In recent weeks, Sandy Hook conspiracy theories have cut into an ever growing share of attention focused on the tragedy, with many on the web “questioning the official narrative” regarding the sad event — positing that the Newtown school massacre didn’t happen as reported or, as they have also suggested, didn’t happen at all.
The Sandy Hook conspiracy crowd has been referred to as “Sandy Hook truthers,” and, in a digital age, they amplify their message via Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook as they connect with one another and share theories and conjecture about the tragic murders at the Connecticut elementary school.
The Inquisitr has addressed these Sandy Hook conspiracy theories individually in separate and cumulative posts. The “evidence” ranges, including but not limited to, levels of grief deemed improper from parents of the murdered children, the involvement of Newtown resident Gene Rosen (who sheltered six children that fled from the school and has subsequently been harassed by Sandy Hook truthers), the seeming pre-event existence of websites and Facebook accounts memorializing the victims and raising funds, and the alleged involvement of “crisis actors” on the scene in Newtown and in subsequent media appearances during which they purport to be witnesses or grieving parents.
Sandy Hook conspiracy theories are, under a modicum of critical consideration, an amalgamation of conjecture, faulty reasoning, inaccurate early reporting, and ignorance about the mechanics of the workings of Google — but despite their flimsy premise and ultimately vague end-game, Sandy Hook truthers seem to be growing in rather than declining in number — even drawing in MLB star Denard Span, who tweeted yesterday:
I was watching some controversial stuff on YouTube about the sandy hooks thing today! It really makes u think and wonder
— Denard Span (@thisisdspan) January 16, 2013
In the realm of conspiracy — whether it’s Sandy Hook truthers, Birthers, 9/11 deniers or otherwise — some common behaviors and attributes exist including a strong level of resistance to any evidence that conflicts with their worldview. Another is the lack of clear direction in conjecture like the Sandy Hook conspiracy — no clear picture ever emerges, and doubts are sold to the gullible through the guise of narrative questioning.
After the Sandy Hook conspiracy phenomenon blew up, Skeptical Inquirer‘s Benjamin Radford spoke to the Huffington Post, telling the site that the “questions” frame makes the subterfuge line easy to buy as the simple act of asking questions in and of itself is not problematic:
“The video begins with something that really everybody can accept — ‘We are just raising questions,’ … The whole subject is framed like, ‘Don’t look at us, we’re not saying this crazy stuff, we’re just asking questions.'”