There’s a lot we don’t know about the Austin bomber, but what we do know suggests he’s part of a disturbing and growing trend of right-wing terrorism in America.
Right-wing terrorism is on the rise in the United States.
The Justice Department still hasn’t issued a national press release on federal charges against three men in connection with mosque bombing: https://t.co/7KAfUIZvaj
— Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) March 14, 2018
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) April 12, 2016
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) October 15, 2016
Recently, a serial bomber in Austin, Texas claimed the lives of two people, both African-American, while injuring several more. Austin Police were initially operating under the assumption the bomber was targeting people of color, but the bomber also placed an explosive that was triggered by tripwire and set off by two white men. Last night, police closed in on a suspect named Mark Anthony Conditt, who blew himself up in his car. Conditt’s motive is unclear, but blog posts he wrote in 2012 for a community college class provide some insight into his political views.
Conditt was homeschooled by his mother during high school and neighbors say his Christian faith was important to him. In a Facebook post, his mother Darene wrote, “I officially graduated Mark from High School on Friday. 1 down, 3 to go. He has 30 hrs of college credit too, but he’s thinking of taking some time to figure out what he wants to do….maybe a mission trip. Thanks to everyone for your support over the years.”
Conditt wrote assignments for a community college course and his author bio says he’s a conservative. The blog posts show he held several right-wing views, including anti-abortion, and anti-gay rights positions.
- Anti-gay rights – Conditt blogged that homosexuality was ‘unnatural’ and gay marriage should be illegal. “Homosexuality is not natural. Just look at the male and female bodies … It would be like trying to fit two screws together and to nuts together and then say, ‘see, it’s natural for them to go together.’”
- Anti-abortion – Conditt wrote that he opposed “free” abortions, “If you can’t provide for a child, then don’t have sex.”
- Anti-sex-offender registry – Conditt was also against lifetime registration for sex offenders, writing, “You have to really hate the guy to make him suffer for the rest of his life, even when his prison time is up.”
- Pro-death penalty – Conditt was in favor of the death penalty. “Living criminals harm and murder again — executed ones do not.”
- Against releasing suspected terrorists – Conditt wrote that suspected terrorists should not be released even if they provide information that helps capture other terrorists, “I think that it is just plain dumb to release a terrorist, much less a senior one – no matter what he can provide.”
You may notice there’s been no call to ban Christians from the United States. The president hasn’t loudly lied that Conditt’s neighbors and family knew he was constructing bombs, as Trump did after the San Bernardino terrorist attack. There have been no calls to attack Conditt’s family, as Trump threatened to do with ISIS fighters. There’s been no threat of anti-Christian violence from Trump, like the one he tweeted after the Barcelona attacks.
Study what General Pershing of the United States did to terrorists when caught. There was no more Radical Islamic Terror for 35 years!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 17, 2017
When it comes to radical Islamic terrorism, Trump and the GOP like to say we can’t fight a problem if we don’t name it. Will they name radical right-wing terrorism as the threat it is? I’m not holding my breath.