ONTD Political

What Sandy Hook Truthers Believe and The Answers that They Will Never Listen to.

6:44 am - 01/19/2013
Your comprehensive answer to every Sandy Hook conspiracy theory
Every conspiratorial allegation about the tragic Newtown shootings, answered

While it’s often best not to engage with conspiracy theorists on their own turf, as you can probably never convince them, it’s worth setting the record straight on all the myths and phony evidence surrounding the Sandy Hook massacre.

We’ve rounded up every major piece of evidence we could find that leads theorists to say the “official narrative” of events “doesn’t add up” and provided the facts that show why these questions can be easily explained. We’ve ignored the empty accusations with no evidence to support them (it was the Jews!) and focused only on the theories that try to present actual empirical or circumstantial evidence.

Let us know if we missed any and we’ll add to it as more myths emerge. In no particular order, here is your comprehensive guide to disproving the Sandy Hook Truthers:

Why aren’t the adults sadder?  “They aren’t behaving the way human beings would act,” as conspiracy theorist Jay Weidner told fellow conspiracy theorist Jeff Rense on his radio show. Theorists have zeroed in on Robbie Parker, who they say wasn’t grieving hard enough for his slain 6-year-old daughter, Emilie. In one widely circulated clip, Parker laughs before stepping up to the microphone, and apparently someone says “read from the card” (as in cue card) before Parker breathes heavily in anticipation of beginning a press conference. “This is what actors do to get into character,” one popular YouTube video states. Rense and Weidner also take issue with the mourning of the school nurse, the family of slain teacher Victoria Soto, and others. “ALL ACTORS??? NO TEARS,” wonders the author of SandyHookHoax.com on a page featuring videos with numerous interviews from the shooting.

Answer: People mourn in many different ways, sometimes all at once. As a recent Scientific American article on gref noted, “oscillation between sadness and mirth repeated itself in study after study … Time and again, a grief-stricken person’s
expression would change from dejection to laughter and back.” George Bonanno, a psychologist at Columbia University who studies grief, even developed a way to determine if this mourner’s laughter was genuine or merely a facade to hide grief — he determined that they “exhibited the real thing.” Scientists think this is part of our internal resilience mechanisms kicking in, because constant grief is simply too much for a person to handle.

What about Emilie? One of the most common myths circulated on message boards and in YouTube videos is that Emilie Parker
is actually alive. The “proof” is a photo purportedly showing her with President Obama when he visited the school after the shooting.
Conspiracists know it’s Emilie because she’s wearing the same dress as the one Emilie wore in a family portrait taken before the shooting (an alternative theory is that the girl in the photo with Obama is her “double”). Other websites take issue with the family portrait, alleging it was Photoshopped for some reason, pointing to the fact that the Emilie is making a “devil’s horns” sign with her hands and “making the devil’s horn hand sign isn’t easy. Try it yourself. Imagine getting a 3- and 4-year-old do it.”

Answer: The girl on Obama’s lap is Emilie’s little sister. It’s amazing that we have to say this, but sometimes younger siblings wear clothes passed down to them from older siblings, and sometimes siblings look alike because they are siblings. And there’s no evidence or even motive given for why the portrait would be Photoshopped. Making a “devil’s horn” gesture is actually incredibly easy. Try it yourself.

Why do they all look the same? Numerous websites juxtapose pictures of people from Newtown against pictures of similar looking people from Aurora, Colo., and assert they are the same actors.

Answer: Not all women with brown hair are the same person.

But what about the rifle? Alleged shooter Adam Lanza used a Bushmaster AR-15 assault rifle as his primary weapon, but conspiracist have seized on footage of police removing a long gun from the trunk of Lanza’s car. “This reveals the ‘Big Lie’ of the mainstream media … the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle was left in Lanza’s car,” conspiracy website NaturalNews states in a story picked up by Alex Jones’ InfoWars this week.

Answer: Actually, the gun shown being removed from Lanza’s car was a shotgun he never used. Lanza brought three guns inside the school — the AR-15 and two handguns — all of which were found inside the school.

