1992.08.21 Ruby Ridge
Ruby Ridge would not qualify as one of the largest or worst massacres by itself, but it was Act-1 in a 3 part play. Government (FBI/ATF) agents entrapped Randy Weaver and tried to extort him into infiltrating and becoming an informant for them. When he refused, they were abusive and went after him for refusal to appear. After a confrontation (on his land), a shootout (killing his son), and causing a siege, they botched hostage negotiations when snipers killed his wife (while they were running for cover and not firing back: which violates the constitution). Then the Democrats tried to cover it up. An investigation found the FBI was wrong, criminal charges issues, and they settled a civil lawsuit for $3.1M over their misbehavior (like hiding evidence of their malfeasance). This and the later Waco seige abuses of power were the two contributing factors that agitated McVeigh into the Oklahoma City Bombing (168 dead). That's not to excuse McVeigh's behavior in any way (he deserved the lethal injection he got), but when you break the law and abuse the lash, you shouldn't be shocked when there's backlash.
|1992.08.21 Ruby Ridge
|U.S. Government Agents (FBI/ATF) railroaded a guy to try to make him an informant. When he refused, they used screw-ups and technicalities to spy on him, got caught, got in a shootout, caused a siege, killed his wife, child and dog, then hid evidence of their malfeasance in all of it. And later got scolded in an investigation, and settled a civil suit for $3.1M.||❌ Gun Control was the problem. Governments lack of it, as well as bad laws making an excuse for abuse of power|
❌ The government was on the wrong side of this one.
There was a lot of dumb:
- Bill Clinton was President, and Janet Reno the inept and aggressive AG. While they didn't directly order this, they did set tone and rules that lead agencies to be more abusive during this time.
- Weaver certainly wasn't innocent: when the FBI had their informant ask him to saw down a shotgun for money, he did so.
- But it's more dumb to pretend that a 18 1/4" barrel is safe, but a 17 3/4" barrel is a felony in the first place -- so the law that started this was a violation of the 2A and common sense.
- The FBI/ATF totally fucked this one up, in every way. Trying to railroad a guy into being an informant is immoral. Entrapping him to abuse the law. Abusing technicalities around the law, to ruin a guy's life. Fucking up spying on him and killing his dog, kid, and wife? Then burying evidence?
- While there were criminal charges filed against the Sniper, they were dropped under pressure from the Federal Government
- Under anonymity, a DOJ official told the Washington Post that he believed the Weavers probably would have won the full amount ($200M) if the civil case against the government had gone to trial.