Wednesday, February 14, 2018

What Do We Do?

For those who haven't seen the news, a student who had been expelled from a high school in Florida returned to the school, tossed smoke grenades into the hallway to trigger the fire alarms, and then started shooting when everyone filled the hallways. He killed 17 and wounded 50. This is despicable and it's unacceptable that this keeps happening. So how do we stop this? Here are my thoughts:

● Target Hardening: It's time something was done to protect schools specifically. As sad as it sounds, there needs to be a single point of entrance with metal detectors, bulletproof glass, and an armed officer right there. No one should be able to get a gun into a school.

● Threat Reduction: These people often have histories of mental problems or prior violence. It's time that...
● The state should be allowed to hold people for an extended period of time when they show mental problems combined with suggestions of violence. Family, teachers, employers need to be allowed to initiate such proceedings with immunity for all but bad faith initiations. If the person refuses treatment and displays violent tendencies, they need to be locked up and kept.

● When someone is under observation for mental issues, is under a restraining order, or is convicted of any crime of violence, they should be banned from gun possession and the police should be allowed to search their property and remove their guns/weapons. Their drivers licenses should be tagged with this restriction as well, and there needs to be a database gun sellers/cops can access to get the list of these people.
● Making Satisfaction Impossible: Some shooters are looking for fame. There should be a media boycott on the use of their names or any discussion of their ideas/manifestos and pasts/stories. Any book or movie rights should be forfeit to the state. Bury them anonymously without ceremony or religious rights.

● Trouble Spotting: There should be parental criminal liability to get the parents involved. Not for the actions of the child but for supplying the child with guns or bombs or other similar hardware. There should be civil liability for psychologists/counselors who fail to report people considering such violence. The Safe-to-tell hotlines are a good idea. Anyone should be able to report someone they suspect to the authorities.

● Cultural Issues: Hollywood and the videogame industry need to take responsibility for their actions and stop selling gun violence as the cool way to solve problems. Others, especially on the left and the fringe on the right, need to stop being so incendiary in their words... spewing the kinds of hate you see on Twitter makes you complicit. Also, we need to start marking people when they are online. Anyone who posts a comment anywhere should be required to leave their own name and location automatically. This will help shutdown places where the crazies meet to fester -- lots of these kids, like the Florida kid, visit these places and are encouraged by anonymous assholes to commit their crimes. It's time we took seriously the criminalization of incitement to violence.

Please share any thoughts you have on this?


AndrewPrice said...

Let me add one more thing. School specific. Schools need to hire a lot more male teachers. Our K-12 system is largely run almost entirely by liberal women. One thing that has become obvious is that these women are incapable of spotting when a young man is in serious trouble rather than just being male -- something liberal women repeatedly show they despise. That is just asking for trouble.

Moreover, troubled young men need male role models to teach them right from wrong and to hold them accountable. Call it sexism if you like, but it's true: women cannot do that job with these young men.

I also suspect that adding males to that environment will slow or stop the kind of daffy thinking that these young men interpret as apocalyptic, which will reduce their anger.

And honestly, it may even be time to separate students by gender.

Critch said...

This punk was on the radar of the police and they did absolutely nothing...I'm very pro-2nd Amendment, but I have no problems with people like this being disarmed until someone can take a look. He was all over social media with threats and the other students said they were scared of him.

AndrewPrice said...

Critch, I agree. This kid gave off enough signs that he should have been investigated and they should been allowed to take his guns and things in the meantime.

AndrewPrice said...

Bwak gun control bwaaak gun control bwak bwak gun control

So predictable. Such a false solution.

BevfromNYC said...

I am particularly in agreement about your last bullet point. Way back in yesteryear when my Mom grew up alongside a loaded shotgun in the corner of the kitchen, this kind of crap didn't happen. They also had Westerns where shootings didn't show blood or guts, War Movies that didn't show blood or guts, and Print sources that show blood and guts.

Same for my age group...Also we got to play with real toy guns with real human children (Cowboys/Indians, Cops/Robbers, etc) that didn't create blood and guts unless one happened to fall down. But also we learned conflict resolution and because we actually had physical contact with other human children, we learn how to punch each other without doing permanent damage.

