Making the Next McVeigh

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When Timothy McVeigh was arrested in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995, a copy of the racist novel The Turner Diaries was found among his things. The book spins a tale about a violent revolution and the overthrow of the US government, and the eventual mass murder and systemic execution of any and all non-white people. The book published in 1978, and has since become required reading for hate groups, and has also become the source of an uncountable number of violent acts.

Today, The Turner Diaries pales in comparison to right wing media, whether it’s the diet white nationalism of Fox News, or the full flavored hate of NewsMax, OAN, and their copycats.

It can be argued rather easily that today’s right wing hate machine is far more popular, and far more accessible than ever before. While copies of The Turner Diaries were carried under jackets and tucked away in backpacks, Tucker Carlson and his ilk are openly available in every living room in America, during prime time, no less. Attacking the military, railing against the existence of government, whitewashing a violent insurrection … all spewing the same lies,  and all on the same page. All hiding behind a free speech argument that none of them actually understand.

If we ignore the open incitement that has become the standard script for right wing outlets, then we risk the inevitable consequences. And when those consequences come, the most likely response will be to say the perpetrators are just patriotic Americans doing what patriotic Americans do. Or at least that’s how Tucker will spin it.

This is not a prediction we enjoy making. But the rage machine is making McVeighs every minute, and our tolerance for it is permission. Again, this is an “I told you so” that we hope to never deliver, as we want nothing more than to be wrong about this.

But we’re not.

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