Virginia Tech: Shootings

Today, at least 31 people were killed by a gunman at Virginia Tech, and many others were wounded. Originally it was thought, that only one person was dead.

Virginia Tech has closed and classes are canceled; the area is said to be secure.

These school/university shootings are just horrible. Will new gun laws be enforced by a Democratic president — Obama or Clinton?

It might be the deadliest school shooting in US history, but the story is not new; just a few of the earlier shootings in history (wikipedia.com):

Platte Canyon High School shooting (2006) — 2 dead,

Amish school shooting (2006) — 5 dead,

Rocori High School shooting (2003) — 2 dead,

Columbine High School massacre (1999) — 15 dead.

Related news at news.google.com.

Update: Lubos Motl has some speculations as to who the Virginia Tech gunman was. (It turned out to be student Cho Seung-hui of Virginia Tech).

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17 Responses to Virginia Tech: Shootings

  1. chin says:

    new gun laws will do nothing. suffering is not eliminated by controlling it or hiding it, suffering is eliminated if the causes and conditions for suffering are eliminated. the same is true for such shootings. what are the causes and conditions? gun control is only the surface.

  2. Kasper Olsen says:

    I’m not sure gun control will do nothing — ever wondered why you very rarely see such incidents in Europe? But of course the underlying reasons are more complex.

    -Kasper

  3. gorkon says:

    Gun control does nothing but make it harder for law abiding citizens to keep and bear arms. If the situation changes, then only outlaws will have the guns. This shooting likely was NOT done by a law abiding citizen, but byt someone who would have had the gun anyway no matter WHAT gun law is passed.

    Gorkon

  4. Kasper Olsen says:

    Sure, Gorkon — then I guess you have relatively many “outlaws” in the US, compared to Canada, or Europe for that matter?

    -Kasper

  5. mwoodsh says:

    law abiding or not, the more presence guns have in society, the easier it is for ANYONE to get their hands on them.

    i quote a sign in a gas station in my home state…a place i refused to get out and pump gas out.
    “when guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.”

    gun control won’t fix the whole societal problem at hand here, but deregulation of such laws sure as hell has NOT worked…have we not seen an INCREASE in such incidents?

    right to bare arms. i support our civil liberties to the fullest, but governing so as to provide a safe society should be priority. our citizens are not showing that they can do it themselves…time for government control.

  6. Ted says:

    Why don’t we start over on this blog? Lose the stupid “good guns-bad guns” argument — any Chem student can put something together that will take out an entire lecture hall without any big bang.
    Focus on the hurting people around the country — the world — right now because this mixed up slob didn’t know how to ask for help and decided to take it out on the people around him. Can you – personally – do anything to comfort them? Can you – personally – do anything to prevent the “next time”? Do you see some awkward, uncomfortable new person in class or at work and think yourself too cool to befriend them? Can you overcome your prejudices and reach out?
    Pray or meditate or whatever you do to whatever God or gods you acknowledge… and then do something positive and uplifting for someone around you.

  7. MononcQc says:

    I’m curious as to what social movement will get blamed for this; I heard it was ‘because’ of a girlfriend. That’s a change from videogames, gothics or whatever.

    Hopefully, some activists will not get over the top with it.

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  9. nickir20 says:

    I am also curious to find out what will happen next with the gun laws? This is a very very upsetting story.

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  11. gorkon says:

    Guns being available as they currently are are not as “easily” available as you might think in the US. First, you already must have to wait 7 days to purchase any gun when you purchase it legally. You must pass a background check when you purchase it legally. You must get a hunting license and training in order to use any gun properly (as in not killing people with it…only animals). It’s not exactly easy for the law abiding to get a gun. The criminals likely already have them, or can get them much easier then we can. Criminals have NO regard for gun control laws and don’t care about following the law. Gun control laws are largely ineffective. That is the state of things. Also, with the death count in this going up above 30, this guy didn’t just have 1 gun. He likely had several or a possibly illegal assault weapon. If it was an assault weapon, then how would gun control help? I stand by my earlier statement….tougher gun control will prevent nothing. It will only make it more difficult for the law abiding. Period.

  12. MononcQc says:

    I’d not believe gun laws would get incredibly stricter than they are; Virginia Tech will probably get most of the blame for not having the lock-down set in place after two people were shot.

    The president did claim that they had information that led them to believe that the killer had fled and was trying to leave the state.

    But yeah, they had no proof, so they’ll probably get most of the blame, and Lobbies will do the rest to keep a status quo on gun laws.

  13. Dr. Alice says:

    I can’t really picture how the university administration could have known that they needed to lock the place down after the first shooting. It’s only obvious in hindsight.

    For the rest, concealed-carry being permitted on campuses is the only sure-fire way to prevent tragedies like this.

  14. gorkon says:

    Dr. Alice:

    Conceal carry is a good thing. It should be allowed. The people with the permits are not the ones you should fear. It’s the ones with out the permits that you should be deathly afraid of.

    Another thing, all college police officers should be armed. VT officers were armed. I work for a Community College in Ohio and our officers currently are not allowed to carry a firearm and the only firearms on campus are kept in a office under lock and key which is totally ridiculous.

  15. gw says:

    Dr. Alice:

    Living in the Houston area, gun violence on educational campuses has unfortunately become common. You would think that the university administration would have “gotten a clue” and done the same thing that is done here. That is lock down the entire campus for any type of firearm incident. A little inconvenience to the school in this case could have gone a long way in saving some lives. Such a “zero risk stance” is a small price to pay for the potential to mitigate tragedy. It is for this lack of judgment, that I feel the university administration really should be faulted.

  16. Kasper Olsen says:

    nickir20: probably nothing will happen, as usual…

    MononcQc: I agree. Then gunmans background will be studied in much detail, and many psychological theories will be invented to explain what happened. But the fact that it is so relatively easy to buy a gun in Virginia (and most of the US, for that matter) will soon be forgotten….

    -Kasper

  17. Jesse Park says:

    YES it was tragic- YES it was a shock to everyone. My heart goes out to all those affected. It seems that every TV station that were represented had at times, some so called ‘Experts” to give their opinion of any aspect of the incident. Many were telling that security could have been better-Notification could have been given to EVERYONE on campus, or coming to campus.
    I think the Campus Police, the city, county, State police, FBI, ATF and anyone else did a GREAT job.
    I suppose if there was some procedure that every one that came on campus had to come through a single ‘checkpoint’ (Like the Airpport security) then if everyone was searched, then interviewed by some psyc doctor to see if any had ulterior plans, MAYBE something could have been done to prevent this.
    COME ON folks, A university is like a small city. WAKE UP Folks.!!!!! If all the police in the state of Virginia were on the campus at the time, the ‘STUDENT” could have easily passed any one and no one would single him out. There is no way any university budget would allow a police offier for each and every person on that campus.
    Can anyone tell me how a University as large as this could possible ‘lock down’ every building in the two hour period between shootings? This university is a small city for god’s sake. It happened by one crazed nut that was bent on killing, regardless of how many police were there, he could still do what he did. I think the administration and the police acted as quickly as possible to notify students and others on campus, and I APPLAUDE their efforts.
    The so called “EXPERTS” that appear on every TV station after any event as huge as this, are wanting their fifteen minutes of fame. I think if these ‘EXPERTS’ are so good, what is their solution?

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