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New York Times looks at Alexandria shooter's troubled home life; '…little to do with Democratic politics'

Rep. Steven Scalise was upgraded from critical to serious after yet another surgery Saturday but will remain in the ICU through at least the weekend, including Father’s Day.


James T. Hodgkinson, of course, was killed. Several outlets are reporting that he had a piece of paper on him with the names of three congressmen. Sources aren’t saying who exactly was on that list, but New York Times readers can spend their Father’s Day learning just about everything else there is to know about Hodgkinson, including his troubled family life.

A volatile home life, huh? Hmm … let’s see if we can predict where this is headed.

No one can truly know what motivates a man to drive halfway across the country, live out of his car — as Mr. Hodgkinson apparently did — and attempt a mass killing of members of Congress. In the days since the shooting, much has been made of Mr. Hodgkinson’s strong political views — he was an ardent supporter of Senator Bernie Sanders’s bid for the 2016 presidential nomination, and he railed against President Trump and Republicans in Washington on his Facebook page and in letters to the editor of the local newspaper.

But another aspect of his personality may have also presaged the shooting: his troubled home life.

Much has been made of his strong political views, likely because they culminated in him opening fire on congressional Republicans practicing for a baseball game. But that take lacks the nuance that only a paper like the New York Times can add.


Alan Blinder is just one of four credited writers whose work will reportedly appear on the front page, who it’s unsure who exactly who wrote the bit about the “well-kept house with the pale sun awning and the pretty flowerpots off a gravel road” and who added the interview with the county auditor overseeing Belleville, “a quaint little city where flags fly on Main Street and the movie theater marquee is set off in lights,” who insisted that Hodgkinson had little to do with Democratic politics locally, “for all his complaining about Republicans.”


Touchy! Give the public a minute to catch up with this renewed, post-Election Day interest reporters have in journalism and asking questions that matter to the public.

That’s odd … a search for “evil” only returned results for quaint little Belleville, home of a one-time high school wrestler whose motivations in firing on those congressmen can only be guessed at.

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