The Bowling Green Massacre: Myth or Mandela Effect?


Since you clearly have internet access—if you don’t, please take a moment to thank the homeless man who printed this article off for you at the public library and don’t forget give him a dime to cover his expenses—you’ve probably heard of the Bowling Green Massacre, a horrific act of terrorism, masterminded by a pair of Iraqi refugees and mentioned in passing in an interview by professional Trump apologist Kellyanne Conway. You probably have also heard that it never happened.

The media has been quick to write this off as just one more example of the Trump administration’s post-truth commitment to rewriting the past to fit their political objectives (the “loose constructionist” view of history, if you will), but maybe there’s another, more charitable explanation. Maybe Conway is simply a visitor from a parallel universe.

If that sounds like hogwash and/or balderdash to you, you may want to check out a recent thread on the subreddit dedicated to chronicling encounters with The Mandela Effect. (If you haven’t heard of the Mandela Effect, the phenomenon’s definitive resource site describes it as “what happens when someone has a clear memory of something that never happened in this reality.”) The thread was created by a user named BlueberryPrincess82 who claims to also vividly remember a Bowling Green Massacre and provides some surprisingly specific details of the attack.

Bowling Green Massacre Mandela Effect

If you’re harboring a deeply ingrained prejudice against screenshots (or maybe you’re just on your phone or something), here’s the text of the original post:

I know the press is (unfairly?) hammering Kellyanne Conway about this and everyone just assumes she made it up, but does anyone else remember an actual Bowling Green Massacre?

And I’m not talking about the arms smuggling scheme or whatever that all of the articles I’ve read seem to think she might have been talking about. I mean an actual, honest-to-goodness terrorist attack.

I definitely recall a bombing in Bowling Green that killed … maybe a dozen people? I think it happened either at the end of the Bush administration or the first month of the Obama administration. I’m pretty sure it involved a suicide bomb being set off on a city bus. The way I remember it was a young muslim guy–he could have been in his late teens, possibly early twenties? (I’m ashamed to admit this, but I remember seeing his pictures on the news and thinking he was kind of cute.) He hid an IED inside a dufflebag or knapsack or something and I think he detonated it using an ipod or some kind of portable music player.

Later, they arrested a second, older muslim guy. I think he was responsible for building the bomb. They were definitely both Iraqi refugees, like Conway said.

So am I nuts, or did this happen? Everyone at work thinks I’ve lost it.

Right now, the atmosphere in the thread is pretty skeptical, and no one else from the Bowling Green Massacre universe (BGM-1 if we are BGM-null) has materialized, but who knows what the future (or an alternate past) will bring.

Or maybe collegiate sports are to blame:

Bowling Green Massacre College Football

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    Anthony Mark

    All this proves is that fake news has been around for decades. We should really be ashemed of ourselves for allowing a propaganda machine to be “the tail that wags the dog”. maybe the “freedom of the press amendment should be redefined as the “resposibility to report only facts that are established and agreed upon” amendment. I personally never accept “news” if someone “does me a favor and sends a little link along to “inform me of some juicy littlle tidbit they’ve come across today”; but for that matter, i also dont pick under public coffee tables in foodcourts for recently discarded chewing gum! Congratulations to the American media organization who has in all likelihood lobbed a hot potato in Kelly Anne’s direction ast they di d in sarah Palin’s case during her foray into the past Vice presidential running.

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