Temple killer was white supremacist

Wade Michael Page, who killed six people inside a Sikh temple Sunday, was a "frustrated neo-Nazi who led a racist white supremacist band," reports the AP.
Page told a white supremacist website in an interview in 2010 that he had been part of the white-power music scene since 2000 when he left his native Colorado and the started the band, End Apathy, in 2005, the nonprofit civil rights organization said. He told the website his "inspiration was based on frustration that we have the potential to accomplish so much more as individuals and a society in whole," according to the SPLC. He did not mention violence in the website interview.


    1.  Forget that; I don’t want to give the dead moron any free publicity.  He’s not famous.  He isn’t even infamous.  No cult of fame for killers, I say. 

      (I am not accusing you of creating one, or anything, though– curiosity is totally natural in trying to make sense of the senseless.  I’m just saying, the hell with this Nazi piece of trash.)

      1. Yes I’m sure if we don’t talk about him, he’ll be real sorry.

        seriously, who thinks he’s still capable of glee? it’s a silly childish attitude people have that makes then think the dead regret anything. even if you’re religious, you ignoring him like he’s some bully in the playground isn’t much punishment compared to the eternal damnation, prescribed in most holy books.

        (apologies for lack of capitalization, writing frommy phone. “holy books” originally very hilly instead.)

        1. By ignoring him you create less romanticizing of him in culture as a whole, less imitation and hero worship.  Who cares the fuck about him and his rotting corpse, I care about the hordes of tweens being raised to be racist having another role model.

          1.  To be fair, there are going to be people who romanticize him, whether or not we pay attention to him and try and figure him out. The removed comments on this thread show that they already are doing so. But, I’m not sure endlessly talking about him is helpful either, so… yeah.

          2. I appreciate the sentiment, but light is not what makes these things grow. Look up “Clan of the Fiery Cross” for an inspiring example of how racism fares with publicity.

        2. I’m not talking about him, I’m talking about the next guy. I’m talking about the culture of exalted infamy around trash like Mason. There is an exalting in vilification. Much like I don’t think terrorists should be tried in military tribunals– they aren’t warriors, they are criminals– I don’t think criminals should be given undue attention. I’m not saying that we hide this guys identity, but rather that linking to his Myspace page is a small “win” for his stupid band.

      2. He’s dead. I’m not sure anyone is going to benefit from any publicity. I understand your concern and posted only because it was new info. I really hope the ATF is going to interview the other former band members and the label that produced this trash. Southern Poverty Law Center has been on these guys for awhile.

        1. I think it is far more important to go after the living people who foster this “us versus them” paradigm then to allow fringe people to make martyrs of themselves.

          1. You do realize that to “go after” them, will entrench and reinforce their delusions of their make-believe “race war”, of which, they are the both the victims and heroes of.

          2. I’m pretty sure we’re looking at the trenches already; they don’t need our help to dig themselves into their delusion hole. That said, this is why I don’t want this guy made a “bogey man.” He’s a racist little criminal. Superstitious & cowardly.

          3. We’re past the point where offering the stormtroopers milk and cookies is going to bridge the ideological divide.

  1. And absolutely no one who ever met one of these guys is even remotely surprised this happened.  These guys have been a problem for a while and it’s good to see that this act is being called out for what it is – an act of terrorism.

    Any veracity to the rumor he was not the only shooter?

  2.  “frustrated neo-Nazi” Is there any other kind? All these jerks are butthurt, have no achievements in life and are stupid. That is why they need to feel proud of their ancestry/skin color, because there’s nothing they have done they can be proud of.

    1.  That’s why most folks assume this guy shot up a Sikh temple in an attempt to Kill Muslims. 

      1. Probably because most of the attacks against Sikhs in the US in the past have been due to some mouth breather thinking they’re striking a blow against Islam. Of course that doesn’t mean it’s true in this case but past experience shows that it’s at least a plausible explanation.

        1. As a frequent mouth breather [severe allergies, severe asthma] I’d rather not be associated with this jackass who probably was a nose-breather anyway.

      2. But an article I read said that he had some “psyops” role in the military. I would have thought that he would have learned about the difference between Muslims and Sikhs in that role.

    2.  I kind of mostly agree here.  I do think that we have to acknowledge that there was a conscious decision on the part of white power groups to specifically go after and recruit these angry, working class young white men, because no one else was really paying any attention to them. People like Enoch Powell (and William Pierce here in the US) figured out pretty quickly that using punk and post-punk sounding music was an incredibly successful recruiting tool pretty early after the Sex Pistols broke up (Skrewdriver’s alliance with the hard British rightwing).

      I don’t know… If they’ve done nothing in this world, or have nothing to be proud of, what structural problems made them easy pickings for the likes of Pierce and his ilk. This doesn’t absolve the frustrated neo-nazis from their actions by any means, but I think it does help explain it a bit better other than they were just losers from the get go…  

    1. Boingboing ranks high on all the major search engines and is likely indexed frequently. So doing a search about the attack likely gets boingboing on the first page or two. No doubt the white supremacists are working overtime to post their view in as many places as possible under the deluded belief that everyone would think just like them if they were just heard.

