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Old 2007-04-17, 17:17   Link #101
Vexx
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ah.. thanks for that correction on his status ... news reports, are after all, prone to stupidity (what *DO* they teach in those journalism classes?) ... my error on how alien gun purchases were regulated.

We're starting to get reports of a variety of heroic actions (even if executed by the untrained ).... I'm glad to hear many people stepped up to the situation as best they could.

I have no speculation on why he thought no ID and filing the numbers on the guns would protect him or his family from being identified other than he was poorly informed on that subject. Since it appears to be forming up that there was an ex-girlfriend at issue -- I really can't get into his head (it has never even occurred to me to be violent with someone who doesn't want to be with me anymore).

edit: just read up on this guy (so typical anymore that I have to go to a Canadian paper to actually get information) ... http://www.thestar.com/News/article/203895
Apparently he was waving warning flags all over the place that he was 'going south' on the mind-o-meter but alas, alackaday --- our mental health care system is so fragmented and individuals often underestimate what they see when it comes to danger signs .... blargh.

Last edited by Vexx; 2007-04-17 at 17:42.
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Old 2007-04-17, 17:32   Link #102
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No one can ever be blamed for not knowing the details of the regulations, because they're overly complex and changed at the whims of the ATF. I, myself, just learned about this after I was corrected by some one on another board who pointed to the official documents.

Filing the serial numbers off was, indeed, weird. I can't imagine that his actions would be logical, though. I don't think we can really expect to get into his head without a very solid understanding of abnormal psychology....

I'm really relieved to hear about some of the student actions. The lack of reported heroic acts, especially in a post-9/11 America (ugh, I swore I'd never use that phrase, but it's appropriate) was disturbing to me. I'm glad to know that some of the students gave it their best.
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Old 2007-04-17, 17:54   Link #103
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Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
edit: just read up on this guy (so typical anymore that I have to go to a Canadian paper to actually get information) ... http://www.thestar.com/News/article/203895
Apparently he was waving warning flags all over the place that he was 'going south' on the mind-o-meter but alas, alackaday --- our mental health care system is so fragmented and individuals often underestimate what they see when it comes to danger signs .... blargh.
From what I've read, his plays were pretty morbid. I freaked out reading what summaries they gave.... But his English teacher said she tried to get him to go to counseling. Too bad you can't force people to try to get better if they don't want to.
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Old 2007-04-17, 18:58   Link #104
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Originally Posted by cmage View Post
From what I've read, he had citizen status and was allowed to buy a gun just like any other citizen. He'd lived here for twelve years, after all.

I feel bad for the families of everyone involved.
From what I heard he chose not to become a citizen. But citizen or no citizen he certainly had more than a few loose screws to begin with. I'd be interested to know more about his background. Not of his ethnicity but more of how he grew up, what problems he faced, and any medical issues in the past etc.
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Old 2007-04-17, 22:07   Link #105
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Resident alien are legal resident, just like an average citizen. The only difference is that they can't vote, nor run for political office. Every other rights are exactly the same as a citizen.
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Old 2007-04-17, 22:16   Link #106
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Whoa, pretty sick. I find it a cold representation of the decay in which American society has been under for some time, but that's just me.

And about the gun... I heard today he bought it at a goddamn supermarket. Is that true? You can buy a goddamn freaking gun at a goddamn supermarket in freaking America? A live gun, one that can take lives?

That's pretty sick.
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Old 2007-04-17, 22:28   Link #107
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It is terrible that a shouting like this happened. Its espically strange that the guy just went crazy... no one even knew he was mentally unstable.

Even here in my home town of St. Louis MO they have counslers avaliable in case kids need to talk or are afraid. Schools are assuring kids that if anything like this happens "They have a plan" the only plan we ever had was locking the door and laying on the ground in the dark. If a student is the one shooting how will being locked in a room with them help us??
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Old 2007-04-17, 22:56   Link #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayos View Post
Resident alien are legal resident, just like an average citizen. The only difference is that they can't vote, nor run for political office. Every other rights are exactly the same as a citizen.
Well, under every piece of legislation I know of, this is true. However, these specific regulations are designed by a particular government agency which is given the authority to do so, and can change them at whim. These regulations, presently, differentiate between immigrating and non-immigrating resident aliens.

