Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Virginia Tech shootings

  1. Apr 16, 2007 #1


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member


    http://www.wdbj7.com/ has a video stream from local news

    Eyewitness reports are being listed at http://www.roanoke.com/news/wb/xp-113296 [Broken] ]

    "The Collegiate Times is an independent student-run newspaper serving the Virginia Tech community since 1903."
    http://collegiatetimes.com (which, for now, redirects to http://www.collegemedia.com/ ) is trying to report on events. ]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 16, 2007 #2


    User Avatar
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Holy freaking ****!
  4. Apr 16, 2007 #3
    US Shootings at University campus :mad:

    Ohh dear... :mad:
    Hope nobody on this board had to go through that ordeal.

    I understand this can happen once and a while, but it is become almost predictable in the USA. There seems to have been 2 separate shooting. Crazy
  5. Apr 16, 2007 #4
    Two shootings, what a tragedy!
  6. Apr 16, 2007 #5
    yeap... there seems to be a predictable pattern unfortunatly
  7. Apr 16, 2007 #6

    Unfortunately - It is the news that perpetuates this kind of thing. There might be hundreds of people considering suicide at any given time in the US alone, and this kind of coverage gives these individuals ideas other than the time honored tradition of taking thier lives in solitude. The coverage of this latest shooting guarantees the continuation. There will be more! The remedy is to not cover these stories .... period. Let this coverage be limited to those that need to know.

    People considering suicide need not be given the option of taking as many as is possible with them. The only way to help prevent the reaccurrence of this sort of crap, is to prevent this sort of idea from entering the brain of these screwed up individuals.

    This may sound strange, but the best way to prevent this is to ignore it.
  8. Apr 16, 2007 #7
    That is a massive leap of faith, we are yet to know anything about this persons reasons for doing what he/she did.

    This type of thing Must be covered by the press. I find your reasoning rather weak at best. Its nothing to do with the freedom and coverage of information why people do these types of things. IMO I would put the blaime directly on the Guns and culture of violence in the USA, and not on the Press.
  9. Apr 16, 2007 #8
    The post office shootings didn't stop until it became a joke, and by all accounts, these shootings in general will not taper off until we laugh at them, or ignore ...... noone suicidal wants to be laughed at or ignored. Todays shooter got exactly what he wanted in spades.
  10. Apr 16, 2007 #9
    Yes, and I agreed with your comment that it has to do with gun culture in America. I also noticed that this sort of thing rarely happens in California (or at least is rarely reported as a shocking school shooting). Instead, we have normalized gang violence. Is there a difference in gun culture or general culture here that discourages school shootings by "civilians" (i.e. non-gang members)? Or maybe allows for alternate ways of dealing with whatever issues shooters have?
  11. Apr 16, 2007 #10


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    It appears that the 'two' shootings were by the same person (still to be confirmed), so its two locations, one event. The shooter is apparently dead. Police have yet to confirm it was a suicide. AP/CNN has reported at least 31 dead (which may include the shooter).

    It is the worst campus shooting in US history.
  12. Apr 16, 2007 #11


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Gold Member

    You really can't separate the press from the culture of violence in the US. It's not the sole cause of it, but it is a part of it. From football being the most popular sport in the country, and huge hits the most popular highlights, to the old pager alerts whenever a high speed chase was going down and it took over every news channel, violence is celebrated as spectacle everywhere in the press. Media members are Americans, after all, and part of the same culture as everyone else.
  13. Apr 16, 2007 #12
    I was linked to http://www.slate.com/id/2099203/" page from a wiki on school shootings. The author explores the motivations of the Columbine shooters and finds that one (Harris) was a psychopath who had a superiority complex.

    I think that's a very strong, but subtle attitude in the U.S., the demeaning of human life.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 22, 2017
  14. Apr 16, 2007 #13
    Yes, but the Media or Press is purely market driven, the market is there and wants it so it supplies. The press are (should be in a democracy) neutral and only really a leans on what is actually happening.
  15. Apr 16, 2007 #14

    Gauge where you think America is on this scale, I believe the American society to be very Masculine in general now. What happened today is a direct consequence of this.