Fast forward to the internet age where children no longer have physical contact with other human children and spend their time playing the most violent stuff I have ever encountered. Entertainment is so graphically violent, no wonder there are video streams of kids laughing while committing violent crimes or. instead of intervening, everyone stands around and takes a video.

Okay, I am done rambling...

tryanmax said...

Target Hardening: Most school shootings seem to happen while class is in session with shooters entering through an unlocked main entrance. That means just locking the front door while class is in session would solve a lot. In other words, target hardeing is a great idea, but I don't think most people appreciate how soft most schools are. We probably don't need to go straight to metal detectors and bullet proof glass.

Threat Reduction: I'm convinced that the only people against this are people who fear they might be locked up for mental issues. An inordinate number of them work in politics and journalism.

No Satisfaction: This would be oxygen to conspiracy theorists. They already claim false flags as it is. On the other hand, this could be beneficial in a different way. Most mass shooters are planners, meaning it would not be out of character for them to release their identity and a manifesto online prior to committing an act. With mobile technology, windows would be extremely narrow to catch them between posting and attacking, but a window would open.

Trouble Spotting: As the father of two very well behaved children and one who is, well, not, I have concerns about parental liability. Children are hard to control, and a well behaved child is nothing short of a blessing. At a minimum before getting on board, I would need the definition of "supplying" to be exceedingly narrowly tailored, almost to point of meaninglessness. I'm also against increasing pressure on mandatory reporters, who already heavily err on the side of meddlesomeness.

Cultural Issues: You'll get no disagreement from me on this. Far, far, far too much narrative entertainment ends with a gun being the solution to every problem. If you can't persuade your rival, shoot him! If you can't reach the prize, shoot everyone in your way! If someone bumps into you, go on a 140 minute shooting spree against everyone who ever looked at you funny! Anti-heroes have greatly supplanted traditional heroes who only used violence as a last resort in the face of their own immenent demise.

The real-world culture is a mess, as well. When it comes to real-world incitement, there is a decidedly one-sided view on the part of institutions. The press reports that Trump rallies "attract violence" when anti-Trump protesters show up to fight. Politicians in both parties angrily object to equating both sides of a street brawl. Violence is routinely excused or brushed asside if it comes from those deemed aggreived.

Male Role Models: Again, you'll get zero disagreement from me. I wholeheartedly agree that liberal women can't tell the difference between a troubled male and a male. The rise of the notion from feminist scholars that masculinity itself is "broken" very much affirms that. And that inability to discern has the very real possiblity of turning a healthy male into a troubled one.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, I think it matters. The less "human" we let society become the more unstable people will act in inhumane ways. And when you have an internet that acts like a psychotic and an entertainment industry that teaches us that gun violence is how you solve problems, it's a wonder that more people aren't messed up.

AndrewPrice said...


Hardening. My kid's former elementary school had a locked front door, a video camera and one of those look-in-the-camera-and-buzz devices. They could see what you were carrying and doing long before deciding to let you in. That worked great. Her middle school has something similar (minus the camera) and I walk right past it every time because they keep the door open. Silly. Even just having a system like the elementary school would help.

Threat Reduction. I think the issue is ideological. The NRA doesn't want to accept any limits and the left doesn't want the issue to become bad people -- they want this to seem like guns cause good kids to go wrong.

Satisfaction. I'm not worried about the conspiracy nuts. They need to grow up. I do think this would stop a sizeable proportion of the people who actually do this. Not all by any means, but maybe 30%, and the most random ones at that.

Trouble Spotting. This would be the hardest one to get right, but I think the parameters need to be not punishing the parents for what the child has done, but punishing the parents if they are essentially accessories before the fact. For example, they just arrested a woman in Pennsylvania for supplying her kid with guns the kid openly talked about using to shoot up a school. The wife of the Orlando shooter apparently drove him to the club knowing what he was going to do. I would even suggest that parents should be responsible for any guns in the house.

Agreed on cultural issues. Films are a mess. Most involve gun violence. Television, same. Politicians have taken to speaking in violently hyperbolic ways. The internet is a cesspool of inappropriate behavior and thousands of lurkers waiting for a soft target to manipulate. One of the latest kid apparently hung out at a website where 'other students' encouraged each other to shoot up their schools.

