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Thursday, June 12, 2014

Some Inconvenient Truths about American Mass Murderers

Whether our nation is mourning the victims of yet another mass murderer, or murderers, the liberal politicians and pundits, like a toddler in charge of the TV remote, continue to play the same sorry episode from their progressive programming: guns are to blame and the government needs to do something about it.

However, when it comes to the worst mass murderers in the United States, there are several very inconvenient truths for those of the liberal persuasion, and none of them involves guns. First of all, of the ten worst mass murderers in American history, only 3 of them—Seung-Hui Cho, Adam Lanza, and George Hennard—used guns as their primary means of killing.

Of the four worst American murderers, Gary Ridgway (71+ victims), Andrew Philip Kehoe (44 victims), Ted Bundy (36+ victims), and John Wayne Gacy (34+ victims), none of them used guns to kill. Ridgway and Gacy strangled their victims. Bundy strangled, bludgeoned, and drowned his victims. Kehoe used bombs to kill his victims—mostly school children ages 7-12.

As one looks beyond the means of killing and examines the lives of these men, other troubling patterns emerge. Virtually all were from broken, or at least troubled, homes. Ridgway’s parents remained married, but his mother, Mary Ridgway, was a domineering woman who was prone to terrible treatment of her son.

Early in his childhood Ridgway was a chronic bed-wetter. After he wet his bed, his mother would berate him in front of his siblings and then give him cold baths “while paying special attention to his ‘dirtiest’ parts, that is, his genitals.” She would often perform the baths barely clothed herself. In his teenage years, Ridgway fantasized about having violent sex with his mother. No doubt that this is often what he acted out as he raped and strangled (not always in that order) dozens of prostitutes over a 22-year period.

Ted Bundy was born to Louise Cowell at the “Elizabeth Lund Home for Unwed Mothers.” Initially Bundy was raised by his maternal grandparents Samuel and Eleanor Cowell. They presented him as their son and Louise as his older sister in order to avoid the social stigma of an illegitimate birth. Bundy would eventually discover the truth and expressed lifelong resentment towards his mother for the deceit.

Bundy was especially fond of his grandfather. However, Samuel Cowell has been described as a “tyrannical bully and a bigot who hated blacks, Italians, Catholics, and Jews, beat his wife and the family dog, and swung neighborhood cats by their tails. He once threw Louise's younger sister Julia down a flight of stairs for oversleeping.”

Ted’s mother would eventually head west to Washington State. There she would meet and marry Johnny Bundy who would later adopt Ted. The Bundy’s would have four additional children and Ted would describe this home as a “wonderful…solid Christian home” with “two dedicated and loving parents.”

Outside the home, young Ted encountered printed pornography which he described as sparking and fueling his perverse and violent attitudes towards women. Just prior to being executed, Bundy would note that “The most damaging kind of pornography - and I'm talking from hard, real, personal experience—is that that involves violence and sexual violence. The wedding of those two forces—as I know only too well—brings about behavior that is too terrible to describe.”

John Wayne Gacy grew up with a violent, abusive, and alcoholic father who often belittled and beat him. Gacy also was regularly molested at a young age by a family friend. Married in his early 20s to Marilynn Myers, Gacy and his wife moved to Waterloo, Illinois in the fall of 1966. Not long after relocating, Gacy became involved in wife swapping, prostitution, pornography, and illegal drug use. At this time, Gacy was also having homosexual encounters.

In the late 1960s Gacy was having sexual encounters with boys as young as 15. In 1968 Gacy was indicted on an oral sodomy charge—a charge he would not face in these “enlightened” times. Gacy plead guilty and served only 18 months of a 10-year sentence. By the 1970s he was again sexually assaulting teenage boys. Gacy also indulged in gay pornography. In 1972 he committed his first of dozens of murders.

From 1970 to 1973, Dean Corll of Houston, Texas kidnapped, tortured, raped, and murdered at least 28 boys ages 13 to 20. Corll’s parents divorced when he was six. As a young adult, Corll frequently enjoyed the company of teenage boys. Corll was shot and killed in August of 1973 by one of his teenage accomplices, 17-year-old Elmer Henley.

