The Patch

April 24, 2007

Continuing the rant…

Filed under: Politics — freshlysqueezedcynic @ 10:34 am

Okay, that was just something I had to get off my chest (and my drafts). Anger fuels the writing process no end, especially when you’ve got a target to hit, and in this case it’s the Virginia Tech shootings, which have, in the immortal words of Brad R. at Sadly, No!, brought people of every race, creed and religion along to join together to say: “The senseless massacre at Virginia Tech basically confirms everything I’ve been saying all along.”

Frankly, I hate this kind of bullshit that comes after any kind of random incident like this. There’s a sense of “what did we do?” or “what went wrong?” or “who is responsible?” kind of thought that normally leads one to decide that one’s own bete noir, be it gun control, the Second Amendment, awfully violent films and games, whatever, is the answer to all of the above. And it’s bullshit. This guy was, by all accounts, an unbalanced individual who was considered potentially dangerous, and ended up fulfilling that by acting violently. There’s no “big question”, no grand lesson that we can take out of that. The amount of people that could do something like this is a small sample indeed, and the amount that do even less. You can’t really take lessons from this kind of shooting, still less use it as a meaningful example to influence public policy.

And it’s hard to say “we can’t protect you” as a society from some kind of harm, be it bird flu, terrorism, or anything like that, but sometimes the scale of things and the possibilities make it impossible for us to be able to counteract every potential cause of harm all the time. We can lessen the possibility of it happening, we can try our hardest to prevent something like this happening, but in the end it comes down to probabilities; we have to be lucky all the time, they only have to be lucky once.

And looking at that, it’s shameful how some people have got up on their high horse and used this to grind their particular axe, as if this school shooting was somehow symptomatic of the wider world in general, as if we can take some kind of lesson out of this that we can’t take out of the normal murder, violence, war, and crime that happens in the world, that this mass shooting somehow means more than the ordinary, everyday shootings (a phrase that should give us all, at least some pause; ordinary, everyday murders. Just no longer newsworthy, you see). Most grimly amusing were the petrified few who still cling to the notion that the SCARY MUSLIMS ARE OUT TO GET US, despite the shooter being… urm, Korean, conservative commentator and all-round moron Debbie Schlussel being one of the foremost, not to mention the eerie, nasty little quasi-fascist commentators of the Little Green Footballs blog.

Astonishingly, those creepy bastards aren’t the worst, since, alas, more mainstream right-wing pundits such as John Derbyshire, Mark Steyn, and Michelle Malkin blame the victims for the shootings, claiming that you must be a bunch of quivering girly-men (or girly-girls) not to charge down a deranged psychopath spraying bullets from two semi-automatic guns at anything that moves. Let us remember that these are the the people who support the war in Iraq. Let us see how gloriously in touch with reality they are.

 As a bonus, there’s also the Sunday Times showing how low the mighty paper of record has fallen since Rupert Murdoch got his grubby little hands in it by publishing the opinions of faux-feminist contrarian (Contrarian – noun – Someone who gets paid to be spectacularly, bone-headedly wrong with style.) Camille Paglia suggests that we’re all feminized now (I, personally never noticed my new vagina until now) with a lot more words, a lot more Freudian imagery, and a lot less fucking sense than the right-wing morons. Also she suggests that “Young women now seem to want to behave like men and have sex without commitment. The signals they are giving are very confusing, and rage and humiliation build up in boys who are spurned again and again.” So, obviously, it’s the bitches’ fault that they get shot. Strangely, I have been rejected by women who may or may not want to have sex without committment with someone who is not me, but I have not shot up my university. I suspect this is because I am not, unlike the shooter, predisposed to violent thoughts and mentally unbalanced to the point I am a danger to others, something Ms. Paglia seems to have missed. But then. Ms. Paglia never let facts get in the way of blaming women for things. (google her name and date rape and see what turns up. Don’t blame me when you get really angry.)

Jesus, these people make my eyes bleed.

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