Would-be killer inspired by Glenn Beck

Joseph E. Bowker, CMSgt, USAF (Ret) 2010/10/12 17:57:00

Fox News incites violence — there’s no longer any doubt

fox news incites violence doubt

Byron Williams tried to kill people — and he was inspired by Glenn Beck

Watch the video. Hear what he had to say. And help us stop Fox News from stoking hatred and violence:

Click here

Fox News has inspired at least one person to attempt mass murder — a new report released yesterday removes any doubt.1

Three months ago, a heavily armed man named Byron Williams was on his way to kill people at two non-profit organizations in San Francisco
when he got into a gun battle with police before they eventually
arrested him. Now, in an interview from jail, he's just told us that
Fox News' Glenn Beck was a major inspiration:

"Beck will deny
everything about violent approach, deny everything about conspiracies,
but he'll give you every reason to believe it ... I understand what he's

If you needed any more evidence that Fox News is dangerous, this is it.
It's time to do everything we can reduce Fox News' influence and stop
them from spreading divisive propaganda and inciting violence. More
than 200,000 people have joined the Turn Off Fox campaign and are asking
businesses and public places in their communities to stop playing Fox
News. Will you join us?


Byron Williams came frighteningly close to killing people at offices of the ACLU and the Tides Foundation in San Francisco. He was stopped by police on the highway in Oakland
just a few miles from his targets, and shot at them for about 12
minutes (injuring two of them but thankfully killing no one) before they
finally could arrest him.3

While many Americans are aware of the ACLU, the Tides Foundation is an
organization that most people had never heard of — until Glenn Beck
started demonizing and spreading false information about them. Since
Beck’s show premiered, he has pushed conspiracy theories involving Tides on nearly 30 episodes. During the same time period, Tides was never mentioned on other news channels.4,5

Williams survived the gunshots police used to bring him down — and now,
he’s told us about his motives. According to an interview with Williams
released by Media Matters yesterday morning, he was driven by a bizarre and false conspiracy theory involving Tides Foundation that Glenn Beck pushed multiple times on his TV show.6

Click here to watch a video about Williams' attempted killing spree
(and its connection to Glenn Beck's conspiracy theories) — and to sign
our petition calling on businesses and public places to stop playing Fox


Here are some more quotes from Byron Williams that show what he thought about Glenn Beck:

  • "I would have never started watching Fox News if it wasn’t for the
    fact that Beck was on there ... It was the things that he did, it was
    the things he exposed, that blew my mind."
  • "Anything that you do is going to be considered promoting terror attacks
    or promoting violence. So now they’ve got Beck labeled as a guy that is
    trying to incite violence. And what I say is that if the truth incites
    violence, it means that we’ve been living too long in the lies."7

Williams is the clearest example we have of someone who was motivated by
Fox News to engage in political violence — but he's part of a
consistent pattern of violence from far-right extremists that was likely
motivated at least in part by the hateful rhetoric and misinformation
that's commonplace on Fox News and in other far-right media. Many of
those who have planned or carried out violence (including Byron
Williams) held racist and anti-Semitic views and were angry at the fact
that our country has a Black president.

  • In April 2009, a white supremacist named Richard Poplawski
    shot and killed three police officers that were called to his house.
    Poplawski hated Jews and Black people, and believed in right-wing
    conspiracy theories that say the Obama administration is gearing up to
    take away peoples' guns and institute a police state. Glenn Beck has
    consistently implied that the Obama administration is taking away our
    rights and moving us towards a fascist dictatorship or police state.
    Poplawski once posted a Youtube clip of Glenn Beck — in which he
    discussed a conspiracy theory about FEMA concentration camps — to the
    white supremacist website Stormfront.8
  • In May 2009, abortion doctor George Tiller was gunned down
    in his church by an anti-abortion terrorist after being demonized for
    years by Fox's Bill O'Reilly
    as "Tiller the Baby Killer." O'Reilly had compared Tiller to the Nazis
    and to Al-Qaeda. He said that Tiller had "blood on his hands" and that
    he wouldn't want to be Tiller "if there is a Judgement Day."9

There's a very real danger of political violence from the far-right —
and Fox News fans the flames every day. It's no longer a hypothetical
question whether the conspiracy theories, bigotry, and violent rhetoric
on Fox can lead to real-world violence. It's already happened.
Thankfully, police were able to stop Byron Williams before he committed a
massacre. But we might not be so lucky with the next killer inspired
by Glenn Beck and Fox News.