How come the memorial pages were created before the shooting? One of the most cited pieces of “hard evidence” in the hoax theory is that memorial pages for the victims were allegedly created before the shooting even took place. Theorists point to Google results giving dates before the shooting for various pages.

Answer Actually, this is a very common glitch for constricted-date Google searches. The results are imprecise and can often display incorrect dates on the search page, even when the date on the actual page is correct when you click through to it.  For instance, here’s a Fox News story on the Sandy Hook shooting that Google says is from Oct. 1, 1983 — how come Fox News didn’t stop the shooting if it had 30 years advance notice???

What about the car? Early on, theorists latched on to the notion that the black Honda Accord driven by Lanza was not actually owned by his mother, as police say, but by a man named Chris Rodia, who was mentioned on a police scanner at the time of the shooting. One theory is that Rodia may have been an additional shooter. An even more advanced theory is that Rodia may have been taking advantage of mentally ill people like Lanza and using drugs to make them do his bidding.

Answer: This one was debunked by the theorists themselves just a few days after the shooting. BeforeItsNews, a conspiracy website, obtained the police audio definitively debunking the myth (Rodia appeared on the scanner because he was getting pulled over in a traffic stop miles away, but his license plate doesn’t match Lanza’s car). “This was a huge blow, because lots of people were making big leaps on this … but we now have to look elsewhere,” another amateur investigator said on YouTube.

What about the man in the woods? Central to proving any conspiracy theory is finding co-conspirators, which in this case means multiple shooters. Theorists have seized on helicopter footage of a man getting chased by police through the woods behind the school as evidence there was more than one shooter. Who is this man?

Answer:  It was Chris Manfredonia, the father of a 6-year-old who attends the school. He was on his way to the school to make gingerbread houses with first-graders when he heard gunfire and smelled sulfur, so he ran.

But there was another man in the woods (maybe): Eyewitnesses saw a second man in the woods wearing camouflage pants and a dark jacket, and said that he may have been armed. Must be a second shooter.

Answer: Actually, he was, according to the Newtown Bee, “an off-duty tactical squad police officer from another town” who heard the gunfire.

What about the third man at the firehouse? Children fleeing the school said they saw a man pinned down on the ground in handcuffs outside the firehouse. Could this be a second or third shooter?

Answer: No, like Manfredonia, this man was briefly detained by police in the hectic aftermath, but quickly released when it was determined he was just a passerby, Connecticut State Police spokesperson Lt. Paul Vance, who was on the scene, confirmed to Salon. “Were there other people detained? The answer is yes. In the height of battle, until you’ve determined who, what, when, where and why of everyone in existence … that’s not unusual,” Vance said.

Then why did some eyewitnesses report multiple shooters? Theorizers have parsed conflicting media reports and interviews with eyewitnesses saying they saw multiple shooters. How could they be wrong?

Answer: In the stress and confusion of a situation like a mass shooting, misreporting is not just common, but the rule.
And there’s a reason eyewitnesses are viewed so skeptically in criminal court cases: They often get things wrong. The Supreme Court has called eyewitness testimony “notoriously unreliable” while the Innocence Project says ”eyewitness misidentification is the single greatest cause of wrongful convictions.” Yet theorists would have you believe that a small handful of media interviews with people on the scene trumps all the other interviews with people there and police and media reports.

What about that Gene Rosen guy? Theorists have fixated on Rosen’s account of that day and harassed him for it. Rosen sheltered six children during the shooting, but theorists have alternately claimed that Rosen’s accounts are suspiciously too consistent in various interviews he gave, or suspiciously inconsistent. Other people claim Rosen was an actor, because they claim he is a member of the Screen Actors Guild.
And what happened to the bus driver? Why did Rosen sit with the kids for hours? Why didn’t he take them to the firehouse down the street where authorities were staging?

Answer: Rosen did invite the bus driver inside and she helped him contact their parents. An early AP report erroneously reported that he sat with the kids for hours, but he told us that the children were only inside his house for about 35 minutes. He did call their parents. Four parents came right away and Rosen took the remaining two to the fire station. Rosen is not a member of SAG (that’s a different Gene Rosen, who is seven years younger).

