“A day which will live in infamy”; words used by Franklin Delano Roosevelt that echoed throughout the world. From that speech forward, America declared itself as the international leader of global relations. Nobody would be able to harm the American people and get away with it. While this iconic phrase was related to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, surely the same can be said of the tragic event which occurred in a location at the heart of the country. On the morning of April 19, 1995, Timothy McVeigh set off a bomb in Oklahoma City which impacted the nation of America forever. This hindrance is the greatest demonstration of domestic terrorism America has faced to date. In an attempt to voice his disapproval of the way the government controls the people, McVeigh believed striking back against a prominent government target was the best way for his dissatisfaction to be heard. What happened on that spring morning has lasting effects which are still evident today. There is no getting around the fact that the act Timothy McVeigh performed devastated the lives of many Americans and set America on a new course to criminal defense.
Timothy McVeigh came from a rough background, as most of the people responsible for large scale criminal offenses do. His parents were divorced, he lived with his dad, and he was bullied at school; more or less alike to many other teenagers. But what set Timothy McVeigh apart were his fantasies about retaliation. He wanted to punish others who had made fun of him or taken advantage of him. This led to many drawings in school which included his revenge ideas. What made McVeigh extreme was his hatred for the government. He believed the United States Government was the biggest bully of them all. During his time in high school, McVeigh was introduced to guns by his grandfather and once he graduated, he became infatuated by the Second Amendment. At age 20 McVeigh decided to join the army due to his growing passion for weapons. McVeigh claimed that the army taught him how to turn off his emotions which would later lead to his detached mindset for the victims of his crime. After only four years in the army, McVeigh was discharged, shortly after not passing the psychological evaluation for the United States Army Special Forces. After not being able to find a suitable, ‘non-liberal’ place to live, McVeigh decided to find some of his army buddies. This was a pointless cycle however and Timothy McVeigh ended up moving back in with his father. His father however did not share the same ideologies as him and so McVeigh moved out to his own apartment. McVeigh expressed his views by writing to newspapers about taxes and writing to a congressman complaining about the lack of protection police officers provide. His hatred of the government was evident in all of his actions, and he did not enjoy large groups of which he made clear after leaving the NRA. This loathing culminated with an event that determined McVeigh to seek retribution for the government’s lack of accountability. The Waco Siege was the breaking point for Timothy McVeigh and was what made him unwavering in his choice to conspire against America (Russakoff and Kovaleski). McVeigh believed that the government did not handle the situation well and they were unconstitutional in their use of CS gas against the women and children. Shortly following the Waco Siege, McVeigh moved in with Terry Nichols, a former friend from the army and a future co-conspirator. During this time, Nichols taught Timothy McVeigh how to make bombs out of various materials and McVeigh began ending his ties to childhood friends and family members; foreshadowing what was to come.
Timothy McVeigh was resolute at this point to avenge the lives of those killed in the Waco Siege. Along with Terry Nichols, McVeigh began the hunt for a way to get back at the government. His first intentions were to get back at federal agents who had been a part of the Waco incident. McVeigh contemplated a...
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