyfriend while they’re sitting in a car? People who did nothing to him. Nothing. What hero plots this, for five years?  The only reason for this is to make the father suffer, to exact terrible revenge, to engage in terror.

This wasn’t justice, it was retribution.

It was cold blooded murder and terrorism of the very worst kind – it was killing kids to punish their parents

No matter how wrong Dorner may or may not have been done, nothing justifies his actions.

Nothing, nothing, excuses this. Nothing. 

While you’re at it, answer another question for me, how do you tell the cops that were just doing their duty from the ones that had it coming? Because I’m a little hazy on that whole part.  Especially there at the end where it was the San Bernardino Police that surrounded the cabin but somehow it’s the Los Angeles Police who have divine retribution coming for killing Christopher Dorner, how’s that work exactly?

Christopher Dorner murdered people. Murdered them. He wounded others. He carjacked a guy at gun point. He tied up an 81 year old man. He broke into people’s houses and tied them up and and stole their property.  He’s responsible for all of it. Him personally.

I guess we’re all just supposed to be grateful he didn’t do worse.  After all, he’d been maybe, probably, could be, wronged. So that excuses it, right?

What a guy. What a hero.

- This stinks to HIGH HEAVEN! There is a cover up, misdirection, inconsistent stories, and the MURDER of the suspect at the end! I fear "we" will NEVER get the truth about what Dorner knew about the LAPD! Can you say Waco? I knew that you could.

Last time I checked we had gotten the truth about Waco, we just didn’t like it.

I don’t seem to remember much of a cover up. There were plenty of screw ups, but no particular cover up – what with it all happening live and in living color from a hundred cameras and news feeds piped directly into our living rooms. 

As long as you’re answering questions for me, how about this one: What do you call it when a guy robs a bank at gunpoint because they repo’d his house and put his family out on the street? And it all happened because the bank engaged in chicanery back when they were offering easy, easy mortgages.  Now our robber shoots the bank manager point blank in the head – it’s not the same bank manager who sold him the loan all those year ago, but hey, who cares, right? Bank managers are all the same, rotten to the core.  And then the robber publically declares that he’s going to rob more banks and kill more people if given the chance and there’s not a damned thing anybody can do about it … and then he gets shot and killed by the police as he attempts to flee the scene, but not before he manages to kill just one more cop in the process.  Who’s the murderer here? The cops? Who’s the hero? Is it the robber? Sure it is, because don’t we all just hate bank managers? And banks? And the whole damned fat cat Wall Street financial system that’s been ass raping the whole damned world for the last ten years?


But, Dorner, right. He’s a hero. 

He’s a hero because you, you don’t like the LAPD. That about right?

There must be something deeply wrong with me psychologically, for I cannot help feeling a sense of solidarity with raging madman of the week Christopher Dorner. Here is a guy with a plan, with real skills, and an intelligent message. Dorner is actually out there taking action, trying to make a real difference, however warped and illogical his message might be. It's more than most of us can say for ourselves when it comes acting on causes we feel passionate about.... So what now? Do we all grab our assault rifles and open season on the LAPD? Not exactly. We need to find a middle ground between killing sprees and Facebook likes. Lets bring Dorner to justice for murder, and then collectively press for reform of the LAPD and police departments all over the nation. We have Dorner to thank for this teachable moment.

That’s Wilson Blair at ITHP, home of the survivalist Libertarian. 

Politics indeed make strange bedfellows.

A teachable moment. That’s what Blair called this. A teachable moment.  And the lesson, well, yeah, murder, but hey, at least Dorner took action! That’s something. Action. I guess the same could be said for Aurora Colorado, right? Or Sandy Hook. Or fucking Charlie Manson – a man of action if ever there was one.

You've got to be kidding me.

And if you are, it's a poor joke in piss poor taste.

You out there, crying over Christopher Dorner, this is who you’re in bed with.  Right here. I hope you at least thought to use protection.

Dorner, whatever he was, was no hero, and he's for goddamned sure not worthy of your respect or sympathy or your tears.  He betrayed every oath he ever took. He’s a disgrace to the uniforms he wore and the men and women he swore to serve beside. He’s an asshole.

This was no preschooler cut down in a hail of bullets. This wasn't some congresswomen shot in the head point blank. This wasn't just some guy minding his own business in a mall or a movie theater or any of the hundreds of others victimized by gun violence this last year. He's no tragic figure from Hollywood, he's not John Rambo or Will Munny or Django Unchained. He’s a guy who, with malice aforethought, chose to become a murderer. He chose this path. He wasn’t forced into it, he deliberately chose it, he planned it, he declared his intention and he pulled the trigger. 

It doesn't make a damned bit of difference if you hate the LAPD.

It doesn't make a damned bit of difference if you hate all cops everywhere and are firmly convinced that The Man is out to get you. And it doesn’t matter even if you’re right.

It doesn't make a damned bit of difference if you think that everybody in a police uniform is a sadistic racist bastard.

It doesn't make a damned bit of difference if every cop in Southern California went absolutely apeshit and swore to hunt Dorner down like a mangy dog.

It doesn't matter if you've got a beef with the government, or you hate Obama, or you hate Conservatives, or whoever you hate. Doesn’t matter.

Those are separate issues.

Now, certainly the police have many things to answer for, but that’s beside the point. 

And yes, it will be many, many years of sincere effort for the LAPD to wipe away the stench of racism and brutality that they've so justly earned.

And most certainly police officers who can't tell the difference between two petite Asian women delivering newspapers or a skinny white surfer on his way to the beach and a six foot tall, 270 pound black man bent on murderous revenge need to be held to public account - or at least need mandatory eye exams and some target identification retraining.

And yes, it sure would be nice if you, the taxpayer, felt like coughing up a bit more of your tax dollars to fund police departments so that they could train and equip their officers with non-lethal weapons, or at least ones that don’t light the house on fire – and yes, there are such things, they just cost a lot more than a standard burner round.  You want to pay for that? I’m hip, let’s do it.

But that doesn’t make Dorner a hero.

Christopher Dorner is not a misunderstood rebel. 

We all understand him just fine. He’s a selfish, self-centered son of a bitch with an axe to grind – and maybe he was justified in feeling that way. Maybe everything he said about the LAPD was correct. Maybe he was discriminated against. And then again maybe he wasn’t. Maybe he was a liar and a scumbag and just exactly the kind of guy people are accusing the LAPD of being, because frankly, a guy who resorts to revenge killing and terrorism instead of legal and lawful actions is very likely exactly that kind of guy. Exactly. 

