The Lost Man Behind the Leftist Myth: Jared Lee Loughner's Motives Have Been Scrutinized and Synthesized to Learn Why He Committed Mass Murder, but the Fact of the Matter Is That Loughner Is Mentally Unhinged

By Duke, Selwyn | The New American, February 7, 2011 | Go to article overview

The Lost Man Behind the Leftist Myth: Jared Lee Loughner's Motives Have Been Scrutinized and Synthesized to Learn Why He Committed Mass Murder, but the Fact of the Matter Is That Loughner Is Mentally Unhinged


Duke, Selwyn, The New American


To be frank, any exposition upon Arizona murderer Jared Lee Loughner's life must start with a certain acknowledgment: He is not a sane man. I don't mean this figuratively in the way public officials might use metaphor, such as when Barack Obama spoke of bringing a gun to a fight with Republicans (language against which his party now rails). No, if Loughner is not authentically insane, it's hard to imagine who is.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Loughner's derangement hit America like a jackhammer on that fateful Saturday. January 8, when he shot Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and others, leaving six dead and 14 wounded. But it had long been apparent to those who knew him--and few knew him very long.

And in recent times, knowing him long wasn't necessary to understand that his mind had gone terribly awry, as now well-known Internet postings attest. For instance. Loughner posted a YouTube video entitled ''Introduction" in which he presents a series of bizarre syllogisms such as:

* If B.C.E. years are unable to start then A.D.E. years are unable to begin

* B.C.E. years are unable to start.

* Thus, A.D.E. years are unable to begin.

All the other syllogisms in the video are similarly bizarre and devoid of any rational message.

He didn't hide his irrationality well, either, impressing many around him as a potentially violent individual. This caused him to be suspended from a school he attended from 2005 through fall 2010, Pima Community College (PCC), and prohibited from returning unless a mental-health evaluation indicated that he posed no danger. Attesting to this behavior, third-year PCC instructor Ben McGahee reported, writes the Washington Post, "On his first day in class ... Loughner yelled out a random number during a lesson, then asked the instructor a strange question. 'How can you deny math instead of accepting it?"' McGahee feared Loughner, saying, "When I turned my back to write on the board. I would always turn back quickly--to see if he had a gun."

Echoing this is Lynda Sorenson. 52. another McGahee student. She said there was "never a lime ... that he [Loughner] was not disruptive" and that she was afraid he'd bring a firearm to class. She said, writes the Post, "her only previous contact with someone like that came at [sic] time when she was working in a psychiatric hospital."

The police, too, knew Loughner. having often visited his home, "contacts that ranged from petty nuisance complaints to a drug arrest," writes Fox News. And last year alone he had five contacts with PCC campus police for code-of-conduct violations, run-ins that ended with his aforementioned suspension.

When did all these problems begin? It's hard to know exactly, but serious issues already had become apparent during his attendance at Mountain View High School (MVHS). Caitie Parker, who attended MVHS and college and played in a band with Loughner, said he had many friends "until he got alcohol poisoning in '06." She was referring to an incident so grave that Loughner had to be hospitalized and almost died and after which he dropped out of MVHS. Zach Osier, another MVHS schoolmate and once Loughner's closest friend, added detail on the January 12 edition of Good Morning America. He said that Loughner changed alter his girlfriend left him, becoming increasingly angry and commencing abuse of alcohol and drugs--including a hallucinogen called Salvia. Incidentally, this may relate to Loughner's insanity, as some theorize that drug use can induce schizophrenia in susceptible individuals. And based on what I know about the condition--note that it usually manifests itself during young adulthood (Loughner is 22)--I think the likelihood is great that he'll be thus diagnosed.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

However Loughner's problems began, we know the tragic ending. He gathered his Glock pistol, bought ammunition, took a cab to the Tucson Safeway outside of which Gabrielle Giffords was appearing, and. …

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