This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, June 11, 2014:
The media coverage of the murderous attacks on policemen and Las Vegas Walmart shoppers on Sunday predictably ignored the actions of one individual who confronted one of the attackers, giving the police time to neutralize the threats before they became horrendous. His name: Joseph Robert Wilcox.
Largely ignored in USA Today’s reporting of the event, and ignored entirely by the Los Angeles Times, Wilcox’s role in ending the attack before it got out of hand was nearly invisible. USA Today referred to Wilcox as
just “another man” who was one of the five killed in the attack, but the paper gave plenty of space to Nevada’s favorite son, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, to rant about the need for more gun control:
All of Nevada mourns the tragic loss of our neighbors, our friends, and in the case of Officers Alyn Beck and Igor Soldo, our protectors.
Reid failed to mention Wilcox as one of the key protectors of the flock on Sunday who allowed the police enough time to surround the store, confront the criminals and end the threat. Deep in its report, USA Today did finally acknowledge that perhaps Wilcox might have had some role in the fight:
Joseph Wilcox, 31, was in the store and was carrying a concealed weapon. Wilcox walked past Amanda Miller and confronted her husband. Amanda Miller then fatally shot Wilcox.
The Los Angeles Times was even more egregious in its dereliction. It reported only that when the police arrived at the store, they “found a dead shopper at the front of the store … who [had been] innocently going about her [sic] daily life.”
As Alfred Lord Tennyson once wrote, “A lie which is half a truth is ever the blackest of lies.” If one believes the LA Times, they not only will not know the truth of what happened on Sunday, they will have been lied to as well.
Thanks to the local Las Vegas Review Journal, the full story is available, including the role played by Wilcox. Late Sunday morning, Jerad Miller and his wife Amanda entered a pizza shop where two police officers were having lunch. After walking past them, Jerad turned back and murdered both of them and then removed their weapons and ammunition from their bodies. They then left the shop and ran across the mall to the nearby Walmart store.
When Jerad entered the store he fired a round in the air and shouted: “This is a revolution!” This got the attention of Wilcox who was returning an internet modem he’d bought earlier in the day in an attempt to repair his mother’s internet connection. While nearly every shopper in the place bailed out or hid behind shelves or counters, Wilcox did not. He turned to a friend standing next to him and said he had to go “take care of something.”
Wilcox was a mild-mannered unassuming individual who built websites for his customers. He lived at home. He also carried concealed. According to his mother, he often didn’t carry his sidearm, but on Sunday he did. When the flag went up, another part of him revealed itself: Wilcox was a sheepdog. Instead of running away from the threat, he moved forward to it, intending to neutralize it, protecting the flock.
Unfortunately, he didn’t know he was dealing with two threats, not just one. According to plans discovered later, Jerad Miller and his wife Amanda were planning on creating as much havoc and mayhem as they could. After murdering two police officers having lunch at a pizza shop, the Millers removed the officers’ weapons and ammunition and ran across the mall to the Walmart store. Part of their plan was for them to ambush incoming officers with Amanda appearing to be just another customer pushing a cart when they arrived on the scene. Their plans also included an attack on a nearby court-house.
When Wilcox confronted Jared, Amanda pushed her cart alongside Wilcox, pulled out her pistol and fired it, point-blank, into Wilcox’s ribcage, dropping him instantly to the ground.
But that delay gave Las Vegas police time to surround the building, confront the criminals in a brief shootout, and end the threat. The threat ended when Amanda shot her husband and then herself.
Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie, according to the Journal, said that “Joseph died attempting to protect others.” His deputy, Kevin McMahill added: “[Wilcox] was carrying a concealed weapon and he immediately and heroically moved toward the position of Jerad Miller.”
That Wilcox was a sheepdog was made plain when his uncle, John Wilson, learned what had happened. He said:
He heard the threat to everyone and was trying to stop it. He wasn’t trying to be a hero. He was trying to do what he thought should be done.
One of the best definitions of sheepdog comes from the Urban Dictionary:
[Sheepdogs are] certain special people who watch over the rest of the people. The rest are called sheep. Sheepdogs prevent the wolves or bad people or things from hurting the sheep. Sheepdogs understand violence is sometimes necessary in order to protect the sheep. The sheep really don’t like the sheepdog. Sheep prefer to go along their merry way, oblivious to the perils of life. Sheep tolerate sheepdogs’ existence in order to keep the wolves away.
When Wilcox left the house on Sunday morning, he had planned on returning the internet modem and then taking his cousin swimming at a friend’s home. He brought with him his firearm. He also brought with him the mindset of a sheepdog: they don’t want to, but they’re willing to.
All of which directly contradicts the worldview of the national media. They studiously avoided giving Wilcox any significant attention simply because, by his actions that day, he proved what NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre said following the Newton, Connecticut massacre: “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”
When it comes to sheepdogs like Wilcox, the media is deaf, dumb, blind, and mute. For those who survived Sunday’s rampage, Wilcox is a hero.
Las Vegas Review Journal: Shooters carried arsenal, supplies into Sunday rampage
Urban Dictionary: sheepdog definition