The Atlantic

A Psychological Theory Explains the Mail Bomber Reaction

Some blame right-wing extremism; others blame left-wing extremism. There isn’t even a suspect yet.
Source: Kevin Coombs / Reuters

There’s no suspect yet for the spate of mail bombs terrorizing America, but don’t expect this minor detail to prevent the opinion-makers from divining the sender’s motives. I mean, who needs a suspect to know exactly what he, or maybe she, secretly wants?

So far, many have blamed . And perhaps that’s only natural given the intended recipients, a Who’s Who list of President Donald Trump’s political nemeses, including Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Maxine Waters, George Soros, even Robert De Niro. I has found that the target is a fairly reliable indicator of the terrorist’s ideology. Who usually bombs abortion clinics? That’s right, anti-abortion extremists. Still, it’s wise to wait for a suspect to materialize before looking into his heart.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic5 min readPolitics
Hong Kong’s Protesters Earn a Victory. They Will Need More.
Officials in Hong Kong said they would suspend controversial proposed legislation. There will be other efforts to erode the city’s freedoms.
The Atlantic6 min read
Tip Your Hotel Maid
My grandmother worked in housekeeping for 10 years—and it’s a job where you could use a gratuity.
The Atlantic10 min read
This Isn’t Going According to Plan for Kirsten Gillibrand
The senator from New York is a battle-tested campaigner who thrives as the underdog. But 2020 is proving to be a much tougher challenge than she thought.