1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Elementary school shooting

Discussion in 'Serious' started by Sloth, 14 Dec 2012.

  1. walle

    walle Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    5 Jul 2006
    Posts:
    1,750
    Likes Received:
    57
    Anyway, there have been discussions about firearms elsewhere at Bit-Tech, so I will see myself out of the discussion for now.
     
  2. longweight

    longweight Possibly Longbeard.

    Joined:
    7 May 2011
    Posts:
    10,517
    Likes Received:
    217
    That's the attitude, don't answer the hard questions from Carrie or Nexxo :)
     
  3. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

    Joined:
    14 Apr 2004
    Posts:
    4,955
    Likes Received:
    202
    Interesting discussion so far, and I'll provide my opinion from the perspective of someone living in what may be in the not-too-distant future the Second Republic of Texas.

    I took the day off work and my wife and I went to see the Hobbit, so we didn't actually learn about the incident until we returned to pick up our daughter from school. Since the movie let out at the same time as our daughter's school, we made arrangements with another parent for the kids to play for a few minutes after school until we could get there.

    Upon arriving at the school, a number of the other parents were hanging around discussing the shooting - I was the only male present. Interestingly (or not) the consensus among the other mothers was that when they first heard of the shooting, they all wanted to rush to the school to get their kids. Nevermind that the shooting took place halfway across the country, their first thought was that their child was no longer safe. As they talked about the event, every single one of the mothers expressed the opinion that the world was no longer a safe place, and that it was time to arm the teachers. Every. Single. One. After all, the logic followed, if the teachers were armed then they could have saved all the kids (or at least most of them, or maybe some of them, or they could have taken out the guy before he killed anyone else - more on that later).

    I wondered about the wisdom of arming teachers, especially in a state that has a history of repeatedly cutting education funding. As it is, my daughter's teacher can't get everything done in the classroom on her own. She relies on assistance from parent volunteers, including providing actual instruction during the day. None of the mothers lent much thought to how a classroom firearm requirement would be managed. If a firearm is to be effective against a bad guy, it follows that it should be readily available. You have to be able to respond quickly, right? If it's readily available, does that increase the likelihood that a student could get a hold of it? If you want to keep it well secured and hidden from kids, how long would it take the teacher to get to the firearm, unlock the trigger, load the rounds, and aim; all of this while locking the door and shepherding the kids to a protected corner? Thanks to education cuts, teachers have more students to look after. When a teacher is distracted, if a student gets a firearm, who is responsible? The teacher? The district? The principal? Who provides maintenance for the weapons, and how will proficiency be managed? How is all of this going to be funded?

    As the mothers continued to inquire of one another about which shooting ranges their husbands liked and how often they went shooting, and how the world needs more guns to keep the bad guys at bay, I suddenly felt very uncomfortable. As the lone dissenter I decided not to take part in the discussion, and instead played with the kids. They seemed to be having more fun anyway, as apparently nobody bothered to tell them that the sky was falling and every stranger was out to simultaneously rob, rape, and shoot them, then give them tainted candy - possibly in that order.

    The script is already playing out as it does every time a shooting occurs. Both sides of the debate bring out their talking points, and nothing will ever get done because it's always "too soon." If we put off the discussion long enough, another election season will be upon us. Then we can avoid the topic altogether because nobody can get elected by taking a stance on gun control. In the meantime, we'll continue to hear about all the hero civilians who could have set their panic aside, quickly identified the bad guy (because they all look the same), and taken him out before he killed anyone else. Nevermind the common thread in almost all of these scenarios (hint: the person almost always kills himself as soon as he's done).

    What really astonishes me in all of this is that Newtown, Connecticut, was not the only shooting that occurred this weekend. Apparently it's so common now the media has to prioritize which one gets the most coverage. Obviously it's the one that is most mediapathic. Think of the children, after all.

    I really need to get out of here.
     
