The first kneejerk reaction was to demand stronger gun control. Let that sink in.
Now, maybe I'm reading different breaking news stories than they are, but none of the accounts I have read made any mention of a gun that walked into the temple of its own free will and started shooting, unmanned. All of the accounts I have read actually mentioned a human shooter. One who was obviously willing to break the law in order to kill people. I would posit that a man willing to break the laws barring mass murder would barely blink at the idea of breaking a few gun-ownership regulations. And thus gun control fails before it is even implemented.
The second kneejerk reaction was to blame conservatives - specifically Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann - for the hate that obviously inspired this senseless attack.
At first the accusations were just bandied about by a twittersphere full of armchair pundits on break from their usual "it's Bush's fault, and the Koch brothers are funding the Tea Party" rants.
Not to be outdone by a few twitter - well - twits, NBC came late to the party. An official release from the NBC Nightly News included the following inflammatory (and as uncorroborated as Harry Reid's Romney Income Tax Witch Hunt) statement:
Officials told NBC News the suspect, who served in the U.S. Army, had many tattoos. The suspect had some kind of radical or white supremacist views but, as far as officials said they had heard, he was not in any kind of radical organization. His previous run-ins with law enforcement involved traffic offenses, they said.Hmm. Add in the fact that major networks are now classifying this shooting as a "domestic terror attack" (while the Fort Hood shooting remains classified as "workplace violence"), and the demonization is complete.
Guess I should expect to be detained "for further observation" the next time I dare to fly in my old Army jacket.