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Veteran Advisor

Mad gunman or terrorist

Have been thinking today about the terms used to describe events.

The Tuscon shootings have been labeled as a 'mad gunman' attack.

But how would it differ from a 'terrorist' attack?

Both would be responsible for killing innocent people.

Both would/could have the purpose of trying to kill a politician.

Both would be carried out by a mentally disturbed person.

Both create fear in the general population.

Both can cause the authorities to over react.

 

So why have different labels?

6 Replies
Senior Contributor

Re: Mad gunman or terrorist

Well Canuck, Loughner was nuts and on drugs. Loughner was a cult of one, his "terrorist" group could hold meetings in a phone booth. Loughner wasn`t funded by Sadam Hussien Smiley Happy. Terrorists use fear to further a political or religious movement. Loughner just wanted attention for himself. When "Ol` Sparky" fries him his terrorist organization is done.

Senior Contributor

Re: Mad gunman or terrorist


@BA Deere wrote:

Well Canuck, Loughner was nuts and on drugs. Loughner was a cult of one, his "terrorist" group could hold meetings in a phone booth. Loughner wasn`t funded by Sadam Hussien Smiley Happy. Terrorists use fear to further a political or religious movement. Loughner just wanted attention for himself. When "Ol` Sparky" fries him his terrorist organization is done.


Exactly. Kudos.

Veteran Advisor

Re: Mad gunman or terrorist

First obvious error in your observation is there is no evidence Saddam funded terrorists, certainly not directly. That would be different from your own country.

Now Loughnar was gunning for a politician, indications are he planned for a while to do it so why is it not considered 'political' and therefore a terrorist action?

I am not sure Terroists, as labelled, always want to further a political or religious movement or at least any recognized political or religious movement.

If so I am sure some things labelled as terrorist is nothing more than the actions of 'mad men'.

So why are some labelled one way and others labelled the other?

IS it better for other reasons to have 2 labels for what is really similar things?

That is what I am saying, why are some actions considered terrorist and some just mad men.

Just curious.

 

BTW just heard a physician being interviewed that said '95% of mentally ill are not violent and 85% of violence is carried out by people who are not mentally ill'

Senior Contributor

Re: Mad gunman or terrorist

Well if you want to get real picky, a 12 yr old girl shop-lifting is also a "terrorist". If Loughner isn`t "mentally ill" I don`t suppose he can use that as his defence in court huh? Loughner`s victims just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Had there been a Tea Party going on then they would have been in the wrong place. BTW in my definition, anyone who kills in cold blood is nuts, that shouldn`t be a defence in court, it should be a extra reason that criminal should executed.

Senior Contributor

Re: Mad gunman or terrorist

Canuck, what that proves is this monster is one of the 5% and 15%.

Advisor

Re: Mad gunman or terrorist

Terrorist are not generally mentally incompetent by the clinical definition, sounds like this guy was.