The Only Mass Shooting Conspiracy Theory Primer You’ll Ever Need

Over a span of less than 24 hours, America endured two more mass shootings, both carried out by young white men armed with assault rifles, and fed by internet-driven hate. The motivations of El Paso shooter Patrick Crusius and Dayton shooter Connor Betts appear to have been different, with Betts in particular seeming to be driven more by personal animosity and hatred of women than any political cause.

The causes of the two shootings might diverge, but one thing that doesn’t is the conspiracy theories that started up in their wake. The discourse about the El Paso shooting was flooded almost from the first moment with fake news, memes, errors in early reporting, nebulous conspiracy theories, and outright lies.

The Dayton shooting didn’t generate much in the way of conspiracies, but that’s only due to it taking place late on a Saturday night. By then, it was easy enough to lump the two shootings together as part of some kind of vast plot, carried out in two different places by the same shadowy group.

Longtime watchers of the early discourse around mass shootings will recognize everything that was written and said about El Paso, because it’s the same stuff that’s written and said about every mass shooting. They all have the same conspiracy theories, the same fake allegations, the same mistaken eyewitness reports, and the same attempts to flood the news cycle with fakes in order to create chaos.

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Gilroy Garlic Festival Shooting Conspiracy Theories

Late afternoon on Sunday, news broke that America did that thing America does so well: walked into a peaceful crowd of celebrating people and started shooting them.

From the details we have, about 16+ hours after the shooting, 19-year-old Santino William Legan decided he wanted to be a martyr for a cause existing entirely in his head, and cut the fence of the Gilroy Garlic Festival carrying a semi-automatic rifle. He opened fire, shooting approximately 12 people, killing three – including a six-year-old boy. Legan was then shot and killed by Gilroy police, ending the rampage.

As used to these horrible shootings as we’ve become, so too have we become used to the fusillade of conspiracy theories that follows each one. The one you’ll hear the most is the one you always hear the most, and the one that pisses you off to the greatest degree: that it was a “false flag” staged by (INSERT PRESIDENT HERE) to serve as a distraction from (INSERT NEGATIVE NEWS STORY HERE).

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Brain Worms All the Way Down

Did you know that James Comey left a cryptic message in his tweet jumping on the “five jobs I had” trend? And that message detailed the location, date, and subject of the deep state’s next false flag attack?

You didn’t hear that? Well it’s obviously because the “MSM” didn’t want you to hear it. But if you knew what to look for, if you had the special knowledge it takes to decode what [these people] are *really* saying in their tweets…well…it would be obvious.

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Black Helicopters Swarm LA! Cabal Arrests Underway! Or Not!

One of the hallmarks of the modern conspiracy theory movement is that the powers that be (the deep state, the New World Order, the cabal, or whatever we’re calling it this week) use training exercises as cover for actual operations against the people they control.

We’ve seen everything from 9/11 to the Sandy Hook shooting to the Boston Marathon bombing labeled a false flag drill that “went live” under the cover of training – giving the plotters the perfect cover to carry out their plans for consolidating power and rolling back our rights. Or something.

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Debunking Santa Fe High School Shooting Conspiracy Theories

Updated at 4:15 PST

As sure as the sun will come up and the tides will roll in and out, there will be a mass shooting somewhere in America.

Today, it was at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas, a suburb of Galveston. As of this writing, 10 people are confirmed dead, including one teacher. Details are still coming in, but the a suspect is in custody, a male thought to be a student at the school.

As much as mass shootings are a sick reality of life in this country, so too are the instant conspiracy theories that spring up in the minutes and hours after the bullets stop flying.

Because these conspiracies and hoaxes have little substance to them, there’s usually not much there to debunk. But it is useful to at least shed some light on them – not for this particular shooting, but to train minds that are so fried by the constant onrush of news to filter out noise and accusations that have no legitimate reporting behind them.

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