As of this writing, conspiracy flake
"While it sounds like an outrageous claim, one is left to inquire whether the
Written on his personal blog, Tracy's theory ignited international outrage, more anguish in
But instead of canning Professor Tracy, FAU should put him on display as a lab specimen of paranoia in full bloom. Let him continue teaching his "Culture of Conspiracy" classes and video-stream his lectures, so that students far and wide can study this bizarre psychological phenomenon.
The most disturbing of historic events -- from
Soon after the shootings at
Several hundred journalists were apparently duped, or secretly in league with the anti-gun plotters. Included by implication in the dark cabal were the eyewitnesses, survivors, first responders, coroners,
What made Tracy stand out from other ranting online troglodytes was his tenured position at FAU in
Within days, a queasy reality took hold of the professor himself, and he began to backpedal. In an interview with
"In terms of saying that
Oh, how he must have wished that were true. Then, lurching onward: "I said there may very well be elements of that event that are synthetic to some degree, that are somewhat contrived. I think that, overall, the media really did drop the ball."
If you're waiting to hear Tracy's version of what really happened in
Well, at least those darn reporters got something right.
On-scene bedlam is part of any mass murder. Conflicting and even wrong information always gets passed along in the first frantic minutes. That happened in
It wasn't a conspiracy at
In the end, the facts of the crime remain hideously simple. Twenty-six people, most of them first-graders, were shot dead by a single, heavily armed man named
Many believe that the pain caused to the families by Tracy's blogging justifies his firing by FAU. Others, including some who are mortified by his postings, say his views should be tolerated because campuses ought to be havens of intellectual freedom.
Incompetence is a separate issue. That a professor of communications is so ignorant of basic news-gathering practices is pathetic, but at this point Tracy's value in the classroom is not as an instructor but rather as a case study.
He's not just another academic blowhard with scant real-world experience. He's a bona fide conspiracy kook who appears disarmingly normal. For that reason alone he's worth observing, though it remains to be seen how many students will be flocking to his lectures.
If FAU dumps him, Tracy will be a hero in the sweaty universe of anti-government paranoids, who already blame sinister forces for the professor's misfortunes.
These days he's keeping a low profile, ducking
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