The general talk has been about statistics. Demographics. Toxic masculinity. The kids. The guns. Searching for a place to lay a blame far too massive for one shaky set of teenage shoulders to bear.
I agree. Not that we should ban firearms, because they’re not technically the cause. A murder weapon cannot stand trial for the murder, that privilege is reserved for a suspect with the motive, intent and opportunity to commit the murder.
🙋🏻♂️Ooh ooh I know this one, pick me pick me! The students! Let’s ban the students! It’s one hundred percent guaranteed to end school shootings once and for all. Too extreme? Maybe just close all the schools. Boom. Problem solved. Consider the budget effectively trimmed. It’s categorically impossible to shoot up a school if there is no school.
You see what I did there? Wordplay with insight and reason. Dry wit. I learned it on my own, in conversation with more experienced people, by seeking out and reading classic novels, discovering and absorbing several degree’s worth of philosophy, psychology, art, language and history from copious diverse sources, for free, through the internet. I learned to bend and break the rules of grammar with sentence fragments. To write for effect. I learn by consuming the rich heritage of literary greatness actively denied to me in all of the 15+ schools where I was forced to waste my childhood in a painfully numb, near vegetative state.
No offense, veggies, but a tomato is actually a fruit.
Don’t want to get rid of our “great” schools? They’re necessary, for the kids, you say? If someone hates a place so much they want to kill the people there, is it necessary the go? Maybe don’t force them to keep showing up, see how many shootings there are then. People should have the option to leave, or just stop going if they hate it so much. Problem solved. Again.
Not ready for a return to (some) Classical Greek standards of voluntary education, where teachers compete to attract students? Fine, let’s be progressive. Let’s imprison our children and force feed them propaganda regurgitated by the barely trained, relatively inexperienced and unwise hired hands, who assign largely fruitless tasks in a secure compound with a lord-of-the-flies sort of vibe, then if any one of those little shits tries to escape before their sentence is over, send them or their parents to a worse prison, the fuckers. Let’s call that civilization. Let’s call that modern education. Let’s call that the Gulag. It would be more accurate.
In government schools, you don’t acquire education, education acquires you.
Keep the Gulags? Alright, well if we insist on trapping people in a stifling protofascist barracks for the most restless, formative and volatile twelve years of their lives, expecting them to emerge compliant and pacified, let’s at least make some improvements to the environment. Maybe the prisoners would be less likely to riot if the conditions were better. Maybe eating noxious gruel off a tray at the same time every day, sleep deprived, anxious, drugged, for a decade, maybe that gets to a person. Maybe if school sucked a little less hard, fewer people would decide to fuck it and end their miserable, short lives in a hail of gunfire, as a viable alternative to one more fucking day in that hellhole.
Our kiddie gulags are best in world, true super, no need improve!
Even if that were true (it’s not) it would only make sense to blame a child for their violent reaction to a perfect shiny happy institution, in an autocratic regime. the supposedly educated and supposedly competent and supposedly free adults might consider taking some responsibility for the institutional hell they help create, perpetuate, and mandate our most vulnerable, at-risk segment of the population attend.
Somebody sends an iffy tweet and they get spit roasted before the plane lands. But nobody gets a pink slip on this one. Odd.
If it makes sense to hold a minor blameless in a sexual encounter with an adult, and to hold the adult fully responsible, why do we blame the minor in these school shootings?
Whose F(ouc)ault Is It, Anyway?
Some adults have stepped forward with professions of responsibility, placing it squarely on the shoulders of the NRA (a completely uninvolved and unrelated organization), but not themselves.
A large coterie of supposedly reasonable people insist the culprit is violence in video games or movies. News flash: video games and movies are art. Art imitates life. Life is incredibly violent. If the kids learned it from the video games, where did the video game developers learn it? What was the inspiration for Call of Duty? That would be wars and to a certain extent, law enforcement. That’s the State. The same State that runs the schools. Good thing there’s not a conflict of interest. 🤷🏻♂️
It might seem radical to blame the government for advertising to, recruiting, then physically and psychologically abusing, training and rewarding high school students for killing people who live in other countries, in near constant wars, now so efficient an enterprise that an American Armed Forces Employee is more likely to kill themselves after answering the Call of Duty, than to be killed in Modern Warfare. Where some see a conspiracy theory or a radical idea, I see a simple, logical extension.
Too big to blame!
Why pick on a government? That would make just zero sense. Wars aren’t violence, you see, in newspeak, they’re economic stimulus packages for certain sectors of the economy that are far too profitable to be bad, too profitable to be avoided, too profitable to be stopped. Too profitable, that is, for the government to pass up. And what of the losses? Integrity, morality, the lives of thousands of other young males around the same age as the most recent scapegoat, the future health of generations? Oh those? Those are acceptable losses. Better yet, collateral damage. Because, literally.
