For those who haven’t paid attention to the news lately, Jared Loughner is the alleged suspect in the shooting spree that killed six and wounded more than a dozen including Congresswoman Giffords.
Almost immediately, there were numerous attempts by people with a political axe to grind to pin this on their political opponents. As more information about the shooter is known, there are people who still want to make some political hay off of this tragedy such as Congressman Brad Sherman, a Democrat from California.
The real question people should want to know the answer to is Who is Jared Loughner?
The commonly known information is that Jared is a 22-year old who lives with his parents in Tucson, Arizona. It is also known that he is the alleged suspect in this tragedy. Beyond that, a lot of people do not know that much about him.
One of the most common characterizations of Loughner is that he is a social outcast. He also did not handle rejection well no matter what form it came. He is a heavy abuser of alcohol and marijuana. This drug abuse was also the cause for being rejected for military service. One time during high school, Loughner drank tequila during school – probably lunch, went back to class drunk, and passed out.
Loughner also had a tent set up in his backyard which contained a shrine of some sort. which consisted of a miniature altar with a replica of a human skull. As of now, one could only speculate at to the purpose of the shrine.
Loughner attended a local community college where he came across as a mentally unstable individual. According to a series of e-mails sent to friends, Lynda Sorenson made the following statements about Loughner:
- “…We do have one student in the class who was disruptive today…He scares me a bit. The teacher tried to throw him out and he refused to go…he will be out of class very soon, and not come back with an automatic weapon."
- “…we have a seriously disturbed student…they are trying to figure out how to get rid of him before he does something bad…Needless to say, I sit by the door."
- "…He is one of those whose picture you see on the news, after he has come into class with an automatic weapon. Everyone interviewed would say, Yeah, he was in my math class and he was really weird. I sit by the door with my purse handy. If you see it on the news one night, know that I got out fast..."
Based on these disruptive incidents, Pima Community Collegesuspended Lougher until he had “mental health professional's written assurance that his presence at college would not present a danger to himself or others" in September. Part of his suspension was based on the college discovering a YouTube video where he claimed the college was illegal according to the U.S. Constitution.
Another major fascination is online gaming. Loughner spent a lot of time playing Earth Empires which was formerly known as Earth 2025. Loughner would use the forum posting feature to pose questions to his fellow gamers such as:
- "Does anyone have aggression 24/7?"
- “If you went to prison right now, what would you be thinking?”
- "Would you hit a Handy Cap Child/ Adult?"
He also talked about his inability to get a job or to have a relationship with a woman.
Numerous people, like Paul Krugman, have used his actions trying to pin the blame on their political opponents. The most common reason is that he has political associations with The Tea Party, Sarah Palin, and Glenn Beck and “the violent rhetoric they spew.”
Loughner had an eclectic mix of books he read including "Animal Farm", "Brave New World." Other books in the wide-ranging list included "Mein Kampf," "The Communist Manifesto," "Peter Pan" and Aesop's Fables seemed to be out-of-place with the other books he listed.
So based on his reading material, Loughner appears to be more of a fascist or a communist. Loughner’s friend said that he didn’t even watch the news, and didn’t have a political ideology. He thought that he wasn’t shooting at a congresswoman, but he “was shooting at the world.”