Male Role Models. Well said. Totally agree.

BevfromNYC said...

I first recognized the "spectator" syndrome in myself about 25 yrs ago. Fortunately it was kind of harmless. I was crossing the street with a friend and guy was walking toward us. As he moved past me, he appeared to pull a knife out of his coat and walked toward the front of the car stopped at a red light, facing the hood/driver staring..then just as quickly put the knife? back into his coat and walked on.

Neither my friend nor I reacted...then, we both looked at each other and "Did you see what I just saw?" "Yeah..."

It has really bothered me that I did not react at all...just kept I was watching it on.....TV.

BevfromNYC said...

Here is an interesting article from the New Yorker...Thresholds of Violence from 10/2015.

On caveat: I have not finished reading the article yet so...

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, I've experienced that from time to time, though not in anything as dramatic, where I knew I probably should have gotten involved but didn't. It's an odd feeling.

AndrewPrice said...

By the way, I do want to commend the teachers/coach who sacrificed themselves to shield the students from bullets. People like that are what give me hope about humanity. Good bless you. RIP

AndrewPrice said...

Interesting article, Bev. I once read that the one thing all serial killers have in common is that they were fascinated with hurting animals as a child.

Stacy said...

I'm also in agreement with all that you said, but like tryanmax, holding the parents responsible makes me all kinds of nervous. I also raised one child who was hellbent on doing the exact opposite of what she was told and her teen years left me feeling like I was living in a war zone. Nothing that we tried made any difference. We took her to a counselor who basically turned out to disagree with everything we did and encouraged her to dwell on her problems and rehash them constantly. Oh, but don't ground her for heaven's gives her too much time to think about things. Seriously? Our response was to pull her out of councelling and tell her to pull up her big girl panties and move on with life.

Eventually, she evened out a bit and is now married with a child of her own. However, EVERYTHING is still a big freakin' deal in her world. She's not a video game player, but her phone is clutched in her hand virtually at all times. She sleeps with it under her pillow. I blame the phones for a major part of the mess we're now experiencing with the youth. As it's been pointed out, they don't talk face-to-face...even when they are sitting beside each other. I know young married couples who text rather than talk. It's crazy, but this is what they know. They've not learned how to process emotions. That's why when something upsets their world they are shocked, stunned, bewildered, frustrated, and in mental anguish (enter the snowflakes). They don't have a clue how to handle what they're feeling. On the flip side, they can't imagine why anyone gets angry at them when they say (text, tweet, post on Facebook, etc.) the crude, rude, vile, hurtful things they do. They are truly shocked.

It isn't going to be a nuclear bomb or a meteor or whatever that brings about the fall of civilization as we know it. It's going to be the media and social media outlets and all the devices that go with them.

Anonymous said...

Look up the side effects of SSRI's. (prozak,paxil etc) A small percentage of users under the age of 25 develop suicidal and homicidal impulses. Pay particular attention to the EU warnings. Almost every school shooter is on this stuff.

AndrewPrice said...

Bwak gun control bwaaak gun control bwak f*ing bwak gun f*ing control If you don't agree to "gun control" then I f*ing HATE you! bwaak it's not nonsense if we all believe it blindly! bwaak

If this is ever going to change, conservatives will need to do it over the kicking, screaming, tantrum-throwing bodies of the great mass of hateful liberalism.

AndrewPrice said...

Anon, There may be something to that. A lot of the anti-depressants they hand out cause violent and paranoid behavior in some people.

BevfromNYC said...

Stacy - That all goes back to not learning face to face conflict resolutions. Kids who noses are stuck on a phone etc. posting/texting can't see what it looks like on someone's face how hurtful words can be.

AndrewPrice said...

Stacy, I see that too in the phone generation -- they don't know how to process emotion and minor things blow them up. I have to wonder if this is going to become a bigger problem.