After the shooting, police were skeptical of Henley’s description of Corll’s crimes. Henley was proven correct after the police searched Corll’s home. There they found a sexual torture chamber. “There was a board with handcuffs attached, ropes, a large dildo and plastic covering the carpeted floor. There was also an odd wooden crate with what appeared to be airholes cut into it.”

Over a six-week period in 1971, to satisfy his sadistic sexual desires, Juan Corona raped and murdered over two dozen men. Corona would sodomize and then stab his victims. Adam Lanza’s parents were divorced. Aaron Alexis’ parents were divorced. Elliot Rodger’s parents were divorced and his father took pornographic photos that he sold online.

Instead of guns, the most common elements of the worst among us are broken homes and sexual deviancy. One reason liberals can’t stand to hear such information is that it defies a government solution. The left would much rather rant against firearms and seek legislation to restrict them.

Additionally, liberals in the United States have been complicit in the breakdown of the family and the spread of sexual immorality. Whether divorce, fornication, marriage, prostitution, pornography, homosexuality, and so on, for decades now, in the name of “sexual freedom,” liberals have called what is evil good, and what is good evil. They have preached, promoted, and even passed legislation in defense of these “values.”

Thus, to hear that such things are a significant part of the lives of those who commit mass murder is a terribly inconvenient truth for leftists. In our culture, we usually debate only the legitimacy of killing our fellow human beings when it occurs in the womb. (Of course, along with robbing us of tens-of-millions of lives, abortion devalues human life in general and breeds violence.)

When the fruit of liberalism is revealed in mass murder, then liberalism becomes more difficult to defend. This is why when mass murderers act, liberals would much rather focus on an instrument than the character of the killers.

(See this column at American Thinker.)

Copyright 2014, Trevor Grant Thomas
At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.
Trevor and his wife Michelle are the authors of: Debt Free Living in a Debt Filled World


  1. Mass murderers almost always display "liberal" values.

  2. What happened to my id?

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Pardon my above delete due to a late edit.

    Trevor I think you have inappropriately conflated serial killers and rampage killers under one heading as "mass murderers". Serial killers seek prolonged power and control over their victim and most often strangle, stab, or beat their victims to death. Further, serial killers almost always kill one at a time. They take sadistic pleasure from another person’s pain and the control they gain over their victims. Most serial killers do not use firearms, preferring instead to choose a method more personal and direct.

    John Wayne Gacy and Gary Ridgway (the Green River Killer) strangled their victims, and as you noted Ted Bundy strangled, bludgeoned, and drowned his victims. Those people are serial killers.

    On the other hand, of the top 4 US mass murderers you cite, only Andrew Philip Kehoe seems to qualify as a rampage killer. Kehoe didn’t engage in repeated violent attacks upon others over a period of time, he was involved in one known incident. This profile matches that of a rampage killer.

    If you wish to analyze the use of firearms in mass killings, it is most appropriate to EXCLUDE serial killers and look only at "spree" or rampage killers. What you have done is the logical equivalent of including Adolph Hitler (who gassed millions of people to death) in your list of mass murderers to skew the statistics and buttress your argument that many mass murderers don’t use guns -or that gun control won’t stop mass killings.

    Gun control and potential modification of existing firearms law may not stop or eliminate mass killings, but it would slow down the body count.

    Examples of spree or rampage killings include the “Virginia Tech massacre” perpetrated by Seung-Hui Cho, the “University of Texas Tower Shooting”, perpetrated by Charles Whitman, -who killed 16 people in a shooting rampage in the vicinity of the bell tower of the University of Texas in Austin in 1966, the “Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting”, perpetrated by Adam Lanza, and the “2011 Norway attacks”, perpetrated by Anders Breivik.