I find the differentiation to be somewhat unjust, and the fact that the agency has the power to create and change regulations without legislation to be a flagrant abuse of power.

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Whoa, pretty sick. I find it a cold representation of the decay in which American society has been under for some time, but that's just me.

And about the gun... I heard today he bought it at a goddamn supermarket. Is that true? You can buy a goddamn freaking gun at a goddamn supermarket in freaking America? A live gun, one that can take lives?

That's pretty sick.
Hm, I've actually never thought about it that way. Mulling over it, I still don't, but I grew up in an area where you could buy a gun, clothes, live seafood, and ice cream all at the same place, so it's always been that way for me. Of course, back when I was a youngster the teenagers in my area still took the rifles to school in their trucks and no one thought oddly of it and no one shot each other. I guess people were just generally more often sane then than now.

These days, though, handguns being sold in more general markets are very rare--I can't even think of any examples today. There's still a lot of misinformation coming out in the press right now in the frenzy, so I don't know how credible that claim was, but if he did buy it at a more general market, it was probably a small, personally operated one. I can't think of any supermarket chain that would want to deal with the publicity or legal responsibility that comes with selling handgun, which entails the obligation of running background checks, keeping meticulous sales records, and the possibility of jail time if a mistake is made.

If it was a general market, it was probably a smaller store where the owner sold other items to supplement his income from his gun store. Most gun stores today sell either only guns or guns as well as hunting and/or self-defense items, though you'll also find pawn shops that sell guns (generally to be able to resell guns pawned for cash).

The major exception here is Wal-Mart, which still sells rifles and shotguns in some stores, and still sells ammunition in most. In fact, that's where I generally buy more common ammunition types, myself. I can certainly respect that you feel the way you do, but I can't say I feel the same way myself--nor quite understand why some one else would.
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Old 2007-04-17, 23:05   Link #109
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And about the gun... I heard today he bought it at a goddamn supermarket. Is that true? You can buy a goddamn freaking gun at a goddamn supermarket in freaking America? A live gun, one that can take lives?

That's pretty sick.

I have been all over the US - including numerous visits to Blacksburg while my former undergrad college roommate was earning his Masters degree at Virginia Tech - and I have yet to encounter a supermarket that also sold guns. The closest thing I can think of would be a Wal*Mart "SuperCenter" where a regular Wal*Mart retail store (some of which do sell firearms) is combined with a supermarket under the same roof. But I wouldn't normally consider one of these stores as a supermarket per se. So I am very skeptical about that bit of information. All the reports I have seen so far seem to agree that the 9mm pistol was purchased at a gun shop. There was a receipt found, and the owner remembered selling the gun to the student. The gunman also supposedly had a .22 pistol, but I have not seen any article about that gun's origin.
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Old 2007-04-17, 23:20   Link #110
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First of all, my deep sympathies for the families and friends of those who have been killed in this terrible tragedy.

Secondly, I take Governor Tim Kaine's comments to heart -- that he has "nothing but loathing" for those who took the tragedy and "make it their political hobby horse to ride".

That being said, a quote such as this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kyuusai
ONE good person with a gun could have stopped this early--or maybe have stopped it from happening at all. The policy itself very well may have had an effect on even the planning of this tragedy by its perpetrators, since the gunmen knew that all the law and policy abiding students would be unarmed.
...makes me glad that I'm not an American and that I don't live in America.

Before you start attacking me for this opinion, please let me put this in a calmer perspective. I completely fail to see how potential violence can be solved with the threat of even more violence.

I totally fail to understand how guns -- lethal weapons that can take lives -- can be seen as such an important civil liberty in an advanced society that has such well-developed legal and social systems.

