EUGENE, Ore. — Almost a year before Sandy Hook shooter Adam Lanza opened fire at a Connecticut elementary school, he reportedly called in to a radio show on the University of Oregon campus.
John Zerzan has hosted “Anarchy Radio” on KWVA every Tuesday night for 12 years.
It’s a weekly show that attracts listeners from not only Eugene, but all over the country.
“The calls aren’t screened. Sometimes there aren’t any calls, sometimes there could be as many as seven or eight in an hour. You never know. That’s what makes live radio fun and very interesting,” said Zerzan.
That’s why he says he wasn’t surprised by Lanza’s call.
It lasted about seven minutes.
For the length of the call, the caller–who’s now identified as Lanza, but assumed a different name–talks about a domesticated chimpanzee named Travis, who attacked his owner’s friend.
“It can be seen as entirely parallel to the attacks, random acts of violence that you bring up on your show every week, committed by humans, which the mainstream also has no explanation for,” said Lanza. “I don’t think it would be such a stretch to say that he very well could have been a teenage mall shooter or something like that.”
Two years later, Zerzan remembers the call not because of the eerie connection to a mass shooting, but because of the story about the chimp.
“Well I was shocked, you know since I had no idea who it was, and of course he hadn’t done anything yet. It was a year before the massacre in Connecticut. I’m just really floored by that,” said Zerzan. “Just because of the story about the chimp, which we hadn’t heard, so we were kind of like, oh really; that it was more that than actually the point he was making, and going back to it, that’s what’s really chilling and ironic.”
Zerzan says he’s hopeful this call surfacing will help start a conversation about society’s impact on people.
“It takes a madman that is somebody who’s so heinous as to murder small children to make that point. That too was, I found that really, that makes it doubly awful in a way.”
Lanza’s former classmate recently confirmed for the New York Daily News that Lanza made the phone call.
According to the newspaper, Lanza also mentioned the phone call on an Internet message board.
Zerzan says next Tuesday he’ll be discussing the call during his show on KWVA 88.1 at 7:00 p.m.