Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Get the Facts Right

Reading the news stories on the gunman who killed NPS ranger Margaret Anderson in Mt. Rainier NP on News Years Day and then fled into the backcountry to be found about a day later dead in a creek from hypothermia. But the focus on the man connected his service in Iraq as cause for PTSD and his violence in the NP.

But then the Veterans Administration did their homework and found this:

"As more information became available on Barnes, it grew clear that his troubles had little to do with his service in Iraq or his assignment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. According to The Seattle Times, Barnes was apparently disturbed before he entered the Army—having been expelled from school as a teenager. Additionally, military records show Barnes served in a headquarters communications job in Iraq. A spokesman at Lewis-McChord told the Times there was no record of Barnes having received a Combat Action Badge, indicating he probably never came under fire in Iraq.*"

He didn't suffer from PTSD. He was just crazy and the Army accepted and trained him, exacerbating his anger and rage. That's not PTSD, and the news stories shouldn't be connected dots that aren't there. The media tried to connect invisible dots, but the dots didn't exist to connect.

So media, next time, get the fact right for a change.

1 comment:

  1. The serial killer of homeless people in California was just caught - turns out to be another "troubled" vet.