    Last edited: 16 Dec 2012
    Teelzebub and Carrie like this.
  4. Bogomip

    Bogomip ... Yo Momma

    Joined:
    15 Jun 2002
    Posts:
    5,161
    Likes Received:
    39
    [​IMG]

    Interestingly Switzerland has one of the highest rates of gun ownership in the world. The difference is that because they are given to conscripted military personnel only (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_of_Switzerland), those that have them are psychologically examined beforehand, and then trained in the use of the gun if deemed fit. Ammo is also not allowed to be stored by the person (this is fairly new, until 2007 they were allowed ammo but it had to be stored, in a sealed box, which would be checked regularly by on duty military personnel or police).

    The difference? Well I accept there are ALOT more people in America (roughly 38 times more), but the gun crime in america is, per capita, still about 8-9 times as bad. A lot can be said for screening of people you are giving a gun to, and careful restriction in their use - but even more can be said for just not having guns :)

    edit: supermonkey - nice post. It is essentially "do you want your teacher fumbling with trembling hands for a gun or do you want them trying to get your child to safety?". :)

    edit2: I also accept that poster above is slightly bias given it has clearly selected countries with low figures :)
     
    Last edited: 16 Dec 2012
  5. Zener Diode

    Zener Diode User Title

    Joined:
    13 Sep 2009
    Posts:
    624
    Likes Received:
    44
    How does that quote go again, "when the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem has to look like a nail". It's sad that when people get gunned down, there are those that come to the conclusion that we need more guns. What happens if one of those teachers snaps? Give teachers guns and suddenly you'll have inside jobs as well.


    Nice post btw.
     
  6. longweight

    longweight Possibly Longbeard.

    Joined:
    7 May 2011
    Posts:
    10,517
    Likes Received:
    217
    The last three posts have been very good!
     
  7. DXR_13KE

    DXR_13KE BananaModder

    Joined:
    14 Sep 2005
    Posts:
    9,133
    Likes Received:
    380
    Why not give every teacher a SMG? Great at close distances and easy to use.
     
  8. Puk

    Puk (A shrewd and knavish sprite)

    Joined:
    23 Mar 2002
    Posts:
    967
    Likes Received:
    74
    If you'd have armed half my ex teachers, I probably wouldn't be sat here typing!
     
  9. padrejones2001

    padrejones2001 Puppy Love

    Joined:
    17 Jun 2004
    Posts:
    1,434
    Likes Received:
    15
    I don't personally own a gun, however, I have a number of friends who do and we go to the shooting range on a fairly regular basis, but when I have a gun in my hand, I don't think to myself, "Well, wouldn't this be the opportune time to go on a murderous rampage?" because I, as well as the people around me, absolutely respect how deadly guns can be. We're not lunatics and we certainly don't represent a microcosm of society.

    The other incredibly glaring issue is the state of the mental health system here. To say it's absolutely shambolic would be incredibly polite. There are a lot of places here where the only real mental health you can get is in prison, which has been the norm since the mid-80s. We don't think about mental health, we don't talk about, and the end result is that we don't honestly care about it. Most people here have to have incredible medical benefits to even see a psychologist without paying an arm and a leg.
     
  10. Bufo802

    Bufo802 Member

    Joined:
    28 Jul 2008
    Posts:
    335
    Likes Received:
    8
    Looking at mental health, in the US is there an equivalent of being able to go to the GP (local general doctor) with no cost to get anything whether physical or mental issues checked out?

    It does possibly seem that it's not noticed/nothing done about more and then its allowed to get worse leading to events such as this.
     
  11. padrejones2001

    padrejones2001 Puppy Love

    Joined:
    17 Jun 2004
    Posts:
    1,434
    Likes Received:
    15
    It depends on the state, really. Healthcare is still essentially run on a state and community level, so it's really at their discretion whether or not to provide services. I live in Minnesota where the healthcare system is actually quite good, but I still wouldn't say that I could get help without a) having health insurance or b) without spending money. There are still community hospitals, which will treat your mental health problems, but really only if you're an immediate threat to others.
     
  12. Pod

    Pod New Member

    Joined:
    14 Dec 2012
    Posts:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    I can see this debate from both sides.

    The person who owns and uses guns responsibly cries outrage when the prospect of this freedom being removed is raised.

    The person who lives in a relatively gun crime-free nation is not allowed to own a gun, so doesn't really miss it.

