On May 4, 1970, a disorganized and nonviolent antiwar protest turned violent and deadly when the Ohio National Guard inexplicably opened fire on students at Kent State University — indelibly polarizing the United States populace to an extreme arguably unabated since.
Guardsmen opened fire on the assembled crowd, unleashing between 61 and 67 bullets in 13 seconds — which left four people dead and nine wounded. Now, 49 years after the unjustified bloodbath, critical questions remain unanswered about both details of the incident, as well as circumstances that culminated in the shooting of unarmed protesters.
Perhaps the only inarguable detail of the Kent State massacre, often referred to simply as “Kent State,” is the fundamental, polarizing shift in popular perception.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson dismantled President Joe Biden over his serial false statements regarding gun crime in America during a Rose Garden speech Thursday in which he announced several new executive actions against firearms.
But Carlson saved some of his most venomous criticism for the man Biden has picked to run the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, David Chipman, whom the host described as “a conspiracy nut” and exactly the wrong person to run that particular agency.
Chipman, Carlson noted, made the comments last year regarding the federal government’s 1993 siege of the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, which was eventually burned to the ground due to actions taken by the FBI and ATF. Chipman claimed that Davidians used .50 caliber rifles to shoot down two FBI helicopters, which is absolutely untrue.
“At Waco, cult members used 2 .50 caliber Barretts to shoot down two Texas Air National Guard helicopters. Point, it is true we are fortunate they are not used in crime more often,” Chipman stated in response to a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” event.
Davidians did reportedly shot at and damage three government helicopters, but none of them were shot down and no federal agents were hurt.
Turning to the president’s newest anti-gun executive actions, “to enforce them, Joe Biden has nominated a man who is unhinged from reality: David Chipman,” Carlson said on his show on Thursday.
“Who is David Chipman? Well, he is a conspiracy nut for one thing.”
“In 1993, the ATF killed dozens of innocent children and at least one pregnant woman for no obvious reason. It’s one of the worst things that federal agents have ever done in this country,” the Fox News host said, noting that four ATF agents were killed along with 82 Branch Davidians.
“If you’re taking over the ATF, maybe you could apologize for that. But no, David Chipman lied about it and then attacked the dead.”
Berenice Sterling was a first-grade teacher in Bath, Mich., in 1927 when she asked school board treasurer Andrew Kehoe for a favor. Sterling wanted to have some fun with her students on the final day of school, so she wondered if the class could picnic in a shady grove of trees on Kehoe’s farm that Wednesday, May 18.
Kehoe agreed, but he urged Sterling’s class not to wait till that date. Instead, he said, they should have their picnic “right away.”
Asked after May 18 why he thought Kehoe had made that suggestion, Bath resident Monty Ellsworth gave a stark reply:
“I suppose he wanted the children to have a little fun before he killed them.”
The full story of Kehoe — who went from first trying to control a school’s budget to finally just blowing the whole building up, killing 44 people in a fit of rage — is revealed in “Maniac: The Bath School Disaster and the Birth of the Modern Mass Killer” (Little A), out now.