24 March 2005

spiked-risk | Red Lake: a tragedy, not a lesson

"There is a new industry of school violence 'experts', with a journal entitled Journal of School Violence appearing in 2002, which recommended restricting access to schools, increasing the number of school police officers, developing emergency plans and adding telephones and radios around schools. An unarmed security guard patrolled the corridors of the high school in Red Lake, and was the first person to be killed by Weise. Rather than spending money on books, security seems to be taking over."
So much for unarmed "guards" as protection, much less as even a deterrent. I'm sure the poor guy's uniform made him prime target #1.

What's really interesting about this article is that it actually talks about the root issues of what motivates a child mass murderer. Not the video games, the guns, the goth clothing, but what sent these kids over the edge. It's interesting to note that people don't just wake up one morning with an innate desire to massacre. It festers and grows, and manifests itself in a number of ways. Sometimes, albeit rarely, it explodes into mind-numbing violence.

However, as this article points out, these events are rare.

In spite of the rarity of these events, the feel-gooders are quick to make sure we put measures in place that will presumably keep this from happening again. In fact, what happens is that rights are eroded for everyone, and the real issues continue to be ignored. But the politicians can rest easy, because many mommies now feel better.

What's is also interesting is how our society seeks and desires the quick-fix, and in doing so, typically overreacts with futile, feel-good policies that do nothing to stop the problem. Point in case: zero-tolerance policies. There's a great list of "common sense" or "zero tolerance" stupidity. For example:
A six-year-old in Colorado was suspended for violating the school's anti-drug policy after a teacher saw him share a lemon drop sweet with a friend. The school also called an ambulance for the lemon-drop-eating friend.
Nope, you can't make this stuff up. People really are that stupid.
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