    Personally I think the USA is well beyond being able to control this sort of thing anyway - it's too ingrained into the wider population (and indeed constitution) ever to change.

    You just have to accept that one of the prices of this particular freedom is that there is a small, but still worrying chance that you and/or members of your family are going to be shot at eventually.

    Random gun attacks happen everywhere, but in developed Europe they are a bolt from the blue, whereas in the States the sky is always going to be cloudy.
     
  13. padrejones2001

    padrejones2001 Puppy Love

    Joined:
    17 Jun 2004
    Posts:
    1,434
    Likes Received:
    15
    I think that's where the misconception begins, though. Honestly, the people crying foul do not reflect the majority. Most people I know are in favor of stricter gun control and already go well beyond what is required in terms of gun safety.

    I feel like there's an idea that Americans all drive around in huge trucks with gun racks and walk around with six-shooters on our hips or something. That couldn't be further from the truth.
     
  14. SuicideNeil

    SuicideNeil New Member

    Joined:
    17 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    5,983
    Likes Received:
    345
     
  15. Da_Rude_Baboon

    Da_Rude_Baboon What the?

    Joined:
    28 Mar 2002
    Posts:
    4,082
    Likes Received:
    135
    There was a discussion on the breakfast news about the shooting this morning and the mental health issue was raised. America is very bad at recognizing and treating mental health issues. The person expressing this point claimed that the perpetrators of the high profile shootings in the US had all exhibited mental health issues in the run up to the shootings but had not been diagnosed or treated. I do not know how valid this claim is but it puts another light on the subject of free health care for all. Realistically it is to late to put any kind of meaningful gun controls in place in the US but we can perhaps help the mental issues which could be causing the shootings.

    For those members in the US who firmly believe in the right to bear arms, what do you consider is an appropriate level of arms?

    I also think Neil's post is a good one. I believe in the Scandinavian countries there a controls on how the media reports suicides as studies have shown that detailed news reports on suicides can act as a catalyst for others to act.
     
  16. Carrie

    Carrie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18 Nov 2010
    Posts:
    3,183
    Likes Received:
    992
    So the image portrayed of virtually every second American being in therapy is false then?
     
    Last edited: 17 Dec 2012
    David likes this.
  17. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

    Joined:
    23 Oct 2001
    Posts:
    34,344
    Likes Received:
    1,748
    The prevalence of mood disorders in the adult population the US is about 10%, of severe mood disorders about 7%, and of bipolar disorders about 2%. About 1% has a psychotic illness. About 1% is some form of socio- or psychopath.

    Lumped together, about 45 million people in the US have a mental health problem.

    Since the 1990's there have been about 38 school shootings: that's about 38 perpetrators. You'd expect mental health services to be so well-resourced that this 0.000084% does not slip through the net. Good luck with that.

    Restricting guns is easier and cheaper.
     
  18. jrduquemin

    jrduquemin Member

    Joined:
    20 Oct 2009
    Posts:
    228
    Likes Received:
    5
    It is easier to buy a gun in the US than it is to get healthcare, from what I've heard...
     
  19. padrejones2001

    padrejones2001 Puppy Love

    Joined:
    17 Jun 2004
    Posts:
    1,434
    Likes Received:
    15
    I'll put to you all like this, the three largest mental health providers in the country are: Los Angeles County Jail, Rikers Island Jail in New York City and Cook County Jail in Illinois. Do note that they're are all prisons. We feel that it's easier to rehabilitate the mental ill that commit crimes after they've already committed crimes. In fact, the mentally ill prison population quadrupled between 2000 and 2006, and now there are more mentally ill in prison than those that aren't.

    So yes, it's a real problem that presently has no solution. Like I said before, I'm all for stricter gun control, but I am far from naive enough to think that shootings like this or even worse will stop occurring.
     
  20. Da_Rude_Baboon

    Da_Rude_Baboon What the?

    Joined:
    28 Mar 2002
    Posts:
    4,082
    Likes Received:
    135
    Really? Gun control now sounds like bolting the stable door after the horse has escaped. The guns are all ready out there in such numbers how do you get them under control?
     

Share This Page