    I’m not sure where you get your sick ideological justification to call the majority of these criminals liberals or a product of liberal thinking. Perhaps you note that many serial killers were sexual perverts and assume they must therefore be liberal, because everyone knows conservatives and republicans don’t act that way, -right? Or perhaps you believe anyone who thinks a woman should have control over her body as it relates to reproductive rights condones murder and is therefore predisposed to be the next Ted Bundy. If that isn’t your argument, then perhaps you would be so kind as to prove the assertion you inferred in the article by some other means.

    At any rate, we know what ideology Anders Breivik espoused because he was exceedingly verbal in communicating his political positions. On the day of the attacks, Breivik electronically distributed a compendium of texts entitled “2083: A European Declaration of Independence”, describing his far-right militant ideology. In them, he lays out a worldview encompassing Islamophobia, support for "far-right Zionism", and opposition to feminism. The texts call Islam and Cultural Marxism "the enemy".

    Breivik killed 69 people, mostly children and teenagers, in a mass shooting at a Workers' Youth League camping event (AUF - a liberal political organization) on Ut√łya island. It is unknown how he was able to successfully schedule and coordinate that attack along with bombings he perpetrated the same day in another location, -or whether he received any assistance from an outside party. Regarding the latter possibility, the photo linked below has been attributed to AUF event activity on the island at some point prior to the shooting.

    My God, Trevor, -Anders Breivik sounds a lot like you.

  5. Nice try Kiev, but the argument can just as easily be made that an armed person standing in the way of these "rampage killers" would "slow down the body count." This sometimes happens, but then such incidents don't get the media coverage, because, among other things, the killers don't achieve the high body count.

    I understand the difference between "serial killers" and "rampage killers." My point in this piece is that, when one looks beyond the body count and starts examining these killers, the most common and troubling things about them surround not their means of killing, but their troublesome upbringings, which almost always is the result of the breakdown of their family.

    This is the case with Anders Breivik as well, if you bothered to even look. His parents divorced early on. There was a custody battle. He displayed mental health issues early on which almost certainly were the result of his upbringing. As Wikipedia notes, "In another report by psychologists from Norway's centre for child and youth psychiatry (SSBU) concerns were raised about how his mother treated him: 'She 'sexualised' the young Breivik, hit him, and frequently told him that she wished that he were dead.'"

    I knew none of this about Breivik prior to today, as I only researched U.S. killers for this piece, but before even looking for this information, I was almost certain of what I would find.

    Additionally, Norway has strict gun control laws. They passed the Firearms Weapons Act about two years prior to Breivik's attacks. Again, as Wikipedia notes, "Gun ownership is prohibited in Norway, unless one has officially documented a use for the gun." Additionally, Norway has a total ban on automatic weapons.

    As I have noted before, liberals in the U.S. have been directly complicit in the destruction of the family in America. Whether through politics, the church, the media, or the culture in general, they continue to attack the family. As long as this is occurring, I will continue to point it out.

  6. Well you certainly seem to think you know what's going on, but I'm not so sure this belief of yours is based in reality. For instance, your argument that liberals are directly complicit in destruction of the American family (your inference being liberals are more culpable than conservatives) seems to conflict with divorce rate data for states when compared by political ideology expressed at the ballot box.

    For example, did you know conservative or "red" states consistently have higher divorce rates than "liberal" or blue states? In some cases the divorce rate is more than double for red states over blue states. Odd, huh?


    You also ignore the consistent application of logic to your argument that the mass murderers you cited were a product of the effect of liberal social policy upon the family. If this were true, it would be equally valid to point out (as I did) the right wing ideology of Anders Breivik that closely parallels comments you yourself have made about liberals, socialism, feminism, and generalized anti-Islamic propaganda (rotten fruit article). If liberals destroyed his family, then conservative propaganda destroyed his mind.

    Unfortunately for you, the link I cited previously shows that red states lead the nation in divorce rates, so we are left with conservative and right-wing propaganda and righteous indignation as the primary ideological motivator of these rampage-shooter nut jobs.

