Monday, October 27, 2008

School Shooting in Arkansas

CNN reports on the latest school shooting, this one in Arkansas.

Two people were killed and one wounded in a shooting at the University of Central Arkansas on Sunday, according to a hospital spokesman.

The shooting prompted a campus lockdown.

One suspect was in custody and three others were being sought, police said in a recorded message.

Even with these sparse details, I think the questions we've often discussed can be raised again. Is this kind of incident preventable? How? Should the gun-free status of universities be changed and licensed gun owners encouraged to carry on campus? Or would that solution move us into an area of even greater problems?

The UCA site will hopefully contain some updated information later today.


  1. Mike,

    The answer to your question, is this preventable is no. Nothing can stop someone from committing a crime.

    Nothing can stop someone from shooting another person. NOTHING, confiscate every firearms and within hours, people could make another.

    Firearms have been around for a few hundreds of years; the technology is well known. You can't put the genie back in the bottle.

    Should the gun free status be changed? Mike, it wasn't a gun free zone when these people were shot was it? Nothing stopped someone from breaking the law and bringing a gun onto campus. What the gun free status did was keep any possibility of a legal defensive handgun use from happening.

    Let's boil it down to some simple questions.

    1. Should the university be required to provide a completely safe environment for the students?

    2. Is a completely safe environment possible?

    3. If the university can not guarantee the complete safety of each and every student; shouldn't the university allow students to defend themselves?

    4. Is not ironic that many military veterans; trusted to defend America by safely handling firearms, aren't allowed to defend themselves the same way on campus?

  2. Mike,

    I saw these comments and wanted to bring them to your attention regarding the responsibility each person has to stop crime, to help other people.

    Freshman Sam Hausen was about 50 feet (15 meters) from the shooters when the gunfire began.

    "I heard about five or 10 shots and, at first, I thought it was just firecrackers, because everybody always clowns around out there, but I just realized that it wasn't firecrackers," he said.

    As he began running away, he saw a wounded student hit the ground and another stumble into the dorm, he said.

    "I saw a couple cars speed off," Hausen said. "I don't know if they were the shooters or not."

    What does it say about our society when we have people running away from injured people?
    What does it say that people are forced to run away instead of being able to confront criminals? Is it any wonder why criminals feel free to violate our laws, our safety when we've forced helplessness on so many of our citizens.

    We spent time talking about the rights each of us have but what about the responsibility to apprehend criminals or try to prevent crime?
    Do we have a responsibility to keep our fellows safe or help them when they are hurt?

    I'm not faulting this guy for running when that was the only option left to him. But I am questioning the wisdom of a society that forces people into two roles; criminal or victim.

  3. A big question to ask is "Why this shooting"? Lots of people were shot in the inner cities of America this weekend....but 3 college kids take fire and its national news. What does that say about the state of these Gang-Infested areas? I would say the American Media, and likely the majority of its people don't care about the poor people who live and work in these areas. But a College campus, that's a haven for Middle and upper-class young adults!

    As for your question of "Would concealed carry have helped", in the short-sight of it, no. All the Victims were freashmen, so too young to carry (I don't see that as right BTW...Adult should mean Adult) but in the further sight of this, would the shooting have happened if a uniformed Campus cop was on the scene? probably not. Would the shooting have happened if the Shooter knew that any of the people on campus might be carrying as much fire power as the cops?

    There were hundreds of gun shows, and shooting competitions and gatherings this weekend with no such massacres. So I fail to see how allowing legal carry of firearms could have hurt matters.

    Since you didn't say anything, and you get upset when we put words in your mouth...what's your stance on these issues, Mike?

    Oh and offtopic

  4. Bob, It did sound like you were being a little hard on that guy for running. His fearful reaction was normal; it's a rare man who can stand up to something like that and not betray cowardice, don't you think? So, what's the answer? Arm all these guys? Is that how they should compensate for their fear and be able to stand up to evil?

  5. Weer'd, Thanks for asking and not trying to read my mind, although you know me pretty well by now.

    "Or would that solution move us into an area of even greater problems?"

    This has been my point all along. As you know, I'm against guns because I feel the best your gonna get is a short term benefit in certain rare situations. The collateral problems of 1. a certain percentage of you legal gun holders going bad (.02% or 20%?), 2. some percentage (how much?) of your legal guns ending up on the dark side, 3. the pervasive mentality of violence being the solution. There's probably more I can't think of right now.

    So, what's my solution, you ask? I don't have one. Does that mean we shouldn't talk about it? I don't think so. These are the best things to talk about, the one's that defy simple solutions.

  6. My solution. Maybe you need to read some books. Maybe take a stats course if you're shaky on that science.

    When you cite a statistically verified 0.1% next to a 20% made up out of whole cloth, its a little insulting)

    Yes statistics can be spun, and can be misleading...but "From my experience" type numbers are nothing but bunk data and the spread of ignorance.

    I'm sorry, Mike, but I'm not an Acolyte in the Church of the Gun. I'm an Anti-Gunner who used his science background, and personal experience on the firing line to learn that such talk of Gun Control is total lies and horse-shit.

    No hyperbole there. LIES. As in they KNOW the TRUTH and they LIE about it....Or they, like you, appear to have an aversion to any sort of hard data, for whatever reason.

    Out of respect for you, I won't speculate on why that is....but an answer might be enlightening.

  7. Mike,

    I wasn't trying to be hard on the guy personally for running but on the society that created that kid's mentality.

    Think about this, guys his age are in the military. Here is a link to a different story where the responses were a little different.

    I asked some questions about what should our response as society be, should we run away from a fight or try to stop it?

    I've talked to my wife about what I would do if there was a mass shooting at our church, some place we are at. I've made my decision that I'm going to fight; armed or not. I see it as part of the responsibility of being a citizen. That is the point I'm trying to make; as a society we've been reduced.
    Most of our law enforcement would tell people don't try to fight back, just be a good witness or hide and hope someone doesn't kill you. How sad we've become.

    Don't we as citizens have a responsibility to not only be good witnesses but actually try to stop crime? To help protect others in our society?

  8. Mike,

    Again I'll ask about cars. You are concerned about firearms being misused but we know that cars are misused daily, right?

    Do you support the implementation of severe car control laws?
    Background checks prior to purchase, limits on the amount of horse power-after all no one NEEDS a car that can go faster then the speed limit, right?

    Let's face it, the focus on firearms isn't about reducing the violence; it's about control.
    90% of all violent crimes aren't committed with firearms. Why not focus on those crimes?