It seems a lot of people are disturbed about the questions of motives, or lack of, surrounding the last 3 or so terror-styled events. I call them that because there are questions about calling them terrorism. I.e. Parkland, Las Vegas, Austin.
The second question has to be does it kelp to know the motive? I’m not sure it does. But I can see where motive matters legally when prosecuting criminals. There is still the matter of what they did, not just why.
Concentrating on motive can take our eye off of what they did. We have a need, it seems, to explain why. That can also create lots of conspiracy theories.
In Las Vegas, it leaves room for all kinds of speculation or theories. And there is a niche for conspiracies in this country. There may not be as many motive questions about Parkland since some vengeance or mental characteristics appear to apply. Austin is unique, at least so far, on motives. We don’t know yet or may not know.
But this not knowing seems unsettling to a lot of people. Again, does it change the events, or what happened? I don’t think so.
Another question is: was motive a major consideration to the perpetrator in these cases? I’m not sure, or don’t see it. And if there is no political motive, officials are reluctant to call it terrorism. Yet perps still do these things to instill fear in people by the act itself.
I am coming to the conclusion that maybe the why doesn’t matter all that much. I have to be content that we may never know for sure. Or it could be that they wanted their 15 minutes of fame. I am willing to accept not knowing, though it would be nice to know.
The conclusion though is what if — other than vain fame — there is no clear motive? What if they just did it because they could and because they wanted to? Obviously they could not talk themselves out of it. So it would have been up to someone or something else to intervene to stop it. Two of them had a suicidal pact in the end, Las Vegas and Austin. So they would not really be held accountable.
I am convinced that some people do things just because they can, or because they are fascinated by it. Or maybe it is fantasy they want to carry out? Never mind that it effects so many other lives of innocent people. They overlook that or don’t care.
In the end, I have to be comfortable with not knowing. There is another possibility the person wanted it to be a mystery that everyone is left to solve. Sort of a ha ha, figure it out. To me that can be dangerous. I don’t have to play that game. Then again, maybe these madman killers just want events to speak for themselves? Maybe that is the point.
On the other hand, people sometimes do what they do simply because they can. Maybe there is a void conscience, whatever. I can look at it that they simply had enough drive or ambition to commit the atrocities. Maybe they want to find out if they are really capable of carrying it out in some twisted plan? One possibility is as bad as the next.
Closure should not require knowing a motive. That can be a game. We know what they did.
When asked about the Austin bomber, the family said they could not believe it. “He was a nice kid.” The brother of the Las Vegas shooter said he was a caring guy, it was a total shock — that could be a motive itself. It is a symptom of terrorism. In the Parkland case, you could say it looked like a foregone conclusion that too many people ignored. Seems it is either beyond belief that the person did it or completely predictable.
What about pure evil? I think that is an explanation in itself. People who do evil acts are evil. The acts define thems. Maybe they don’t need a reason? It is self-definition.
We are left to dig through all the evidence and clues to make some theory plausible. Some people get hung up on the why as if there is, or must be, some explanation. Still the rest of us just sit disturbed and offended by the events.
However, these events do raise collateral questions about law enforcement or botched warnings, missed clues. Many more questions than there are answers.
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