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[personal profile] lizzybennet
Chris went to grad school at the Univ. of Arizona. We lived less than a mile from where the shooting took place and have been to that particular shopping center on more than one occasion. Chris was an adjunct at Pima Comm. College, where the shooter went to school.

At the time we lived in Tucson, there was a shooting at the Univ. in the nursing school. A failing student shot three of his professors and then himself. I haven't heard anyone mention the most recent tragedy in connection with the nursing school shooting, but in my opinion this speaks very loudly about the need for better gun control laws in Arizona. I know. They won't stand to hear of such things. We knew people out there who had oodles of guns, including automatic weapons. There is still a certain feel of "the wild west" out there, with the desert always reminding you that you live in a place where humans don't really belong.

This shooting is a tragedy. There's no question about it. But I hope we can learn something from this, as a society. I wish we could stop the poisonous, negative rhetoric and just learn to work together.

Date: 2011-01-11 06:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gemmaj.livejournal.com
To me--basically a cultural outsider--it's just insane that the focus of the discussion isn't gun control. Paranoid schizophrenics and Glocks? They do not mix.

Date: 2011-01-12 01:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mysteena.livejournal.com
I agree!

Date: 2011-01-11 08:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sunrise0124.livejournal.com
Yes this is a bad thing but to me, gun control won't solve anything. look at England who got rid of all guns. Guess what? those who still commit crimes still get guns and people still die from them. It only keeps good people from being able to protect themselves. Sorry I disagree that gun control is the answer. I actually think it should be the other way around. People actually watch what they say and do when they are worried they will get shot. I'm just saying.

Date: 2011-01-12 02:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] themenow.livejournal.com
I totally agree with you.

Criminals are going to get guns no matter how stringent our gun laws are.

How do we keep them out of the hands of the mentally ill? We can also follow England: all persons who have mental illnesses are registered. Even if you are agoraphobic or depressed (regardless of how bad), you have to be registered with the government; employers are allowed to have that information as it's become part of their background checks.

I don't want to have to register with the government because I'm on meds for depression and anxiety disorder. I'm not a threat with a gun; but I want to have the right to have one. Especially after our break in. One of the sheriffs who worked our case told us about how one man caught a guy breaking in. He pulled his gun on the thief and held him in place until the police arrived. He didn't need to use it; but it was there as protection (real protection).

I think the sad thing is that one truly sick person can ruin just about everything for everyone. Look at how Muslims are looked at now because of 9/11.

Anyway, I'll hop down off my soap box.

Pima CC was the CC my mom worked at when she lived in Tucson. She taught GED and ESL there. (Oh, did I tell you that one of her current students in the CC in St. Charles tried to jump! They talked him down luckily. Her stories of her GED students are pretty bad. Scary even.)

Date: 2011-01-12 01:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mysteena.livejournal.com
I'm not saying people shouldn't have guns. It is part of our constitution that we are allowed to bare arms and I feel that is one of our guaranteed rights. But I do think there should be limits. For example, right now Arizona is considering legislation that will allow people to carry guns onto school campuses. Is that really necessary? In Arizona, people are allowed to carry concealed weapons. That guy next to you in line at the grocery store might have a gun under his coat. Isn't that just a little extreme? To me it is.

Date: 2011-01-12 02:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] themenow.livejournal.com
Sarah's parents both have concealed weapons permits. I think my dad does too, but I'm not sure. I know he has a gun permit but I think he can't have it tucked under his coat.

I think the real problem is how to keep the guns out of the crazy people's hands. Because the sane people aren't the ones who will pull a gun out in line at the grocery store. However, I'd certainly be happy if a guy with a concealed gun was in line with me and a crazy man came in with his gun and the sane guy pulled his and saved us all.

Granted there were a lot more reasons back in ye olde days to carry guns while you were out and about. And sure, I think having an automatic weapon tucked in your shoulder holster is a bit extreme (okay a lot extreme).

UF is so strict with their "weapons" policy that kitchen knives, like ones you use to cut your steak with are forbidden on campus. So if you bring your lunch you gotta eat with some plastic wear. That, to me is also extreme.

Date: 2011-01-12 01:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mysteena.livejournal.com
I've never heard of anyone going on a shooting spree in England. I'm not saying it hasn't happened, but if it has it is a rare occurance to how often it happens in America.

So, are you saying this senator and the nine year old girl, and the nursing student's professors should have watched what they said and did, and then they wouldn't have been shot?

Date: 2011-01-12 03:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] themenow.livejournal.com
Oh no, there's nothing that the senator or the girl could have done.

I honestly believe that the real problem isn't so much stricter gun laws, but to ask how do we keep the guns out of the hands of criminals and mentally unstable people (although with them, how do we do that without infringing on their privacy).

Look back to Columbine: I always thought it was weird that the parents of those two boys didn't know that something was going on. You're my parent expert: if you get suspicious don't you investigate what the kids are up to? Do you get subtle feelings or hints that something is "too quiet"?