Maybe, and here’s a thought, maybe the LAPD training officer and the review board who kicked Dorner off the force were exactly correct in doing so.  Maybe they did their jobs exactly the way they should have.

I don’t know one way or the other, but this I do know: once Christopher Dorner chose to become a murderer all his complaints were moot.  I don’t care what his beef was, he’s an asshole and I’m not going to shed one tear over his death.

He’s not a patriot or a symbol of America or some such nonsense.

Taking up arms against your neighbors and former coworkers, taking the law into your own hands, murder, terrorism, kidnapping, car jacking, all are just about as un-American as you can get.

He’s not some poor persecuted whistleblower. 

He had his day in front of the review board.  He had his appeal.  As I said above, given his actions, I strongly suspect that he was removed from the force for a good reason, because he was unsuitable to be the kind of cop we want patrolling the streets.

Be that as it may, Dorner had many, many legal options, many courses of action that he could have taken.  Good grief, look at the sympathy he’s getting now, look at how much people seem to hate the LAPD (even people who have never even been to LA) – Dorner might not have won an appeal, but he very likely could have gotten satisfaction in the court of public opinion and maybe even monetary compensation in civil court.  And there are plenty of lawyers willing to take on just such a case, because after all, who doesn’t hate the LAPD, right?

If Dorner really had a case, he would have won eventually.

So, why didn’t he? Why didn’t he take it to court? And don’t give me this horseshit about “they would have killed him first!” because the LAPD forgot about him five years ago.  Dorner did the killing first, not the police. Dorner isn’t the only guy in the last couple of years to be let go from his job, or even from the LAPD. It happens. And a lot of the time it happens for a good reason.

He is most certainly not a hero in any sense of the word.

I’ll remind you one final time that his first action was to murder an innocent woman whose only “crime” was to be the daughter of somebody Dorner hated.

He killed that exemplary young women and her boyfriend, in cold blood, without mercy, without warning – solely in order to levy retribution on her father.

I don’t care how much you squint your eyes, there’s nothing, not one damned thing, heroic about this act. It’s craven and cowardly and unjustified in any fashion by any social norm or ethical code or moral law. 

Dorner was no hero. Period. He wasn’t cut down defending truth, justice, and the American way – whatever the hell that is. He died trapped like a rat in a box, right after he killed a father and a husband and a guy who got up that morning and put on his uniform and went out to protect the citizens of America – that policeman, San Bernardino Police Department Detective Jeremiah MacKay, was everything Dorner should have been, and wasn’t.

Christopher Dorner was a murderer and a terrorist and a kidnapper and a screwed up excuse for a human being who just happened to have chosen as his enemy a widely hated police department.

There’s only one person responsible for Christopher Dorner’s death.

And that’s Christopher Dorner.



Addendum 1:  Every time I write one of these, I hope it's the last. But it never is, there's always another massacre. Always.
The Seven Stages of Gun Violence
The Bang Bang Crazy Series:
Part 1, What we need, see, are more guns, big fucking guns
Part 2, Gun violence isn't the exception in America, it's who we are
Part 3, Sandy Hook, the NRA, and a gun in every school
Part 4, More dead kids and why we have laws
Part 5, Gun control and a polite society
Part 6, The Christopher Donner rampage, they needed killin'
Part 7, Still more dead kids and let's print our own guns!
Part 8, Let's try blaming the victim, shall we?
Part 9, Armed soldiers on post, sure, nothing to go wrong there.
Part 10, Big Damned Heroes!
Part 11, Two in the Bush
What do we do about it? How do we change our culture of gun violence? Bang Bang Sanity

Addendum 2: As noted elsewhere, I’ve  been around guns my entire life. My dad taught me to shoot when I was a kid – in fact the very first gun I ever fired was my dad’s prized black powder .75 caliber smooth bore Civil War trench piece when I was about four years old. I still own my very first gun, bought from Meyer’s Thrifty Acres in Jenison, Michigan, for me by my dad when I was fourteen years old – a lever action Winchester 30-30. I got my first deer with that gun.  I grew up shooting, at home, in the Boy Scouts, hunting, target shooting, plinking, with friends and with family.  Thirty years ago I joined the military and spent my entire life there. I know more than a little about guns. I’m a graduate of the Smith & Wesson Rangemaster Academy, the nation’s premier firearms instructor school. I’m a certified armorer and gunsmith. I’ve attended pretty much every boarding officer and gun school the military has. I hold both the Expert Pistol and Expert Rifle Medals. I’ve taught small arms and combat arms to both military and civilians for nearly thirty years now. I’ve fired damned near everything the US military owns, from the old .38 revolver to a US Navy Aegis Guided Missile Cruiser’s 5” main battery – and everything in between. I can still field strip a Colt .45 M-1911 pistol and put it back together in under a minute, blindfolded – I happen to own several of them, along with numerous other semi-auto pistols and a number of revolvers. I used to shoot professionally and in competition. I helped to design, test, field, and fire in combat US Military weapons systems. I’ve spent my entire life in places where gun usage is extremely, extremely, common. I have a Concealed Carry Permit. I’m an Alaskan and I typically carry a gun in the wilds of Alaska on a regular basis. I am neither pro-gun nor anti-gun, a gun is a tool, nothing more. If you feel that I’m ignorant of guns, or that I’m anti-gun, or unAmerican, well, you’re welcome to speak your piece – just so long as you can live with what comes after.


  1. I would hope that no more parts are needed, but I know better

  2. Thank you Jim. You've expressed the disbelief and outrage Dorner apologists engender in those who pay attention quite well.

  3. You are absolutely right about all of this, in my humble opinion. The minute someone chooses to take a human life rather than choosing some form of legal (and hopefully less violent) recourse, they forfeit their status as a reasonable human being. Thanks again for phrasing such a messy subject so eloquently, and try not to let the stupid haters elevate your blood pressure. =)

  4. Spot on Jim. I love this site for the clear logic and critical thinking skills on display in every post I've read. I have a question.

    You said: "He’s not a patriot or a symbol of America or some such nonsense." I totally agree. The guy is a caricature of what it means to be American.

