When Scott Roeder shot dead abortionist George Tiller at his church in Wichita, Kansas last year, abortion advocates were quick to point the finger at the entire pro-life movement.
It will be interesting to see if these same voices will blame former vice-president Al Gore for the recent attack on the Washington, DC offices of the Discovery Channel.
Earlier this week, environmental advocate James Lee took several employees hostage and threatened to detonate bombs if the Discovery Channel wouldn’t agree to create programs espousing his radical environmentalist agenda. Lee addressed a whole manifesto to Discovery, accusing them of contributing to mankind’s destruction of Planet Earth and insisting that they use their cable channels to promote his extremist agenda, including the demand that they “stop encouraging the birth of any more parasitic human infants.”
Fortunately, no one was hurt in Lee’s attack—except Lee himself, who was shot dead by police when he pulled out a gun and appeared to be about to shoot one of his hostages.
Is Al Gore to Blame for Gunman’s Attack?
Lee’s connection to Al Gore? According to MSNBC, Lee once said that he experienced an “awakening” upon watching Gore’s environmental documentary An Inconvenient Truth.
Will Al Gore now be sued, like my father was, under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act for “conspiring” with other environmentalists to incite violence? Will Gore and other environmentalist leaders be expected to issue statements condemning Lee, only to be told they’re still to blame? Will the entire environmental movement be stigmatized as violent extremists?
Likely not. And that’s as it should be. James Lee was one lone wacko, whose actions have no link to the legitimate environmental movement.
Don’t Blame Legitimate Activists for Madmen’s Actions
We in the pro-life movement have been saying for years that every movement has wackos like these. Among those attracted to causes like pro-life or environmentalism, there will always be a tiny subset who—for whatever reason—will resort to such extreme, violent acts.
Like Roeder, who had no connection to the pro-life movement, Lee had no ties to the environmental movement. Nor is there anything in the “inflammatory rhetoric” of Gore’s movie—or the message of any other mainstream environmentalist—that would suggest to any sane person that violence is the answer to our environmental problems.
The mainstream media, along with the public, are adopting this view of the situation. As they should. My hope is that they will apply the same reasoning to the pro-life movement, and quit blaming us for the acts of madmen like Scott Roeder.