David Brooks is one of my favorite conservative columnists.
He writes for the New York Times and is a regular weekly contributor to PBS’s “NewsHour” and can be heard on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered” evening news broadcast.
He said something today on NPR I want to endorse in a full-throated fashion. Brooks said in a discussion with E.J. Dionne, the Washington Post columnist, that he dislikes it when the media identify individuals suspected of mass shootings.
I agree. Wholeheartedly.
Thus, I won’t identify the young man arrested today after the Santa Fe High School massacre near Galveston. I didn’t ID the Sutherland Springs, Texas, shooter, or the Parkland, Fla., gunman, or the Las Vegas sniper, or the Orland, Fla., terrorist. And on and on …
Brooks’s rationale for asking that the media not ID these individuals is that he believes giving these individuals publicity emboldens future madmen from committing copy cat crimes.
Bingo, Mr. Brooks!
I’m in your corner.
Yes, I have posted the names of some of history’s more notorious assassins: Lee Harvey Oswald, Sirhan Sirhan, James Earl Ray. Of those three, only Sirhan is still living. I see these individuals in a bit of a different light than the mass murderers who commit the heinous crimes that have become all too common place in contemporary society.
I accept fully David Brooks’s reason for seeking to refuse to give these alleged losers any more publicity than they deserve.
Which is none. Zero. Zip.