24 April 2013
Apologies to Paul Kevin Curtis
The man accused last week of sending ricin-laden envelopes to the President, a U.S. Senator from Mississippi and others is apparently a crackpot but not, as far as we know for now, a terrorist. All charges have been dropped against Paul Kevin Curtis, the Elvis impersonator supposedly obsessed over an alleged organ-harvesting conspiracy. It now seems that Curtis's authentic mania made him a perfect target for a frame. Without naming names this time, investigators now believe that another man used Curtis's characteristic sign-off line, "I am KC and I approve this message," to send police in Curtis's direction. Since I used Curtis's arrest as an occasion to speculate about the viability of profiling conspiracy theorists as potential terrorists, I feel obliged to post this follow-up as a clarification. Alas, the indications of a frame-up in this case will probably only make more Americans more paranoid. I'm sure many people besides their parents feel that the Tsarnaev brothers, their adventures of last Thursday and Friday notwithstanding, have been framed for the Boston Marathon bombing, and everyone who wants to believe that other otherwise obviously guilty suspects were framed by shadowy forces will point to the Mississippi case as justification for their knee-jerk assumptions. Nice work, government!