Submitted by Elaine Magliaro, Weekend Contributor
I’m sure the readers of this blog remember the Newtown massacre that occurred in Connecticut on December 14, 2012, when twenty students and six adults were shot and killed at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. Not long after that tragedy, conspiracy theorists began to spread stories about the massacre being a hoax. In January of 2013, Gene Rosen, a man who had sheltered six children during the massacre, began receiving calls from people he didn’t know accusing him of lying about what had happened that day…and of his being a “crisis actor.”
At that time, Rosen didn’t know what to do. He said, “I’m getting hang-up calls, I’m getting some calls, I’m getting emails with, not direct threats, but accusations that I’m lying, that I’m a crisis actor, ‘how much am I being paid?’” Someone even posted a picture of his house online. It was reported that Google+ and YouTube accounts were created in his name. Messages about him appeared on white supremacist messages ridiculing him as the “emotional Jewish guy.” In addition, in dozens of blog posts and videos, people claimed that Rosen was a fraud. He even received an email that purported to be a business inquiry, which taunted him asking, “How are all those little students doing? You know, the ones that showed up at your house after the ‘shooting’. What is the going rate for getting involved in a gov’t sponsored hoax anyway?”
Rosen admitted that he had done a lot of media interviews following the tragedy at Sandy Hook School. He said, “I wanted to speak about the bravery of the children, and it kind of helped me work through this. I guess I kind of opened myself up to this.”
Alex Seitz-Wald of Salon reported that there were “many flavors of conspiracy theories surrounding” the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School. He added that one thread that united many of the theories was “the notion that this was a government hoax aimed at taking away people’s guns.” Similarly, Tom Boggioni of Raw Story said, “Sandy Hook ‘truthers’ believe that the Newtown shooting never occurred or was part of a ‘false flag’ operation designed to open the door to the confiscation of all guns by the government.” Ben Smith and CJ Lotz wrote that the “leading version of the ‘Sandy Hook Hoax’ theory, such as it is, holds that the incident was staged by the White House as a prelude to disarming America. Many of its claims are rooted in contradictory and confusing media statements that came out of the chaos of the first hours of the shooting, and which are virtually always present in such chaotic moments.” They added that similar “confused media reporting served as the basis of the 9/11 Truth movement.”
Robert Goldberg, a historian at the University of Utah who has written a book and lectured extensively about American conspiracy theories, said, “Whether it’s the Oklahoma City bombing, or the Waco incident, or Ruby Ridge, or 9/11, or Sandy Hook, the idea is that these are modern Reichstags (the event that occurred in Germany in 1933), which is an excuse that the government is going to use to declare an emergency to take the guns away from the patriots, and then confine the patriots.”
One might have hoped that the Sandy Hook truthers would have moved on by now…and maybe found a new conspiracy theory to wrap their warped minds around. Unfortunately, it appears that hasn’t happened because one of the truthers recently stole a sign from a playground in Mystic, Connecticut. The sign had been displayed at a playground dedicated to the memory of Grace McDonnell, one of the Sandy Hook shooting victims. The vinyl sign, which weighed 50 pounds and featured a peace symbol, was based on a drawing done by seven-year-old Grace. The man who claimed that he stole the sign called Grace’s home. He told Lynn McDonnell, the dead child’s mother, that he had taken the sign because he believes that the shooting at Sandy Hook was a hoax. McDonnell said that the caller taunted her by claiming that her daughter Grace never existed. How heartless and cold can a person be?
Peace Sign Stolen From Conn. Playground Honoring Sandy Hook Victim Grace McDonnell
Tom Boggioni said that the Grace McDonnell playground is “one of 26 planned playgrounds being built by the Where Angels Play Foundation in honor of all 26 victims.” He added that the theft of the peace sign came ‘two weeks after another playground sign, located in Hartford, was vandalized with someone spray-painting ‘Peace to Sandy Hook,’ a peace sign, and the numeral ’2′ on it.”
I can’t begin to imagine what kind of delusional, sick individuals would steal or vandalize signs displayed on playgrounds dedicated to the memories of innocent young children who died in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012.
Note: There are plans to replace the signs at both playgrounds.
Beware of Conspiracy Theories About Sandy Hook (Lewis Rockwell)
Sandy Hook ‘Truther’ Tells Victim’s Mother Her Daughter Never Existed (Huffington Post)
Sandy Hook truthers claim the Newtown massacre was a hoax (America Blog)
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