    Every walk of American life is filled with those who think it is perfectly acceptable to visit retribution on their fellow humans for some real or perceived slight, harm, or disagreement. It doesn't matter if it is a president and his administration executing an aggressive war a small country. Or a former police officer going on a murderous rampage for harm supposedly done to him by the LAPD. Or a keyboard commando threatening a blog writer for daring to express a difference of opinion. Or some silly TV show or movie script where the hero kills people and destroys shit. Or whatever. All that goes into this mindset is evidenced daily in each of our lives.

    My question is: When do we as a people become the caricature? When is this America?

  5. Nicely put - only one slight quibble:

    "Taking up arms against your neighbors and former coworkers, taking the law into your own hands, murder, terrorism, kidnapping, car jacking, all are just about as un-American as you can get."

    didn't the several states start off with a civil insurrection (what would nowadays be pointed to as terrorism)?

    Love your writing - reminds me that the fight against pure uncut stupidity and unthinking ignorance is worth waging each day

  6. Well, you didn't piss me off! Everything I've read so far about this bizarre story has lead me to the same conclusion. You just said it way better than I ever could have.

    I was waiting for you to tackle this story. You did not disappoint.

    "It doesn't make a damned bit of difference if........"
    "Those are separate issues."

    This was an especially important point to be made. I think too many people overlook that.

    Thanks for a great post. Too bad that we (collectively) make it necessary.

  7. Jim, reading it now. But one of the very first things you said was, "And here we are, a year and six essays later and I can't see where it ends or how many more installments I'll have to write." You don't "have" to write anything. But I'm really glad you do. Please choose to keep on writing this series because, as you've said over and over, it doesn't look like it's going to end anytime soon.

  8. And you are a Firefly fan too! Totally love it!

  9. Last week on my Facebook page I linked to a blog post from elsewhere (yes Jim, I read other bloggers -- there, I've said it) that quoted a black former LAPD officer who said he understood Dorner's assertions about racism in the department.
    Not "his actions are justified" or even "hey, you can appreciate where the guy's coming from". Just "unnhhh, yeah, there ARE a lot of racist assholes in the LAPD".
    I was stunned and surprised by the three day shitstorm that ensued in my comment tail. Something about this deal really winds people's clocks.

  10. While I agree in spirit with your jeremiad I would like to offer an opinion. I believe Dorner exhibited mental problems for quite some time. It was likely the real reason he was dismissed from LAPD. That doesn't make anything he did excusable but it does make it explainable.
    I'm not qualified to make a psychological diagnosis but I recognize certain behavioral characteristics. Dorner felt discriminated against and blamed others for his failings. Race was only a part of the problem and probably a small part. Without counseling he was doomed. Perhaps he was doomed regardless.

  11. Jim,

    Thank you for writing this series. I agree that there is no way to know how many more parts will come. And it's sad that there are any at all.


  12. He was the American Anders Breivik, close enough.

    1. Uh, except, he wasn't at all comparable to the crimes of Anders Breivik

    2. So what was the point of attempting to promote such an analogy?

      Especially when it's so obvious there is no comparison?

  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

  14. Well typed my good man. It's the love affair with guns and violence. The media does not help, hey it's not a movie real people died.
    Thanks for your web page and your service to our country

  15. Sad that you keep having to repeat the obvious in these matters...too many people think that cases like these all end up with that Gary Sinese moment and the truth is exposed, all bad guys vanquished and all of the innocents are saved...television shows never show that frequently there's collateral damage...and that the crazy guy with the portable armory is just that and nothing more...thanks for shining that flashlight of logic and truth once again...

  16. The only thing I can say is that the accusations he made against the department are ones I've been hearing since the sixties. Did that justify what he did? No. I can, however, manage to feel a little, tiny, bit of empathy for a man who went off the deep end. That's no justification. It is a statement.

    Also, please note that I'm a Canadian, and while I have a great deal more knowledge about the US than most Americans have about Canada, I don't have much first hand experience of the gun control problem; it's maybe a bit easier to have some sympathy for all concerned.

  17. Jim: Thanks for your series on gun violence. The articles have clarified my own thinking and sent me to re-read the Constitution and the Bill of Rights more than once. And how do I use this information? In futile attempts to change the whacked out thinking of a few friends, who believe that if “The Man” pushes you enough, it’s okay to start blasting at anything that moves. As you say, you can’t reason with the unreasonable, but I’m probably unbalanced enough myself to believe that you gotta try.

  18. All in all, a quite reasonable assessment, as always.

    I would, however, like to point our that the bit you quoted from Wilson Blair wasn't completely unreasonable in its ideas. I'm obviously not sanctioning Dorner's actions, but it is worth noting that every man-made catastrophe, no matter how horrifying and obviously wrong, has a root cause. That root cause needs to be addressed if we don't want history repeating itself.

    1. ...all and all, quite an unreasoned conclusion.

  19. I just want to thank you for reading over what you typed and obviously employing a great editor. Even if that editor is you. I am so disgusted at the shit people put out on "news" pages and public information sites without even a spell check. So I commend your writing.

    As for the content. I hate that America is on this terrible Merry-Go-Round of shootings and infighting. While I do not look forward to another Bang Bang Crazy piece, I do agree with your commentary. No matter how vile one person or entity is, that is not license to perform detestable acts of terror and absolute cowardice. If he were a "hero" he would be doggedly pursuing a lawful discourse...

  20. Good job, Jim!
    This glorifying, romanticizing and idealizing of Mr Dorner's criminal behavior as "trying to make a real difference" , blah, blah, blah is straight up horsepunky. Equally so the conspiracy to quiet a whistleblower crap.
    As a far, far left, left, left libertarian ( sorry Jim, I really am) who spends a lot of time fussing and fuming about matters of race, class, and culture , I think I'm most irritated by the yahoos spouting off about Mr Dorner being a hero in relation to those issues. Right, you betcha, a revenge killer is gonna put us on the path to parity for all. Wahoo. Sure. Horseshit.

    Keep up the good work you danged old moderate, you. Good job.
    Alaska Pi

  21. I've been reading your site for a while now, and I find that I enjoy reading your articles. Your comment, section, on the other hand, is kinda sorta nauseating.

    Maybe you should just *think* about easing up on your control of comments a little. Or not - your blog.

    The sycophantic tinge is off-putting, though.

    1. This comment sort of off-putted me...if you must know.
      So I found I had to log back onto this site just to reply to it.

      I can't speak for all the rest of us sycophants here, but I for one am beyond thrilled there is finally someone who is not afraid to tell it like it is. And that someone is not black, not white, not liberal, not conservative, not rich, not poor...just one of the "rill Amurcans" who is fed up with the state of this beloved country.

