An Open Letter To @Hallcyon Regarding His Craig Hicks Comments
‘Galen Hallcyon’ is a video blogger. I’m not familiar with this individual, or their output. However, a post they made on Facebook has come to my attention. The post is dated 22 October 2015, and its author ‘Hallcyon’ appears to claim that he had a conversation with Craig Hicks prior to The Chapel Hill Shootings:
‘I even have conversed with him on these positions. I thought the fellow was highly dangerous and my talks with him even kept me up at night. I was highly disappointed in not being able to reach him as he seemed persuaded by the inflammatory rhetoric of many vloggers. ‘
Further details are unfortunately lacking. This claim is now being used by a number of the usual suspects to confirm that this atrocity is an anti-Muslim hate crime, even before any attempts to substantiate these claims have been made. I reached out to ‘Hallcyon’ on Twitter and in a private email1 in the hope he would clarify a few things. Even though he has remained active on social media in the days following my attempts to communicate, I’m yet to receive a response. Given the potential importance of this information to the official investigation, I’ve posted my email below in the hope that it may prompt a response. I encourage you to share it far and wide.
Given the potential value this information could have to the current Police investigation, I feel I have a responsibility to make them aware of it too – so I will also be forwarding this on to The Chapel Hill Police Department in case they are not already aware.
From: Stephen Knight
Date: Tuesday 10 November 2015
To: Galen Hallcyon
Subject: Craig Hicks Comments
My name is Stephen Knight. I’m a blogger and podcaster. I came across your Facebook post the other day where you state that you had a conversation with Craig Hicks (https://m.facebook.com/hallcyon/posts/893242964057716:0). I reached out to you on Twitter with a few questions, but on reflection I’ve decided email may better lend itself to the expansive responses required. I was wondering if you’d be so kind as to clear some things up for me here please?
1. You describe Craig Hicks as a ‘noted anti-Muslim Bigot’ in your post. What information are you basing this claim on? I cannot find any sentiment or statement from Hicks which suggests he harboured any anti-Muslim animus.
2. When did you have a conversation with Craig Hicks, and in what form did this take? What did he say that concerned you?
3. Given the undeniable public interest in this case, will you be making your conversation with Hicks available to the public?
4. Did you pass this conversation/information on to the police?
I’ve previously reported on Craig Hicks’s documented views on my blog & podcast, which seem somewhat at odds with the comments you have made and the information you have alluded to in your Facebook post.
I would be keen to update my blog with your responses and any new information about Hicks’s possible motives that you are in possession of, unless you have objections.
My interest is not to defend atheists from charges of genuine bigotry, but rather I’m keen to amplify the truth of the matter and adjust my output pending new information.
Were there good reasons to suggest Hicks was motivated by anti-Muslim bigotry, I’d like to make that information known to my readers and listeners, given I’ve spent a considerable amount of time saying there is no evidence2 for such a claim.
I believe it would be of value to provide some details, as certain individuals are currently amplifying your words as though they are irrefutable evidence that Craig Hicks killed three innocent Muslims due to his bigoted, anti-theistic worldview.
I would ask that if you choose to reach out to ‘Hallcyon’ as a result of this blog, you do so in a civil and respectful manner.
Whatever the final findings of the official investigation, I hope the family of those murdered that day get the answers they are looking for and that justice is served.