Tragedy in Connecticut

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MegB

howeird beale wrote:

Catchfire wrote:

Unionist wrote:
I was puzzled by Michael Stewart's rabble piece.

Yes, well fortunately I can assist you in your puzzlement since (surprise?) I wrote it.

 

Now i see why you don't provide explanations for most of your moderation calls.

Specifics are anathema to you.

What a vague, faint hearted, tenuous and confused mess.

You are entitled to your opinion on the piece, of course, but tying it into moderating is a cheap shot unworthy ... actually, quite worthy of you.  If you don't have anything constructive to add to the thread, stay out of it.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Just saw on one of the news channels that gun stores and gun shows did well on the weekend after the Newtown shooting - sales were driven by fears that Obama will bring in new gun control legislation. I think we've seen this movie before. Frown

Bacchus

Well the barn door's been bolted open on that one Boom Boom. If I lived in the States, I'd be buying guns too because unless they are going to ban the suckers and rip them out of peoples hands, any measure will be too little too late.

Unionist

Bacchus wrote:

If I lived in the States, I'd be buying guns too because unless they are going to ban the suckers and rip them out of peoples hands, any measure will be too little too late.

Not now, wait till the "debate" has subsided and the price goes down. Buy jeep, shell deer. Or something.

 

Bacchus

Well truly I would have gotten them as soon as I starting living in the states, unless I lived in a state with good gun control (are there any? )

Caissa

I just read the article by Michael Stewart. It seemed very heart-felt. I hope Michael elaborates on his last paragraph in a future blog post.

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

"First We Mourn, Then We Organize"

The above is a link to a blog entry by Milwaukee teacher Bob Peterson. Here's a good quote, btw:

Bob Peterson wrote:
But, as Nicholas Kristof wrote in Sunday’s New York Times, “What do we make of the contrast between heroic teachers who stand up to a gunman and craven, feckless politicians who won't stand up to the N.R.A.?”

There are plenty of resources (and links on Peterson's blog) about speaking with children when they have questions about living in a violent society. Actually, there's a great deal of resources. I guess they need it... what with the epidemic of mass killings and incessant gun violence in the USA.

shartal@rogers.com

I was both touched and upset by the I am Adam Lanza's mother piece. I personally know of families that live afraid of teen age children with serious mental health problems. I also know many who are afraid for their family members, particularly in relation to self harm and suicide. Many live with both mental health and addiction related fears.

Significant numbers of both teen and adults live with both severe mental health and addiction disabilities. Personality disorders are part of mental health. Disowning these disorders as not really part of mental health concerns is to avoid the issue. The real question how can individuals who live with cognitive and perceptual impairments be supported to live at liberty without conflict. .

Of course gun control is necessary but this tragedy is not only about guns. It is also about rage, grief, loneliness and lack of effective supports

6079_Smith_W
Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

This was posted on my Facebook page just now - and I saw it on CNN today as well.

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

If this whole tragedy hasn't made you all sick enough...Rumour has it that the yahoos from the Westboro Baptist Church are planning on showing up to the funerals.

Brace yourselves.

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

Hackers target Westboro Baptist Church after Newtown threat

Quote:

After church leaders announce plans to protest at site of school massacre, Anonymous posts the personal information for dozens of members of the extremist group, including names, e-mail addresses, and phone numbers.

I think they were going to pray at the school to thank god for his judgment, not protest at the funerals, seeing how Connecticut is one of the states that allow same sex marriages... at least that's what I read.

6079_Smith_W

I don't think so Bec. Their schtick is definitely the maximum offense, and that means funerals. They threatened to come up here once after a poor fellow was decapitated on a bus.... then chickened out after the cops wouldn't protect them from the reaction.

lagatta

I'm actually surprised no war veterans have gone on a shooting spree against them yet, for picketing military funerals... 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Evan Solomon had a young guest, a survivor of the Columbine massacre whose sister was killed, and whom has been working with young people ever since. The guest was trying to explain the root causes of young people going on killing sprees like Newtown, but Solomon cut him off because all Solomon wanted to talk about was the gun control issue. Evan Solomon can be a real prick sometimes.

6079_Smith_W

lagatta wrote:

I'm actually surprised no war veterans have gone on a shooting spree against them yet, for picketing military funerals... 

It was bikers who let it be known they would come to the funeral in WInnipeg (though they had no relation to the deceased, as far as I know). Bikers have also played a prominent role in keeping that hate group away from some funerals in the U.S.

 

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

On a related topic, I found this article very thought-provoking:

http://finance.fortune.cnn.com/2012/12/17/the-money-behind-the-massacre/...

and wonder how to find out whether OMERS, OPSEU or OTPP and other public service pension plans have invested in this or a similar company?

