There is some talk that Micah Johnson, the shooter who killed five police during a protest in Dallas, was radicalized online. Johnson’s desire to “kill white people” was either generated, nurtured, or both by browsing websites and communicating through social media.
I think he was radicalized.
As CNN reports, “Micah Johnson’s online history shows he followed dozens of sites that focused on injustices committed on the black community. He visited and liked several websites dedicated to Black Lives Matter and the New Black Panthers, along with the Nation of Islam and the Black Riders Liberation Party, two groups the Southern Poverty Law Center considers hate groups.”
Extremist websites act as pulls towards extremism, and this is enough for the media to go on. It fits with the good guy-bad guy narrative we like. There are groups out there that can simply brainwash a person to do bad things. But there is more to radicalization than what the media can get across in quick soundbites. There is also a push to extremis. It is the push, I believe, that we should be most worried about.