Feature

United Kingdom: A killer with legions of fans

How could a “murdering, child-beating, woman-hating bully” become a hero to so many people? asked Tony Parsons in the Daily Mirror.

Tony ParsonsDaily Mirror

How could a “murdering, child-beating, woman-hating bully” become a hero to so many people? asked Tony Parsons. Three weeks ago, Raoul Moat—a 37-year-old bouncer who recently finished serving four months in prison for assaulting a 9-year-old—shot his ex-girlfriend and her new boyfriend, killing the man and wounding his ex. Then he went on the run, prompting the largest manhunt in British history. For six days, Moat eluded police, as helicopters and dog teams scoured the country. When he was finally cornered, after shooting a police officer, he killed himself.

Such a man deserves no pity, and certainly no respect. Yet “to a growing army of misty-eyed morons, Moat was a martyr, a hero, and a legend.” Some white working-class men with little education and no job prospects have seized on Moat as a tragic figure who was understandably enraged at having been dumped by a woman. His Facebook page has tens of thousands of fans, who leave fawning messages as if he were “the Princess Diana of steroid-abusing nutjobs.” While it may be comforting to note that most of them are “illiterate cretins who couldn’t text their way out of a paper bag,” it’s horrifying to see that Britain has “so many of them.”

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