Earlier I posted on the conspiracy that's cropped up around Larry Sinclair, Donald Young, Larry Bland, and Nate Spencer. I'd like to add a bit more to that topic, especially regarding how this story began.
A much loved choir director at Trinity United Church of Christ, Donald Young, an openly gay man, was murdered on 23 December. Robbery might have played a part in his death, as "Christmas presents and jewelry were missing from his home" (NBC). Although his death was reported in December, it aroused new interest in spring, 2008. The following comment, left at Larry Sinclair's blog, accounts for some of the renewed interest in Mr. Young:
[. . . .]
Larry, take care of yourself! I just heard today that the gay choir director of Obama’s church was murdered at Christmas. Some have suggested that he might have been going to say something about Obama.
A few short hours later, Larry Sinclair appeared on Jeff Rense's broadcast to claim that he’d been in contact with Donald Young in the autumn of 2007. Curiously, Sinclair had never mentioned Young previously, but he now claimed to have had numerous telephone conversations with Young in the months prior to his death, and that Senator Obama directed Young's murder in order to keep him quiet.
This addition to Sinclair’s series of accusations against Senator Obama introduced the 2008 equivalent of the “Clinton Body Count.” No sooner did Sinclair allege that he’d been in communication with Donald Young in the autumn then others began adding names to the list. The first to be added was Larry Bland, a gay man murdered on 17 November. Mr. Bland might have been a victim of robbery, but other possibilities exist: Bland's mother fears that her son's fondness for online meeting sites might have contributed to his end. Moreover, this story suggests that Mr. Bland was not the first victim of a serial killer; his death, however, was close to Mr. Young's. The third man was Nate Spencer, and while you can read about Mr. Spencer here, but let's just say that the gentleman passed away due to illness rather than violence.
That the senator bore responsibility for the three men’s deaths became a matter of “fact” rather than speculation almost immediately, and the majority of such claims appeared on Larry Sinclair’s website; his supporters quickly took their “knowledge” to others sites—including
While rumors took root at Sinclair’s site, which Sinclair actively moderates (in order to remove posts that challenge or insult him), he initially abstained from commenting on this embellishment of his tale of Donald Young; one might suggest that he encouraged the rumor’s development as it fed into his larger scenario—the senator was a murderer.
Sinclair finally negated the inclusion of Larry Bland and Nate Spencer into his Donald Young story in May, 2008—a full two months after the rumors began swirling on his site. On 21 May, he claimed that, while the senator was not responsible for Bland and Spencer’s deaths, Young’s assassins had “tr[ied] to use the Spencer/Bland deaths as a cover for the Young murder.” That is, assassins murdered Young in a manner that echoed other attacks on gay men in
The allegation about Nate Spencer first appeared on Sinclair’s blog on March 26 in response to a poster who wrote, “[y]ou complain about people slandering you, and then you engage in the exact same thing?” To this, supporter “Robin” replied with the first mention of “Nate (Nathaniel) Spencer”:
“It’s not slander when it’s true. It’s really best that you do some research before you comment. Google the names “Donald Young”, and “Nate (Nathaniel) “Spencer”. Both of which were gay, both were part of the choir at Obama’s church, both murdered within days of each other. I do believe there was also a 3rd victim, but I don’t know his name.”
"Robin" included this link to a page at "Covert History," but that blog makes absolutely no mention of any death other than Mr. Young's. I'd like to note that there's something puzzling about the page itself: there's a post about Young, but it's dated "March 8." However, it cites a March 17 National Enquirer story).
It might be assumed that, immediately after Sinclair implicated the Senator in Young’s death, people went to Google. They most likely found a blog written by a young
I also wonder why you can barely find information anywhere that Nathaniel Spencer, from the same church choir as Donald Young, was murdered in the same week, in the same way. Wouldn’t you think that was news, that two people from the same choir were killed execution style, in their homes, in the same week. Mum seems to be the word. What the heck is going on here?
This was posted a mere two days after "Robin" introduced Spencer into the conspiracy. Like "Robin," “Sally Holmes” offers no source for her claim that Spencer was “murdered in the same way” as Young. In fact, she wonders why there isn’t any information available that supports her tale. However, two days later she changed her story; rather than wondering why there’s a lacuna in information, she then claims that,
I wrote about the scrubbing of Internet sites of information about Donald Young and Nathaniel (Nate) Spencer. Right now, it’s even harder to find the information I found just a couple of days ago.
Interestingly, I wonder if I’m the only one who has discovered that Nate Spencer was in Donald Young’s choir and that he was killed in the same week and in the same way as Donald Young, execution style in his own home.
I didn’t find this piece of information in any conventional news source but ran into it a church member’s blog, at least the part about his being in the church choir and his death in the same week as Donald Young’s. I learned about the method of death elsewhere.
Someone, allegedly unknown to Sinclair but quite possible written by himself or a supporter (e.g., Citizen Wells, Victor, Liz, Robin), delivered a letter to prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald on April 21st, claiming that “there is another case that needs your urgent attention. Especially with the recent execution-style murders of Donald Young, Larry Bland, and Nathaniel Spencer, Tony Rezko and Stuart Levine are also potentially at risk until these matters are resolved.” At this point, the allegations became settled “fact,” and remained unquestioned until mid-May.As an aside, I'd like to draw attention to the following exchange between a Sinclair supporter, "Citizen Wells," on Well's own Wordpress site following a post on the "TUCC murders":
[zzzz] // May 17, 2008 at 7:05 pm
Again, the claim that Mr. Spencer was murdered was introduced, without supporting evidence of any kind, and became "fact" immediately. The lack of supporting evidence was later blamed on "internet scrubbing," which, Wells implies, Obama is somehow responsible for. I think this speaks for itself.
From what I understand, Mr. Spencer was very ill for a long time (he was listed as “sick and shut in” in the TUCC bulletin of Novemer 2007, so he might have passed due to natural causes).
If you can direct me to a source (e.g, the Trib, police reports, etc.) that discusses his murder, I would appreciate it.
Sally Holmes Says:
Saturday, May 17, 2008 at 2:46 pm
#9 BA -
There are still some sites with information about Donald Young’s murder. There were two other possible associated murders: Larry Bland and Nathaniel (Nate) Spencer. Nate Spencer died the same week as Donald Young and was also in the church choir. There used to be tons of newspaper story links to these murders on the Internet. It’s virtually all gone now. The Internet has been scrubbed clean of information. It’s impossible to find ONE WORD about Nate Spencer any more.
Thank you for your time and assistance.
Why does this conspiracy matter? Ultimately, it probably doesn't. However, it is, I think, a fine illustration of how people will consciously invent tall tales in order to harm another person. No sooner do those tales get introduced to an eager crowd, then the tales become indisputable fact. One person plants an idea (see "Sally Jones's email above), a few other people add embellishments (Larry Sinclair with Young, "Robin" and "Sally Holmes" with Spencer), and the thing takes on a life of its own.