Patheos Evangelical Blogger Says El Paso and Dayton Shootings Appear to be False Flag Operations (UPDATED)

UPDATE: That was fast. Just hours after I published this post (but a day after Blankley’s article was published on Patheos), the “false flag” claim was pulled from Bethany Blankley’s blog. If you want to see it, you can go to the archives here and here. She also posted it at her personal website here.

……………………………… (original post)

Patheos blog Hedgerow written by Bethany Blankley yesterday called the massacres at Dayton and El Paso “false flags.” She wrote:

Unfortunately the tragic events of shootings in El Paso or Dayton increasingly occurring in America appear to be False Flag events perpetrated by conspirators to get rid of the Second Amendment. Once you’re familiar with the pattern, you’re able to identify them.

According to Blankley, other tragedies may be false flags, including Sandy Hook.

Some investigators point to 9/11 terrorist attacks, the NORAD drills of 9/11, the 7/7 London Bombings, the 2011 Norway shooting, the Aurora shootingSandy Hook, and the public shootings in Orlando, South Carolina, West Virginia, California, Nevada and many more as False Flag attacks.

Is Alex Jones an investigator? Jones also called the Sandy Hook massacre of school children a false flag and is in the middle of a defamation suit brought by families of Sandy Hook victims. Jones has been removed from several web platforms.


44 thoughts on “Patheos Evangelical Blogger Says El Paso and Dayton Shootings Appear to be False Flag Operations (UPDATED)”

  1. Conspiracy nonsense existed before the internet but not nearly to this degree. Like all things involving human beings, the net has good and bad, and unfortunately the bad traits of users have been amplified greatly with the collective power it wields. People can act like mobs in their instant attacks on others, and these absurd machinations can bubble up from nothing because human beings are wired to find patterns in everything. The more points of information available, the more connections one can imagine. We have never had this much information available to our minds at one time.

    Add to this what seems like some sort of psychological need to feel like things are being controlled in secret in an almost religious manner, and the dual need to feel privy to that secret knowledge, and you get what we have now. The only thing in my personal life I can compare it to at all is the UFO craze in the 1970s. This was a strange time when even the President was saying he had seen them, even though something unidentified viewed optically from the ground is hardly news. When you are around “true believers” it becomes in some ways like a cult, with willing disbelief in the facts and creative explanations for their lack.

    There absolutely is no arguing with those fully indoctrinated. There is no common ground they recognize. I tried to enjoy some “live” YouTube videos of the original Apollo 11 landings for this past 50th anniversary. They had live concurrent chats and while many were just enjoying the memories and the marvel of it all, a flood of people descended to claim it was all fake. I remember when most of this started with a movie named Capricorn One in the 70s (there was also a junk book around the same time, but it didn’t have the exposure the movie did). To think it would have grown to this degree by now was never in my wildest imagination.

  2. I for one am hoping Alex Jones has to make a HUGE payout in his case. I’m betting that will start to curb some of this nonsense.

  3. It is fascinating how she dispenses with the requirement of actual evidence.

    “It’s a false flag operation.”

    “Because I say so.”
    “Based on what evidence?”
    “‘Some investigators’ say so.”
    “What investigators, and what is their evidence?”
    “Well, here’s a Coast to Coast loon who speaks in complete sentences. He says all these other things were false flags. So this must be one too. Oh, and he uses footnotes.”
    “So does David Barton.”
    “It’s a false flag operation…”

    That anyone over the age of 9 would fall for this tells you all you need to know about Trump voters.

    1. Exactly. And we will be seeing her disinformation used in the far right media, complete with giant headlines and in comments and right-wing Twitter.

      She also claims

      …[Sen] McCain “was the main supporter for the terrorist [Muslim] Brotherhood. Senator McCain was the one who opened up the Congress to the Brotherhood. He was the one arranging the meetings and appointments and providing them with protection.”

      Her source? “Egyptian media”. Everyone else’s source? Her. Thus providing cover to Trump and a reason to focus on Islam instead of white supremacy.

      It’s an Olympian contest between Russia and the far right for the best disinformation campaigns.

      1. It’s very sad she’s given a platform for what is no different from an anonymous wacko’s posts to Free Republic.

  4. It’s rather disturbing what Patheos will allow…something akin to hate speech is OK. Mentioning the words, “virgin,” “Beliefnet,” “womb,” “hell,” or “leper,” is not. I also received an email claiming to be from Patheos, asking me to join the fight against censorship of conservatives by evul libruls (not an exact quote).

    1. As long as its the RIGHT kind of Hate Speech.
      Your last sentence provides the answer.

    1. There’s some serious paranoia going on at that website, right next to the large keg of virtual KoolAid that she’s been imbibing.

      She’s writing a book about Islam (due in 2019). Apparently it wants to take over America, yada, yada yada. But then she calls 9/11 a false flag? However, it seems clear that she doesn’t want domestic terrorism to take the focus away from Islamic type of terrorism just when her book is coming out.

      She should be (but won’t be) 410ed immediately by Patheos.

      1. Writing a book, eh? It sounds like someone is going for sales from the wacko crowd, Ann Coulter style. Unfortunately, she will probably get them.

        1. With any luck it will be remaindered as fast as some of Coulter’s books.

  5. As a former, very active, evangelical church member, I quit the movement because of the shallowness and corruption. The support of the Iraqi war and torture by Geo W Bush was the last issue.

