WND on Ski Resort Gunman

From WorldNetDaily, 31 December:

 Ski manager shot after professing Christianity

Investigators: Gunman asked ‘ religion’ questions before fatal attack

– A gunman who broke into a staff meeting at a Colorado ski resort ranting about religion asked the manager what he believed and shot him twice when the victim responded he was Catholic, according to reports published today about the tragedy.

…Sheriff Joe Pelle said [Derik] Bonestroo was yelling something about religion to employees when resort General Manager Brian Mahon heard the commotion and came into the room. The Camera said witnesses reported the shooter asked Mahon which religion he believed, and when Mahon said he was Catholic, the shooter fired twice and killed him.

Naturally, the Freepers were all over the story; one commentator blames “Dawkins, Hitchins, [sic] etc”, while another points the finger at “Government schools and the mass media.”

However, the WND report (almost certainly rewritten from other sources) once again fails to give its readers all the facts. What was that “something about religion” that Bonestroo was yelling? The Rocky Mountain News reported on the same day:

The Derik Bonestroo who came to Eldora Mountain Resort on Tuesday morning packing a gun is as much a mystery to his old friends as are the demons propelling him to a violent end.

They couldn’t relate to the ski-lift operator who declared his intent to convert non-Christians then gunned down the resort’s popular general manager.

…Bonestroo, who wasn’t well-known in Nederland or at Eldora, where he had worked for a month, fired a bullet into the ceiling after saying something like: “I’m a Christian, and if you’re not a Christian I’m here to convert you.”

From the circumstances it’s obvious that Bonestroo was mentally ill and that whatever religious thoughts were going through his head were the symptoms of psychosis; this tragedy tells us little about the nature of religion or religious belief. But WND, which likes to promote the idea that Christians in the USA are being “persecuted” by non-Christians, has apparently given us a report skewed to re-enforce that impression. Maybe it simply didn’t have all the facts to hand; in which case, can we look forward to an update?

3 Responses

  1. This reminds me–yesterday I was watching CNN Headline News while channel surfing and I they were talking about the bus matron who left the young, disabled man on the bus overnight in freezing temperatures so that she could go to church on time. Except that they said, “She had to get to an appointment” instead of “She had to get to church.”
    I was surprised at the blatant coverup.

  2. Having said that, people travelling into the UK from Arab countries get asked how many times they pray.

    At least they don’t get shot…not yet anyway…

  3. snarla, when I saw the original reporting that stated she “had to get to church”, I wondered if it was accurate. CNN may have just been excersizing caution by leaving out the purported nature of her appointment.

    Anyway… nice post… I doubt we’ll ever see that correction. More likely this story will circulate through various channels for years to come.

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