      So if the comments tend to border on hero worship, well...it's probably because at this time, what with meteorites hitting the ground here and there, asteroids doing fly-bys, the first papal resignation in like a bazillion years...we're slightly in need of someone who can leap tall buildings in a single bound, etc, etc, etc. You know...like Letter Man!!! (Just to date myself, I mean Letter Man from The Electric Company and not Letterman the comedian.)
      Cheers Jim, from one of your sycophantic fans.

    2. There seems to be some confusion about my commenting rules - I do not delete comments just because I disagree with them, or because the commenter doesn't suck up sufficiently, or because they don't "like" me. Take a look at the America posts if you think I'm lying.

      I delete certain comments because the commenter is a troll, i.e. a rude, obnoxious, childish asshat who can't behave in public and who thinks being a dick on my website is some kind of God given right. Specifically I delete only those comments that are deliberately antagonistic for no other reason than the commenter is an asshole. I don't like those people and I don't feel that I'm required to give them a platform, you are extremely unlikely to change my mind in this regard, but you're welcome to try.

      If you'd prefer a comments section that allows diskish behavior and the manners of 4-chan, or you feel that the comments here are off puttingly sycophantic, then my answer to you is exactly the same as it has been from the very first day I started Stonekettle Station, either don't read the comments or go somewhere else more to your liking. I'm not changing how I do things for some random anonymous complainer who passes by on the Internet.

      Bottom line, if I really was the guy you think I am, I'd delete your comment, wouldn't I?

    3. Anonymous - who wrongly thinks that Jim Wright only allows sycophantic comments - his regular followers are THRILLED at his level of clarity, his humor, his writing skill, his knowledge, his attitude, and his ability to show his logic and priorities. We have shared and spread his blog, encouraged him to have a talk show and/or run for President (he says he would not want to be in politics), and we feel he is one of the clearest voices of reason today! Like many here, I am RELIEVED that someone can tackle the issues with such knowledge and ruthless logic. Is there anyone else today who does this as well as Mr. Wright? Most who are as incisive are 'humorists': George Carlin (RIP), Jon Stewart, Bill Maher. There is Congressman Alan Grayson, and I love his straight talk and youtube clips, but he cannot be as wide-ranging in his topics as can Jim Wright.

      I'm sure that if you have read many of his articles and the comment sections, you have seen some responders who disagree (although apparently many who disagree read a little, and then insult him and leave, lol). He is not nearly as controlling as you him implied.

      Sycophants? Just because we are supportive and grateful? I see most of us who love his work as people who were logic-deprived and intellectually starving/thirsting to death in the typicsl media morass of today - self-serving politicians, whackos getting air time and/or in leadership positions, news that is not even news and news that is sensationalized rather than logical and comprehensive - and we stumbled onto a clear, ordered, comprehensive, sensible haven where we can actually find nourishment and sustenance instead of fast-food 'fluff'. So it is perfectly understandable that we may give him a bit more adulation and gratitude than you may see elsewhere.

    4. Oops - typos/errors -

      2nd paragraph, last sentence: He is not nearly as controlling as you HAVE implied.

      3rd parpagraph, 3rd sentence: "I see most of us....starving/thirsting to death in the TYPICAL media morass...."

    5. Yeah...and Jim is bi-lingual...he speaks English and American....fluently...and clearly...

  22. I think I said earlier that this series faced the possibility of becoming .... well, a series.

  23. Here's my take on this one:

    The day after the couple was shot to death less than 5 miles from my home, my son's 6th grade class was stopped so that the teacher could tell them that there was a serial killer roaming around Orange County, but they shouldn't worry because they would be safe at school.

    Yeah, we can debate the judgment of the school teacher and administrators, but the fact of the matter is that my 12 year-old came home from school absolutely freaked-out and desperately anxious about the "serial killer" roaming around the area. He didn't sleep well that night.

    A couple of days later I called him over and we watched the cabin go up in flames. I told him that he didn't have to worry any more about the "serial killer" because he was dead.

    He asked me if I was sure he was dead. We watched the cabin burn to the ground. I told him, "Yep. Shot and burned up."

    He said, "Thank God" and breathed a sigh of relief.

    And that's what I think about the death of Chris Dorner.

  24. The reality that I see is yet another person who thought he was mistreated (whether he was or not I find impossible to know) used guns to extract his revenge. Yet again the "guns kill" has been proven.

    He didn't get "his day in court", he didn't prove that he was "wronged" all he did was take innocents with him on the way to his grave.

    Some would call it a "workplace health and safety" issue. I call it collective society insanity - problem solving by lethal weapon.

    Thanks for the discussion Jim - I'm sure there will be many more parts to come.

    1. I'd also note that when he decided to take action, he didn't stalk and attack the actual person he had a beef with, which, given his training and experience, he certainly COULD have. No, instead he attacked their CHILD.

      And thats the act of a terrorist (As Jim pointed out), and most of all, a Coward.

  25. Obviously, I'm weird, but I want to read your stuff *and* find periwinkle bunnies. (Maybe in the Plastic Easter Stuff aisle?) I'm aiming for both, if you don't mind.

  26. I must be ignoring the right stuff - this is the first I'd heard about The Glorification of Christopher Dorner. And I think it may be a teachable moment; not the story itself, but the meta story you're telling.

    Because, though you didn't link to the posts you're citing (thank you!), I have this funny feeling that most of the people jumping on this particular bandwagon are the same as the 'from my cold, dead hands' bandwagon. Who've been in tight solidarity with the rest of that bandwagon - up to now. And think they still are - except that Dorner was black. That's going to cause one hell of a lot of cognitive dissonance with that crowd, and I can't wait (well, actually, I can) to see just what kind of responses it calls up.

    I predict that either there's going to be a lot more silence in that area than there has been lately, or that the pro- unlimited gun movement splits pretty profoundly, and loudly, over Dorner. My hit rate on predictions is actually pretty bad, but I can hope, anyway.

    Ann C.

  27. Perfect mash-up. Straight away the best synopsis yet of this tragic tale.
    So many guns.
    So many deaths.
    And that shouldn't matter one iota if you're a librul, a rightwingnut or straddling the line.
    Not hard to figure that one out Mr. Wayne La Pierre of the good ol' N. R. of A.

