Another school shooting has taken the lives of what is being reported as 9 students and a teacher‘s aide. Twelve others were wounded by the 17-year-old murderer, This time the massacre was in Santa Fe Texas, a small town of approximately 80,000 residents south of Houston.
The Houston Chronicle described the assassin with these words: “He posted a photo on his Facebook page of a “born to kill” T-shirt and wrote in a journal about shooting people and committing suicide. His Facebook cover photo comes from an album called “Dangerous Days” by a dystopian cyberpunk band called Pertubator with a track that took on a haunting quality before 8 a.m. on Friday morning: “Humans Are Such Easy Prey”
The newspaper wrote, “The signs of dark, violent fantasies were ubiquitous in (the killer’s) social persona and private ramblings.”
Like the 1999 Columbine High School killers, he had a penchant for wearing a trench coat. Presenting a dichotomy of personalities, he had been an honor roll student, played on the high school football team and expressed a wholesome desire to join the Marines.
Seventeen were killed at a Parkland, Florida high school just three months ago on Valentine’s Day. This list of school shootings goes back to 1990.
The immediate reaction by many on the left is to go after guns — confiscate and destroy them. Eradicate the Second Amendment as outdated. Blame the NRA. Then comes the talk of mandatory mental health evaluations and permitting involuntary commitments.
Lost in the mix is the undeniable fact that violence, passing as entertainment, has for far too long, permeated our society. Music lyrics were once taken on by Tipper Gore, then-wife of Sen. Al Gore. She testified before a senate panel in 1985, saying, “…in virtually every medium, the communications industry offers increasingly explicit images of sex and violence to younger and younger children. In the course of my work, I’ve encountered a degree of callousness toward children that I never imagined existed. No one asks what is in the product or its effect on kids, only how well it will sell.”
Her efforts to expose the encroachment were vociferously fought by the music industry. In 1985, the graphic violence was mild compared to today. According to Quora, the Internet “became mainstream among researchers by 1989, among Silicon Valley movers and shakers by mid 1995, and by most US households by 2001.”
In 2018, many children are isolated, unsupervised and fatherless. The Internet provides them with explicit images and social media sites to “express themselves.” Their entertainment is raw and often violent. Fewer families than ever before are involved in a faith-based community. Values are no longer taught. Parents increasingly put their own pursuits ahead of their children. These are the areas that beg for attention, since they create the personalities that revel in violence.
Families owned firearms throughout our history and mass shootings were not perpetrated at schools by adolescents. The cause is too uncomfortable to address, but it’s time to remind parents that their children are their primary responsibility. Economic pressure must be applied to the entertainment and music industries. The NRA, which protects freedom, is not the problem.