(Kilroy was there–in the Federal Complex 10 miles from Oklahoma City center–when the bomb went off. Our building shook as though in an earthquake–the explosion sound reached us just as we emerged from the building–a cloud (dust from concrete and debri) began to form as we watched.
Though McVeigh had scouted the building previously, including the location of the daycare center adjacent to the epicenter of the blast, he lost his way piloting the bomb-laden truck to the site, and was given directions to the Murrah Building by the kind people of the city.)
There’s been a lot of agonizing about what is going on in America lately — why are mass-shootings becoming so common, what’s going on?
Michelle Goldberg writing in The NY Times has put her finger on a very unsettling point.
Timothy McVeigh, the right-wing terrorist who killed 168 people in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, cared about one issue above all others: guns. To him, guns were synonymous with freedom, and any government attempt to regulate them meant incipient tyranny.
“When it came to guns,” writes Jeffrey Toobin in “Homegrown,” his compelling new book about the Oklahoma City attack, “McVeigh did more than simply advocate for his own right to own and use firearms; he joined an ascendant political crusade, which grew more extreme over the course of his lifetime and beyond.”
Reading Toobin’s book, it’s startling to realize how much McVeigh’s cause has advanced in the decades since his 2001 execution. McVeigh, who was a member of the K.K.K. and harbored a deep resentment of women, hoped that blowing up the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building would inspire an army of followers to make war on the government. This didn’t happen immediately, although, as the historian Kathleen Belew has written, there was a wave of militia and white supremacist violence in the bombing’s aftermath. But today, an often-inchoate movement of people who share many of McVeigh’s views is waging what increasingly looks like a low-level insurgency against the rest of us.
Early indoctrination into the “insurgency”, as in the picture below, bears “fruit” in Texas (recent example below)
On the 14th of May 2023 in the 6000+ population town of Keene Texas, a 12 year old murdered an employee of a fast food restaurant with an AR15—–6 shots which typically would have torn the body of the targeted person apart.
Preference for the AR15 lies in, among other things, the nearly complete absence of recoil—-which explains the ability of a 12 year old child to repeatedly aim and fire. Bullets launched from the weapon leave a 3 inch diameter wound, literally disintegrating bone, flesh and organs on their way through the body.
—and yet we do nothing–