We can't allow Fox News to stoke the kind of fear, division and hatred
that leads to violence. It's time to ask our friends, our neighbors,
and our communities to turn off Fox. Please join us:

Thanks and Peace,

Read More: http://www.colorofchange.org/turnofffox/580/?id=21...

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Top Opinion

  • Rodney 2010/10/12 19:13:27
    LOL, typical Liberal mindset, blame everyone but the perp. It is always someone else's fault isn't it? The world is nothing but mindless boobs waiting for someone to give them an order. Shall we go into all the leftist loons that have killed, beaten and terrorized others? Shall we go there?

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  • James 2010/10/22 01:46:44
    It's one thing when one person goes bat sh*t crazy and actually BELIEVES anything that Beck says on television. I mean, how many people have gone off the deep end because Chris Matthews told them to? This is too F*cking hilarious.
  • antiteaparty 2010/10/19 15:03:06
    I have said this on my blog before... Here is a quote from my blog...They are hatred personified, one step away from Zieg Hiel! Don’t take my word for it alone, watch them at town hall meetings and rallies. They heckle people in Wheel Chairs that are worried about losing their home… I’d bet that if Glen Beck or that Pin Head Palin stood up and ordered Tea Baggers to kill Muslims this country would be shaken to its foundation. These people would go nuts and attack everyone that looked Muslim… you are already seeing people attacked because they look Muslim nearly everyday, all these people need is a little push!...
  • steven 2010/10/14 17:48:38 (edited)
    "Beck will deny everything about violent approach, deny everything about conspiracies, but he'll give you every reason to believe it ... I understand what he's doing."

    First, note that Beck decries violence, as anyone who watches would know. Second, he does NOT deny conspiracy, but says it is in the open, as do I. Third, Charles Manson thought he knew what the Beatles meant, too. He was nuts and so is this guy. And Joseph, do you remove all responsibility for civil behavior from the perpetrator himself? It's obviously easier and more satisfying to feed your agenda and personal vendetta than to admit the truth, but give it a try for once, okay? Fox doesn't make killers any more than Obama offers hope.
  • seadog6... steven 2010/10/14 21:59:55
  • steven seadog6... 2010/10/14 22:42:08
    Thank you. Righteous indignation tends to bring out eloquence.
  • seadog6... steven 2010/10/15 03:42:02
  • Joseph ... steven 2010/10/28 22:28:16 (edited)
    Joseph E. Bowker, CMSgt, USAF (Ret)
    Beck is a typical Propagandist. Josef Goebbels did the same thing, "Talk up the Fascist Line," but push others to get their hands dirty. He didn't. Glenn's Mama's favorite lil' boy, he is the same, used the same tactics as Herr Josef. push hands dirty glenns mamas lil boy tactics herr josef push hands dirty glenns mamas lil boy tactics herr josef
  • steven Joseph ... 2010/10/29 00:43:16 (edited)
    Listened to any Bill Maher lately? Any Rachel Maddow? Any Keith Olbermann? Guess when they spout hatred, it's "just telling the truth", right? Come on, wake up and smell the s**t on your own shoes. Btw, Beck just tonight AGAIN said that violence would be counterproductive. So, how does that lay blame at his feet?

    "By the fruit of their works shall ye know them."
  • **Bessie** 2010/10/14 16:20:02 (edited)

    and this was Al Gore's fault.

