Saturday, December 15, 2012

The horror ... the horror ...

Last week when the first dispatch went out over the airwaves saying a child was hit by a school bus at an Amherst elementary school, my mind instantly flashed back to the horror of three years ago where a 2-year-old child broke free from his mother at a bus stop and ended up under the wheels of moving bus.

One of my daughters at the time was the same age as the child killed in that horrific accident.

Yes, it's human nature to always initially fear the worst: You hear about an earthquake in a foreign county where friends or family are vacationing, and instantly assume they have been impacted. Last week I titled that post "A Parent's Worst Nightmare," because nothing can be worse than losing a child. Nothing.

So I'm at a loss to now come up with a headline that captures the bottomless horror of an incident that erases the lives of twenty innocent children, all of them the same age as my youngest.

As CNN anchor Aaron Brown watched the second tower collapse live on air on that unforgettable morning he said somberly, "There are no words ...".

Once again, as our entire nation mourns, there are no words.


Anonymous said...

But let's be honest. Along with the horror we are starting to see acceptance. This is the 7th mass shooting this calendar year.

We're now treating these incidents and the humans whose lives are lost as "collateral damage", part of what comes with protecting a fundamental American right, the right to bear arms.

We've elected to draw the line short of allowing individuals to carry their own rocket launchers and nuclear warheads, but beyond large-capacity weapons that permit a person to spray an area with gunfire without reloading.

I say that line is an arbitrary one, which has nothing to do with what the Founding Fathers intended. The NRA and others say otherwise. We have a significant segment of the population that is absolutely paranoid about ANY discussion of reform on guns.

Dr. Ed said...

John Lott said it best, that man was a suicide bomber. I can think of a lot of things he could have done without a gun that would have murdered far more children, simply stealing a gasoline or propane truck and driving it at full speed into the school comes to mind. Think that would be all that really hard to do (you might not even have to know how to drive a standard shift).

Or you can go down to the local Walmart and if you know what you are doing, you can get the stuff to either make a lethal gas that would kill ALL the children in the school if introduced into the HVAC system, or a bomb that would level the building.

Or you can just intentionally do what the gas crew accidentally did a few weeks down to Springfield. This isn't overly hard to do, the safeguard isn't that one *could* do henious things like this, but that no one would want to.

Look, we can't keep either illegal aliens or illegal drugs out of the country. Do you honestly think we would be able to keep guns out?

BTW -- he was 20 years old.
Aren't you supposed to be 21 to purchase a handgun? Rifle at 18 but I though one had to be 21 to either carry or buy a handgun and that is why cops had to be 21.

So it already was illegal for him to have those guns....

Dr. Ed said...

Larry, what makes someone a homicide bomber (aka "suicide bomber")?

What makes a Palestinian want to blow himself up in hopes of killing Israelis in the process?

Is that relevant to explaining this perp -- essentially similar in that he killed others knowing he would die too.

Larry, they are talking Autism -- that is not a mental illness, but the bullying that one gets because of it can lead to one. Phoebe Prince was ADHD but also bullied, and she committed suicide, which is what this perp did too, he just killed the innocents first.

I also know something about that part of Connecticut -- very rich, very WASP, and very bigoted. Look at the spelling of the perp's last name, and I don't think that family comes from money.

Was he going back to avenge past bullying? We wont' get told, but I am just wondering.

And before people say that Phoebe Prince is different, remember that she didn't just quietly go off somewhere and kill herself -- no she hung herself with a scarf that her sister had given her for Christmas, knowing that it would be her younger sister who found her body. That wouldn't mess up the sister????

Anonymous said...

We let these things happen.

See the following essay from today's New York Times

Anonymous said...

Once again I am hearing the media using the word "heroes" to refer to "victims".

I suspect that there are entire psychology term papers that could be written about the now frequent conflation of these two words by our network mouthpieces.

Walter Graff said...

