There is a tinge of hope that the murder in Ottawa last week will not send our dear Canada down a spiral of anti-"terrorist" legislation, surveillance and loss of freedom, but just a tinge.
Even the most open minded journalism seems to take it for granted that the word "terrorism" is appropriate for this event, there is an unconscious submission by the media to government speak and there has been ever since the word became ludicrously appropriated by GW for his endless war.
Because of this murder in Ottawa and the acceptance that the proper association for it is "terrorism", we have become willfully blinded to what exactly happened and why.
In the first commentary on the shooting it was quickly accepted that there were probably multiple gunmen ("shooters" in the correct parlance) and that this was an organized terrorist attack, probably ISIS connected.
From the first hysteria, (perhaps we should coin a new word: "testosteria") polititians and journalist have persisted in seeing this through the lens of "terrorism" with all the implications of a nation in crisis about which something must be done!!! Harper insist this was an attack on Canada, Baird, (or Blaird, as I like to call him) says that obviously the gunman was "radicalized". This word is the trope du jour, meant to imply that we will never be safe from those among us who are turning into monsters before our eyes, werewolves in our midst, ready to wreck destruction upon us at any moment. Pretty scary. The radicals are coming!!
Much more information may become known about Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, but it will all be couched in terms of the accepted parlance, like this
If we can just take a step back and look this from a different perspective, it might make a lot more sense that to say we are all in danger and we must do something to defend ourselves from "terrorism".
Michael Zehaf-Bibeau was a petty criminal, a loner, a troubled individual. His behaviour seems to have been anti-social and psychotic. Many people like this do not fit in, they know it, but their perception is that it is society's fault. They want recognition from a society they despise. This can only lead to conflict, either on a small scale, like petty crime, drugs, minor aggression, or, given scope and greater alienation, to something larger. Such people feed off and react to the world around them, it is in the immediacy of the moment that they crave attention, on the stage of now. For an outcast and one like Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, it is not difficult to imagine that the greater his alienation, the more he was drawn to the ultimate role of outcast, an Islamic extremist. But let us state here that these ideas, this desire to be the ultimate outcast, are not coming from Islam, or those trying to convert people to extremism, it is coming from us, from our media, our politicians and our irrational fears and irrational actions. Michael Zehaf-Bibeau is the actor looking for a play, one that will give him stature in the society he despises. It is we who gave him the play, and put him on the stage. We have actually willed people like this into existence, people who are seeking an outlet from a deep alienation, a purpose and a justification for their troubled lives.
Once Michael Zehaf-Bibeau take the steps of becoming a Muslim and voicing an intent to go and fight in the ME, then he triggers the attention of the police, who take him seriously as a possible, eventual "terorist" and prevent him traveling abroad. What exactly did they expect this man to do at this point? The hated authority has just prevented him from being what he wanted to be, the ultimate outcast, what could he possibly do to react?
Well we see what he did now. He has been declared a "terrorist" by his government, his freedom to travel and to be himself has been denied, and we see his resulting actions, his response, his persona acting the part on the world stage given to him.
What I am saying, to be as clear as possible, is that Michael Zehaf-Bibeau
was not a "terrorist". he was not "radicalized" by Islam, or Muslims. He was a troubled individual acting out the fantasies of the world around him. Our very fear of supposed personae like Michael Zehaf-Bibeau helped create his persona. His actions were a result of the way we perceived him and reacted to him and we continue to perceive him so.
In no way do I wish to trivialize the tragedy of murder that occurred in Ottawa last week, but it was not "terrorism", it was not the result of Islamic "radicalization".
Unfortunately the media and the politicians have their "terrorist" incident and they are not going to give it up easily, well not at all, actually.
As FDR so famously said, "we have nothing to fear but fear itself." Fear right now is our greatest threat, but it is also a secret desire. Fear pumps the adrenaline, gets the blood moving, requires action, we must do something!
There has been so much hyperbole about "terrorism" so much money spent, so much delight about us v them, that it is quite impossible to step aside now. We have willed this into existence and we are not giving it up now. This is manna from heven for journalists. This tragedy gives Harper his action plan, makes him relevant, he is now the Defender of Canada the anti-"terrorist" Crusader! Even now he is thinking of refurbishing 24 Sussex Drive after the next election.
The truth is, there was no "terrorist" incident. It was all wishful thinking fulfilled.