    And finally, you ignored the allegation I made (see link in previous post)related to possible assistance Breivik may have received and the liklihood it had roots in far right political Zionist groups like JDL.

  7. It is true that the divorce rate in red states seems to be higher than in blue ones, but this is not due to conservative values. For one thing, marriage rates in red states are much higher than blue ones (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/10/opinion/10douthat.html?_r=0), and those in red states (as you link points out) tend to marry younger. In other words, it seems that those in red states tend to believe in marriage more than those in blue ones. (As we also see by which states are most eager to redefine marriage.) Also, as I have pointed out before, committed Christians are much less likely to divorce (http://www.crosswalk.com/home-page/todays-features/christians-and-divorce-busting-the-myth.html) than the secular and the nominal Christians. Also, red states are much more likely to see divorce for what it really is.

  8. "Nominal Christians"? Really? Is there actually such a thing outside of your current need to explain away some rather inconvenient truths?

    If you're so sure the higher divorce rate of red states is NOT ATTRIBUTABLE to conservative values, then why do you seem so certain that liberals and progressive social policy have been "directly complicit in the destruction of the family in America"? I think it's a fair question, and my own guess is this double standard in your logic is primarily attributable to faith and the hypocrisy of religion.

    In general, my own thought is divorce rates are higher in states where people harbor a fundamental belief that they don't have to tolerate anything they don't like or don't agree with.They don't feel like they have to tolerate lousy politicians, unpopular political agendas, personal rights that violate their own religious beliefs, illogical and unexplainable foreign policy, Islam as a political force in the world, higher taxes here at home, imperfect mates, or unhappy marriages.

    Riteous indignation is a part of that. It is also part of the problem with rampage shooters who follow an impulse to go postal, -go out in a "blaze of glory", and take a bunch of other people with them.

    Definition of riteous indignation: -reactive emotion of anger over perceived mistreatment by others or by a system governed and designed by others.

    Compare this with the biblical story of Job, whose own humility and humble faith enables him to tolerate and transcend the intolerable. His example seems especially relevant to our current problems and the social, religious, and political intolerance preached by some folks.

    For myself, I'll have to tolerate your refusal to recognize and address my allegation that Anders Breivik was motivated to attack and kill over 69 people by an association or identification with far right political Zionism exemplified by JDL.


    This is indeed a tough road, but I hear there's a reward waiting for the faithful who are firmly resolved to love and tolerance.

  9. What causes divorce? Almost always: the sin of one spouse or the other, or both. Which political philosophy has been most willing to not see sin for what it is? Liberalism. So whether the politics of a particular state tends to be dominated y liberals or conservatives, it's those "values" most treasured (typically) by liberals that result in the breakdown of the family..

    Job is a GREAT example of what real faith looks like.

  10. Well we agree on the story of Job. That's a start.

    As for divorce, it is caused by a parting of the spouses, which -no matter what else may have happened between them- is a violation of the oath each took before God to join and cleave unto each other for better or for worse until death do they part.

    "Which political philosophy has been most willing to not see sin for what it is? Liberalism."

    That is an example of your own righteous indignation. Seeing sin -and running your mouth about it in a cynical attempt to promote a manipulative political agenda- are two entirely different things. Blame is man's invention. Forgiveness is God's example.

  11. There will be no "forgiveness" unless one sees sin for what it truly is, which will then lead to the only cure for sin (as Jesus Himself taught): repent and believe. Voting for the GOP is no cure for sin, but it helps our culture to have those with political power to have at least a basic understanding of what is right and wrong.

  12. So you're convinced Jesus would have voted republican on a partisan line straight down the ballot, -right?

    Personally, I think Jesus was the progressive of his day. His message offering a new relationship between God and man ran counter to long-held positions of the religious and political establishment. History shows us progressives become political targets of the establishment, and Jesus was certainly targeted with lies and persecuted with disingenuous manipulation of the system and of Pontius Pilate.

