Conspiracy Corner – The Sandy Hook Mutations

Two conspiracy corners in one day? Well, I was in Wellington last week and never got around to updating the site (i.e. I was having too much fun to worry about the internets).

The Sandy Hook Mutations

Note: I got the date completely wrong on when Sandy Hook occurred; it was post the election, not prior.

Sandy Hook is fast becoming a conspiracy theory that says the real victims of the shooting are not the dead, their families or friends but, rather, gun owners and conservatives. It is also a good example of what I think is a common set of mutations for such conspiracy theories, namely:

  1. It didn’t happen (It was set up by the media or the president. Presumably to justify further erosions of civil liberties – narrowly defined as being about guns rather than, say the rights of women), or:
  2. It did happen, but not the way we’ve been told (It did happen but there was a second shooter and some of the victims were invented – to make it look worse than it really was?) or
  3. It did happen the way we’ve been told, but there’s another layer to it (The real cause was drugs, or video games or something not related to guns and the government and the media are deliberately making guns the real victims to hide other problems in society or there is a suspicious correlation between some other event).

More thoughts on all of this below.

Matthew Dentith wrote his PhD on epistemic issues surrounding belief in conspiracy theories. He is a frequent media commentator on the weird and the wonderful, both locally and internationally. On occasion he can be caught dreaming about wax lions but, mostly, it is rumoured he works for elements of the New World Order.

2 thoughts on “Conspiracy Corner – The Sandy Hook Mutations

  1. I am hoping you already got a thousand corrections on this, but in your 95bfm spot on the 24 of January, you mispoke, “… end of last year, just before the election, there was the Sandy Hook school shooting … ”

    But the Sandy Hook school shooting took place on December 14th, after the election , which was on November 6th .

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sandy_Hook_Elementary_School_shooting

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_election,_2012

  2. You are quite right; that’s a terrible oversight on my part (in vague defense; I was on holiday and so only got up ten minutes before the segment was recorded. It’s surprising I was able to articulate words, let lone put them in sentences).

    It also shows me that maybe I should listen to the segments once they’ve been recorded; I don’t like listening to the sound of my own voice so I hardly ever review them post the recording to look for mistakes, et al. Given that I went straight back to bed after the recording of that one (I’d had a late, late night) I didn’t even do my usual post-show review but, instead, curled back into bed and slept until ten (by which point the memory of that segment had faded into distant memory.

    Also, the audience for this blog isn’t really all that big (and we don’t really have any listener numbers for the segment), so I’m kind of reliant on people like yourself who both listen to the segments and read the blog to tell me when I’ve got it wrong. So, cher cher.

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