April 17, 2007
The news of the terrible tragedy that struck the Virginia Tech College yesterday has traveled the globe. 33 Students murdered by a lone crazed gunman, a 23 year old South Korean Student, Cho Seung-Hui, who has been in the country legally since he was 8.
Shortly after the release of the gunman’s name, Cho Byung-se, a South Korean ministry official handling North American affairs stated, “We are in shock beyond description.” He added, “We convey deep condolences to victims, families and the American people.” South Korean Diplomats are said to be traveling to the scene of the carnage. While this incident is a major embarrassment to the Korean people, fixing blame on them is just wrong. Citizens or government of South Korea have nothing to do with this senseless act of murder.
Upon hearing of this I looked in on some blogs, both right and left leaning. Before even the smoke had settled from the shooting, some on the left were trying to fix the blame on President Bush. Similarly, some on the right were sarcastically expecting the onslaught of gun control advocates to spin this towards their political agenda.
Europeans wasted no time in chiming in with bashing Americans and guns for this tragedy. Keith Ashcroft, a British psychologist said, "I think the reason it happens in America is there's access to weapons -- you can go into a supermarket and get powerful automatic weapons."
I’d like to know where these “supermarkets” are that sell “powerful automatic weapons” are located. When I legally purchased each of my guns, I had to fill out endless forms, submit to a background check over a minimum of a week and just wait. The entire transactions are registered with the Sheriffs Department, even though I am not required the register the guns themselves. Mr. Ashcroft, please send me details of where I can visit one of the “supermarkets” you say I can so easily purchase a “powerful automatic weapon.”
Not to be outdone, Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly and Geraldo Rivera couldn’t wait for the smoke to dissipate before they were crying and blaming the police and University president. Rivera was incensed that he was unable to ask accusatory questions of officials. While I am a fan of Fox News, I dislike both of these phonies and don’t need either of them “looking out for me,” as O’Reilly like to claim he does.
Britain’s UK Telegraph asks, Why are there so many shootings in America? Yuan Peng, an Chinese American studies expert is quoted, “This incident reflects the problem of gun control in America.” Italy’s daily Corriere della Sera’s ran an opinion piece entitled “Guns at the Supermarket,” a critical view of the U.S. gun lobby and the ease with which guns can be purchased. Shootings draw global condemnation. Germany’s Spiegel Online ends up Blaming Charlton Heston, indirectly.
It appears Europeans know something we legal gun purchasers don’t.
In all the calls for gun control again, no one seems to realize that the campus of Virginia Tech already banned all guns!
Last October I wrote of The School Shooting They Never Mention, the one where an Assistant Principal put a stop to the shooting by retrieving his own gun and confronting the shooter.
Could some armed faculty, administrators or even trusted students have stopped Cho Seung-Hui before the death toll reached as high as it did? We will never know, now.
With all of Europeans cries of the ease of our obtaining guns and needing stricter gun laws, as they have, perhaps they should look into their own problems as they too have endured these terrible tragedies. America isn’t the only one that deranged loners choose to shoot people in schools:
December 1989: Marc Lepine shot dead 14 women in Montreal's Ecole Polytechnique.
March 1996: Gun enthusiast Thomas Hamilton shoots 16 children and their teacher dead at their primary school in Dunblane, Scotland before killing himself.
March 1997: Mohammad Ahman al-Naziri killed six children and two staff during attacks on two schools in Sanaa, Yemen.
November 1999: A 15-year-old student in Meissen, eastern Germany, stabbed his teacher to death after taking bets from classmates he would dare commit the crime.
March 2000: A 16-year-old pupil at a private boarding school in the Bavarian town of Branneburg, shot a 57-year-old teacher, who later died from injuries.
February 2002: A former pupil killed his headmaster and set off pipe bombs in the technical school he had recently been expelled from in Freising near Munich.
April 2002: Seventeen people killed after a gunman - a former pupil - opens fire in a school in Erfurt, eastern Germany. He then turned the gun on himself.
Each of these countries brags about their superior and stricter gun control laws, yet they didn’t prevent their own tragedies.
I am reminded too of the unthinkable carnage we saw in the country of Rwanda in 1994 over 100 days, resulting in over 800,000 senseless deaths. Slaughtered, not by crazed gunmen, but by machetes and clubs. Could many of those Rwandans have survived if armed against their attackers? They weren’t because the Rwandan government of the time was complying with strict gun control measures recommended by the United Nations, in their quest for “world peace.”
Adding insult upon injury, Michael Daly, NY Daily News Columnist, penned a particularly ugly piece directed towards Virginia, Yes, Virginia, guns kill innocents. I have to wonder if Daly will end up fired, as was Don Imus for offensive speech. Somehow, I doubt it.
Michael S. Brown, O.D., a member of Doctors for Sensible Gun Laws treats us to Evidence says gun laws don’t work earlier this year.
Some say, “if only Cho Seung-Hui hadn’t been able to attain those guns.” They don’t realize that a crazed killer can obtain guns, anywhere, illegally. That he obtained them legally, this time, is largely irrelevant. Had he not had a gun, a knife, hammer or similar tool could have done as much damage.
Another school shooting that wasn’t fully reported was the Jan. 16, 2002 Virginia Appalachian School of Law shooting. What went unreported in the media was that this shooter also was stopped, and captured by students that used their own legal guns!
UPATE: Emilio Karim Dabul at Canada Free Press sees the dangers this shooting exposes us all to. Making note that Al Qaeda also makes note of our unprepardness to handle a single shooter, how much easier it will be for terrorists to slaughter even more of our people. Read the article at The VT Massacre and What it Means to the War on Terror