Switzerland has 8 million people and almost 3 million guns and is not even on the death-by-guns radar. More guns per capita than nearly any country. The problem is far bigger than guns. Start with the fact that Switzerland has near zero divorce rate. What do things like divorce, divisions of families, improper role modeling have to do with this? Look at the mounds of research. Gun control will never happen here. It's in our constitution. Part of the fabric of this country. So we need to work on the important part of the equation, not focus in the tools. That is blaming the car for running the red light. Make it harder for people to drive a car might stop more people from running a red light but the issue never was the drivers license in the first place.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:56, the teachers who protected their children, at least one of whom died in that act of protection, are heroes...more of a hero than you will ever be.

And Ed, more drivel? It's amazing the stuff you spew out - you just make it up as you go along. Please, can't you respect these poor people and just shut your trap for once?

The news reports say that the shooter and his mother lived in one of the more well to do neighborhoods of Newtown. You're taking this guys name and making presumptions from it? How prejudice is that? Shut up and go away already. We don't want to read your claptrap.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:11 p.m.

We can see that you are very angry, but Anon 1:56 p.m. has a good point.

Nine times out of ten these days, the word "hero" is simply used out of guilt, guilt that's borne out of the realization that we're going to do nothing to address this problem.

Anonymous said...

So you, Anon 533 do not think that the teachers who protected their students are heroes? How about the teacher who told the shooter that the students she had just hidden in her classroom were in the gym? She was then shot and killed for her trouble. I'll leave it to others to decide if these teachers who protected their students are heroes.

Dr. Ed said...

And Ed, more drivel? It's amazing the stuff you spew out - you just make it up as you go along. Please, can't you respect these poor people and just shut your trap for once?

NO! Two reasons.

First, I have had enough of the people fanning the hysteria. Everyone fears that this will happen to their child -- and it almost certainaly won't. How about learning CPR (and teaching your children how to swim) because lots and lots of kids drown each year.

This is like the breast cancer hysteria where women fear they will all die of breast cancer when the leading cause (and third leading cause) of death for women is exactly what it is for men, heart attack and stroke. As for cancer, it's lung cancer not breast cancer that kills the most women, and it is increasing rapidly because it is caused by smoking.

Yes breast cancer is terrifying to a woman (or the 2% of men who almost inevitably die from it because neither they nor anyone else is looking for it. Yes this is terrifying, but it is going to be those cigarettes that kill you.

Second, since Virginia Tech, we have tolerated coverups and false flags. FERPA protections expire with the student's death -- Judge Buckley, who wrote it, told me that. But Virginia Tech is still claiming that FERPA prohibits them from telling everyone exactly what it was that pushed that perp over the edge. Same thing in Columbine, we never really REALLY heard everything.

Nothing could justify what these a**h**es have done, but the fact that they have ought to be the proverbial fire siren in the night. HOW are we managing to raise children that do this sort of thing, and are they but the "canary in the coal mine" of a totally screwed up educational system?

But the most important thing here is that much as we didn't respond to 9-11 by locking up everyone who wasn't a White Christian, we need to respond rationally and realistically to this stuff.

Anonymous said...

"and are they but the "canary in the coal mine" of a totally screwed up educational system?"

Mental illness is not the result of screwed up educational system.

Anonymous said...

The real problem is not guns (Canada has more guns, fewer mass shootings); the real problem is how we do not assist parents with kids with mental health issues. It's how it's almost impossible for anyone who might recognize antisocial behavior in another to get them treated. Read the essay "I am Adam Lanza's Mother" on FB and you will hear the agonizing tale of a mother who is afraid of her 13 year old son. He has threatened to kill her many times and the only avenue of help seems to be for him to commit a crime and go to jail -- when he needs a psychiatric hospital.

We need intervention for mental health issues and it is not there, even when the person asks for it. The guns he used were bought legally (by his mother) and he could have made a homemade explosive if he had no access to guns. It's horrible, but the real issue is intervening to prevent these mentally ill people from committing these atrocities.