The gunman who killed two and wounded nine others in a Louisiana theater was a Christian extremist who supported the Westboro Baptist Church, argued against women in the workplace, and advocated for violence against abortion providers.
According to his presence on social media, John Russell Houser, also known as Rusty Houser, was an outspoken conservative Christian extremist who praised white supremacist and anti-gay organizations and espoused right-wing, anti-government conspiracy theories.
On Twitter Houser expressed admiration and support for the Westboro Baptist Church declaring:
The Westboro Baptist Church may be the last real church in America (members not brainwashed.)
Houser only issued two tweets on Twitter. The other tweet reads:
If you don’t think the internet is censored, try reading a newspaper from a country that hates liberals the way I do.
On his Facebook page, Houser linked to an article called “A woman’s place in the church and the weak church elder.” Commenting on the post he wrote:
The bible doesn’t ask me to like what it says, only to obey it.
On his Facebook page Houser also posted a link to an article arguing for strong church leadership and another arguing that Americans are being brainwashed by liberals into hating the U.S.
On both Twitter and Facebook Houser’s presence was minimal. Houser only liked two pages on Facebook, one of which was named “I hate liberals!”
However, Raw Story reports Houser was a frequent guest on the “Rise & Shine” talk show on WLTZ-TV in the 1990s where he frequently argued for extreme conservative positions, such as arguing against women in the workplace and advocating violence against abortion providers.
In addition, Think Progress reports Houser wrote extensively about being a “lone wolf” on a forum dedicated to the New York chapter of Golden Dawn, a neo Nazi group. The following is an excerpt:
I do not want to discourage the last hope for the best, but you must realize the power of the lone wolf, is the power that come forth in ALL situations. Look within yourselves.
According to reports Houser had a history of mental illness and financial trouble. Police called Houser a drifter and said he had only been in Lafayette since early July.