Breivik, Goldstein, Amir, and McVeigh

In a sense, Anders Breivik’s killings were a form of vigilantism, as are almost all killings conducted outside the apparatus of the State. To illustrate my point, we go back to Weather Underground member, David Gilbert, talking about his decision to turn to violence:

Our movement had come about thinking we could shake the moral conscience of America….But painful experience had taught us that there was an entrenched power structure which profited from and systematically enforced oppression. We could not make a dent in the overwhelming social violence of the status quo without coming up against that power structure. (In Dan Berger, Outlaws of America, p. 44)

One could easily envision Breivik making the same exact justification for his decision to turn to killing. Both Breivik and Gilbert killed outside the mechanism of the State, but one is looked at as a sort of hero of the left and intellectual circles, while those same members would view Breivik as a monster beyond compare. This is helped by the media’s attempt to brand Breivik negatively while branding those Good Terrorists with positive qualities. (more…)