When is it #NeverAgain?
Maybe when the government owns all the media, when they start getting all of the revenue generated by these video games depicting but not doing violence, all the box office sales of movies depicting but not doing violence, and all the clickbait Ad sales of all the internet 🐸 memes depicting but not doing a hop, maybe then the finger will point somewhere else. Somewhere that doesn’t impact the bottom line.
Until then, how about we blame the media for granting fame and notoriety to shooters, and spurring copycats. Don’t blame the lifelong respect and honor and pension and discounts given to soldiers for killing people, granted it’s on a much larger scale and with fully automatic *actual* assault rifles, main battle tanks, jets that make it rain inch-thick radioactive uranium bullets, grenades and attack dogs in living rooms, terror hovering in the skies above cities and nightmarish chemical weapons. Do AR-15s kill more kids than drones? Well that all depends on the school district. Don’t send your kids to Golan High.
Okay, so the responsibility just keeps rolling downhill and finally snowballs into the punishment. Yes! Everyone’s favorite part! Get in on the judgment! Revenge now, without further delay! Some people publicly declare, without a shred of detectable irony, that a child, a teenager, should be executed.
Teenage Execution: because, hey, what’s one more dead kid?
This one was defective anyway, right? Riiiiight. I mean, how else will we serve justice to the victims’ families, since the actual murdered victims can’t actually benefit from justice… and more importantly, they can’t vote.
As if killing a child could be called justice at any point in human civilization, let alone in 2018. I’m looking at you, Marco Rubio. I’m looking at you with a mix of disgust and amazement and curiosity about the violence in your own childhood. Do tell.
If killing a kid satisfies your desire for justice, then you have something in common with kids who shoot up their schools. If the child is evil for wanting other children dead, and then successfully manifesting that wicked desire, how can an adult be considered good and right and just in expressing and enacting the same wish?
If a child is deemed not legally competent to stand trial, to sign a contract, hold credit, drink a beer, consent to sex, or rent a car—anything that might constitute autonomy (the stated goal of education) and the assumption of responsibility, self ownership and personal agency—how is it reasonable to recommend the maximum penalty reserved for the worst offending adults? That’s if you think killing people is moral and good under any circumstances.
I don’t know what people are thinking. But now people know what I’m thinking. Your move, people.
The veiled one replied,
And who wouldn’t be proud of me?
An atmosphere of polka dots of
Light bent on gravitational waves
Within a vast ineffable folded space
Some degrees north of an asteroid
Belt held her nebulae in place
Beneath a sulfuric acid sky.
There is no weave, no hue devised
What can hide divine form from the mind.
Even the deepest blackest masses
Yield their truth with backstage passes
All in their own due time.
It’s just a little ways
I said to make the 6:58.
Stopped once along the way by
Stutter steps and heavy breath
With diesel passing on the left.
Three chums into the boxy whale
Before I scarce could catch its tail
And mouth agape it kindly waits
To catch me in the baleen seats
Along its windowed flanks
Only to spit me out about
Twenty-some odd times a week.
Been awake awhile now
While most are still asleep.
I could regret about everything
But I haven’t got the time.
I’m not the strongest link
The weakest or the richest soil
To grow a crop of human
If you hold on to your pride,
My name is gratitude,
I will remember you.
Picnics in the summer sun.
Idaho family fun.
Big time job for the man?
No thanks, I don’t think I can.
Don’t you know, they’d try again.
Caught me in the trap they set
My dog, my boy, my lovely wife
Won’t be coming home again.
I said no to government;
Take my life, I’m through with it.
What are you afraid of Uncle Sam?
Bought and paid for Uncle Sam?
What’s it mean to be American?
The motherland of last stands
Pilgrim pride, bloody hands
Freedom for all or none?
Stop fighting when the war is won.
Excuse me officer, you’re blocking our sun
Mirrored shades resisting the male gaze
Animus of ancient rage encaged
That story bleeds through the page
The weak cut down before their age
The lion doesn’t share his mates
And so all the more he makes
The lioness’ pride he takes
Until his jaw line breaks
And his grey mane shakes
And the dusty earth quakes
And so in crawl the snakes
To ruin everybody’s day
Take what you love most away
Your hide, your hair, your inner life.
What are you afraid of in this land?
Bought and paid for native land
What was taken from Americans
The mother of all last stands
National pride, zip-tied hands
Freedom for all or no one
This civilization of war cannot be won.
