Hokie Reflections

Since everything has been low on the radar now, there are many things that came from the shootings:

The Shooter

I’m not going to put his name out of respect of friends and family who reads this.   The pictures were disturbing and the discussion ends there.  We get to know the person there from classmates and family members saying he was quiet, shy, and got bullied.  If he was a loner, those were telling signs why he was a troubled man.   I’m amazed no one reached out to help this person.  If he had a village or a couple of people to help, it would have been a different situation.  At a young age if people mocked you before high school, you’re scorn for life.  Now, some debated if we need forgiveness for him.  I can say he is to blame of the shooting, but this reflects us as a society that people still have that meanness that causes the person to do this.  If you want to help, just strike a conversation or help the person join a group.  His attitude shouldn’t have happen at a young age.

Gun Control

My view has been generally pro-gun control.  However, from classes I attended and articles I read for the past few years, I don’t think gun control is an issue.  There are so many guns out there, anyone will get it.  I have also learned in a few years that shooters are scared of someone pointing a weapon at them.   In the more likely case, no gun shots would fire and the perpetrator would go to jail.   However, the perpetrator might have a uniform like a bulletproof vest to prevent this and thus cause a dilemma.  It’s like the steroids in baseball; people will find an advantage over the police.  If you want guns, have everyone take a test like getting a drivers’ license, then, have an extensive background check, then the process must require a week to do this before receiving a gun.  This is not controlling guns; it’s a fair process of receiving a gun.   Of course the NRA will go up in arms believing its gun control and would win saying it’s unconstitutional.  The best way to solve guns is stiffer penalties.  In most murder cases, criminals are sent in prison for 5-20 years.  Still, can they be trusted after they leave prison?  If a criminal is charged and been guilty of murder and/or homicide, the criminal should have life in prison.  The problem with us is the US gives out second chances.  It’s odd we give second chances to murderers.  Most of the foreign countries don’t even let a murderer have a first chance out of prison.  For murder and homicide, there should be zero tolerance because someone’s dead and the fair rule say “An eye for an eye.”  The killer should have life in prison (Of note:  I don’t believe in the death penalty because I want to see overtime how the criminals react and some might actually like the death penalty.) and can think about in a prison cell.  [Side note: self-defense is excusable because of protecting your life.  That is why there is a justice system.] Do you think that’s a good punishment?

Oh, for people to blame a pawn shop of giving a gun to the shooter?  The owner did the background check and he came clean and had to give the gun because he followed the process, so back off on the owner.

The Police

The police did what they do and you can’t fault them.  There was a shooting at a dorm and the police found the truck with guns, which was owned by the victim’s boyfriend.  Instincts say guns + domestic dispute = suspect.  They thought they found the killer.  Instead, it was a perfect storm.  The shooter kills 2 at the dorm, the boyfriend leaves at the same time, the shooter did errands, and the police were on the chase and the shooter attack again.  Everyone wants to blame the police, but they were prepared, they just got bit.  Now they know to not assume anything.  If there is something wrong, the campuses will lockdown (i.e. The NASA incident today).

The System

If there was a partial blame, the system of determining if the shooter was mentally ill might be that.  In 2005, the judge ruled that the shooter was “imminent danger to him and others.”  The shooter was going to be an outpatient until the  two women never charge for the incident, and the shooter had treatment for a few days.  I don’t fault anyone because everyone followed procedure.  However, in English classes, he wrote disturbing plays and poems that made students didn’t attended classes and the teachers reporting to the administration about this kid.   The police couldn’t follow up because there was no evidence the kid was threatening.  Excuse me, if students are not coming to class and teachers are reporting this, then what was it?  That was a 100% telling sign the person was trouble.  There is a difference between entertainment violence, and real and potential violence.  In entertainment movies, the good guys win; in the real world, there are no Bruce Willises or Kiefer Sutherlands.  If the people would have report, this would have gone away.  The decision didn’t payoff.  Now, I think Virginia has to change their stance on what to report and have an investigation immediately.

The Media

This was a little less disturbing than the shootings, but it has been an issue for a long time.  24 hour information and sensationalism has ruined all TV news and I don’t think it will ever comeback.  There are a few subplots, so I will run this down:

  • The network news has the responsibility to break news to an audience.  Sadly, none of them took advantage and were showing soap operas.  Don’t give me this crap that people would not want to see this; they watch TV to escape the real world.  Wake up, this is the real world and you’re living it.  The network news dropped the ball on that.
  • At first, having beat reporters on the scene is good because they are to report what is going on.  After the audience knows it’s a big story, anchors and newspeople flew to Blacksburg “to be in the moment” for ratings and the excuse of being there for commercials.  This is why I don’t watch the news; people are finding opportunities to find ratings and showing that they “really care.”  I don’t have a problem with Virginia Tech trying to escape the media whirlwind, but its water for these networks and needed that thirst to beat one another.
  • NBC was giving a gift that they have the shooter’s manifesto sent by the shooter itself.  I really thought NBC had a dilemma because they were going to criticize either way to show or not to show.  NBC showed it, but everyone else uses it and made it overkill.  If I were NBC, if I had enough information on why the massacre happened, and the pieces were coming together, there is no need to show the video.  NBC should get the blame of showing the video, but I heavily blame the other networks running it on a loop for what?  If this is for ratings, that wouldn’t help.  Also, they shouldn’t say anything about NBC airing the video; you did it as well and the networks were in the moment.  This video was everything about ratings and NBC showed to rub it on the face of the other networks.  Unfortunately, they will take the heat and deservingly so.  Now, this is going to be on YouTube and I hope no one shares it on the internet.
  • Major Dap goes to the college newspapers in Blacksburg of focusing on the families, victims, and students.  Real reporting people.
  • Be prepared for overkill.

The WBC

I have never heard of this cult until this past week.  I thought it was World Boxing Company. 

Family and Friends

This is going to be very long recovery for the family and friends of the victims.  It makes me angry that most of these people died at a young age.  I have to recover as well because I have friends going to Virginia Tech and I spoke to a good friend who goes to graduate school and is a little worried about the situation now and later.  I also worried that my friends lost their friends.  I will also include the shooter’s family because they were the only people that took care of him.  I hope everyone leaves them alone; they shouldn’t get any attention from this.  I pray for the family and friends of these victims and hope they get stronger after this incident.

Finally, Virginia Tech

Virginia Tech would never be the same.  I think that’s wonderful.  The next few weeks will be tough, but Virginia Tech has great places and terrific people already there.  Virginia Tech now realizes there’s a challenge, but these students were born to take on these challenges.  Virginia Tech was rising.  It hit a ditch, but they’ll rise again.  Virginia Tech has a strong community in and out of Blacksburg.  Although people say the key is academics, they have an athletic program that will reunite and energize the student body and alumni.  Finally, Virginia Tech convinces us that Hokie is not a word made up by some guy to win a $5 contest; Hokie is a community, lifestyle, and bond that last forever.  Everyone is enjoying the ride.

Now back to your regularly scheduled blogging.

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