  28. Enjoyed the post, as always. I think Mr. Dorner's descent into a raving maniac serial killer makes it obvious the LAPD was thoroughly justified in firing him and probably needs better screening procedures so they never hire anyone that ill again. And I'm a liberal. And I don't understand the apologists.

  29. With the military's lowered standards for recruitment comes a whole new breed of ex-miltary police who are transitioning into civilian law enforcement. I've seen the change, maybe you noted it too.

    I don't know about you, but when I see civilian law enforcement personnel who have an excess of what can only be likened to prison tats, full sleeves and neck ornamentations, my confidence in those law enforcement personnel suffers to some degree. Not saying it is always the case, but then again, ....

    Add in the concern of PTSD, and there's a not wholly new phenomena to pay attention to.

    I'm surely not the only one who sees some of the recently transitioned law enforcement personnel through this particular lens. I don't think it's without credence to be concerned.

    Whether Dorner's sickness was latent, inherent, or engendered by or augmented by PTSD, the question remains, will we see more unstable law enforcement personnel because of the routine transition? Do the lowered standards so recently utilized in the military point to a new concern within civilian law enforcement?

    I believe it necessarily has to be the case.

    1. Your point about these exmilitary now cops is well made, esp. about the tattoos, which always ring as unprofessional to me, an ex cop myself. Same thing with soldiers. Keep the tatts out of sight, thank you.

      It's personally disheartening to me to see todays cops looking like the steroid enhanced, gang tatt wearing bangers they're supposed to be locking up. When you can't tell the diff between the good guys and the bad guys, it's time to either GTFO Dodge, or clean the streets entirely of them.

  30. Another brilliant post! "Not even Jesus and Abortion can get Americans, Left and Right, riled up to the level of frothy insanity the way guns can." How true. I admit I was naive. But with social media, my eyes have been opened. I can't believe the comments that I have read on Facebook - from friends, friends of friends, and acquaintances. People that I thought were reasonable and shared somewhat similiar values and logic. Nothing makes a person's true colors come out like the subject of guns. I am sick of hearing about the fricking 2nd Amendment! Wonder how many crazies have gotten tattoos?

    A friend that currently lives in Texas saw a vehicle with gun decals for father, mother, kid #1, kid #2, and dog. Instead of the cutesy stick people decals.

    "Those are separate issues." Agreed. People get in such a frenzy, they lose sight of that.

  31. My impression is that Dorner was broken. Perhaps by the LAPD, perhaps by the stresses of his military service, perhaps by things unknowable. Not a hero, a victim and a criminal. His supporters see themselves in him--see a man who was wronged and is lashing out in response. We are all victims of the people who wrecked the housing market, of the people who destroyed our economy, of the decades-long campaign to impoverish and make of us a subject class. And in Dorner, I think, his supporters also see an expression of their own anger.

    More food for corvids.

    1. "Sure it is, because don’t we all just hate bank managers? And banks? And the whole damned fat cat Wall Street financial system that’s been ass raping the whole damned world for the last ten years?"

      When these assfuckers have gotten away with it, you can see why people are sympathizing with the vigilante. Why would you appoint a guy who was warned about not fucking up on his taxes to head up the TREASURY Dept which is in charge of COLLECTING TAXES? A DoJ that says we can't prosecute Banksters? They were my former clients? Martha Stewart goes to jail, but these mofo cronies don't? People start fantasizing about guillotines. Because we follow the rules, abide by the laws, still get fucked in the ass and some mofo has a bank account in a tax haven and gets to be the follow up Treasury Secretary appointment. And our complicit media just wants to talk about Lew's Loopy Signature.

  32. Jim,
    my understanding is that he did go through all the legal channels before taking things into his own diabolical hands...it still doesn't justify killing innocent people. Mental illness plays a big part in this..I think he just snapped....and I think you are right-he knew how it was going to end. I live in Riverside close to where the killings happened and the air was thick and the atmosphere was heavy during those days around town. So much sadness and worry about what was going to happen next. This murderer should not be held up as a hero. A hero saves lives-doesn't take them.

  33. I worry about you Jim. It takes stamina and guts to confront and speak truth to as many liars, rogues, shit-stirrers and ideologues out to take as much as they can from the masses of frightened and uninformed citizens as you do, and to speak truth to them all so well and so forcefully.

    But if you try to speak truth to this crowd, which is to say to the village idiots who aren't taking their meds: there is no end to that. Insane people can't be reasoned with. They don't want to be shown the errors of their sad fantasies and twisted logic, they want their mommies and daddies to have loved them better. You can't reason with them because their powers of reason jumped off the tracks a long way back. You can't even shame them, because they are already eaten out hollow by shames so dark and bitter they can't even begin to speak about them. All you could do with this crowd is try to coax them into swallowing their meds again. Not sure how. Maybe find a way to convince them that the LAPD is coming to take away their meds and the only safe place to hide them is down the gullet, at the prescribed dosage and on the prescribed daily schedule.

    Seriously, these people are beyond all hope. What is terrifying is they are almost certainly all heavily armed. When the Framers wrote the 2nd amendment, I'm pretty sure they didn't sit down and think, I know! The very best way to set up a 'well regulated militia' would be to make sure every mentally diseased village idiot gets a brass 12 pounder and a year's supply of grape shot!

    How do we get back from here? I don't have an answer, but meanwhile I do hope you husband your impressive verbal resources for the battles with the ones who are not so ill that they might actually respond, maybe, a little, to good plain sense vividly expressed. BB

  34. absolutely spot on, there's now way a person can commit murder to clear their name.I do believe Mr.Dorner had genuine greivances having grown up in LA and Pasadena what's now being called south central.There were legal and reasonable channels and procedures thar Dorner could have used, I suspect his mental state may have contributed to his rampage.

  35. I guess they'll issue the second in a series of 'Dickheads in Heavan' velvet paintings with the Andrew Breitbart as Teutonic Knight welcoming his brother Chris Dorner to the pearly gates. Dorner will be dressed as a latter day Swahili berserker - knee high black alligator Uggs, leopard skin toga and a grizzly bear headdress (gifted from Sarah P).

    An aside - I watched a film on Netflix the other day called "Red State". The blurb said something about 3 kids answer an ad for sex, but it goes wrong. Then it turned into some sort of PBS documentary about freedom of religion and sin and God's judgement and how the ATF and gov't fuck up everything they touch. I mean, these people were Christians. I think they know a bit more about God's love and freedom of expression than the rest of us.

