Saturday, April 21, 2007

Oh, That Cho

I tend to not like to chime in on the big stories du jour, since so many people have so much to say I figure there isn’t much I could add. Like Don Imus, for instance. I think you can pretty much all figure out where I stood on that and it was such a non-story I didn’t really feel like contributing to the discussion since I thought the discussion was already quite extraneous. So it is not that I have great feelings about the massacre in Blacksborg this week, but I just feel like sharing a variety of thoughts I had on it that I actually hasn’t heard addressed that much.

First off, I found this event WAY more upsetting than 9/11. Most likely because I can relate to college kids in a classroom much more than I can to a bunch of New York Stockborkers and whatnot. And for some reason I find the killer to be much more interesting than the 9/11 dudes. Also, there is not this “This will change the way we live” attitude after this that just allows it to be sad and not a referendum on national security. You really think any laws or agencies are going to be created because of this? HA!

And in case you missed it, once again many are calling for stricter gun laws now. But again, they miss the point that other countries like Canada have equally open gun laws and yet somehow they lack the persistence of whack jobs shooting up schools, post offices and fast-food restaurants. Passing strict gun control is first of all unconstitutional in many respects, but also fails to address the real problem which is our culture. It’s kind of like saying “Well, if we give more money to welfare moms their problems will be solved.” No, their problems will be solved when we eliminate the financial incentive to giving birth to future felons. Use that money to pay for their abortion and you save the welfare, criminal justice and penal systems a lot of money. I am going on a tangent but it really irritates me that people love to blame guns and the gun lobby for this when the problem is the society that allowed a guy like Cho to develop into the psycho that he is.

And about this Cho character…You did this because you hated debaucherous rich kids? Buddy, you went to VIRGINIA FREAKING TECH! It is the school the kids at UVA look down on as being the cheap-beer drinking Ag school full of white trash and kids too stupid to get into Charlottesville. I think Cho would have lasted roughly three hours at UM before he killed half of Coral Gables. Okay, I know he was crazy but his rage just seems a little misplaced. I don’t recall seeing too many BMW’s parked around Blacksburg. And aside from the football players, I have yet to meet a group of Hokies with a penchant for fine cognac. Or vodka. “Your Natty Light and your Milwaukee’s Best weren’t enough? Your F150’s and Camaros weren’t enough?” That might have made some sense.

The thing about Cho is, we all know guys like him. Some friend of mine told me of a guy he knew his freshmen year who told a dorm room full of guys “Tomorrow, I’ll change the way you look at this school forever.” And you know what he did “tomorrow?” Slept until 2, went and had lunch, drank some beer, watched TV and went to sleep. I understand that sometimes you really should look at a guy who writes weird plays or manifesting rants or takes creepy cell phone pictures a little closer, but 99,999 times out of 100,000 this guy is harmless. What I hope does not happen is a sort of modern-day witch hunt, where every kinda-creepy eccentric kid is hauled in for extensive medical examination and kicked out of school just because he’s a little weird. Shit, you could look hard enough at this blog and find reason to have me committed. But for the sake of the alternative, fringe-dwelling weird kids out there, lets not all assume they are potential school shooters. I understand sometimes it is too late when you find it out, but there is no sense in ruining their lives because Cho was the gross exception.

I’m not sure what would have stopped this from happening, perhaps nothing. Much like so many tragedies, we all like to think they were preventable but, sadly, the only thing tighter restrictions do is inconvenience the innocent. The guilty, like water seeing through a crack, will always find a way.

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At 9:42 PM, Blogger Jordi said...

Hey man, long time reader, first time caller.
As far as I know, no veteran was killed by Mr. Cho. That surprised me. During my time at FSU, I had an Iraq or Afghanistan vet in almost every class. Apparently Mr. Cho knew his "hunting ground". Anyone with military experience would have reacted appropriately and stopped the shooter. Agree?
Keep up the great work.

At 11:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post, very fair and rational. As a somewhat reformed loner weirdo, I kind of take offense at Cho being lumped in with our group. Cho was an extremely selfish asshole, and while we are usually as self pitying as he was, we also usually try a little harder to connect with people. He pushed everyone away and then complained he was alone. I think he was just more an asshole than insane.

At 2:56 PM, Anonymous another anonymous said...

Man, sounds like Cho was probably in dire need of some tail. I'll bet this thing never would've gone down had he used the money with which he purchased the guns and ammunition to procure the services of a "professional" instead.

time for us to get off of the puritanical high horse and legalize prostitution.

At 9:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Story fell in your lap. Merry Christmas.

At 11:48 AM, Anonymous Johnson said...

"Some friend of mine told me of a guy he knew his freshmen year who told a dorm room full of guys “Tomorrow, I’ll change the way you look at this school forever.” And you know what he did “tomorrow?” Slept until 2, went and had lunch, drank some beer, watched TV and went to sleep. "

He also told everyone that his dad died and when our RA called his home, his dad answered the phone. He had been running constantly, never showering and alternating b/t crying and laughing like a loon in his room. He was pulled out of school right after the "dead dad" incident. I'm surprised he came back the next year. We laughed off the comment he made about changing the way we look at school and dismissed it as rantings from a kid slowly going loony toons because it was before Columbine. We live in a vastly different world now.

At 11:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If anything, this story brings up a an often overlooked subject and that is mental health in America and the lack of medical coverage and services that are available to the most vulnerable age group 18- 25 year olds. The majority of mental illnesses occur between 18-25. It is sad that around 75% of people are age lack health insurance, not that it would help anyways as most plans only cover 20 days if that of mental health hospilization. You can look up "mental health parity" for more information on this subject. Most people who have dealt with some one who suffers from a severe mental illness knows that this is inadequate. However, I believe Cho could have been stopped had there been enough education by his parents, the authorities and the campus of mental health issues.
The only thing I hope that comes from this is that the mental health issue is brought to light and people are more knowledgeable on this subject.

At 1:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If someone is demented enough to want to cause so much harm, gun control won't stop them. I agree that most weird people are harmless, but it's impossible to tell until they go and do something like this.

At 7:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I went to school with him.

At 8:17 AM, Blogger arielgirl said...

So he wrote weird plays. So did Quentin Tarantino, and look where that got him.

We can't start a witch hunt.

At 6:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder what would happen if everyone had a gun? Probably a lot of people would be killed at first, but then the crazy people would get weeded out by people defending themselves or by bystanders. I say give everyone a gun, its worth it.

We should start a "Guns and Abortion" lobby.

At 9:03 PM, Anonymous White Dade said...

Jordi - Disagree. If he comes in guns blazing and you are unarmed there ain't a whole lot you can do. A hostage situation is a little different since the guy isn't firing at will, but it would realyl depend on the specifics of the situation.

Anon - NO, I think he was pretty much batshit nuts. I know a lot of assholes and none of them would have done this.

AA - I'm not sure about that. My guess he would have just startign killing prostitiutes instead.

Anon2 - Happy Hannukah, actually.

Johnson - Post columbine, I'm guessing since you were high on Fire Brewed you still would have just gaffed him off.

Anon3 - Excellent point. People really do ignore mental health issues and that is perhaps the only thing that maybe could have stopped this guy.

SCC - So what do you do then? I have no diea

Gen - Whoa. I am 2 degrees from Cho? Yeesh.

Arielgirl -And Quentin is obsessed with violence too. I guess some use their powers for good.

Anon4 - I call it the "Pro-Death" lobby. There are too many fuckign people. Fry the criminals, give us all guns, and stop having children.

At 10:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That pic with the hammer is so gay its hilarious! Off the charts on the Unintentional Comedy Scale.


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