    So how does one change the mindset of millions??
  16. Apr 16, 2007 #15
    Had some students and/or teachers been armed, a lot lives could have been saved. Gun-free zones are danger zones. It's easy to kill people when they can't shoot back.
  17. Apr 16, 2007 #16
    Exactly, you just proved my point :smile:
  18. Apr 16, 2007 #17
    Your welcome.:approve:
  19. Apr 16, 2007 #18
    Anttech, I'm not really following you. Are you suggesting that Masculinity is somehow wrong or bad?
  20. Apr 16, 2007 #19


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Gold Member

    The gang shootings, though they don't generally reach the level of spectacle as killing 30 people in one spree, end up killing more people overall. The fact that many schools have installed extreme security measures, like armed guards and metal detectors, might have a lot to do with the lack of large-scale school shootings in California since they seemed to become faddish ten years ago or so.

    One interesting thing is that the one major school shooting that happened in California happened just outside of San Diego, which has the lowest homicide rate of any US city with over a million residents. Places like Blacksburg and Littleton and Austin where other shootings have gone down aren't very violent places, either. The only major gun violence scares I can think of that happened in crime-ridden cities are the Washington DC sniper case and the bank robbers that got into an extended shootout with LAPD in North Hollywood back around '95 or '96 and temporarily turned part of the city into an urban war zone.
  21. Apr 16, 2007 #20
    I am suggesting that their are some aspects of a heavily masculine society that is bad in this day and age yes. But not everything! What happened today is definitely the worse side of a society that is predominately masculine...
  22. Apr 16, 2007 #21
    I disagree that the media responds to just what people want. Look at the dearth of media portraying men as sex objects...are women not a market? In fact, it seems the majority of male sexual appeal is targeted towards gay men, as if women had no sexual desires. The media is just as entrenched in cultural values and often preclude certain ideas and attitudes, acting as a tool of hegemony.
  23. Apr 16, 2007 #22
    Death toll is up to 30 (31 including the shooter). Jesus Batman Christ.
  24. Apr 16, 2007 #23


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    This is such a tragedy. My thoughts go out to the victims and their families and all the students and faculty there who have been affected by this.

    At this point, we know nothing about the shooter's motivations, and we do not even know if he was shot by police or if it was a suicide. Regardless, it's pointless trying to rationalize the actions of someone who was clearly not rational.

    I don't see how the media is to blame here. Nobody normal watches the news about something like this and says, "Cool, I should try that sometime." This could be someone who was failed out, mocked at a local bar by some students, applied for admission and was rejected, was dumped by a girlfriend for a student there (or who was a student there herself, or both), an escaped convict like the last time they had an incident in August (having a university close to a jail or prison does increase the chances that escaped criminals will be a threat to those on campus), or just someone who had a psychotic break for absolutely no reason whatsoever other than the "voices" told him to do so.

    Why don't we wait for the facts to be sorted out from speculation before we start guessing at the motives and pointing fingers.

    I also don't see how one would keep such a story out of the news. Let's be thankful stories like this are still enough of a rarity that they ARE news when they happen.
  25. Apr 16, 2007 #24
    Shades of the Roman Empire, violence was how the powerful kept the commoners entertained. Anything presented by the media has to have the approval of the media Moguls. Ask Imus.

    But it is not just the press and news sectors , the media including movies also provides us with all kinds of violent programming.

    So which is the horse and which is the cart? Did we get more violent as a result of watching violence? Or did the media present more violence because there was a demand for it? Lately it seems that the horse and cart are spiraling in a vicious circle with one driving the other.
  26. Apr 16, 2007 #25
    Are you suggesting that woman have the same sexual drive as men? I dont think that would hold up to scientific scrutiny.

    Perhaps you are right, the Media is, but the PRESS shouldnt be.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook