Nothing surprises me anymore.
I was a bit out of the loop this weekend newswise, so when someone informed me that there was a bit of traction coming from people who believe that the tragic events at Sandy Hook Elementary School were either partly fabricated or a complete hoax, possibly from an administration who wants to crack down on gun control, it's sad to say that I didn't even flinch.
I never expected anyone to come up with something so heartless and cruel as to suggest some of the grieving parents were actors, but I was not surprised. I didn't think that someone would demand to see the bodies of the 20 murdered children because they didn't think it actually happened, but I'm not surprised.
We are a conspiratorial nation. We have been lied to numerous times (quiz show scandals, Watergate, WMDs, Bill Clinton, possibly the JFK assassination), so it goes without saying that we would be skeptical when anything crossed our path. But in this situation, it seems that the conspiracies are coming from those who are firmly set on one side of the gun control debate. And I can think of few things more depraved than calling out the validity of the murder of children. That is not in question, not even in the absence of surveillance video. Clinging to the notion that crying parents are "crisis actors," that the sister of one of those killed is actually the girl herself in a photograph with the president, is desperate at best and sickening at worst.
We should question authority, obviously. We should make sure we are smart and vigilant and we should always ask the right questions. But we should also be logical and compassionate. This latest group is neither.
But it doesn't surprise me.