Eliminationism: It Isn't Just for Races Anymore

(If you haven't read David Neiwert's excellent ten part series on eliminationism, I highly recommend checking it out.)

Here's the thing.

MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin (CNN) -- All Nathan Moore says he wanted to do was smoke pot and get drunk with his friends.

Killing Rex Baum was never part of the plan that day in 2004.

"It all started off as a game," Moore said.

The 15-year-old and his friends were taunting the homeless man -- throwing sticks and leaves -- after having a couple of beers with him.

No big deal, Moore says, but he's sorry for what came next.

It was a mistake, he said, a sudden primal surge that made him and his friends Luis Oyola, 16, and 17-year-old Andrew Ihrcke begin punching and kicking Baum.

"Luis says 'I'm gonna go hit him,' We're all laughing, thought he was joking around,'" but he wasn't, Moore concedes. "We just all started hitting him."

They hurled anything they could find -- rocks, bricks, even Baum's barbecue grill -- and pounded the 49-year-old with a pipe and with the baseball bat he kept at his campsite for protection.

Ihrcke smeared his own feces on Baum's face before cutting him with a knife "to see if he was alive," Moore said.

After destroying Baum's camp, the boys left the homeless man -- head wedged in his own grill -- under a piece of plastic where they hoped the "animals would eat" him.

Then, Moore says, they took off to grab a bite at McDonald's.
...is not a "game." It's not "joking around." I find it hard to believe that this could possibly be a "primal urge."

"Sport killing" is a nice little buzzword, but let's call this what it is. Murder.

This is what happens when people are dehumanized. This is the result of eliminationist rhetoric becoming part of pop culture, a "joke" to be laughed off. This is what happens when it's considered perfectly acceptable to think of a group of human beings as sub-human, as we've noted before. Notice the similarity between the "joke" in the Rachel Moran story, and what happened here. This definitely smacks of luring someone into a beating; they asked him to buy them beer, they invited him to join them, and then they beat him to death. One would think that the other two teens would object when their friend first hit Baum with a bat, especially if they thought he was "just joking." But why not join in, if it's just a fucking bum?

One of them smeared Baum's face with his own shit after killing him. This isn't a "game." This isn't "mob mentality."
They bragged about it around town. Police picked them up and they described what happened.

Ihrcke told police that killing "the bum" reminded him of playing a violent video game, a police report shows.

All three teens pleaded no contest to first degree reckless homicide charges and went to prison.

Moore recently turned 18 at Columbia Correctional Institution in Portage, Wisconsin, where he is serving a 15 year sentence.

"When [the beating] stops, you say, 'What did we just do?'" he told CNN. "There's no rational explanation."
So the obvious response is to brag about your "victory." Need I mention that bragging is a good sign that you knew exactly what you were doing? I'm also irked by the obvious dog whistle attempt at a plea of innocence: it was the video games. I'm sorry, but this doesn't appear to me to be "the video game made me do it," it sounds a little more like "I am incapable of seeing 'lessers' as human; their life means no more to me than a mess of pixels and polygons."

If you watch the video of one of the convicted killers, he appears rather resigned to his fate. There's talk of "the alcohol," and "the pot" as possible "reasons" for what they did, but they're rather half-hearted attempts at excuses. But what I don't see is remorse. He says he's sorry, and yes, I believe he is sorry, in a way. The cynical part of me thinks he's more sorry for his current imprisoned situation than he is sorry for what he has done. I don't know the guy; I can't say what he's feeling. But he doesn't appear to feel anything other than "sorry."

He says he's "sorry for what happened" as if he's talking about a dog he accidentally ran over with his car.

Ignoring and dehumanizing the homeless is what leads to hunting them for sport.

Not to mention linking to a voyeuristic video of two teens beating a homeless man with bats within your story. Way to go, CNN.

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