    But the kids never did get laid. WTF is that? Tommy D

  36. Way down here in law and order Texas, a young man threw a bowling ball at me for saying some of the same things you said about this (that) asshole.
    Supposedly talented naval officer passed over for Lt.Cdr. a third time goes berserk.
    Fuckin' asshole with a big chip knocked off his shoulder.

  37. You didn't piss off this hardcore leftie, Jim. :) I don't think Dorner is a hero, by any means. Any legitimate beef he had with the LAPD ended when he killed his first victim.

    But I don't think the LAPD are heroes either. There are serious problems afoot, when cops mistake old Hispanic women for a 30-something Black man and shoot up their truck (that looked nothing like Dorner's). But at least they're getting a new truck out of the deal.

  38. Oh thank you Jim. It's funny, the way you talk about just about anything, it sounds almost like an extremist rant. The major exception being that what you say makes sense. I love that you can get right to the dirty little heart of things and not go cartwheeling off to the right OR the left. It's not about sides, it's about what's real and right. I can read your blog and it doesn't leave me feeling soiled or guilty to enjoy it. Much respect.

  39. I'll bring up another hot topic, to reply to this hot topic. First, I totally agree with you. Dorner was an asshole who deserved to die. Whenever I hear somebody protesting against the use of drones on US soil, I think of criminals like Dorner, I think of the murder of deputy MacKay and the murders that started the rampage, and how many others were exposed to the selfish and murderous rampage of this asshole... and, you know, I find that I like the idea of an armed drone more and more... It would allow our public servants, to protect and serve us, while staying out of danger themselves. I want to put shields around each and every one of them... and that's impossible, so giving them better tools to use against murderers who have promised to continue murdering, from a safe distance, why not? We use it against foreign terrorists, why not people like this?

    Ok... maybe too controversial, but, our law enforcement officers have to deal with too much, for too little in return. They aren't perfect. There is no such thing. I would not want their job. I could NOT do it. I am very grateful for all that they do for us, especially those who make the ultimate sacrifice to preserve our safety. Why are some people so damned dense?

    The very fact that Dorner thought that killing innocents would clear his name is all the proof that we need that Dorner was wrong... he might have had some actual facts, at some time, some legit gripe... but the very second he chose to put bullets in action to prove his f**ked up selfish point, he was wrong. Period. Anyone who tries to twist it to prop up their personal agendas, politics, or their need to rant and rage at made-up conspiracies, they are wrong too. Period.

  40. I had heard from my mother that some were calling Dorner a hero.

    Hey, there are loonies and conspiracy theorists on the right AND the left, crazy comes in all persuasions. (Although the FEARFUL crazy apparently is more prevalent in Conservatives, according to the latest study, which also clarifies that while fearful people are more likely to be conservative, not all conservatives are fearful.)

    Nope, Dorner was no hero, and he didn't 'snap'. He planned, he stewed, he hated, and he acted on his hate. No 'hero' does that, and a hero ESPECIALLY does not take innocent lives in an act of revenge! What a miserable, hateful, belligerent jerk! I, too, figured that he very likely displayed some of these traits while employed with the LAPD, and they wanted this guy away from them.

    Reminds me of the wisdom attributed to an Indian Chief advising a young man of the tribe, saying that there are two wolves living in each of us, one being fair and kind, the other hateful and bitter and vengeful. The young man asks, 'Which one wins?" and the Chief says: 'The one you feed'.

    Dorner kept feeding his hatred and bitterness. I also caught a bit of an article that had a warning from a woman who had dated him quite some time ago, warning others to stay away from him. His personality problems certainly did not seem to be new. So sad about the innocent lives he took. Stupid, belligerent jerk, not a hero.

  41. Jim,
    I'm beginning to think you ae a collector of sorts. You must have a goal of ammassing the world's bigest pile of hate mail, maybe with the intent of putting it all by the side of a major highway and charging $1.00 per person ($3.00 per carload)for tourists to stop and gawk at.

    "How come the terrorists who felt completely justified in their actions on 9-11 aren’t heroes too? ...etc."

    Sure, in this enlightened, educated, literate society of the gleaming 21st century no one at all would ever miss the irony of that paragraph or mistake it for your true feelings.

    Maybe you can hire a dog to sniff your e-mails before you open them!


  42. Of course, this stuff will continue. Occasionally, though you get bad news that is just too easy to not make a joke from.
    This week a country singer committed suicide. Sad enough. She probably had every right to own the gun that she blew her brains out with. Did she have the right to kill her dog too? Of course she did. How would you make a country song without losing your dog?
    Did I mention that her husband also shot himself? Probably too much of her country music.
    I do feel bad for the orphans she left behind. But thank the gods (that would be the founding fathers) for giving us the right to have an easy way out.

  43. Well put as usual. It struck me, as well is it obviously did you, that considering the rampage he embarked on, there's at least some chance that there was very good reason that he was let go (avoiding the "terminated"). People in their normal minds do not do what he did, no matter how they've been wronged (or perceive they've been wronged).

    I've seen similar comments to those you quote. "This is the beginning. Be prepared to fight for your rights", said one. There really are some crazy nutty people out there who seriously think that there is some kind of mass insurrection against authority coming.

    I know some police forces have problems that need to be fixed, some more so than others, and LAPD seems to have a particularly bad reputation. However, I had an ex-brother in law that was a NYC cop in the South Bronx and Jamaica Queens. (nice neighborhoods right?). In my opinion, you cannot pay these officers enough for the job they do day after day. This goes for police everywhere, but especially in large cities. And I am FINE with their generous retirement plans. I hope they enjoy a happy, peaceful retirement, with my thanks.

  44. Bravo Zulu, Jim. Spot on freakin perfect analysis. For all the screaming and ranting on the interwebs, the same place, coincidently, that gave Dorner the PERFECT format for exposing whatever needed exposing, the bootom line is that Dorner himself was the bad guy.

    Most likely, the LAPD, early on, figured out that Dorner was a ticking time bomb. My only grief with it is that they should have done more to help him get better, but for the life of me, I dunno how you force someone into mental health.

    I do still wonder how his ID was found near the Mexican border AND the same ID still found on his body after the fire went out.

    And why are people rallying behind this guy? He "Stuck it to the man" in their eyes, even though they're wrong.

    We as a people and a nation, spend much time griping and grousing about standing up to the Big Money and Big Power boys that ANY person who vaguely resembles someone standing up becomes a rallying point. That said, I didn't notice too many Dorner fans stepping up behind him and taking to the streets to fight...whatever. We really are a nation of sheep.

