Let’s start with an important caveat: The man just arrested for phoning in bomb threats to Jewish centers is not the party responsible for the large majority of those recent hateful acts. That perpetrator, or those perpetrators, remain unknown and at large, according to authorities. No, Mr. Thompson was a copycat offender (eight times over, allegedly), and — in light of The Narrative on such things — quite a surprising one at that. Unreal:
A man allegedly waging an intense campaign of harassment against a former lover was responsible for bomb threats against the Anti-Defamation League and some Jewish centers around the country, authorities said Friday. Law enforcement sources told NBC 4 New York the 31-year-old suspect, Juan Thompson, was arrested in St. Louis in connection with multiple threats against Jewish centers, including some in the New York tri-state area…he FBI complaint quotes Thompson’s purported Twitter account as saying on Feb. 24, “Know any good lawyers? Need to stop this nasty/racist #whitegirl I dated who sent a bomb threat in my name & wants me to be raped in jail.” That same Twitter account was also linked to a journalist, Juan Thompson, who wrote for online publication The Intercept from late 2014 until early 2016. In February 2016, The Intercept said Thompson fabricated quotes in his stories and created fake email accounts to impersonate people.
I’ve long been a proponent of refusing to hold the terrible actions of one person, or a small group of people, against their entire political “side.” Partisans on both ends of the spectrum engage in this sort of guilt-by-association demaogoguery — whether it’s liberals tarring the pro-life movement when some maniac plants a bomb or attacks a clinic, or conservatives maligning the entirety of Black Lives Matter based on words or conduct of indefensible outliers. But because many on the Left and in the media have simply assumed that a recent spate of anti-Semitic threats must have come from a white nationalist, this glimpse into Mr. Thompson’s apparent worldview seems relevant:
It appears as though the man is an unstable, Trump-hating racist, as his Twitter feed is littered with anti-Trump, anti-capitalism, and anti-white messages.
He also expressed moral indignation over — wait for it — violent threats against Jewish centers.
Reality continues to be stranger than fiction. According to NBC News, “Thompson is charged with one count of cyberstalking, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison, in connection with the case. He is expected to be arraigned in federal court in Missouri later Friday.” Parting thought: If you’re tempted to chirp about these details as “proof” that “the Left” is responsible for these despicable acts, please recall my admonition against attributions of broad-brush guilt, and remember that someone else carried out dozens of unsolved threats. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, those criminals do turn out to be Trump fans. If you’d prefer not to have all Trump supporters demonized and reviled over the actions of a small handful of shameful bigots, then try not to indulge the temptation to play the blame game in the opposite direction. But still, this is truly bonkers. What a time to be alive!