    2. I was proposing to Xeni the other day that some well-known right wing media sites have war rooms where they tally up how many talking points they slip onto popular websites.

    3. Um, Boing Boing is on the internet, right?  
      No seriously, started to feel like non-racists, non-homophobes, non-misogynists are the silent little minority online these days.  Come to BB just to have a few minutes of safety in numbers . . .

  3. It’s not just boingboing. They end up /everywhere/, but boingboing is visible to many literate, educated people who aren’t expecting white supremacist commenters.

    1. I was going to say, I can barely watch a YouTube video without seeing commentary that fits squarely into the ‘racist’ category.

      Most people suck, that’s why i come here.

  4. Luckily for the White Supremacists, Sikhs are “well known” for being pacifists who turn the other cheek at every opportunity.  There is “Zero” chance of this backfiring.


    1. Potok said there’s no research showing white supremacists hating Sikhs, indicating that Sunday’s attack was almost certainly an example of someone mistaking Sikhs for Muslims.

    1. So if he was in Intel… couldnt he have done his non White people christian identity white supremacist research so he did not look like such a stupid ass along with being a psycho… one or the other… but not both.

      “Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life  son”… might want to add “bitter about not being able to achieve your goal of becoming a professional taxi driver (but not the Travis Bickel kind)” to the list.

      1.  I think some of the articles/news pieces I’ve read/seen mention that he was “less than honorably discharged” (that’s how Democracy Now delicately put it), so maybe he was not very good at his job in psyops? I think someone said in another article that his drunkenness was part of the reason he was discharged.

        1. (Caveat: I am not/never have been/should never be in the military, but that’s not going to keep me from talking out of my fundament HELPING :P)

          From what I can find on the Internet, mere poor job performance would have gotten him a general discharge under honorable conditions. An “other than honorable” discharge isn’t technically punitive, but it indicates the powers that be have found serious deviation from expected standards (e.g. chronic discipline or behavior issues, incompetence or inattention that endangers others, or posting on your Facebook page that you won’t follow orders from the President because he’s a crypto-Communazi). It falls just short of (and can be offered in lieu of) a court martial.

    2. FYI, that article seems to paint psy ops to be much cushier and more academic than I think it really is.  I used to work with a former psy ops guy and from his description, he and his unit were essentially guinea pigs who would be subjected to the most brutal physical conditions imaginable so that the military could study its effects. 

      And then I ask myself, does this guy sound more like an intelligence operative or more like a paranoid survivalist who has been brought to the breaking point and back several times?

      1.  Hm.  That’s interesting.  That would probably make more sense. The US military does have a nasty habit of experimenting on their “property”, ie soldiers. 

      2. I believe it’s the name used for propaganda and disinformation campaigns. The name makes it sound more powerful than it is. I think it’s military speak for “professional troll.”

        1. OK, believe what you want.  I will continue to believe the former US soldier with a bunch of Psy Ops tattoos who described to me his experiences as a member of Psy Ops. The wikipedia article is interesting reading, though.

          1. Sorry if I wasn’t clear – I’m not saying he wasn’t in Psy Ops, I’m saying Psy Ops is not what you think it is.

            It’s not MK-Ultra.

            It’s little more than spammers.


            If that’s what he did in the army, then he wasn’t Jason Bourne. More like the guy who ran errands for Goebbels’ secretary’s assistant typist.

            (edit – by “he” I’m not slandering your friend. I’m talking about the brain trust who just murdered a temple full of pacifists.)

          2. @jjsaul:disqus
            I didn’t say he was Jason Bourne, I described what he told me (which didn’t involve being Jason Bourne) and mentioned that I believed him without going too deeply into why.  Also already mentioned that I’d already been reading the wikipedia article, so that wasn’t particularly helpful.

            Read some John Boyd and you will see the connection between low-level propaganda campaigns and physically stressful combat situations.  There’s no real contradiction here.  Incidentally, these guys are much more like “Tokyo Rose” than they are like Goebbels.

            My position is still that this guy is a guinea pig, not a propaganda spokesman.  The military, contrary to popular opinion, is actually smart enough not to put white supremacists in charge of “hearts and minds” operations.

            Edit: Dude’s not my friend and I don’t care who you slander. Nothing I wrote suggests psy ops is glamorous 007 stuff — in fact, I would think describing them as “guinea pigs” would be kinda the opposite. I’m not defending the dude who told me this, I’m trying to provide counterpoint to the rosy view of psy ops contained in the linked article.

            Again, I don’t really care what you believe but please don’t put words in my mouth.

  5. I’m all for deleting random racist comments, but if someone who is verifiably the shooter’s bandmate wants to fill us in on the asshole’s motivation isn’t that relevant enough not to delete however offensive it might be?. (I know its delicate balance, and moderator is god etc…)

    1. It would make for breaking news on Boing Boing.  and probably more informative coverage than any of the Networks could imagine.