I believe, for the mentally unstable, people just aren't paying attention. People don't want to think that their kid is sick or crazy (mentally ill) because it'll bring a stigma on the whole family. My mom has said it was easier to just not do anything about my "problems" because 1. they didn't have a name for what was wrong with me back then and 2. it was just easier to ignore than deal with. Although, she admits now, that it was a shame we didn't get help considering how much that help has improved my quality of life now. (This is why I'm such a proponent for good mental health care.)

I truly believe that that guy's parents (and his friends) fall into this category. They didn't want to deal with the problem and worried about what might happen to the family and how others would see them if word got out that their son was mentally ill. The news last night reported that the shooter had built an altar in his parents back yard that included a replica human skull (showed a pic too). His friends mention how in the last couple of years he seemed to withdraw a lot and go on rants and raves, vocally. He was kicked out of school because he kept muttering to himself, shaking his head and hands violently. The school said get therapy. But that's it. His parents didn't encourage him to get help. His friends didn't. So there's this violent and sick man walking the streets. He gets a gun and shoots people. I don't think he cared who it was that he shot; I think it was the shooting that he got off on.

There's no easy solution to this problem.

I think we can reach out to our community, encourage people to really look out for each other. After the Virginia Tech shooting academic advisors and faculty at UF can take classes on how to deal with students that seem troubled. How to get them help, how to talk to them and encourage them to get help. Campus offers free counseling to our students. If the psychologists think the student needs further help they refer them out. Now it's up to us as individuals to decide if we're going to pay attention and help as needed or ignore it.

We've had a couple of troubled kids come in. It's been interesting dealing with them. Sometimes scary. But following the guidelines gives me some comfort.

Date: 2011-01-12 06:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mysteena.livejournal.com
If I'm not mistaken, in Arizona people are not required to have a permit to carry a concealed weapon. That's what bothers me. I don't mind if people carry them, if they have a permit and have gone through the appropriate background checks.

As for the Columbine kids, I feel the parents failed in a huge way. It is so important for parents to pay attention to what is going on in their kids' lives. Granted, the Tucson kid was older and his parents may have felt like he was an adult, but still. They should have taken the recommendations of Pima CC much more seriously. Let's be honest. There are a lot of weirdos at community college. It cannot be easy to get kicked out, so he must have really had some serious issues manifesting themselves. He also had a huge youtube presence where he ranted and raved about this stuff. But who was watching it? No one until after the shooting. There is so much crazy out there, how do we know when someone is just crazy enough to actually act upon their delusions?

Our campus has a very detailed plan in place in case of a shooter. Does yours?

Date: 2011-01-12 07:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] themenow.livejournal.com
They don't have to have permits? AIYEEE!! Okay, now that I agree with you on! I think if anyone has a gun they have to have a permit. No permit, no gun!

I agree with you on the Columbine kids' parents. How did they not know? I had no privacy as a kid. None! And it kept me honest.

The kid at my mom's current CC that tried to jump was taken away by the police and put under 72 hour mental health evaluation. My mom thinks he was coked up and thinking he would do a "jackass" stunt but when the cops arrived he was all, "oh life sucks! suicide!" Her students agree with her though as they have told her he shoots up a lot. I think he's in jail now.

UF has an emergency service that sends out text messages, emails, and other alerts if something like this comes up. Now as to what we should do if someone comes in guns blazing...no one has told me what to do. We've been told that anyone that threatens violence or is violent we're to call campus police. They also give us a two page form on how to handle not only trouble students but troubled staff. How to encourage them to visit the counselors, who to call in we're worried, etc.

Date: 2011-01-12 06:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sunrise0124.livejournal.com
It does happen in fact, just last summer it happened. 12 died more than a dozen injured. Just because we don't hear about it doesn't mean it doesn't happen. http://www.foxnews.com/world/2010/06/02/report-feared-dead-shooting-northern-england/

I see it as a sign of the times. We hear about all sorts of bad things going on in the world lately.

No, I'm not saying that. The 9 year old was innocent in this. she was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. As was most of the ones that were shot. Guessing from what the news said this morning, he was at one of those events a few years ago and was not satified with her answer to a question he had asked her. And since that time he was spiraling down hill. So, yes I do feel that in his mind, she had failed him in a way which made Giffords the target. I don't feel he was right in that but I think that's what he was thinking. Also from the notes he has in his home, he was also hoping he would die doing this. So he was crazy.

This senator, was my senator for awhile. Jeremy sent her a few letters explaining his side of the story. And everyone of her replys back was a little snipy. So yes, I do feel the senator said the wrong thing to someone and that sent him over the edge. all it takes for someone who is not mentally stable to pull a trigger is to have someone say the wrong thing. same logic.

Date: 2011-01-12 06:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mysteena.livejournal.com
That's interesting. I'd forgotten that she was also your senator for a while. And you're right, it is a sign of the times.

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