No one knows why Fort Hood shooter Ivan Lopez killed four people, including himself, and injured 16. That’s probably not going to prevent people from jumping to conclusions and blaming it on the music he listened to. ABC News found a Facebook page that appears to be Lopez’ under the name “Ivan Slipknot” that matches biographical details, and a Fort Hood official confirmed that some images on it showed Ivan Lopez. Several of the pictures on the Facebook page also showed the band. There are already reports from right wing websites like Brietbart that are zeroing in on Lopez’ love of the band.
It’s tragic that anyone would go on a shooting rampage, especially at a military facility. But to focus on the music he listened to as opposed to his mental status is only telling a fraction of the story. We’re talking about a soldier that served in Iraq, and even if he didn’t see any direct combat, serving in the military is intense enough of a thing to undergo. Every time someone goes on a shooting rampage, the music they listened to, the video games they played, and the films they watch are intensely scrutinized, but it ultimately comes down to much more than the media he consumed. The Virginia Tech shooter was obsessed with Collective Soul’s “Shine.” That doesn’t make Collective Soul any more of a scapegoat than it should Slipknot. It should be enough to focus on the tragedy at hand than to start trying to make music the scapegoat.