    1. She must follow the Mark Driscoll School of Patheos Evangelical Blogging, where human dialogue is prohibited. It’s part of their Gospel of Self-Serving Misinformation.

    2. I guess she actually knows how far from fact she is and doesn’t want anyone pointing it out.

  6. “For thus the Lord spoke to me with mighty power and instructed me not to walk in the way of this people saying, ‘You are not to say its a conspiracy! In regard to all that this people call a conspiracy”…. For they are consulting with mediums and spiritists … To the covenant and to the testimony, if they do not speak according to this word it is because they have no dawn.” ( Isaiah 8:12-20)

  7. The information you just shared is going to cause me to stop reading Patheos entirely. I will let them know.

  8. Evangelicals: “Rock Drum Beats are from Evil Africa!”
    Evangelicals: “The ‘Rapture’ will happen in 1972, I mean 1988, I mean 1994, I mean 2000…!”
    Evangelicals: “Europe Doesn’t Teach the Holocaust!”
    Evangelicals: “Here’s 34 Scary Things That Will Happen if Obama Becomes President!”

    U.S. White Evangelicals have several decades of conditioning, and today they do not seem to have an identity apart from their blatant lies and falsehoods. Also on Patheos Evangelical, the Cranach blog comment sections are regularly full of self-serving obfuscation, deception, and clownish sophistry. They don’t yet understand how poorly their digital footprint will be evaluated in the history books.

    1. Evangelicals: “Rock Drum Beats are from Evil Africa!”

      And before Rock it was Jazz.
      And before Jazz it was Ragtime.

      Common factor in all three’s acceptance:
      All were “n*gg*r music” from “Evil Africa” until white bands picked up on the trend.

    2. “They don’t yet understand how poorly their digital footprint will be evaluated in the history books.”

      They don’t care about that. They don’t care about history now, so why should they care what history will say in the future?

      They only care about the check clearing.

  9. After skimming the titles of some of her blog posts I felt both nauseous and in need of a shower. Why would any legit platform give her a voice?

  10. The conspiracy theory complex (which is my term for the right wing media these days) is vital for the religious right, conservatives and Libertarians . Belief in these preposterous conspiracies is a mental drug they administer to themselves to avoid being overwhelmed by cognitive dissonance. Reality intrudes upon their convictions each – with more alarming frequency and weight.

    1. But not unexpected.
      Blankley has a track record of obsession with “False Flag Ops — But *I* KNOW What’s REALLY Going On!”

  11. Utterly revolting.

    The lowest kind of politics with no regard for the victims of these horrible crimes.

    I think, Warren, that being kicked out of Patheos should be regarded as a monumental ‘badge of honour’.

  12. Are Evangelicals primed to accept preposterous conspiracy theories? Why do so many embrace them? Do they need to be part of something that nobody else knows, no matter how ridiculous it sounds to the world outside the Evangelical bubble, or what?

    1. Maybe when they see bad things happen and get blamed on the “wrong people “ they invent twisted crazy theories to place the blame where they want it to be.

      1. So if a gay, black, Muslim committed the crime they would accept that as fact. It’s unfortunate for them that straight white Right wingers are much more prone to that behavior.

    2. ” Do they need to be part of something that nobody else knows, no matter how ridiculous it sounds to the world…?”

      I think that might be about right. A kind of corporate “we’re special.”

      Ahhhh. The terrible dangers of insecurity …

      1. Isn’t “part of something that nobody else knows” the very definition of Gnostic?

        An Inner-Ring Illuminatus of Occult Gnosis (Speshul Sekrit Knowledge)?

        1. I think you’re pretty much on the button there, come to think of it.

          One doesn’t usually think of certain kinds of evangelicals as gnostics, but actually … (it’s the “God has told [just] me …” nonsense that is really quite fashionable in some religious circles these days – what is really “God is in my pocket and does what I tell him!” … perhaps we should invent a religious toy specially for small[-minded] people: “My Little Pocket-God”?)

          1. Thanks. I managed to get there, with your help.

            Ultimately, there is no arguing with conspiracy theorists, because they cheat. To wit, they make outrageous claims, then demand you prove they’re wrong. (Which will never convince them anyway, but…) In the reality-based world, it is generally understood that if one makes an extraordinary claim, the person making the claim has the burden of proof.

            In Conspiracyland, extraordinary claims are their stock in trade. So the response is always “Prove I’m wrong!” Never respond to this, because life is too short, they won’t change their beliefs, and they’re insane.

            Also, never gaze at clouds and ask what shapes they see. You will flee in terror.

          2. Usually I don’t waste my time w/ conspiracy theorists But when I do respond to a “Prove I’m wrong” claim, it is usually just a simple “You are wrong.” and when they claim I didn’t prove that, I point out: “I’ve given as much proof for my statement as you have for yours.”

  13. Wow… how does one still claim to be a “Christian” and believe stuff like that and then get to full-throat proclaim it as well? I’m tempted to visit the blog and vent but then that gives them the legitimacy of a page visit…

    1. She is simply using blind faith to inform areas outside of religion. She hopes it is true, therefore it is, in her mind. Until evangelical pastors truly start going after blind faith in general, and the epistemology of blind faith, even if it is only referred to as faith, I don’t see this changing. Faith is simply too easy of a way to make things you hope are true true, for it to go away on it’s own.

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