    You all are pathetic. al gores fault pathetic al gores fault pathetic
  • bags 2010/10/14 15:53:52
    I don't like Fox's style of news. Even the local reporters are abrasive. Other people enjoy it, it's all a matter of perspective and frame of mind. I see people like this as being the sort a movie could set off, or a particular TV show, or a book....whatever. For folks like this it's a trigger for a behaviour. It doesn't affect normal, relatively sane folks.....otherwise there'd be blood running in the streets and mass upheaval and there isn't. And as long as people retain their sanity there won't be.
  • Archer ~ The Limit Break of... 2010/10/14 14:17:07
    Archer ~ The Limit Break of PHAET
    I agree that Beck/Fox can be dangerous when put in the wrong hands.

    However, *hands* owned by the wrong person can be dangerous. People read into *books* beyond the intent of the author and try to kill people - it still doesn't mean we should ban those books any more than we should ban a TV show.

    However, I'd like to see Beck (and those that follow him) denounce the actions of this man, and repeat that they do NOT condone such actions.

    Of course, denouncing or not, this is going to make his ratings spike. He'll benefit from it, and he knows just how to manipulate his watchers so he CAN profit from this - monetarily or simply via popularity/ratings.
  • BobbyMcKeown 2010/10/14 12:17:57
    So, are we switching to blaming Glenn Beck for everything now instead of George Bush?
  • **Bessie** BobbyMc... 2010/10/14 22:10:36
    G.B. I see a pattern. Could be!
  • Sissy 2010/10/14 11:24:28
    I received this in my e-mail this morning and why would anyone be "surprised" that the nuts of the world who listen to this jackass wouldn't believe that they are doing us all a "favor" by doing as he so blatantly suggests? Just wondering.
  • activ1 2010/10/14 07:07:29
    I'm will always support anyone's right to free speech, no matter how distasteful I find it. I've lived in countries where it doesn't exist, and I don't want that for my own country. Sensorship is a very dangerous road to travel down. Don't people ever look at what happens after a military coup? The first thing they do is take over the TV and Radio stations.

    The problem is not so much with Beck. He's just an entertainer out to make a buck. He knows how to manipulate an audience, in much the same way as televangelists manipulate their flock.The problem is with people who actually believe that he is anything more than just an entertainer. Tragically, this guy Williams falls into that category.
  • Archer ... activ1 2010/10/14 14:18:28
    Archer ~ The Limit Break of PHAET
    I think you hit the nail on the head.
  • activ1 Archer ... 2010/10/14 15:47:09
    Thanks for your response. If you criticize Beck in the slightest here on SH, it is usually followed by extremely angry responses that are borderline psycho. Nobody should be that crazy over an entertainer.
  • Archer ... activ1 2010/10/14 17:21:23
    Archer ~ The Limit Break of PHAET
    I'm wondering if some ought to be tested for rabies. One should not foam at the mouth over any person, place or thing. It isn't healthy.
  • activ1 Archer ... 2010/10/14 18:17:30
    Yeah, the devotion that some people have for entertainers is kind of frightening.
  • Colbert 2010/10/14 04:51:42
    Damn liberals and their "facts" and "knowledge." Get over yourselves with your "educations" and your "laws."
  • ggaitherii 2010/10/14 02:49:12
    I'm not a Beck fan (his logic is usually only consistent inside of his ideology), but he can't be held responsible for this nut. Simple minds will grasp to things that help validate what they already want to believe. Words do have consequences, but if a man can watch television and do this.....his issues extend far beyond Beck.
  • riceroni ~ POTC**FUKU2** 2010/10/14 02:22:10 (edited)
  • steven riceron... 2010/10/14 17:52:19
    So the perp bears no responsibility at all? Manson thought he knew what the Beatles meant. Did he? This guy admits Beck is not for violence. Are you really that blind?
  • riceron... steven 2010/10/15 02:40:13
  • steven riceron... 2010/10/18 20:12:09 (edited)
    When you can show that Beck and Limbaugh actually instigate violence with their words, take them to court on a class action suit. In the meantime, the man who commits the act bears the responsibility. Adolph Hitler didn't have to be listened to, but many chose to be enchanted and hypnotized. It comes down to allowing it by not doing adequate research. Watching one time, all the way through, may be adequate for most.

    BTW, another poster here makes the point that the Discovery Channel could as likely take the blame for Lee's actions. That's as ludicrous as your claim.
  • CarDriver 2010/10/13 18:28:35
    Beck has never preached hate!
    It is clear this person has never watched Beck.
    It is clear this guy has never watched Fox News!
  • Georgia50 2010/10/13 14:15:27 (edited)
    1. What has Beck said of these organizations that is provably false? From all I've seen, he uses direct quotes and videos.

    2. Any psycho can use anything or person as a pretext for violence. When they arrested the Unabomber, he had a book by Al Gore in his possession (faithfully omitted from the evidence list by a compliant FBI), and his manifesto appeared to have been inspired by Gore.

    3. How come liberals only oppose criminals that attempt to do harm to THEM, but the criminals who harm the rest of us they love, cherish, and defend to the nth degree?
  • Poppa Blues 2010/10/13 13:11:20
    Poppa Blues
    Sooo...let's see, you want to base your claim on the testimony of a psycho? Really? You have to stop drinking the Obama Kool-Aid!
  • jackolantyrn356 2010/10/13 12:04:37
    How could goodness inspire evil??? How can honesty inspire lies? how does bravery and a Ruling oif Law create corruption ? Those who are corrupt and evil already. So far all I've seen have been Democrats.
  • janet 2010/10/13 11:44:47
    How does rodney get 28 thumbs up with his nonsense and no one else has more than 2?
  • chaoskitty123 2010/10/13 08:39:47
    Joseph E Bowker... if you believe this then get off the internet, never write or say another word which might be overheard by others because you too could be the inspiration for some nutcase going on a killing spree who instead of saying he heard voices of chipmunks telling him to maim torture and kill or that it was Glenn Beck... it was you Joseph E Bowker who inspired him to do this horrible things because he listened to you and YOU caused him to do it.

    I thought you were more intelligent than this but as I have said many times in the past unfortunately... you just keep proving me wrong.
  • Joseph ... chaoski... 2010/10/13 14:25:30
    Joseph E. Bowker, CMSgt, USAF (Ret)
    Good point - I must say, but I am NOT as nasty, in my worst attacks, as Glenn Beck is on a normal day.
  • MOM - L... Joseph ... 2010/10/13 17:52:09
    MOM - LOL@Silly.St.Sarah.of.Wasilly
    And you do not have access to millions on the airways!
  • Sir Bud. chaoski... 2010/10/14 07:35:08
    Sir Bud.
    And you expect others to value your opinion when you keep proving your own wrong?.
  • Conservative in California 2010/10/13 08:19:29
    Conservative in California
    Hasn't Glenn Beck praised MLK jr. and Ghandi, as well as Jesus for their non-violent messages of protest? I watch Beck regularly, and never once has he advocated violence.

    Definitely can't say the same of the Left.

    Too bad more on the Left can't preach the same non-violent message that Beck espouses. We'd have a much better and less violent world.
  • janet Conserv... 2010/10/13 11:46:47
    So who on the left preaches violence?
  • Georgia50 janet 2010/10/13 14:16:43
    New Black Panthers.
  • Joseph ... Georgia50 2010/10/13 14:25:52
    Joseph E. Bowker, CMSgt, USAF (Ret)
    ...both of them?
  • Georgia50 Joseph ... 2010/10/13 16:23:09
    Yes, both OFFICIALS who were important enough for the Obama Dept. of Justice to ignore AFTER the Bush DoJ had already won the case against them.

    Isn't it the left who cry us a river every time there's a terrorist incident in the US that can't be blamed on JUST ONE home grown terrorist? Isn't it the left who refuse to call out Muslims when the terrorists turn out to be Muslim? So since you're into numbers, how many Muslims are there in the US that the left insists on defending?

    And do you seriously want to play a numbers game after the endless horrors perpetrated on humanity by the left in the last century? (Yes, I know this is one-off logic for this specific topic, but still...you want to reduce this to numbers?)
  • MOM - L... Joseph ... 2010/10/13 18:41:57
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