Ever since the Menendez brothers shot their wealthy parents to death in 1989 and then received rabid attention from adoring fans (a girl even ended up marrying one of them in prison), I’ve been sickened by our culture’s attraction to lowlifes who commit violent acts. Now, it’s happening in the Boston bombing case through social media.
The “Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is innocent” Facebook page has 11,250 members and is expected to exceed a quarter million by the end of the month. The page is filled with admirers and supporters who think the younger Tsarnaev didn’t have anything to do with the bombing. They see him just as a dude in college who watched Walking Dead like everyone else, a good-ole-Americanized kid who is being unfairly treated by the U.S. government.
Also, a bunch of teenage girls and conspiracy theorists have started a hashtag campaign on Twitter, #freejahar, to ensure a fair trial so that the “angel” Tsarnaev can be set free.
I’ve also noticed that the news media, particularly on television, are beginning to speak of the 19-year-old with sympathy, calling him a “normal kid” and reminding people that he’s weak and suffering while on the ventilator in the hospital.
Let me remind anyone tempted to become sympathy saps. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is not a “normal kid.”
This is a normal kid, and he isn’t with us any longer: