“All I wanted was a girlfriend.”
A Colorado man who allegedly planned to embark on a women-killing rampage in order to protest his virginity was arrested Saturday on a terrorism charge.
Christopher Wayne Cleary, 27, was apprehended in Provo, Utah, where he was renting an AirBnB apartment. A Denver native, Cleary has been previously arrested in Colorado for stalking women.
According to probable cause filings, the Provo Police Department was prompted to act after Cleary posted on Facebook that he’s intent on becoming “the next mass shooter” by “killing as many girls as I see.” Police worried that Cleary might be planning to make a carnage of the local Women’s March, which took place on Sunday.
In a self-pitying post, he wrote:
All I wanted was a girlfriend, not 1000 not a bunch of hoes not money none of that. All I wanted was to be loved, yet no one cares about me I’m 27 years old and I’ve never had a girlfriend before and I’m still a virgin, this is why I’m planning on shooting up a public place soon and being the next mass shooter cause I’m ready to die and all the girls the turned me down is going to make it right by killing as many girls as I see.
At his interrogation, Cleary told the police that he was “upset and not thinking clearly” when he wrote the post. At some point, he proffered a punishment for himself: “handcuffing himself to a tree in the middle of nowhere where no one could hear him scream.”
At least in rhetoric, Cleary followed the example of Alek Minassian, the 25-year-old Canadian who in April slaughtered 10 people in a van attack in Toronto. Both Minassian and Cleary related their homicidal urges to being “incels” (involuntary celibates) — the appellation for a subculture of men whose romantic failures have morphed into misanthropic resentment.
The growth of this subculture — which largely organizes online — and its potential for violence have led many to question whether there is something about the current state of Western culture that exacerbates incel (or “beta male”) behavior.
Clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson (often traduced as suggesting “enforced monogamy” as a solution for incel aggression) often blames what he sees as a culture-wide attack on “masculinity” for society’s inability to truly understand — and respond to — the plight of incels before it’s too late. The rejection of traditional gender roles and the indemnification of masculinity as a disease, argues Peterson, have left society blind to the emotional landscape of boys, who as a result grow up without a role model to teach them how to hone their urges, restrain their innate aggression, and fulfill their aspirations in a productive, rather than destructive, way.