    2. When I deleted it, I saw no evidence that it was anything other than a random racist comment.  If DrKumAndGo has any further information, I’d love to hear it.

        1. Yes, but it doesn’t really contain any information that hasn’t already been repeated by other commenters.

      1. I, for one, would be especially interested hearing any further information regarding the possibility that he may have a doctorate degree of some kind.

    3. It wasn’t offensive, it was just stupid.  There’s no chance the comment was actually the guy’s motivation.  (“They took all the boss taxi driver jobs!”)  It was a transparent troll/derail and deleting was the right thing to do.  Wish I hadn’t responded to it in retrospect.

      1.  I don’t know… I kind of think “the foreigners are taking all the jobs and excluding all the good white Americans” is pretty obviously racist and offensive. It added nothing to the conversation we were having in this thread.

        I think racists tend to use less obviously racist rhetoric than they used to, in part because blatant racism is no longer socially acceptable in polite company anymore.

        So,  I kind of understand why Felton took it off in that light.

        1. Umm, I’m arguing that it should have been deleted.  But that’s because it wasn’t substantive, not because it was offensive.

          1. OH… sorry, Got lost in the thread…  :-( Still, I think there was a racist subtext to what the removed commenter was saying. In addition to it being just out and out dumb as you point out.

  6. This is probably a stretch, but given they are looking for a person of interest with a matching tattoo, info on the deleted commenter might be useful.

    1.  I don’t think that’s BB moderators job, though. I’m sure that the people investigating (FBI, local cops) are on his background, including his band mates. 

  7. You also can never quite tell who is going to be a pyschotic racist.

    I was on another message board back in 2004-2005 and one of the members turned out to be Keith Gilbert.


    Nobody had any idea about who he really was and what he was really like until he managed to get himself in trouble.  All i knew about him was that he liked Urals (Russian BMW clone motorcycles with side cars).

    Nowhere in my mind was there a neural connection between obscure russian motorcycles and “tried to blow up Martin Luther King… but got caught”.

    Now there is.

  8. Does the hate come from fear? Are these “supremacists” so out of touch with normal human behavior that they can only imagine that everyone else is as angry,  small minded and vindictive as they are? Is there even a solution?

    1. Yes. I think that’s exactly the case. Except for the ones who are in it for the scraps of authority and cash they can harvest off the mentally defective followers.

      I’ve certainly never met someone calling himself “the master race” who seems confident he can achieve anything on a level playing field.

    2.  My understanding is that they are sure everyone else is angry and such. Moreover, people who aren’t angry simply haven’t opened their eyes enough to see the thing that should make them angry.

      People tend to assume that everyone else thinks the same as they do, and evidence otherwise is seen as someone faking or something along those lines.

    3. I think the key attribute to bigotry is the dehumanizing of a person. Once someone is no longer considered human then any stereotype can be applied and the normal considerations applied to social behavior no longer apply. It is a form of  ‘essentialism’ where a person is no longer a unique biological creature but instead is part of a class that has some abstract but definable attributes. You hear the same talk from misogynists, homophobes, and racists. They talk about perceived problems with a class of people, never about an actual person.

      The solution, I think, is to break down the thinking of people in the abstract and to think of people as unique individuals. For people who are older and hardened, there may be no solution. For children, exposure to diverse cultures and different ways of living are needed. I think that with the right education, even a person in a very bigoted culture can grow up to be a decent person.

  9. Is anyone here shocked? Anyone? Raise your hand if you’re shocked. We’ve averaged about one right-wing assassination, assassination attempt, or terrorist attack in the United States per month since January of ’08; nobody gets to be shocked by this any more.

    We don’t get to do anything to stop this, because every time the Justice Department even talks about calling attention to the problem of anti-abortion terrorist networks, Christian dominionist terrorist networks, or white supremacist terrorist networks, let alone doing anything about them, all the usual Republican officials and Republican talk show hosts rush to the nearest microphone to claim that the Justice Department is trying to make it illegal to be a Republican.

    Which they’re not. But if the shoe fits …

    1. I’d have been shocked if it was anything but.

      Now, I am curious how Fox and pals are spinning this one, or if they’re more focused on how Obama’s spending taxpayer’s money on Mars dunebuggies.

  10. I am glad that your entry does not focus on the fact that the shooter was discharged from the Army more than a decade earlier with a general discharge.  Some other coverage has headlined that fact, seeming to suggest that this is some sort of sign or signal that should alert our society to “watch” such a person for future criminal activity, including mass murder.  During the period of 1998 (when the shooter was apparently discharged from the Army) and today, thousands of individuals have been discharged from the armed services with a general discharge.  The number of those individuals who subsequently engaged in serious criminal conduct is, in my informed opinion, miniscule.   Not all unfavorable information about the life of a future mass killer has any relationship to that future action

    1. He was apparently demoted while in the service and discharged due to a pattern of misconduct. Presumably, details will be plastered all over the media by tomorrow.

Comments are closed.