Tommy_Paine

I was just watching PBS news hour, and there does seem to be some impetus for some kind of change.  Diane Finestien will be putting forward a bill that seems to have some pretty sweeping changes, relative to the U.S. scene.  "Red Dog" Democrats who have been allies of the N.R.A. in the past have broken ranks with them, and I'm told that some Republicans have also.

Unlike other incidents where the N.R.A. came out swinging, they seem to be laying very, very low this time.  

There is a sense that something is different this time.

If all that's true, go ahead and cry or be enraged at just what it took for it to be different this time--maybe.

Meanwhile, I saw on a news crawl that 10 Afghani girls were killed by a landmine today.  If anyone is counting. 

 

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Legally recognize Westboro Baptist Church as a Hate group..

 

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/legally-recognize-westboro-bap...

 

Also hit them where it hurts by riddening them tax-exempt status.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I found this article very thought provoking.  I agree with the premise that no amount of legislation or mental health services will heal the US until they heal their violent society.

Quote:

American culture is a violent culture; it has always been a violent culture.  There is a smorgasbord of partial explanations for why this is.  I will address gun control and mental health below, but the culture of violence in which they are embedded consistently evades serious discussion.  A sick society produces sick people.  A society in which many forms of violence are valorized will produce many incarnations of violence that are not.  This does not excuse the killer’s actions, or rationalize his motivations, but it is an honest assessment of factors which produce such behavior and which legislation and medicalization will not succeed in muffling.

...

 The state does not solve social crises, the state uses social crises to reinforce a range of social relationships and control certain populations.  The history of gun legislation in the last century and a half is one of black criminalization.  From the Black Codes that barred freed slaves from owning guns, to the criminalization of open-carry in California targeting the Black Panthers, to more modern mandatory sentences for gun possession and gun enhancements primarily utilized against blacks and Latinos, gun laws (like most criminal law) have a significant and measurable racial bias in application.  Blacks are over five times more likely to be arrested for gun possession than whites.  In the context of mass shootings, white people commit 77% of all mass murders in the U.S.  In keeping with the U.S. commitment to racial profiling and the new federal policing brand “Smart on Crime,” why is there no clarion call for the targeted enforcement of existing gun law on those who commit the overwhelming majority of these crimes, specifically white, middle-class men with ages ranging from young adult to middle-aged?

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/12/18/misdiagnosing-the-culture-of-viol...

Polunatic2

I've been seeing a lot of NRA-type comments about banning knives, shovels and cars because people are killed by them too. Why not ban old age and cancer too they might ask. Then there's the twitter hashtag #armtheteachers in which its twits argue that arming everyone in the school would prevent these kinds of mass killings. Of course they neglect to mention that in situations of panic, darkness, smoke, etc. (Aurora), only the best trained people can possibly have a chance at success. There is likely to be more collateral damage as was the case recently in New York when police opened fire on a shooter outside the Empire State Building and wounded 9 bystanders. 

George Lakoff had an interesting piece in which he extols Obama's response as a good example of changing the frame. 

Conservatives have argued that guns = freedom, and that there should be no limit on such freedom. The president trumped their argument: The price of not protecting the nations’ children is too high. Permitting the mass murder of our children is not freedom.

Polunatic2

Oops. Double post. 

Serviam6

This whole thread seems to be about guns and making them harder to access but doesn't seem to touch on the mental state of this killer, his history, factors leading up to his murder-spree or what else could have been explored in order to prevent this from happening.

Unionist

Obama's spokesperson just said that he supports Senator Diane Feinstein's bid to revive the Clinton ban (1994-2004) on semi-automatic assault weapons.

Better than nothing. Any measure that makes kids think that firearms are bad things, is fine by me.

Given all the frenzied adoration of firearms in the U.S., and given how that country routinely shoots and maims and executes its own people and people all around the world, and makes money off arms and video games, it will be a very strenuous and long uphill battle.

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

Serviam6 wrote:

This whole thread seems to be about guns and making them harder to access but doesn't seem to touch on the mental state of this killer, his history, factors leading up to his murder-spree or what else could have been explored in order to prevent this from happening.

Of course these are important issues, especially relevant to future preventive efforts, but I think the reason why there's not much discussion of them here (or elsewhere) is that we don't have the needed factual information. Possibly we never will. There is much speculation, and as has been noted before, much false information circulated in the media, about the shooter's family, medical history, personality and so on. 