But how was the dead principal quoted? Theorists seized on a quote on the shooting in the Newtown Bee from a Sandy Hook principal Dawn Hochsprung, who died in the shooting. How could she have been quoted if she “died”?

Answer: The Bee quickly posted a retraction and an apology: “An early online report from the scene at the December 14 shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School quoted a woman who identified herself to our reporter as the principal of the school. The woman was not the school’s principal, Dawn Hochsprung, who was killed in the Friday morning attack.” Things are confusing in the aftermath.

What about the LIBOR connection? Early theories posited that the fathers of both Lanza and alleged Aurora shooter James Holmes were set to testify before the Senate on the (real) LIBOR banking scandal. Could bankers have been involved in the shooting to discredit the supposedly explosive testimony set to be given by these two men?

Answer: This one falls apart in just about every way and the hardcore theorist abandoned t weeks ago as a bogus. Ben Swann, the Ohio TV reporter who thinks there were probably multiple shooters at Sandy Hook, investigated and determined there was “no evidence” to support any of the assumptions in the LIBOR theory. TPM also looked into it and found it to be “100% false.” There are no LIBOR hearings scheduled, neither man was selected as a witness, and neither man is in much of a position to deliver an explosive testimony on the scandal anyway.

Vance  said he was disgusted by the conspiracy theories. ”There’s no hoax. I was there. I stepped over the dead children. That’s no hoax. And it’s offensive to me as an investigator, and it’s offensive to the families who lost their babies to have people come up with silliness like this.
Whatever their reasoning is, whatever their rationale is, it’s just terribly offensive,” Vance added.

dearmisterecho 19th-Jan-2013 02:46 pm (UTC)
LA LA LA CAN'T HEAR YOU
NWO!!! SHEEPLE!!
SUICIDE PILLS!!!1!
hangonego 19th-Jan-2013 04:46 pm (UTC)
Nxet ur gonna tell me 9/11 WSANT AN INSIDE JOB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
makeme_moo 19th-Jan-2013 08:58 pm (UTC)
Ughhhhhhh. I went to lunch with my husband's co-workers (and him ofc) a few months ago. That was like, their topic of the day, or something.
im_an_aaangel 19th-Jan-2013 04:15 pm (UTC)
You definitely can't use logic on these guys. My father in law is one of them and when I tried to link him to actual research on why the conspiracy is bullshit he said "those all have a liberal bias, I do my own research". Disagree with something? Just claim it has bias!
moonshaz 20th-Jan-2013 05:11 am (UTC)
moonshaz 20th-Jan-2013 05:11 am (UTC)
Holy cow! I didn't realize that would be so huge, and I don't know how to shrink it.
nonnycat 20th-Jan-2013 06:41 am (UTC)
My dad is a lot better about it now but I remember back around 9/11 and such, he was WAY into conspiracy theories. I was like 15 or so and trying to argue because none of what he said made sense. He gave the "I do my own research" line too, but his source? World Net Daily.
tabaqui 19th-Jan-2013 04:15 pm (UTC)
Jayzus, people are fucking stupid. And disgusting. And stupid. I hope all this 'truther' crap just goes away soon. Maybe a meteor can fall on the Westboro cult and deflect attention.....
erinlyn98 19th-Jan-2013 04:22 pm (UTC)
Thank you for posting this. I have a few of these nuts on my fb feed....people i used to go to HS with, and I am going to share this as a point that they are dumb. I wont say that of course, but it's inferred/.
ragnor144 19th-Jan-2013 05:56 pm (UTC)
Between people who "liked" Romney and Sandy Hook truthers, I have gotten rid of a lot of FB friends. It's not worth raising my blood pressure over.
hangonego 19th-Jan-2013 04:43 pm (UTC)
Hahahaha, I got this response when one of my friend's posted this video from some douchebro "Yeah if you wanna be a little sheltered American bitch then you can deny this video like you are."