    As for helping our culture to elect political representatives with “a basic understanding of right and wrong”, that suggests you don't trust the public to look after it's own interests. -Either that, or your own interest is not the same as the public interest, which leads to the possible conclusion your political agenda is primarily one of manipulation of public opinion to serve your interests.

    Don’t get me wrong. Knowing right from wrong is a desirable characteristic that we should uphold. The key is who is allowed to define what things are right and what things are wrong. Dick Cheney still says the invasion of Iraq was right and just, and that he would do it again even knowing Saddam posed no threat to American citizens. For Cheney, regime change was right and just even if it had to be “justified” with lies. Worse, we have continued to do the same thing to other countries like Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Ukraine, and Syria at high cost to human lives.

    As far as I know, you have never criticized Cheney, or Congress, or Obama for this agenda, -even though it cost almost 5000 American lives, trillions of TAX DOLLARS, and half a million civilian lives in Iraq alone. Instead, you would rather talk about the incident at the American embassy in Benghazi, Libya in which a relatively small number of people died. I think you take these positions entirely for cynical political purposes and NOT to expose and see sin for what it truly is. I only mention war because you have touched on the subject of morality and right/wrong.

    The most tragic political consequences of the Iraq war are the subversion of American integrity and permanent damage to the US reputation for truth and justice. Given these things, perhaps you should change your go-to tag line to “what then shall we do with the truth”?

  13. The Iraq question is a fair one, and I have linked to some important pieces on the matter recently. (See my "National Defense" section.) If the circumstances were the same, I would almost certainly support our action in Iraq. Remember that, given the information we had, support for action in Iraq was overwhelming--in D.C. and across the country. Remember this from Bill Clinton:


    Though, almost certainly part of his motives were to distract from the Lewinsky affair.

  14. I checked your links under national defense. One article in particular gained my attention.

    Recovering the Founders’ Foreign Policy
    By Philip Giraldi -May 6, 2014

    Two quotes FTA:

    “An ambassador, as the personal representative of the president, was not intended (by the founders) to function as an offensive weapon.”

    “If there is any confusion about the objectives of U.S. diplomacy, they should be dispelled by George Washington’s Farewell Address, in which he stressed the need to “Observe good faith and justice towards all nations; cultivate peace and harmony with all.” In spite of his own revolutionary experience, Washington would not have approved of sending ambassadors overseas to openly meet with opponents of the local government, and cultivating “regime change” would shock him. He would agree that while it is accepted practice for an ambassador to report on developments in the country to which he is assigned, involvement or interference in local politics should never be on the agenda.”

    Politically speaking, this author is after me own heart. Thanks for the reference.

    Back to the discussion:
    By "if the circumstances were the same", I assume you mean IF we could still trust our politicians to be absolutely honest with the public and demonstrate genuine integrity on the issue of involving America in foreign conflicts.

    Choosing to involve America, American troops, NATO, or the CIA in foreign conflicts is NEVER a decision to be taken lightly. Such foreign involvements place every American citizen at risk of potential reprisal under laws of war. We cannot excuse blowback from American involvement in a foreign conflict (whether direct or covert) simply as "terrorism". The days when the public would buy that BS have passed. And sadly the one-time opportunity to use that criminal trick was wasted on a war that accomplished nothing and may have actually made things worse.

    At this point, to get the American public to back another war Obama would have to nuke Chicago. -And with the current state of political division and obstructionism, half the country would probably celebrate such a development. I might toast it myself just as long as Rahm Emanuel bought it.

    I understand your caveat that we had limited knowledge on the WMD issue. I also understand the ability of the government to intentionally limit and manipulate public information for military purposes. We both know information was cherry-picked in the Office Of Special Plans set up by Cheney and Wolfowitz to create plausible justification for their Iraq agenda. We also know that credible opposition sources like Scott Ritter and Ambassador Joe Wilson were attacked and silenced by the same group. For that bit of creative criminal coercion, Dick Cheney was named an un-indicted co-conspirator by special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald.

    The administration even attempted to coerce France into buying Cheney's line of propaganda to stack the deck at the UN. Congress and some talking heads at FOX News discussed officially renaming French Fries "Freedom Fries". Yes, that happened.

