It’s been mere hours since the Austin bombing suspect died after detonating an explosive as law enforcement attempted to apprehend him. The bombings, which have left two dead and five more injured, are still being investigated, and authorities haven’t deemed the city completely clear of package bombs, but that’s not stopping famously well-informed person Geraldo Rivera from throwing out some completely unfounded theories as to why this happened.
Over at Fox News, Rivera—car salesman in the streets, used car salesman in the sheets—explained that the suspected bomber—who has been identified as 24-year-old Mark Anthony Conditt—probably targeted Austin because it’s a liberal bastion. After all, he noted, South by Southwest happens there!
Austin is not only the capital of Texas, it’s also the home of the main campus of the University of Texas. It is a dot of deep blue in a sea of red, a very liberal town. They want to keep Austin weird — that’s one of their slogans. [South by Southwest], the big mixed media event is just tapering out, just ending right now.
So there was a lot of attention to this liberal island in a conservative sea. That might have had something to do with his choice of targets and the timing of these.
We get it. Austin wants to keep itself weird and the bombings really put a harsh vibe on that liberal mellow. And this could absolutely turn out to be some right-wing string of attacks. But, as of now, Austin police have explicitly said they don’t know what the motive behind the bombings was. So it’s quite reckless to throw out pure speculation as journalism before any of the facts of the case have been laid out.
Hilariously enough, as Raw Story points out, it was Fox’s own audience that took the most umbrage at Rivera’s theorizing. Insinuate that the suspect in a potentially politically motivated attack could be conservative and suddenly the Fox audience cares about journalistic integrity.