In terms of the parents, I understand the hesitation. Some kids truly are out of control even though the parents try. And I would not say that should be a basis for liability. Where I think liability comes in is parents who supply guns to these kids or come into the possession of diaries outlining plans and don't report it... basically the things that make you a co-conspirator or accessory. I would not say simple failure to control the kid should be punishable. That should not be relevant because these kids really are beyond control.

In any event though, I appreciate your concern and tryanmax's concern and I think it is probably the hardest area to get right.

AndrewPrice said...

Let me add one more thing...

Young males have been a problem since we fell out of the trees. They are inherently violent and in need of stimulation. When they have nothing to contain them, give them a reason to conform to society's norms, and occupy their time, they tend to do bad things.

This is why the prisons are full of young men and why revolutions are fought by young men. They are out of control and are looking for someone (gangs, fringers) to give them a sense of belonging.

In the past, people tried to tame them with things like scouting, religious training, military education, sports, etc. But all of these things have been wiped out by liberal attacks, by changing tastes, the growth of suburbia, the real-world detachment of the internet, etc. So the places these young guys used to be "whipped into shape" are disappearing. And the result is a growing number of dumbass young dudes who have no idea how to act and who look for guidance from the darkest corners of the internet. They are essentially, easy pray for ideological predators.

I think that part of fixing this will require the return of things like physical scouting, summer camp, team sports, and other "boy activities." And honestly, these things need to be male-only to give these young men a chance to be followers -- something they would not do with or in front of women. It's the inverse of the idea that young girls don't speak up in classes full of boys.

AndrewPrice said...

Yahoo is asking if the tide is turning on gun control. Well, I give them credit for realizing that they are on the losing side. The left didn't used to believe that. BUT... the answer is no.

If the tide was turning, someone other than the usual liberals would come out in favor of it. See how that works, Yahoo? When only the people who've always believed something come out and whine their usual position, nothing's really changed. And it doesn't many how many hard-core liberals you cite, they don't matter in this debate.

And let me give you some bonus wisdom, dumbsh*ts. The reason(s) the public won't buy into gun control:

1) It doesn't work. Criminals will always get guns, even if they are "all" confiscated. And even if for some reason they can't get guns, they'll find another way to do it. For example, Oklahoma City, 9/11, all the guys driving trucks into crowds. Guns seem to have carnage limit... other methods do not.

2) You... yes, YOU liberals have shown you can't be trusted, so the public knows not even to start with you. Indeed, the moment I suggest any sort of gun control, I see you (i) calling for an immediate ban and confiscation, (ii) deciding that only white males should be banned, (iii) trying to ban guns based on color, (iv) adding a $15 minimum wage to the bill, (v) demanding gun rights for felon transsexuals... and that's the point I start shooting.

3) The public knows that only a handful of these killers exist and they aren't going to strip millions of people of their rights to self-defense just to not stop the killers.

Indeed, guns do not kill people... people do. Want proof? There are nearly 300,000,000 guns in the US. Perhaps 20,000 are used in crimes each year and around 10,000 kill people. That's not even outside the statistical margin of error. You don't reshape America for what is essentially statistical error.

4) We're not taking advice from people who hate us.

5) We're not taking advice from people who are causing the problem.

6) Guns serve an important purpose because they are an equalizer and we don't like the idea of a society where the biggest and strongest can kill anyone they want.

So yeah... no.

And crying about it won't help.

Anthony said...

For my money the big problem is the weakness of the family. Many kids are being failed by parents that don't have the time or won't take the time to deal with them.

I'd say having schools do during more during regular hours isn't realistic. Schools have a finite amount of time to educate students. Time spent with the most troubled or dangerous students is time not spent teaching the stuff colleges and employers expect students to know.

After school programs and transportation (lots of troubled kids are latch key kids) are the best ways to help kids that need extra attention but even that isn't enough. We would need to take action when people resist help but that would be a tremendous invasion of civil liberties and tremendously controversial.

How far are we willing to lower the bar for detention and his long are we willing to hold minors? My guess would be not very and not long.

More make teachers would be nice. That is an observation that has been made many for many decades (since I was younger than my youngest) and in many contexts. Dealing with large groups of kids, even kids that aren't troubled, takes a lot more patience than many guys seem to possess.

Stacy said...