School shootings and their causes/contributing factors etc. have been investigated before, however:

One study with relevant points is here:

http://www2.ed.gov/admins/lead/safety/preventingattacksreport.pdf

A book-length anaysis which can be read online for free is here:

http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?isbn=0309084121

Some surprising factoids that emerged from a cursory reading of the reports:

-- most school shooters were good students (A's and B's; few were failing)

-- most school shooters had never been suspended for behaviour issues, nor had any brushes with the law

-- most had not shown any significant variation from their normal level of involvement in activities, interests, friendships, social interactions etc. in the weeks before the shooting

-- very few were social isolates; about half were considered mainstream socially and had friends and engaged in activities that were considered mainstream by their peers

-- about a quarter socialized with non-mainstream friends, but were not socially isolated

-- most attackers reported being bullied or persecuted

 

From the Safe Schools report (my first link above), some key findings:

Key Finding 1:Incidents of targeted violence at school rarely are sudden, impulsive acts.

Key Finding 2:Prior to most incidents, other people knew about the attacker’s idea and/or plan toattack.

Key Finding 3:Most attackers did not threaten their targets directly prior to advancing the attack.

Key Finding 4:There is no accurate or useful profile of students who engaged in targeted school violence.

Key Finding 5:Most attackers engaged in some behavior, prior to the incident, that caused othersconcern or indicated a need for help.

Key Finding 6:Most attackers had difficulty coping with significant losses or personal failures.Many had considered or attempted suicide.

Key Finding 7:Many attackers felt bullied, persecuted, or injured by others prior to the attack.

Key Finding 8:Most attackers had access to and had used weapons prior to the attack.

Key Finding 9: In many cases, other students were involved in the attack in some capacity.

Key Finding 10 : Despite prompt law enforcement responses, most attacks were stopped by meansother than law enforcement intervention, and most were brief in duration.

There's elaboration on all of these findings, and a discussion of preventative measures.

 

Unionist

A wonderful post by... Carlos Santana! Yes, one and the same:

http://supremedesignonline.com/2012/carlos-santana-stop-acting-surprised...

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

I guess this is what gun nuts ultimately hope for;

http://www.ctvnews.ca/world/11-year-old-takes-gun-to-school-fearing-anot...

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Someone tweeted (jokingly I hope) on CNN a few days ago that all tots should be armed so they can shoot back.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

contrarianna

 

Quote:

Newtown kids v Yemenis and Pakistanis: what explains the disparate reactions?

Numerous commentators have rightly lamented the difference in how these childrens' deaths are perceived. What explains it?

        Glenn Greenwald   
        guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 19 December 2012

My Guardian colleague George Monbiot has a powerful and eloquent column this week provocatively entitled: "In the US, mass child killings are tragedies. In Pakistan, mere bug splats".[bold added]
....
There's just no denying that many of the same people understandably expressing such grief and horror over the children who were killed in Newtown steadfastly overlook, if not outright support, the equally violent killing of Yemeni and Pakistani children. Consider this irony: Monday was the three-year anniversary of President Obama's cruise missile and cluster-bomb attack on al-Majala in Southern Yemen that ended the lives of 14 women and 21 children: one more child than was killed by the Newtown gunman. In the US, that mass slaughter received not even a small fraction of the attention commanded by Newtown, and prompted almost no objections (in predominantly Muslim nations, by contrast, it received ample attention and anger).

It is well worth asking what accounts for this radically different reaction to the killing of children and other innocents. Relatedly, why is the US media so devoted to covering in depth every last detail of the children killed in the Newtown attack, but so indifferent to the children killed by its own government? ....

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/dec/19/newtown-drones-child...

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

 

Cops and firefighters made a human wall in Newtown, Connecticut so the Westoboro Baptist Church wouldn't get near victims.

      

6079_Smith_W

There are only five members of Westboro who are not related in some way to Fred Phelps, and they are quite a small (though heavily-lawyered and well-connected)  group:

http://boingboing.net/2012/12/19/infographic-understanding-the.html

 

NDPP

The Ulimate Logic of a Society Built on Mass Murder  -  by Glen Ford

http://www.opednews.com/articles/The-Ultimate-Logic-of-a-So-by-Glen-Ford...

"Mass murder is at the core of the American national religion.."

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

(second attempt at posting)

The NRA released their response to the Newtown shooting: put armed guards inside every school - elementary, secondary, college, and university - in the USA. Maybe they included nursery schools and day care centres, too.

Why stop there? Why not have armed guards inside every church, synagogue, temple, mosque, hospital, doctor's office, all banks, restaurant, theatre, concert hall, movie theatre...?

The NRA is freaking ridiculous. I think they're a terrorist organization and should be banned altogether. Their presentation today was interrupted by two protests.

troublesome_thomas

My initial reaction to any NRA statement or position is generally to brand them as self-absorbed psychopaths, but I actually kind of like the LaPierre's ideas this time around. It is actually quite an enlightened position if you follow the logic ...

First of all, the NRA wants to post armed police in every school in America. Recent figures indicate there are roughly 100,000 public schools in the nation, so at a (conservative) estimate of $50,000 annual salary for each of these police officers, that is $5 billion in new spending.

