When television news announced the recent shooting near the Empire State Building in New York I was waiting for a mechanic to change the oil in beautiful wife Sandy’s car. Several others were in the car dealer’s lounge.
A young man wearing a Notre Dame sweatshirt briefly glanced at the TV, and then continued working at his laptop computer. A 30-something woman and a man in the same age bracket, who had been watching TV intently before the announcement, continued to do so. No one spoke. I went back to reading my book.
A man in his 60s or early 70s wearing overalls, a flannel shirt, and boots entered as the news flash was ending. “Another shooting?” he asked.
“Yes,” I said. “An unhappy former employee of a New York firm opened fire (we learned later that the shooter killed his target and the other damage was done by police bullets) near the Empire State Building. A half-dozen or so were wounded. The gunman’s target and the shooter were killed.”
“The liberals are behind these shootings,” the new arrival said. “They’re trying to whip people up so they can take our guns away.”
“Do you really believe that?” I asked.
“Yes, of course I do,” he said.
The small group in the waiting room lapsed back into silence.
Who is crazier, the shooters or deluded people who believe ridiculous conspiracy theories?