Kudos to the grandmother who turned in her own grandson when she learned he was planning to shoot up a school in Washington.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, I think family failures are a big part of this. Our youngest drifts into this crowd and it's always bad. The fathers are often abusive or absent and the mothers are indifferent "I can'ts do nuthin' about it". Or even worse, they don't even see the problem. They are deeply selfish people who spew violent hyperbole and victimology as common course. Everyone else is at fault. The school is the enemy. All kids do drugs and have sex in middle school.

Even worse, the dumber the parent, the more sure they are that they "ain't need no f*king help from nobody." I've dealt with several of these people as I had to ban my youngest from dealing with their kids. They are worthless human beings and they are raising little monsters.

Anyways, the schools can't fix these kids because the parental influence is, ironically, too strong. It turns out that *ssholeness, laziness and divine victimhood are a powerful selling tool.

That said, I think that an influx of male teachers would at least give another chance to influence these kids. Since their fathers are worthless, having stronger male role models at school as a replacement would at least give these kids one last shot at finding someone to guide them out of the darkness.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, Dealing with large groups of kids, even kids that aren't troubled, takes a lot more patience than many guys seem to possess.

I don't think that's true at all. What's keeping males out of the profession is the degree requirement. Where there is no such requirement, you see the percentages shift dramatically.

AndrewPrice said...

Stacy, I saw that. Good for her! She probably saved a lot of lives.

Tennessee Jed said...

Lots of good ideas here Andrew. Some are probably more realistic than others. Target hardening is absolutely a good idea. Lack of notoriety is laudable, but history of tabloid journalism leads me to think someone would always be willing to publish, and free press and speech would make it hard to enforce. I agree parental failures contribute, but we must be very careful that laws are well crafted. There could be a thin line between guns purchased for farm kids, and more urban enthusiasts. Some kind of re-visiting mental health and weapons is also critical. I just wish congress could rationally discuss without politicizing and throwing stones

AndrewPrice said...

Something I've noticed after this shooting is that the locals seem to be hyper-political. In that regard, this shooting hasn't "felt" like others before it. Here is some of what I've noticed:

1. You have people who were spewing Democratic taking points almost before their kids were cold: "We don't need your prayers, we need gun control." They even have their kids lobbing attacks at GOP politicians and talk radio -- hosts these kid won't even know.

2. You've had a very activist response as well. For example, some guy is taking out billboards in the area today to call for gun control. You've had twitter attacks on politicians way far away. Several have attacked the GOP across the board. Basically, it's come across as a coordinated full-court press against the GOP, and several of the individual parents (and neighbors) have been participating in the attacks.

3. When Trump announced his visit, they raced to microphones to announce a boycott.

This is much more political than these things usually get, even with Hollywood, the Democrats and Obama driving the attacks. Usually, the national media is leading the charge as the parents mourn. These parents got involved literally the first few hours and haven't stopped. What's more they come across as coordinated with the left.

So I looked into this area. Surprise, it's a very, very rich, almost exclusively white suburb of Miami. That is core Democratic country... the people who drive the Democratic party today. I would bet that this area is crawling with activist liberals.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, You are correct, and that is why nothing will change. I wish it would though.

AndrewPrice said...

So they've now had a rally in which the kids from the school gave speeches that sound like they were written by Democratics speechwriters. Gotta tell you... my sympathy is fading fast.

Anthony said...


Teenagers being political doesn't shock or horrify me. They usually are even without parents pushing them.

This whole thing strikes me as avoidable. The system has had tons of contact with this kid and had even been warned he was a likely school shooter.

The troubled teen began showing what may have been warning signs before his shooting rampage. Cruz’s neighbors told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel he would shoot at chickens while students at the school said he talked about shooting lizards and other small animals. His social media page was filled with pictures of him posing with guns.

A report by BuzzFeed also showed that authorities were called to Cruz’s home at least 36 times over the course of six years.

On Friday, the FBI acknowledged the agency failed to investigate a warning from Jan. 5 that Cruz could be plotting an attack.

"Under established protocols, the information provided by the caller should have been assessed as a potential threat to life," the FBI statement said. "We have determined that these protocols were not followed for the information received by the PAL on Jan. 5."

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