    OK then, so... knowing how we have been played repeatedly for fools and suckers by crooks and liars from both parties, -would you support Cheney's craven statement that he would do it again even knowing Saddam was no threat to American citizens? It's a yes/no question.

    Background material:
    If you haven't seen the documentary, check out "Hubris: Selling The Iraq War".


    The follow-up, "Why We Did It" is also worth seeing.


  15. A few quick comments on another defense-related article you linked:

    GOP Should Listen to Cheney - Not Paul - on Iraq
    By Mark Salter - June 25, 2014

    If I didn't see the author's name I would have assumed the article was written by Dick Cheney. It repeats all the traditional justifications Cheney used to manipulate the USA into war against Iraq.

    "A terrorist organization, the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq (ISIS), so extreme it’s been disowned by al-Qaeda, is making such swift territorial gains in Iraq that it has stirred even the somnolent Obama administration into action. ISIS is well armed, well organized, well financed, and has drawn recruits from all over the world, including Europe and North America. It is unyieldingly hostile to the West. It is intent on establishing its own nation-state, from where it would surely plot and organize to kill Americans. Its ambitions are a clear and present danger, and must be stopped."

    Logic indicates in this scenario either al Qaeda or ISIS is acting on behalf of western interests. My own opinion is that would be ISIS. It's no coincidence that Obama allowed US-supplied military equipment abandoned in Iraq to be commandeered and repurposed by ISIS. The likely strategy is for ISIS to take these weapons (which Obama could not supply directly for political reasons) and attack Assad in Syria, thus accomplishing by indirect means the overthrow of Assad that Obama had previously called for.

    The paragraph also makes use of fear as a motivational justification insisting "ISIS is intent on establishing its own nation-state, from where it would surely plot and organize to kill Americans. Its ambitions are a clear and present danger, and must be stopped."

    I don't think the public will buy this carbon-copy of the Cheney propaganda as justification for further commitment of American blood and treasure. Clearly, however, Israel wants us to believe it. The article has Israel's interests written all over it, -particularly the comment that if Rand Paul were to become the republican nominee for president, republican voters seriously concerned with national security would have no responsible recourse other than to vote for Hillary Clinton.

    Geeze...that’s worrisome. If Israel likes Hillary Clinton, I might have to rethink my own support.

    This article is rebutted quite astutely by:

    The Moral Argument for American Restraint—in Iraq and Beyond
    -A new book by Barry Posen. Reviewed by Noah Berlatsky -Jun 17 2014

    Book quote FTA:
    "Restraint is also preferable to liberal hegemony from the standpoint of American ideals. Proponents of liberal hegemony often argue that the United States has an ethical duty to spread its values across the globe. But this argument overlooks the fact that one of the most basic foundational values of America is self-determination. The American Revolution was fought for the principle that people have a right to make decisions about their own fate through their own institutions. When the U.S. sets itself up as a global policeman, it is saying, on the contrary, that U.S. policymakers have the right to decide who should rule in Iraq, or how Iran should conduct its nuclear program. Perhaps, in certain cases, for the security of its own citizens, the U.S. may need to take steps to curtail the actions of other states and other people. But as a wholesale philosophy, -"the United States should run the world" contradicts America’s most basic value: that people have the right to rule themselves."


  16. Thanks for the links and the info Kiev.

  17. Hummm... no clear answer for my question as to whether you support Dick Cheney's craven statement that he would do it again even knowing Saddam was no threat to American citizens. Sometimes silence can speak volumes...

  18. If there was clear evidence that Saddam was no threat, of course that would change things for me.

  19. Ummm... do you think that is not clearly established by now? Even Cheney admitted as much in his own remarks. -Another artful dodge perhaps?

    Just looking for some clarity here. Americans need to understand their past and where they have been in order to properly orient themselves and steer in a direction toward a better future. Those who don't remember and understand the past are doomed to repeat it. Right?