On the morning of the Newtown shooting, a 69-year-old retired psychologist named Gene Rosen stepped outside to feed his cats. To his surprise, he found "four terrified children hiding out in his driveway." The children told Rosen that their teacher was dead. He stayed with them while the tragedy continued to unfold at Sandy Hook Elementary, about a block away.
Sandy Hook "truthers" terrorize retired psychologist
Gene Rosen is being relentlessly hounded by Internet goons.
And now the "truthers" who believe that the Sandy Hook event was a hoax are making Rosen's life a living hell. Apparently they have decided that, if the Newtown shooting was faked (in the parlance of internet conspiracy theorists, a "false flag operation") then Rosen was obviously one of its primary actors. And thus, he should be relentlessly hounded and harassed 24/7 because ???
Rosen was interviewed by several media outlets on the day of the shooting. Clips of his interviews are being endlessly and mercilessly "debunked" on truther websites. Imagine being interviewed on the worst day of your life… and then imagine a bunch of anonymous conspiracy theorists trash talking every aspect of your appearance and demeanor.
It's always fun to feel like you know something that everyone else doesn't know, is too stupid to know. It's a warm feeling, to think that you refuse to have the wool pulled over your eyes like everyone else. But it's also easy to get hooked on that feeling. You start having to up the ante, increase your dosage. And the next thing you know, you find yourself vehemently arguing that those children weren't shot, or that the government sent in a SWAT team to shoot a bunch of schoolchildren, and then put together a massive conspiracy between the government, every single media outlet, and everyone who lived within a five block radius of the school.
The real truth is that bad things happen in the world. Random things. No one is in charge. I understand the allure of the fantasy that some shadowy organization is engineering these events. It's reassuring, in a weird way. But it's wrong and childish to think this way.
Meanwhile, the true conspiracies in our world go unaddressed. Why? Because "capitalism feeds off the poor" isn't as sexy or media-friendly as "Sandy Hook was staged." Or because "elections are won by the rich" lacks a specific human face to badger. The real conspiracies are bigger and foggier, and I guess maybe it's easier to dox some poor old dude whose only crime was giving safe harbor to some terrified children who had just escaped a massacre.