    Anyways, great job as usual, Jim. Pardon my rambling.

  45. Just an aside, Jim. You really should consider collecting your "Greatest hits" (Including this gem) and having them published as, I dunno, a collection of essays like George Carlin (Our modern day Twain) did. Not that you really need the money, but I bet they'd sell huge.

  46. Slight quibble. Dorner was a spree killer, not a serial killer.

    First thing I thought when I first heard about his first murders and the "why" for them was "Oh, that'll clear your name real well." (Note the sarcastic snark was in full force.) The moment he began his BS rampage he proved the LAPD correct for having canned him.

    And for those who really want a good look at a well thought out piece on the right to keep and bear arms here's a link.


    1. The person you linked lost my interest when he started explaining to me what I *really* believe.

  47. If you think that's 'well thought out', you've not been exposed to much that actually was well thought out.

    That hacktackular nonsense was chock full of fictional false assumptions and fallacious misconceptions. It's premises rely solely on it's wholly subjective and preconceived inventions.

    That's not the mark of a well thought out piece, that's the mark of imprudent and crass ideological propaganda. Any time you see an article which is premised solely around misconstrued and fictitious misconstructions you should have the sense to see that the only thing well thought out was the intent to proselytize.

    1. Did you even read it?

    2. I agree that the whole piece is Jim Wright's attempt to proselytize for Periwinkle Bunnies. Also, why was "Also, Nazis" not mentioned once in the entire piece? That's gotta mean something. A secret communication to the Illuminati no doubt.

      [I was hoping to google "periwinkle bunnies" and find the only result was a link was to Stonekettle Station, but apparently periwinkle bunnies are a thing. Who, besides Jim, knew?]

    3. That blogger (The Polemicist) lost me when he claimed that Liberals are all pretending to support the right to have guns, but they all want to eliminate them. I am a Liberal, most of my friends are Liberals, I do a lot of reading and see hundreds of posts by Liberals, and they do NOT want guns banned, but they DO want more regulation.

      His statement: "What all liberal gun-control proposals seek to do, and all they seek to do, is to reduce and eventually eliminate the right of ordinary citizens to possess firearms." So he bases his argument on what MIGHT happen or what he is AFRAID will happen, not on evidence. Sorry. I don't spend my time on such people. He is a fear-mongerer with somewhat better literacy skills than some of the rabid pro-gun people who are afraid they need an arsenal for when 'the guv-mint' comes after them. You may like what he says, but he has several disconnects in his 'logic'. 'Control' is NOT 'banning', 'regulation' is NOT 'eliminating', and to write as if these terms are interchangeable, or as though he knows the 'true intent' of all those using the terms (he is a mind reader? a fortune teller?) is just - well, illogical and incorrect.

    4. Yes, Lucas, I did read it, I went to your link and read it, ....that's why I was able to describe so succinctly just how bad it was.

  48. This comment has been removed by the author.

  49. Thank you for your always well written and thoughtful prose.

    I can not comprehend how anyone could support Dorner or shed a tear for his death. This man was a murderer, terrorist, kidnapper etc. plan and simple. And when he realized that his path of destruction was over, he took the coward's way out with a bullet to his head.

    LAPD is not perfect - nor are most law enforcement agencies -- but we as citizens get what we pay for and with the anti-tax mentality in this country, we are lucky anyone is willing to put their lives on the line for us citizens with what we appear willing to pay.

    The killing of law enforcement officials has sky rocketed since 911. People angry at the government are taking it out on law enforcement officials who have nothing to do with the creation of laws or running of the country..

    1. How about we shed a tear because he was a fellow human being. I absolutely agree with Mr. Wright's essay, but I also know that Dorner was alive and in some ways as much like any one of us as he was totally alien to us. We should shed a tear because he was someone's child and brother. He was someone's friend. He lived along side us, and while we will not really ever know what fatal flaws or tragic experiences led him to acts that we can NEVER condone, he was a living human being and now he is not.

  50. That was a good post, Sir. But in your responding comment to Anonymous (why does he call us psycho fans? Some of us aren't fans per se, just devoted readers), you write: If you'd prefer a comments section that allows diskish behavior. That means streetwise in Ankh-Morpork, right? It must.

    1. Love the Ankh-Moorpark reference Kado! Not everyone will get it, but some of us appreciate that.
      I do want to address the bit about comments. I definitely avoid comments sections of certain blogs because of the trolls. I cannot even imagine what they think they are accomplishing other than convincing the rest of us that they are troglodytes.
      And, Jim, just found your blog. A little logic and less idealism is a breath of fresh air. Check out Barret Rainey at Ridenbaugh Press sometime. He's less colorful but a kindred spirit, I think.

  51. I agree with most of what you said, except this:

    "If Dorner really had a case, he would have won eventually. "

    Mainly because, just like the Gary Sinese scenario you outlined, stuff like that mostly happens on TV but not always in real life.

    However, I am NOT saying that he was a hero or justified in what he did, only that just as he should have known how the standoff would have played out, he probably also knew (or thought he knew) how going through legal channels would have played out.

    Again, I am not saying he was justified in his actions, he was not. Absolutely not. If he thought he couldn't win through proper legal channels, then he should have either tried anyway or found a way to come to peace with it.

    I'm just pointing out that having a righteous beef and using legal channels doesn't always result in a win, not even in the court of public opinion. Heck, a cop fighting a wrongful termination might not even get airtime. I think that the reason he is getting a positive response in the court of public opinion is because he did what a lot of people wish they could do (but, thankfully, wouldn't) and because he's dead.

    1. Well, the only thing that's certain is that nothing is certain - but I understand what you're saying, Jill.

      Perhaps I should have phrased it, "If Dorner really had a case, he likely would have won eventually." See, what I really meant to imply here is this: if Dorner had a case worth killing for, worth declaring war on the police department for, literally worth his own life, and against the hated LAPD of all people, an organization that is widely believed to be racist and biased and unfair, well then it seems to me that if he had even the slightest bit of real evidence supporting his complaint the case would be a win sooner or later for any ACLU lawyer worth his sheepskin.

      Which makes me suspect that Dorner had no such leg to stand on. And that, given Dorner's rather obvious anger management issues and inability to move on, the LAPD was quite probably correct in getting rid of him.