Picnics in the summer sun
the family all having fun
Ruby Ridge and everywhere
give thanks, take good care
Try it, just try it again
THIS IS ONE PERSPECTIVE
I don’t believe in one true religion. But I’m not strictly an atheist. I don’t believe in democracy, socialism, or any political ideology, but I’m not a rebel. I believe all ideas, like all flavors of ice cream, have a certain purpose and a right to exist. I don’t eat all of them, but I don’t interfere when someone eats a flavor I hate.
if ice cream were my religion, it would be a sin to accept a sugar cone when the waffle variety is available. People want to believe because believing is making sense out of an unknown dilemma, answering an urgent question when not knowing is intolerable. I’m not anything which ends in -ist. I have developed an intense allergy to hierarchies. All the sensory data I’ve experienced thus far inform my position on the following controversial political subjects.
In the centuries since the murder-fueled imperialism which founded the United States of America, everyone has immigrated here illegally. I remember singing a Woody Guthrie tune in kindergarten. We agreed in our little warbly voices that this land was made for you and me. It’s more like:
This land was paid for by power.
The root of this position can be traced to the common ancestors of crustaceans and the territorial behavior in effectively all other endothermic amniotes on this planet, for the express and singular purpose of protecting access to limited resources, e.g. breeding opportunities, food and shelter, etc.
If humans wish to distance themselves from the rest of the animal kingdom, specifically, above the animal kingdom, then they must transcend such behaviors, using the highest brain capacity in the animal kingdom to protect the limited resources for the benefit of the entire planet.
The distribution of resources in favor of environmental stability opposes waste. Fighting over resources in a limited area is a waste. Instead, expand the area: relocate individuals or import resources to compensate for increased population densities. In this age of the most extensive and efficient resource distribution infrastructure humanity has ever known, competition at any level is a waste of resources, unless extreme circumstances arise.
Think of a cannabis plant with a mineral deficiency, sacrificing the older, less productive leaves to reallocate essential resources higher up the plant to ensure continued cellular reproduction, survival. Individuals are not isolated consumers of resources, we are cells in a super-organism called humanity, integral to the entire biome as much as bacteria are integral to our microbiome. From ecosystem to solar system, to a wholly unknown universal system, right where we belong. Just where are we, exactly? And how?
From a sympathetic point of view, if the native tribes of the Americas had superior military force and technology (including immune systems), if they retained control of the land they shared with each other, this might be a wholly different country where Indo-Europeans are kept on reservations, what few survived the genocide would perhaps reside inside the United Caliphates of Arabia.
The Fault In Our Wars
Brave New World, 1984,
After reading any of these books, it becomes clear that the military industrial complex is a force of the modern world so pervasive and insidious as to be effectively ignored by the population at large, save for those engaged in profiteering or violence.
There’s been war for a long, long time. It’s good versus evil. Which is which is variable. Iran is evil because they held Americans hostage. Iraq is evil because they invaded Kuwait. Germany is evil because they enslaved, brutalized and murdered 25 million people. Russia is evil because the Soviets murdered a hundred million people. America is evil because they invaded multiple countries, actually used nuclear bombs on cities filled with innocent people. There’s still a nuclear arms race and threats of their use abound, . So everyone’s evil. Israel and Palestine, Somalia, Korea, Laos, Vietnam, the Islamic State, the fucking Crusades… anywhere and anytime killing of humans is carried out, be it in the name of politics, the economy, ethnicity, religion, culture, gender, literally any reason at all—including execution of incarcerated individuals convicted of capital offenses—there is a fault of logic so puerile and sophomoric that it would be hilarious if it wasn’t so completely repugnant and horrific in every conceivable way:
- Killing is wrong, i.e. morally indefensible.
A premise we can all pretty much get behind. Perhaps extreme pain or self defense might invalidate it. Let’s leave suicide aside for the moment and stick with killing others.
- Individuals in Human Group 1 (HG1) have killed/are killing/threatening to kill individuals in HG2.
Sounds like an awful situation. What do do about it? Defend yourselves, HG2!
- HG2+ may violate the first premise with impunity, only as it applies to HG1+.
Do we all have a right to self-defense? Do baby humans have a right to self-defense? Or even an interest in self defense? Perhaps a drive for self preservation, which is inferred by their continued self advocacy, mainly through crying. They can’t get a lawyer or pick up a gun, or run away, so they have a right they cannot enact, or be made aware of, or consent to forfeit. Is it still a right? If so, an argument can be made to support the statement Abortion is Murder. It’s the usurpation of the right to life.
HG2+ ( a set including HG2 and their agents/allies ) is excepted from the first premise without invalidating it if they become non-human, or an exception is added for self defense.
- Killing is sometimes preferable to not killing.
Sometimes? That’s not a clear moral rule with is applied equally and universally. It might be true then that it is was preferable for HG1 to kill HG2 in the first place, and the true crime was in the retaliation of HG2 on HG1. Not clear. Not moral. Not universal. It’s… complicated?
