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Books called a Manifesto after December Killing Spree

Throughout history, various written works have developed a reputation of their own for being affiliated with criminal activity and acts of great evil: Mark David Chapman obsessed over Catcher in the Rye, Hitler penned Mein Kampf. When an institution bans such books out of fear that the ideas contained in them would lead to more violence, the Streisand effect often overcomes any effort to suppress the possession of such books. Under the pseudonym Roman McClay, a man by the name of Lyndon McCleod wrote a series of three books which he titled Sanction. The novels wrestled with a myriad of topics, ranging from hierarchies, vigilantism, neo-tribalism, genetic manipulation, and included revenge fantasies that named people the author had known. Fantasy turned to bloodshed on December 27th, 2021, when Lyndon McLeod killed 5 people in Denver and Lakewood, Colorado before being killed by a police officer whom he wounded.

Of the victims, at least two were named directly in the Sanction novels as people killed by the central character with the same name as the author. Across a series of interviews, McLeod describes his personal history in a way similar to that of the aforementioned character, further fueling the connection between the writing and possible intent for the violence.

The first volume of Sanction consists of 792 pages of challenging arguments, ideas, and conflict.

Since the murders, interviews with Lyndom McLeod have been taken down, and his Instagram page is no longer on the site. Amazon, who sold the Sanction novels, has removed them from their online store. The website affiliated with the book, remains operational at the time of this writing but has announced that the store is at least temporarily closed.

Lyndon McLeod listed a series of statements made about his novels on the website. However, it is uncertain how many, if any of them, are legitimate commentary by those quoted, as the list includes Jordan Peterson, Glenn Beck, Former President Donald Trump, Rolling Stone, Mike Cernovich, and Nassim Nicholas Taleb.

The Daily Beast, as well as other outlets, reported Lyndon McLeod to hold beliefs described as Alt-Right, and violent. If viewed as a manifesto, the Novels claim that the named victims had wronged him in the past.

Lyndon Mcleod camera
Screenshot taken from an alleged camera at one of the shooting locations.

At least one tip had been submitted to the FBI regarding Lyndon McLeod, but did not substantiate an investigation. He, however, had multiple interactions with law enforcement prior to the killings, surrounding claims of fraud and allegations from another science fiction writer. In Sanction, multiple characters disparage the idea of calling the police, arguing it as a form of weakness to require others to do violence on one's behalf.

Possibly predicting the responses to his actions, Lyndon McLeod's characters also talk about how a government or a society both depend on some men to be capable of extreme violence, all the while disdaining them for their abilities. A fundamental element to his writing depends on a relationship between genetics and the social trope of dividing people into hierarchies such as the weak and the strong, and socio-normative types, such as Alpha, Beta, and Sigma categories.

Tying the fiction to reality, Lyndon McLeod targeted tattoo shops, including a location that he formerly owned.

The firearms used have not yet been released, but what looks like an AR-15 style firearm can be seen in unconfirmed footage at one of the locations.

The actions of Lyndon McLeod have highlighted the importance of how we think about violence, as individuals, as armed citizens, and as Gun Culture.

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