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The Sandy Hook massacre makes the heart weep, and demonstrates far too grimly how psychopaths live to vent their demons — by any means, and at whatever cost.
Adam Lanza’s mass murder of 26 children and staff in a Connecticut elementary school, before turning the gun on himself, resurrects the debate about gun control.
That hackneyed albatross shows little sign of extinction in a self-absorbed culture that glorifies graphic violence, demands immediate gratification, fixes its ills with pills, and enfeebles good citizenship.
It’s a deadly recipe that’s cooked up disasters, including the Aurora, Colo., movie theater bloodbath that killed 12 people last summer, the 2011 attack of Rep. Gabby Giffords and five others in Arizona, the Binghamton immigration center carnage in 2009 that killed 14 people, the 2007 Virginia Tech slaughter which extinguished 32 lives, the Wendy’s massacre in Queens of 2000 that annihilated five workers, and the 1999 Columbine High murders that wiped out 12 students and a teacher.
Stricter gun laws are only one piece of the disturbing jigsaw.
A ban on assault weapons seems the logical solution because Lanza couldn’t have wrought his evil without access to his mother’s legal, industrial-strength weapons of mass destruction, according to popular thought.
But the demented don’t need guns to murder the masses.
Michigan school caretaker Andrew Kehoe used a bomb to kill 45 people in the Bath School in 1927 — 38 of them children.
Unemployed Cuban refugee Julio Gonzalez set fire to a Bronx social club called “Happy Land” in 1990, decimating 87 people.
And the 9-11 terrorists used box cutters and hijacked commercial planes to obliterate nearly 3,000 people on America’s worst day.
Even so-called progressive lands have their violent lot to bear.
Japan doesn’t even keep statistics on its low gun crime rate, but that didn’t stop disgruntled Japanese cultists in 1995 from carrying out a nerve gas attack in Tokyo’s subways, killing 12 people and injuring thousands more.
Switzerland employs a reverse strategy.
The law requires Swiss males to own a gun, and a popular saying is that folk are their own cops. Yet such blind trust didn’t stop Swiss schizoid Friedrich Leibacher from blowing away 14 people with a combat rifle, pistol, and revolvers in a parliament building in 2001.
A ban on assault weapons and secondary gun markets is definitely a step in the right direction, but there needs to be a parallel course of action against the triggers of our bloodlust, including our dependency on the Internet — a virtual abyss distorting our reality.
Lanza was apparently a gamer, and while not all gamers are maniacs, our tech addictions have certainly helped to erode the contact skills that form the bedrock of humanity.
South Korea — one of the world’s most wired nations, with more than 25,000 cyber cafes open 24 hours a day — set a precedent for the new phenomenon in 2002, when 24-year-old Kim Kyung-jae collapsed and died after gaming non-stop at an Internet cafe for 86 hours.
Guns cannot be blamed for our culture of violence when we, ourselves, are the deadly culprits — lock, stock, and barrel.Reach reporter Shavana Abruzzo at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (718) 260-2529. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/BritShavana
©2012 Community Newspaper Group
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