In war, law enforcement, interpersonal relationships, etc. those related by some chance characteristic to the perceived threat, e.g. politics, ethnicity, location, appearance, are also targeted. Violence justified dehumanizes the perpetrator first, then the victim. Vendettas have left entire towns sterile. There was a time when the POTUS declared with pride the death of another man, to a round of cheers and applause. Macabre, this penny dreadful play of politics.
AKA: killing babies. There is no justification for murder. Despite what you might cite as a feminist, why does a woman have a right to kill a baby just because it’s in her body at the moment, whereas someone killing that baby against her will would be guilty of a crime? Say nothing of wrong and right, but within the law and outside it. A woman’s will is law, then so must be a man’s will. Because the man’s body birthed the sperm which made the baby inside the woman, has he forfeited his right to kill the baby because it’s outside his jurisdiction? Does her will to reproduce trump his will to reproduce? If a man impregnates a woman against her will, she reserves the right to kill the baby. Now, if a woman impregnates herself against a man’s will, does he reserve the right to kill the baby? Equality is literally a two-edged sword…
Still, you can do whatever you want. There’s no one to judge you in an afterlife. Once you’re dead, you’re dead. And everything will die. It’s just a matter of when, how and why. However people die: on your sword, on your operating table, on your watch; they die. What remains is why. Who knows, all we can do is make something from the hand we’ve been dealt in life. Make the best of what is and not the worst of what was. It’s better to make life than death, as death arises without our help, and we are life which creates itself.
“I believe in traditional marriage.” Traditional in the sense that women are property of their fathers, paid for in a dowery and kept by a man in multiples as breeding livestock. That’s traditional marriage. The husband does not belong to the wife as the wife belongs to the husband in the traditional view.
The Patriarchy doesn’t really exist. Dominance hierarchies exist. Power exists. People exist. People who want to be higher up on the dominance hierarchy or amass power at the unwilling expense of others. I am a person, just like whomever is reading this, excluding the search bots. But I don’t want for dominance or power or anything at the unwilling expense of others.
There are males who oppress and dominate females, sure. But they are equal opportunity dominators, extending their dominance over all other men, or anything in competition with them. Maybe it’s the forces of nature, a mountain, a fear or a personal record. Even plants and animals are not exempt from domination. Just look at the food industry, forests, mining, space.
To think that the patriarchy—a primate dominance hierarchy like any other—only oppresses women, or even disproportionately oppresses women, is myopic and dismissive of all men who have fought against other men to increase or maintain status in the ongoing species-wide struggle for dominance.
Men primarily dominate other men, their competition. It’s just that we don’t call it the patriarchy. To a man it’s just life. It is upon placing themselves in direct competition with men for resources and status, that women realize what men have known forever: what it’s like to compete with men. It’s not easy, it’s not fair, and it’s not often pretty. People get hurt. A lot. And no man gets to call out discrimination or roughness or sexism. If he complains of oppression, he’s told to shut up, be a man, walk it off, quit whining and toughen up. A complaint actually makes you lose status. It’s an admission of inferiority. There are rarely any handicaps or fouls in male competition; the penalty is losing. Status, resources, body parts, your life. Men don’t get to complain about the rules of the game, so neither do women. Either you want equality and fairness, or advantage and special treatment.
In a man’s world, don’t expect any fucking sympathy, assistance or favors. Don’t expect anyone to make it easier for you to succeed, unless they directly benefit. Even then you’d be lucky, if you’re not merely being primed for later use.
i’m sitting in an office chair
a horrible plastic foam affair
nothing like the iron throne there
they used to sit the young girls in,
the spinster single ladies of sin,
the warty wastrels wandering wooded streams,
and set the fire of hell beneath
to get off on the screams, it seems.
After the confession session ended
the seared flesh they discussed was tested
the roast was sliced and served al dente
her poor stained soul be blessed
the altar boys were all obsessed
with every writhe and wrench and protest
a quick fire quiz-show flavor contest
witch mystery ingredient is best
the savor of a smoking breast
wafted on the scent of conquest.
Papa put in a transfer request
send them to the wars he said
the harlots hard raised and bred
tie a funnel to the head
the proud with holy water fed
desert rats in paper cages read
the whole lot wrought of the undead
foul and red the prison bed
fill the whores with molten lead
satan’s wormhole closed and fled.
The leak of demon seed is staid
the tomes and cobblestone corpses laid
to wretched rest on the wrathful day
we take up our rightful place
wizards of the warm white clay
wrung in the hands of a bastard deity
sitting on the throne of chivalry
anathema! apostasy! a thrilling plea
in picaresque defeat of ecstasy
intangible grief thrown up a tree
uniform grey in the green
harrowed on the mustard seeds
quartered by apocalyptic steeds
in this case of a basket in the reeds
where the ancient crocodile feeds
in denial full of empty needs.