Yes, I'm pretty sure my opinion is completely biased, and yes, I'm also pretty sure that statistics can be found to support both sides of the debate. In any case, lives have been lost, and it's just so sad. So sad.
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Old 2007-04-17, 23:22   Link #111
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I can certainly respect that you feel the way you do, but I can't say I feel the same way myself--nor quite understand why some one else would.
We live in different societies that have a different background. America has been famous for being one of a "merry-go-round" country about gun ownership. Over here, we (or at least I) have a pretty different concept of guns: In my case, a gun is a weapon of killing, and should by no means be sold as your regular candy.
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Old 2007-04-17, 23:30   Link #112
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Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Before you start attacking me for this opinion, please let me put this in a calmer perspective. I completely fail to see how potential can be solved with the threat of even more .

I totally fail to understand how guns -- lethal weapons that can take lives -- can be seen as such an important civil liberty in an advanced society that has such well-developed legal and social systems.
I've grown up in rural America, where firearms are as common as automobiles. Basically the argument is simply that, if other students were permitted to be armed on campus, someone would have stepped up and taken him out before 30+ defenseless people were killed. I honestly can't argue with the logic involved, but the moral implications leave a bad taste in my mouth.

They're "an important civil liberty" because, back in the day, it was up to you the individual to protect yourself. There were no phones, and some places here are very remote even today. Police coverage was pretty sparse and much more prone to corruption, too. However, the laws do not necessarily change at the same speed as the environment.


Edit: Oh yeah, hunting is extremely common, too. In fact, it's legal to hunt deer with a handgun in my state as long as it's of a certain caliber (forget what). So, they do have their legitimate uses, which is what most guns sold legally are used for. People think that, in America, you'll get shot for peeking out your window, but it's really just not like that. Except some areas in the inner city where narcotic trafficking is really bad. Then you might get hit by some stray bullets.
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Old 2007-04-18, 00:00   Link #113
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My personal take in regards to self-defense would be that it doesn't take a gun to defeat a gun weilder. A leg of a chair or desk... Whatever. I personally would have grabbed whatever that looked like it would inflict enough pain, hid against the wall next to the doorway and when he came up at the doorway, I would instantly smash it across his face the second he shot a bullet, much less if I could confirm that he was the gunman by simply seeing the gun in his hand. But, that's me. From what I can gather, the students and teachers were too busy trying to escape the predicament they were in. I'm not completely sure if a weapon of sorts would have helped at all, considering they were reacting more to fear than courage. It's just a human nature thing.

As for the "thank God I'm not in America" comments, I ask kindly for everyone to think that this event can happen anywhere. It does not solely have to be in this country. For example; some countries suffer from bombings (car or otherwise) of all sorts. It's a tragedy none-the-less because people died. In this day and age, we can't think that one bad thing that happens somewhere else can't happen where we are at. The scary part is it can.

This entire tragedy is bothering me, I'll admit. Even I'm having difficulty signing up for classes in the next semester to gain more certifications. Not because the classes are full, but because now I question the safety of the institutes and buildings I'll be in. But I refuse to point fingers and place blames. I'm actually not very happy that it seems all I'm hearing from the students is that it's either the faculty's or police's fault that they could not respond fast enough and properly to prevent further bloodshed. In the end, everyone tried and this whole event was simply something that got worse and worse. The best course of action is to answer certain questions like, "What can we improve upon to prevent such tragedies from ever occurring again?" and "We know these kinds of events are not only restricted to schools, but anywhere. What can we do to maintain the safety?"
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Old 2007-04-18, 00:04   Link #114
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
That being said, a quote such as this:



...makes me glad that I'm not an American and that I don't live in America.

Before you start attacking me for this opinion, please let me put this in a calmer perspective. I completely fail to see how potential violence can be solved with the threat of even more violence.

I totally fail to understand how guns -- lethal weapons that can take lives -- can be seen as such an important civil liberty in an advanced society that has such well-developed legal and social systems.

Yes, I'm pretty sure my opinion is completely biased, and yes, I'm also pretty sure that statistics can be found to support both sides of the debate. In any case, lives have been lost, and it's just so sad. So sad.
I certainly won't attack you for your opinion. I will try to explain part of the issue so that you can better understand why I and others think so, even if you don't agree.

