Monday, January 10, 2011

Loners Unite!

I was very concerned to hear this morning Tuscon killer Jarod Loughner described as

a loner

by a reporter on SkyNews.

This easy epithet, this outright unsubstantiated cliche, rises all the time when there are incidents of this kind. The fact is Jarod WAS NOT

a loner.

Judging by the reports in the papers he wasn't the sort of person who was introverted and shied away from contact. In fact he was outgoing and happy to communicate in his school classes and on videos on his internet pages. The fact was he was communicating crazy stuff in his class and extremist crazy stuff in his web-pages and on-line videos indicates that while he was trying reach out to others people, he had grown into a nutter.

He was certainly not alone is his weird political and economic opinions. Looking at America from the outside, it would seem that about 50% of the population are this wacko. I believe they are called Republicans over there.

A loner

wouldn't behave that way, he wouldn't want to join these extremist groups or any group at all. He might not want to talk to groups of people around the water cooler and is definitely not the life of the party, and wouldn't draw attention to himself by screaming out non sequiturs in class. While still being pleasant enough person he would avoid crowds and he would most likely prefer to be self-sufficient. He is VERY probably artistic and creative. Writers for example are, at least while in their acts of creation, loners. Look at me (calling myself "a writer" - HA!), everyone has left the office and here I am typing away by myself when I should be out foraging with the tribe, hunting fruits and nuts for our communal dinner.

In fact, according to interviewees quoted in today's NYT, Loughner wanted to stay in school after being expelled, he wanted to join the army despite failing a drug test, and he was a nice and presumably normal as a kid according to a neighbour. The indications are therefore not that he was NOT

a loner

at all, but that he was a normally socialised person whose psychologically disturbance made it difficult for him to communicate normally as he grew older - it's not that he didn't WANT to communicate.

Also another immensely inappropriate and distracting comment made in the NYT is the following: "Another time, he sat in the men’s room for 30 minutes, leaving front-desk staff members to wonder what he was doing."

Well if I had a nickel, as they say... Having a long crap, reading a book, playing Angry Birds, and maybe choking a quick chicken hardly rates as some out-there quirk worth condemning the bloke as

a loner.

Being alone in the toilet, unless you're snorting something or screwing in the Viper Club, is petty much NORMAL behaviour. OK the fact that he came out asking what year it was, that's a bit weird.


c.f. Party of One: The Loners' Manifesto by Anelli Rufus.

More about Party of One



savannah said...

you're right, sugar! he isn't a loner, he's a whacked out nutcase!


expat@large said...

He's a complete frackin' froot-loop. Out of his gourd. Off his tree...

But don't worry, we've our share of nutters over here. In fact until recently Australia held the unenviable world record for the most killed by "a loner" nutcase on a single day.

Lost in Melbourne said...

Plenty of crazies down here, just a whole lot harder for them to get hold of firearms these days.

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