Second, the NRA wants to develop a national registry of mentally-ill people. To achieve this, mentally ill people would have to be identified. To achieve this, substantial new resources would need to be directed toward mental health programs, diagnosis, early intervention, and support. So let's just double that $5B for school police and call it $10B even. Annually.

Recent figures indicate there are roughly 15 million guns sold in America every year. Simple math then tells us the NRA is officially supportive of a new tax of $667 per firearm sold to support these new programs. Or they might prefer to spread the cost across firearms and ammunition rather than just a flat $667 tax on each weapon. We would need to ask LaPierre for more details on his planned approach, but either way, I think this is an excellent opening position from the NRA - a group that has historically been viewed as rather uncooperative and unwilling to shoulder the burden of social devastation inflicted by firearms in America.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Putting armed guards in the schools and locking down the schools during classes just moves the targets. What about school recess and football or hockey games? While the kids are waiting for buses after school?

Serviam6

Boom Boom wrote:

(second attempt at posting)

The NRA released their response to the Newtown shooting: put armed guards inside every school - elementary, secondary, college, and university - in the USA. Maybe they included nursery schools and day care centres, too.

Why stop there? Why not have armed guards inside every church, synagogue, temple, mosque, hospital, doctor's office, all banks, restaurant, theatre, concert hall, movie theatre...?

The NRA is freaking ridiculous. I think they're a terrorist organization and should be banned altogether. Their presentation today was interrupted by two protests.

Did we expect anything else from them?

eastnoireast

i heard the current review on cbc wednesday. one of the three guests was a survivor (previously mentioned in this thread) of the columbine massacre, whose sister rachael was killed there; she had previously issued a "challenge to her generation" and rachael's challenge is the name of his foundation, who he said speaks to 3 million kids a year about these issues. he was great.

there were a few mentions of "violent video games, where one "shoots people down" with no context, as being a cause or factor (which i agree with).

but nobody laid any blame on the adults, on the "throw them in jail" lynch mob mentality we tolerate, or the rick hilliers' of our world, talking about the afghan mission in terms of ridding the world of "creeps and scumbags". (or was that alberta referring to easterners in the 70's?).

anyway, blame the youngsters, throw in economic pillaging by the 1%, a lifetime of additive-drenched shit food, video games, and drone strikes, then be surprised when they act out what they learned.  really sad.  there is a different buzz about this one though, maybe something will stick in the larger consciousness.

peace.

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

A friend wrote on Facebook: "The NRA is worried that the gun laws will be changed so they are trying to sell this idea to keep the focus off of changing gun laws."

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture
Serviam6

eastnoireast wrote:

 

there were a few mentions of "violent video games, where one "shoots people down" with no context, as being a cause or factor (which i agree with).

but nobody laid any blame on the adults, on the "throw them in jail" lynch mob mentality we tolerate, or the rick hilliers' of our world, talking about the afghan mission in terms of ridding the world of "creeps and scumbags". (or was that alberta referring to easterners in the 70's?).

How about the lip service we pay to anti-bully campaigns. Bullying is alive and well in our school system and still largely unaddressed.

Tommy_Paine

 The NRA took a week to craft a message, and all it seemed to accomplish was to re-stoke the fire of outrage.  This will go down as one of the biggest P.R. fiascos of all time.

I was afraid that they'd come out with some Fabian tactic, where they agreed that some form of gun control was in order-- then quietly lobbied against those measures while the American public lost it's sense of outrage over time.

I don't think this is going away any time soon, and we may be seeing the demise of the influence of the N.R.A. 

NorthReport

Agreed

NDPP

Making Guns in Your Garage

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/technology/micwright/100007925/making-guns-...

"...How 3D printers will revolutionise the manufacture of deadly weapons.."

Serviam6

NDPP wrote:

Making Guns in Your Garage

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/technology/micwright/100007925/making-guns-...

"...How 3D printers will revolutionise the manufacture of deadly weapons.."

 

Wow that's scary. What the hell.  How do you print guns? Like the printer actually bends the metal into the shapes or it prints some kind of design on a sheet of metal then someone cuts and bends the metal? I've never heard of that before but it's freaky.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

3D printers are the first stage of fully functional Star Trek replicators.  Earl grey tea please.

 

 

Chess piece printed by the Form 1.

 

 

Sea creature printed by the Replicator 2.

http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/gadgets/reviews/3d-printer-pr...

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

onlinediscountanvils

That's really fucked-up. Shame on the New York Post and Daily News.

6079_Smith_W

How detailed are 3-D printers? More detailed than this:

http://www.makerbot.com/blog/2011/04/01/makerbot-introduces-3d-printable...

They can print sugar, plastics, and presumably material that is hard enough to serve as a firing chamber. After all, ceramic car engines are already a possibility.

 

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