"You had a hundred billion chances and a way to have avoided today,"
Mass Murderer Cho Sueng-Hui
I want to blog about some other stuff but this Virginia Tech thing is still on my mind. I'm not looking for answers and I haven't actually watched the extended coverage on TV which I think is overkill to an extent but still as the details come to light I've just got to speak some more on this issue.
For one to my U.S friends just accept it the man is American. Stop harping on him being South Korean. He came to the U.S as a kid. If someone comes to the U.S as a kid and does great things like develop a cure for some disease or wins an Olympic medal his heritage and birth country are brushed over and he is called American. So to me if someone comes to the US and does something horrible I think the same should hold too. Leave out the double standard. Accept him as an American, even though he wasn't a citizen. He had been in the country 15 years, he spent his formative years there, did his schooling there. He's one of yours.
Stop giving him the Ben Johnson treatment. Oh not sure what that is? That's when you go from one day being feted as a Canadian Olympic medal winner to the next day being tarred and feathered as a Jamaican drug cheat.
Another detail that stuck out to me as details come to hand was that Cho mailed his raving manifesto to NBC between killings. All I can say is dammmmmn! Admit it if this wasn't so real and horrific and was like some Bruce Willis or Arnold movie we'd all be talking about this like it was cool. I mean how cold do you have to be to stop a bloody rampage and go to the post office, line up and send a package? That is just dread! And I mean that word dread however you wish to interpret it.
Oh and will someone step up and blame something other than our usual scapegoat hip hop music here (thank God they haven't mentioned it yet) cause I mean come on take a look at the photos he sent in the manifesto. You know that kid had to be influenced by popular entertainment. The man pose off with his guns like he was a movie star. Of course knowing hip hop's present luck we'll ignore violent movies and video games and someone will find a copy of Biggie's Ready to Die in his crib or 50 Cents DVD Get Rich or Die Trying (an absolutely dreadful movie by the way). Yea I'm just waiting.
You know its going to happen.
The other thing that caught my attention as the details were released was this interview with the owner of the gun shop where Cho bought his guns. The gun stop owner claims that this atrocity occurred not because gun controls are too loose as most have asserted but in fact due to the opposite. He thinks if gun controls were looser then this wouldn't have occurred. He said they need to allow students and staff members to bring their guns on campus at Virginia Tech.
Now off the bat I said to myself wha kinda eediat ting that? This man head musse bad! Oh you want looser gun controls than the ones that allowed a mentally disturbed kid to buy two guns and kill 32 people? You want guns in classrooms so that students can shoot teachers over grades? Way to go ya pieca poppit! Yea that was my initial thought.
But then this morning my wife agreed with my stance and since that rarely happens in my household I went back and thought some more about the gun owners statements. The man is simply taking a classic Cold War stance. If we have weapons and they have weapons they wont attack because they know we can strike back and do damage. Interesting philosophy isn't it. The US and Russia used it for years, Pakistan and India are still using it. It works sort of. You just live with a heightened sense of fear.
Mind you that philosophy assumes that we're dealing with sane, logical persons not persons who have flipped and gone stark raving mad like Cho. So umm no that theory wont stop these types of incidents. It only works if the aggressive party is afraid to die and since Cho and others like him are quite ready to take their own lives its not a deterrent
Of course I really find the American fascination with guns quite unique and also rather interesting and troubling at the same time. The right to bear arms (and I'm not talking about wearing short sleeve shirts) is tantamount to sacred in the U.S. I mean, and this isn't an original thought here, Americans are willing to accept losses of civil liberties supposedly to combat terrorism and they do this with little furor but let anyone talk about taking away someone's guns and lines get drawn for a Civil war. I'm of the opinion that the American government would have greater success passing a law asking U.S men to each give up one testicle than passing a law strengthening gun control.