ABC’s Good Morning America tracked down a close high-school friend Jared Lee Loughner had to find out more about the motives behind the attack that left six dead and fourteen wounded in Tucson this weekend, including a federal judge and a 9-year-old girl who loved politics. Zach Osler explains that Loughner didn’t have a particular love or hate for politics, at least not in a partisan sense. Contrary to assumptions made by the media and the Pima County sheriff, Osler says the shooter didn’t watch the news or listen to talk radio, and was neither Right nor Left. He was simply disturbed (via Media Bistro and Allahpundit):
Osler blames a film called “Zeitgeist” for Loughner’s state of mind, but that’s just as misdirected as blaming Sarah Palin, music, Tea Parties, The Communist Manifesto, or video games. Sane minds can handle exposure to all of these things, good or bad. The insane will adopt obsessions where they find them, which is the point many of us have been making since discovering Loughner’s disturbed and lunatic rants on the Internet. Even if he had listened to talk radio or actually read The Communist Manifesto, neither would have “caused” or “provoked” the shooting. It’s the lunacy that matters, not the reading list.
But at least we can say with some degree of certainty that a certain law enforcement official should concentrate more on his job than his politics, and that the media would do better to wait for evidence before reaching conclusions. As suspected, Loughner was neither a righty nor a lefty, but an “outie” — from outer space.