      Note however, in the essay I freely surmise that the opposite may also be true, that Dorner's complaint might be entirely legit, that the LAPD has a history of racism and bias and so maybe Dorner's beef was completely justified - but how killing people "clears his name" as he says in his manifesto is utterly beyond me.

    2. Jim --

      With Jill, I think you overestimate the fairness of the US legal system, especially with respect to the challenging the behavior of the police. Also with Jill, I want to stress that even if the legal system is broken qua the actions of the police in the U.S., that does *not* justify murder.

      But it is important to note that, in large part because of the legal decisions surrounding the so-called 'war on drugs,' the criminal justice system in the U.S. has swung far from protecting the rights of the accused. Attempts to bring abusive police officers to justice, or to take legal actions against clearly racially motivated police actions, have been made much more difficult -- indeed, in many cases, the legal framework surrounding e.g. attempts to demonstrate racist patterns of police abuses and prosecutorial misconduct have rendered legal action effectively impossible.

      The last quarter of a century has seen an important and serious *erosion* of civil rights in the U.S., and a growth in the power of the police (and prosecutors) to engage in potentially (and often quite clearly) abusive activities with very little meaningful legal oversight. Again, this does *not* justify murder. It does not even "explain" murderous rampages. However, it is a real phenomenon, and it does mean that legal channels for dealing with the deeply embedded racism in our criminal justice system are not straightforward, nor likely to "succeed" in any obvious way.

      I take it as obvious that the correct response to the (what many perceive, and in my mind is clear) failure of our current legal framework to meaningfully protect the rights of the accused is political and legal actions, not violence! But we must recognize that, as a nation, we were perhaps never as committed to protecting the legal rights of *all* people to be free from police abuse as some might wish, and that whatever commitment we once had has been reduced in recent decades.

      (A brief plug for two decent books summarizing some of the research into the failures of our criminal justice system: Cole's _No Equal Justice_ and Alexander's _The New Jim Crow_. Neither is perfect, but they are both important books.)

  52. On The Polemicist's pro-firearms argument to the left: the left used to be pro-firearms ownership. Then we discovered firearms, and violent protest generally, were a tactical and strategic failure in our kind of activism. There are several reasons for this:

    1) Violence is unpopular. The left wants to raise and lead popular opposition to oppressors. Violence usually works against this. If protesters can be painted as violent, popular support falls in behind a state response, however brutal. The lightly-armed, or even unarmed, public protest is more effective at raising popular opposition than the heavily-armed pitched assault.

    2) The state and the 1% has a practical monopoly on force. It isn't the general public that can bring police power to bear, call out the National Guard, or even start wars. Historically, the American left has found that protests will be answered with overwhelming state force and non-violence is a much more effective answer to this than violence.

    3) Historically the global left has found that well-armed violent revolutions dissolve in internal violence. The consciously non-violent Indian independence movement of the 20th century has so far been more effective than the violent revolutions that 19th-century radicals advocated.

    So the case on the left for violence has become very weak.

  53. I remember thinking that if Dorner wanted to air his grievances, he should have started a blog like you've got here. And then networked the hell out of it to get people to investigate his claims. Killing innocent people to get at someone he knew at work is just plain wrong and reveals that he had a serious dark side that he obviously lost himself to. He ain't my hero. He went about it all the worst ways possible.

  54. Dorner is definitely not a hero; but I feel rather sorry for both him AND his victims. He was a guy who went over the nutsy violent edge of thinking gunshots feel better than just being pissed off in silence. I do believe the reasons he felt that way need serious investigation; but he sure as hell isn't "the hero" of Canton" anymore than Jayne Cobb had intended heroism.

    I do think the cops got a bit nutsy as well, I mean hell....they shot at women who didn't remotely resemble Chris Dorner. Maybe what needs to be discussed isn't just the bang-bang bit at all? Maybe what needs a whole lot more discussion is the epidemic of NUTSY? (Not Anonymous...Syrbal from herlanderwalking.wordpress.com)

  55. A hero? No. But, true or no, he BELIEVED himself wronged, and that makes him tragic. I admit, I feel badly for the guy--crazy caught up to him and had its way with him. My heart REALLY goes out to his victims. In all, a sad, stupid, "Negotiator" kind of disaster that leaves me sad.

  56. Dorner illustrates perfectly what results from an insular, paranoid hostility toward anyone you feel has wronged you. Hollywood (and others) has taught us that, if you are mistreated in a way that makes you really, really mad, you are justified in going completely, violently nuts and destroying all those who done you wrong. ("Don't make me angry; you wouldn't like me when I'm angry.") And now Chris Dorner has become the beau ideal of the survivalist conservative lunatics who think that President Obama has wronged them by being black and humane and who are now advocating some sort of revolution against the forces of oppression. These latter day Spartacuses need to move to, say, Iran, and learn what REAL oppression is like. The irony in all this, of course, is that the vast majority of these soi disant frontiersmen are white racists, and now their hero is a black man. What happened to the good old days when being a conservative was all about law and order?

    1. Actually I believe he's a case of malignant narcissism(sp?).

  57. For another installment of Bang Bang Crazy


    1. more


    2. Oh. Shit. Pre-Traumatic Stress Disorder?

      Ann C.

  58. You know Jim, I love your site, I love your writing. But I have got to take issue with a poor misunderstood villain in this post.

    You can't compare Christopher Dorner to Jayne Cobb.

    I think that the general public perception of Jayne as a mindless, selfish thug is shortsighted, and he is a victim of the vast conspiracy by Fox executives to destroy good television.

    Jayne actually WAS a hero. It's right there in the script.
    "Thank you for the money you sent, it was helpful since Maddy is still sick with the damp lung"
    "The next time little sister gets in a murderin' mood, maybe she'll go callin' on Inara, or Kaylee."

    And if he were truly so heartless, would he have been so crushed by the events of Jaynestown? Or cared what the crew thought at the end of Ariel?

    I really feel we got cheated with regards to Jayne. He wasn't that simple.

  59. Wow. I'm breathless after reading this post. Thank you for putting into words what many of us are feeling. Your assessment of Dorner was honest, blunt, and exactly what his horribly misguided apologists need to hear.

  60. Here we have Wrongful Termination: Chris Dorner’s Terrifyingly Banal Killing Spree an assessment of Dorner's shootings as a workplace massacre. I think it's a very good piece, giving due both to the stresses Dorner was placed under, and to the his abject failure in responding to them.


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