About Virginia Tech

I’m as shocked and appalled as everyone else by this, and I don’t really know what to think or what to say, but I’ve been struck by two things along the way.

1.  Does anyone else think it is really odd that the shooter was a South Korean?  I know it is extremely racially insensitive of me to think this, and it is also a broad generalization which I hate as a rule, but I don’t peg Asians as mass murderers.  They just never seem to be the people who cause the problems.  I hope this doesn’t create a backlash for the Asian community.

2.  I’m getting really upset at people blaming the University for not notifying people after the initial shooting.  This is ridiculous.  How often do domestic arguments turn into giant shooting sprees?  Nobody though the situation would escalate into something like this, and they shouldn’t be blamed for what happened next.  I realize that a lot of people are looking for someone to be angry at, and they are looking for answers, but Virginia Tech shouldn’t be scapegoated for this.


10 responses to this post.

  1. I agree that the school should not be held accountable. Here is what I wrote on a different blog: I heard the president of Va. Tech. on TV last night. The campus is like a city. It has over 100 buildings and about 25,000 students, with about 10,000 living on campus and another 14,000 commuting in and out. Just as you could not secure an entire city in two hours, so the Va. Tech folks could not either. I think it is easy for people to criticize what went on yesterday, but there are no guarantees in life. We take off our shoes before boarding flights because a Shoe Bomber was discovered on a plane. Well, what about the Cell Phone Bomber who might be just around the corner? It’s only a matter of time before someone figures out how to wire a cell phone with explosives. Then we’ll all have our cell phones confiscated before flights. Maybe one day we’ll even fly naked because clothing has been developed as incendiary devices. We have to understand risk in life and learn to live with it.


  2. Posted by Elizabeth on April 17, 2007 at 11:11 pm

    Thank you!! I thought I was the only person who didn’t think that the school should be held responsible! Even with a better ermgency plan in place there still could have been a shooting of this magnitude! There are just too many factors involved in trying to notify that large of a student body at that time of day.


  3. Posted by Julie on April 18, 2007 at 10:25 am

    Going to another major Virginia university just an hour up the road from Tech, I’m not sure I agree. I’ve been listening to everyone talk about this. I’ve seen distressed friends and crying classmates, not knowing if their friends and siblings were safe. Almost everyone here at JMU knows people at Tech, so even though I do not know anyone myself, I have been hearing a lot from students here who have corresponded with students there.

    The school should be held somewhat accountable. Sure, they can’t stop the influx of people coming onto campus for early morning classes, but they can keep everyone from leaving or entering campus buildings. They should also have informed the students earlier than they did. I overhead a student talking to a friend at Tech on Monday who was locked in the library. She said all they heard was rumors, they didn’t know anything that was happening, and scrambled to computers to figure it out.

    Yes, there still could have been a shooting of this magnitude. If he walked straight into the academic buildings and let loose, yes. But he went to a dorm and shot 2 people first. They assumed the guy had fled campus. I guess that’s the last time they’ll ever assume that.

    Certainly there is no way to know how you would react in such a situation. Everyone always says they’d have done a better job. On Monday, Tech *could* have done a better job, but so we say for everything. In that respect, you can NOT blame Tech for how they reacted.

    However. Tech officials ought to be thrown in jail because they COULD have prevented this student from going on a rampage. This kid’s professor went to school officials with his disturbing writings about killing people, suggested he get psychological help, and what happens? They said it was nothing to worry about. The kid was allowed to write about killing people because it was his freedom of speech to do so. And despite this kid stalking other Tech students a few years earlier, they just let it go.
    It’s disgusting. Someone’s head should roll for that.

    Also, on a side note, I’m wondering why residents of other countries, whether living here legally or not, are allowed the full constitutional rights of American citizens to bear arms. Almost anyone can obtain a visa to stay here for a few years, and they’re allowed to buy weapons? Pretty shady.


  4. “I don’t peg Asians as mass murderers”

    Except of course for Pol Pot and Mao Tse-Tung. And that hairy asian Yoda look-alike with the Tokyo subway Sarin gas attack. 😉


  5. It’s a crazy, illogical world we all live in. We continuously have to try to make sense out of senseless events…no one, no town, no local government, no state government, no federal government, ESPECIALLY no university police could have prevented what happened at Virginia Tech. When a 82 year old man who runs a local gas station (that he has operated for 60 years) in a small little town like Auburn, AL gets murdered at 9:00 a.m. with no witnesses and no leads…it is not the fault of the law enforcement. The Korean guy was sick, sick, sick…it makes me deeply depressed that he had no friends or family who did not realize how sick he was; he may have been able to get some help. May the Force be with those who lost loved ones (and the VA Tech Administration and police officers who go to bed each night holding their wives and/or husbands and children and wishing and praying that they could have done something differently but yet knowing they could not have)…


  6. RE: point 1

    I think this is a perception held by a number of Americans. It’s partially that historically the Asian population in the US has been small and concentrated in a few areas until the immigration reform acts of the 1960s. There was a lot of selection bias in the types of Asians that were in America and have sinced decided to come here. This effect is changing today.

    As an Asian and the child of immigrants, what I find most sad about the perpetrator is that he was an immigrant who had feelings of aggression towards his richer, white classmates. I think this says a lot about the lack of America’s ability to integrate new and different people into its society.

    I too hope this doesn’t create a backlash for the Asian community.


  7. The really sad thing is that we were, and are, all “new and different people” when it comes to the melting pot that people call America. I just don’t understand the arrogance of some “American people” who don’t remember that none of us (except the native Americans) are “not from around here…”. Still, feelings of aggression will never justify what was done and this was an isolated event from a very sick individual; maybe I am naive but I think that most Americans do welcome diversity in our society–it is what makes us who we are.


  8. “Still, feelings of aggression will never justify what was done and this was an isolated event from a very sick individual”

    I agree whole heartedly with this, Sandrita! There is no justification for what he did.

    “I think that most Americans do welcome diversity in our society–it is what makes us who we are.”

    I hope this is true. I just fear that it is not.


  9. Posted by Taylor on April 19, 2007 at 12:51 pm

    Me too, Gloria. I am continually haunted and bothered at the dark turn this country is taking. Isolationism and ethnocentrism could very well destroy the fabric of our society.


  10. But is it just the “country” we hear about from the media who have basically become tabloid journalists–who report despair, dread, fear, racism, isolationism and really, really bad news? I live in a small town and work in an office with 21 folks–two of these folks have adopted children from Russia and Kazistan (sp?). And this is ALABAMA! Maybe I am old and living unrealistically but I still hold faith in the good, hard-working accepting people of America.. To quote Charles Barkley (one of my heroes–oh my Gawd, he’s black and I’m white)…”I may be wrong but I don’t think so…”


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: