Wednesday, September 18, 2013

LA Times Whitewash of Aaron Alexis

What the hell is up with the LA Times? Did anyone read this article? Who could have known? Who could have seen this coming? Speak to us oh Buddha. The LA Times article comes off as sympathetic to Alexis' plight of life as an immature, cheap asshole. The NY Times is a bit tougher on Alexis. CBS paints the agitated young man picture. Willful ignorance or narrative writing is at work in the LA Times blurb on the good Budhhist chanter /slash/ angry man. Is it too easy to say the guy was a bit mentally off, an asshole but liked to participate in Buddhist ceremonies? Yes. Let us chant "aaaauuummmm" and bathe in the whitewashing light of the LA Times.

LA Times: "Alexis wore a golden amulet of Buddha around his neck, she recalled, yet also carried a concealed .45-caliber handgun. To a Fort Worth neighbor and a Seattle construction worker, Alexis — accused of gunning down workers at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday — was a brooding, menacing figure quick to brandish and fire a gun"

If he had been wearing a cross, there would be no juxtaposition in the article of the peaceful religious imagery with a gun. Buddhism is a good religion on the organized religion spectrum as it is part of the Eastern tradition. We also read he was quick to brandish guns per a neighbor.

LA Times: "Alexis seemed to hold grudges. He was upset over a salary dispute with his employer, a government subcontractor called The Experts, according to an official close to the investigation. Alexis was investigated by police in Fort Worth and Seattle for firing a handgun in incidents involving disputes with a neighbor and a construction worker. He also had a string of Navy disciplinary infractions leading up to his discharge in January 2011. But there was little indication from his available public record that he was capable of escalating from petty disputes to a mass shooting."

Earlier it was that he bristled over his Navy service. In this line, we are told he holds grudges over slights. At this point in the article, we've read he fired a handgun in multiple disputes with people and had discipline issues in the Navy. The Times still says there was "little indication" he'd jump from petty disputes (gunshots = petty) to a mass shooting. This is where my disgust with the media's framing sets in as what is there to tip us off to a mass shooting by psychos that happen once a year in a nation of 300 million? Not everyone is killing kittens and talking to Satan on the subway before snapping. Some mentally disturbed people are self-destructive. These are truly random events... that all involve people with mental illnesses (Cho, Holmes, Lanza, and Alexis). Even more insulting is later on as the Times describes the two shooting incidents.

LA Times: "In Seattle in 2004, a construction worker told police that Alexis had stared at him and fellow workers every day for a month — and occasionally brandished a handgun — at a construction site next to Alexis' residence. The worker said he had never spoken to Alexis, but Alexis suddenly fired three shots from a Glock 30 handgun into the worker's parked car one day in May 2004. Alexis later told police that the worker had "mocked" and "disrespected" him. He said he had experienced an anger-fueled "blackout" and did not recall the shooting until an hour later, according to the police report. Seattle police said Alexis' father told them his son had "anger management problems," according to a police department blog."

The man shot at people or symbolic possessions of people after nonexistent or minor disputes. Blacks out due to anger at a person who claims he never spoke to Alexis. When does shooting over nothing get minimized by the media? If you commit a horrific crime and are a member of an approved victim group, you get everything minimized. With the 2010 shooting at a neighbor's apartment and then this 2004 story, it seems pretty easy to see how a crazy guy who shoots into empty cars for disrespecting and mocking (his story) might snap later. This is not a hard jump for my brain to make. The article ends with his bitching about not being promoted for being black, which runs counter to the military and other contractors overlooking his violent encounters to employ him. The ending is a statement by a friend that if he had his Buddhist amulet on then, shucks, Alexis wouldn't shoot people with it on because Buddhists don't do that. Imagine a Christian trying to get away with that in the LA Times. Great ending with saying we didn't know what was going through his mind.

That is an appropriate ending and true. We can take a look at his past and connect some dots. The entire article is to show a troubled man who was a mystery, but had redeeming good qualities, yet was quick tempered due to feeling slighted. The simple view of immature and violent guy snapping is too easy. We need to create a fallen angel. Don't hate this violent ne'er do well. Feel for him. He is a victim >sniff sniff< of the racist world >sniff sniff< around him.

No comments: