New York Post Writer Comes Closest to a Motive Behind Garlic Festival Shooting

Jul. 31, 2019
Bob Adelmann

For Maureen Callahan, the Garlic Festival shooter fits the profile, and it has nothing to do with his choice of weaponry: his semi-automatic rifle was just a tool he used to express his anger. The day after the shooting that took the lives of three innocents in Gilroy, California, Friday night, she wrote this:

From those mass shooters who have attacked the innocent before, we know it's a specific strain of anger – deep, repressed, biblically vengeful – felt most commonly by young men, almost always white, who report feeling alienated, dispossessed, misunderstood, victimized, and all too often rejected by women.

Their chosen outlet is the mass slaughter of innocents, carnage at places the rest of us once deemed safe – schools, hospitals, places of work and worship, concerts, carnivals – all meant to hold us hostage, in fear of the next reprisal we're not responsible for and won't see coming.

The shooter, 19-year-old Santino Legan, fits the profile:

[Legan] fits the profile of those who've come before, the rage-induced young men we first encountered through Columbine and later Sandy Hook, Aurora, Charleston, Virginia Beach, the STEM school shooting in Colorado, Charlotte, the Poway synagogue shooting in California, the Louisiana shootings in two parishes, the Sebring shootings in Florida (those last six this year alone), the Mercy Hospital shooting, the Thousand Oaks shooting, the Tallahassee yoga studio shooting, the Jacksonville Landing shooting, the Art All Night shooting in New Jersey, the Santa Fe HS (Texas) shooting, the Nashville Waffle House shooting, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS shooting – and far too many more to mention, but all with one thing in common.

The ever-incubating mass shooter, these young men nurturing their anger through first-person shooter games, violent pornography, through racism and a fascination with guns and violence, is our greatest, most stubborn and pressing threat – more so, I would argue, than Islamic terrorism or Russian hacking or immigration or trade wars.

Following the shooting, others were focused on such questions as: How did he get into the festival? Where did he get this weapon? Why the festival? What motivated him? Why didn't California's strict gun laws keep this from happening?

There are, at this writing, precious few answers, but a few clues.

Santino had been planning the attack for some time. He knew California's strict gun laws would keep him from being able to purchase a firearm, as he was only 19 (California's restricts firearm ownership to those age 21 and older). He knew that security at the food festival – one of the nation's best known and most popular – would be extremely tight, with metal detectors at the main entrance.


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The shooter's solution: take advantage of Nevada's less restrictive gun laws. As a resident of Nevada, he was able to purchase an AK-47 semi-automatic rifle knockoff from a gun shop there online and then pass a background check when he went into the store to claim it.

He also purchased a pair of bolt cutters, which he used to cut through the chain link fence at the rear of the fairgrounds to avoid the metal detectors.

The owner of Big Mike's Gun and Ammo in Fallon, Nevada, saw nothing wrong with any of the paperwork or with Legan's behavior when he picked up the firearm on July 9. He said: "When I did see him, he was acting happy and showed no reasons for concern. I would never sell any firearm to anyone who acted wrong or looks associated with any bad group like white power. Everyone is my brother and sister," said the veteran and store owner on his Facebook page following the shooting, "and I am mourning for the families."

He added: "I have always said we will sell to good people and have done everything we can to make sure this happens. We obey the laws. We are a small home business [and] we sell to people who we think are upstanding citizens to promote safe sport shooting."

Legan even fooled a close family friend, Jerome Turcan, who was training Santino's brother Rosino in boxing and martial arts. When Turcan learned about the shooting, the first thing he did was call members of the family: "They wanted to be sure he [Santino] was OK. That was the last contact I had with him. And then I learned this morning it was Santino who did the shooting. It was shocking."

Santino left a clue on his Instagram account which he created four days earlier, raising further questions: He posted two messages just before the shooting: "Ayyy garlic festival time. Come get wasted on overpriced s-t." The second included a photo of Smokey the Bear and a sign saying "Fire Danger High Today," followed by

Read "Might is Right" by Ragnar Redbeard. Why overcrowded towns and pave more open space to make room for hordes of mestizos [a pejorative for a person of mixed descent, commonly white and Hispanic or white and American Indian] and Silicon Valley white trash?

Revisionist historian James J. Martin called the book "surely one of the most incendiary works ever to be published anywhere." Parts of it were so rancid, racist, and anti-Semitic that it was banned for a period of years.

The shooter referred to himself as an "Iranian-Italian," but a cursory search of his family background reveals little confirmation of either claim.

Callahan could be the closest to exposing the motive behind last Friday night's shooting. If she's right, then the solution remains elusive because the anger is being tolerated and not discussed in polite society: "America is in the throes of a decades-long epidemic that we have come to regard as we do AIDS or some forms of cancer, somehow tolerating it in our body politic rather than trying to solve it, or even address it."

---------------------------

Sources:

NYPost.com: Angry young men continue to be America's greatest threat

Background on Maureen Callahan

DailyMail.co.uk: Third and final victim of Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting, a 13-year-old girl, who was killed along with a boy, six, and college graduate, 25, when white supremacist suspect Santino Legan, 19, opened fire on terrified crowds with an AK-47

MSN.com: Gilroy Garlic Festival gunman cut through back fence to avoid security, police say (Reprint from LATimes)

SanFrancisco.CBSlocal.com: Gilroy Garlic Festival Shooting: Alleged Shooter Screamed Out 'I'm Really Angry'

Background on Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting

SacBee.com: Shooter should 'rot in hell': Gun store owner speaks out over selling weapon to Gilroy gunman

MSN.com: Disturbing portrait emerges of Gilroy Garlic Festival shooter

WSJ.com: Shooter at Gilroy Garlic Festival in California Used Semiautomatic Rifle, Police Say

Background on Redbeard's Might is Right, published in 1896

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