Hahahahaha. ~LIBERAL BIAS~
hangonego 19th-Jan-2013 04:45 pm (UTC)
Not only that, I just think this truther crap is disgusting. These are real kids, and these parents ACTUALLY lost their children due to this. This is just so rude and disrespectful not only to these grieving parents, but to those children who were lost. I just can't stand this crap. Get me out of Texas.
suzycat 20th-Jan-2013 12:17 am (UTC)
It is absolutely disgusting. Especially for some reason the crap about the parents "not grieving enough". Dare I suggest that the reason we tend to like news footage of people in the Middle East after attacks is because they're culturally more likely to scream and cry and be dramatic than your average Anglo-Celt? And dare I further suggest that even those people, caught two hours or ten hours or 20 hours later, might also look fairly normal, fairly shellshocked, be capable of laughter etc too?

It's like these truthers don't know any people and glean all of their information about human interaction off immediate news clips and daytime soap opera acting.
alexvdl 19th-Jan-2013 07:13 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately, those are far from all of the Sandy Hook conspiracy theories. Off the top of my FB feed there is the "Why did people claim Adam Lanza's mother worked for the school?", "Why wasn't there more chaos at the scene?", and the one that links the London Subway bombings, 9/11, and Sandy Hook. People are dumb.

Edited at 2013-01-19 07:14 pm (UTC)
sio 19th-Jan-2013 07:21 pm (UTC)
the most recent one i saw is claiming that Holmes' lawyer in Aurora and one of the mothers of the slain kids are the same actress.

because people can't POSSIBLY look slightly alike at different angles. uggh.
sio 19th-Jan-2013 07:19 pm (UTC)
i can't EVEN with people who believe this hoax crap.

i finally was able to sum up my feelings in this graphic below.

you are free to download, share, spread it EVERYWHERE. just credit me as Lightning.

ETA: holy crap humongoid pic. put in a length/width code so it doesn't take up your whole screen. sorry about that!



Edited at 2013-01-19 07:24 pm (UTC)
suzycat 20th-Jan-2013 12:18 am (UTC)
Excellent.
evil_laugher 19th-Jan-2013 09:28 pm (UTC)
Do we really need to care about these people?
idemandjustice 19th-Jan-2013 11:04 pm (UTC)
No. But we care about reducing their influence.
evil_laugher 19th-Jan-2013 11:09 pm (UTC)
That's what I mean. Do they even have any influence?
idemandjustice Re: 19th-Jan-2013 11:21 pm (UTC)
You'd be surprised. As I mentioned in another comment, I discovered a year or two that someone on my friends list was a 9-11 truther. So, you never know what kinds of ridiculous shit seemingly intelligent people will believe.
alryssa 20th-Jan-2013 02:16 am (UTC)
Same. I removed someone from my FB list that I'd known for years because they started in with the stupid "But this girl is still alive because OMG SAME DRESS" comments on a post of their own. No fucking thank you.
rjdaae 19th-Jan-2013 09:37 pm (UTC)
I followed one of the links in the Snopes article discussing the source of the 'the parents are actors!' rumour, and... this has got to be some of the most convoluted nonsense I've ever seen. O_o
moonshaz 20th-Jan-2013 05:15 am (UTC)
OMG, the image at the top of that page makes my brain hurt. Not even going to try to read any of it, lol!
rjdaae 20th-Jan-2013 05:26 am (UTC)
I couldn't read any of it either, TBH. But gosh, the pictures. There's one on another page that appears to be implying that Joe Biden and Donald Trump are the same person, and that Ron Paul is actually Ian McKellen!
lizzy_someone 20th-Jan-2013 10:03 am (UTC)
Pity Ron Paul didn't tell us that, I might actually vote for him if he were really Ian McKellen!
idemandjustice 19th-Jan-2013 11:05 pm (UTC)
I recommend bringing up how ridiculous this is in your own journals as well. I did that once, and discovered someone on my flist was a 9-11 truther. I'd had no idea. She's gone now.
deleriumd 20th-Jan-2013 01:13 am (UTC)
There was a Reddit thread where someone dissected a popular 'truther' video and they did it perfectly. And lo and behold, some of the conspiracy people came out of hiding and actually called the person, myself and others "sheeple".

The last time I heard someone use 'sheep' in a derogatory fashion, I think I was 14 or 15, and I hated the people that bullied me and always referred to them as 'sheep'.

So... now there's a weird connection where I hear someone use that term and assume it's a mall-goth who is VERY upset.
tallycola 20th-Jan-2013 01:31 am (UTC)
Anyone who uses the word "sheeple" is basically wearing a badge that says "I am an idiot".

ETA: any adult, I mean.

Edited at 2013-01-20 02:03 am (UTC)
seishin 20th-Jan-2013 02:07 am (UTC)
A pretentious idiot.
deleriumd 20th-Jan-2013 08:40 am (UTC)
The guy that called me "le sheeple" took it to a new level of pretension. But then again, in their mind, I am some sort of moron for swallowing government pablum without question, although as a Canadian, I wonder if they assume I'm blinding following my own government, or America's government...

I'm also dumb for not assuming that the Illuminati run the world.
seishin 20th-Jan-2013 06:02 pm (UTC)
Funny how the moment we dont agree with them, *we're* the 'sheeple'. Had a (now former) BFF that would do the same thing. Actually called me stupid to my face because I disagreed with her.

And extra pretension points added for this asshat's attempt to make it sound French.
moonshaz 20th-Jan-2013 05:31 am (UTC)
Seriously. If anyone ever calls me that, I think I'll reply, "BAAAAAAA," just to see their reaction, lol.

OT: And just because I think sheep are adorable, here's a cute sheep pic for everyone's viewing pleasure!



If anyone's wondering, this ewe IS the mother of ALL those lambs (she actually had 5, but one didn't make it)!

Edited at 2013-01-20 05:32 am (UTC)
deleriumd 20th-Jan-2013 08:30 am (UTC)
I think I scared my cat with my squeal.... I JUST WANT TO PLAY WITH THE LAMBS. The fluffy. The itty-bitty hooves and the wee tails that I know go all 'properllery' when it's time for noms.
lizzy_someone 20th-Jan-2013 10:00 am (UTC)
does the ewe belong to the Screen Actors Guild though

i bet that fifth lamb is actually still alive, because CONSPIRACY.
deleriumd 20th-Jan-2013 08:36 am (UTC)
I wasn't clever enough to come up with 'sheeple'. I was more.... sad little goth girl complaining that the only reason people used to spit on me (and worse) was because they were sheep and I was MUCH cooler. The reality was that I was severely bullied, but that does not give me the right to accuse people dressed 'normally' of some sort of iniquity. Plus, when I got older, I realized how hypocritical it was of me- I mean, I'm upset because people harass me based on how I'm dressed, and I turn around and say they suck because THEY dress differently. I didn't bully anyone, but it's a little silly of me to go 'tit for tat'.

But, I was a kid. I was unhappy, I had no parental support, little teacher support and teens need more than just sympathetic friends. And I wore FAR too much eyeliner.

Um... I got a little melancholy. I'm sorry for that, I just wanted to explain WHY I was bratty at that age.
blunder_buss 20th-Jan-2013 04:38 am (UTC)
Do you still have the link to that thread?
deleriumd 20th-Jan-2013 08:28 am (UTC)
I'm so sorry, I've been trying to go through everything so far and I'm not having a lot of luck. The problem is that I belong to a bunch of sub-reddits and I can remember which one it was that had the arse calling me a 'sheeple'.

It's 3:23am and I'm a wee tipsy so I'm going to try again tomorrow. I scoured the drama specific subs, but I still need to search through rage, WTF, conspiracy and probably a few others.

Conspiracy might take some time, I cannot stand conspiracy fans because I cannot deal with:
THE ILLUMINATI
DID the holocaust really happen?
...Did the Illuminati make the holocaust?
America is out to get Ron Paul!!
......Did the Illuminati make Ron Paul?

NO ONE IS LISTENING TO ME, SHEEPLE. SHEEPLE ALL OF YOU!
hello_ilu 20th-Jan-2013 08:47 am (UTC)
I think they're talking about this one? Either way, it's a good comment.
fluffydragon 20th-Jan-2013 02:53 pm (UTC)
I can't even
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