Every day, people are saved from would-be criminals who try to use force on them by retaliating with--or threatening retaliation with--an appropriate counter-force. The great, great majority of criminals do what they do because they do not fear any consequences. When they possibility of consequences presents itself, most will back down. There are some who would attempt to continue, but if the would-be victim can use force to defend themselves against the would-be criminal, why should they not?

Weapons still have a place in countries with good legal and social systems because the social systems can't be perfect, and the legal systems can only tackle the problem AFTER the tragedy occurs. Clearly, neither was the case here.

Is it not true that a good person with a weapon could have stopped the killer before it turned into a massacre? Such a thing is not unusual at all. I understand that you are opposed to the idea of the average person being armed, but the hypothetical situation is quite plausible, especially considering how often such defensive shootings occur.

The idea being "Criminals will always arm themselves regardless of the law, while arms in the hands of good citizens do harm to no one but those attempting to harm others."

Quote:
Originally Posted by WanderingKnight View Post
We live in different societies that have a different background. America has been famous for being one of a "merry-go-round" country about gun ownership. Over here, we (or at least I) have a pretty different concept of guns: In my case, a gun is a weapon of killing, and should by no means be sold as your regular candy.
Well, I understand that the culture is what influences your opinion. I wasn't trying to denigrate your opinion. I was trying to convey that I'm not a very emotional thinker, and thusly cannot consolidate the emotional view with my hands-on experience which didn't treat it as an emotional issue.

It's not that guns are idolized or considered toys in the US. Those who use them consider them tools, or objects. Very dangerous ones that should be handled with respect and care, but objects, and there are no special emotions developed about them.

Those who DON'T use them very frequently tend to share your views, so while I do see it as a cultural issue, I'm not sure it's a US versus other nations cultural issue.
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Old 2007-04-18, 03:03   Link #115
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It's not that guns are idolized or considered toys in the US. Those who use them consider them tools, or objects. Very dangerous ones that should be handled with respect and care, but objects, and there are no special emotions developed about them.
Objects they are, but they are first and foremost tools for killing people. If you want to use that gun efficiently, you have to aim for the torso to raise the chances of defending yourself (if you're talking about self-defense). Probability of the target being killed by your bullets: Pretty high.

I do not believe in guns, and I imagine that these tools fall into the wrong hands because of wide spread gun distribution. If gun production and distribution was limited to government forces, the army, the police, I'm sure less people, less bad people would be able to get their hands on them. By raising production and availability, I don't think you'll be changing percentage statistics all that much, but you will be raising the numbers. Death count would undoubtly increase, the public could only benefit from the increased sense of security. I can understand the logic behind fear and how it could turn against criminals, but I also understand the logic of disillusioned youth and stupid people, which is non-existant. And those are far more common than criminals, mind you.
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Old 2007-04-18, 03:49   Link #116
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As long as you don't allow for corruption in government/military/police, yes it might be more difficult to acquire guns (unless you're already a crime outfit). I point to the poorly named "drug war" where certain drugs are completely illegal to produce or sell.. yet trainloads of the stuff routinely move through the country. If brand name guns are unavailable --- organized crime will make their own and sell more (it isn't really terribly hard to make a gun).

The shooting today of the Nagasaki mayor is tragic but also interesting --- culturally the yakuza spend a lot of time shooting each other with guns that should not exist because they're iillegal. The government tends to look the other way as long as they're just shooting each other. This one hothead idiot yakuza shoots the mayor and not only is the nation horrified but the yakuza themselves are not happy. He transgressed the invisible line, harming a 'civilian'/government official. This will make their 'business activities' more difficult because the stability is shattered. This sort of thinking is almost incomprehensible in the US (and many other countries for that matter).

I can't think of a rational way to reduce gun counts or violence (gun or otherwise) without societal and cultural change and without placing individials at more risk (people tend to ignore the much larger number of incidents where an armed civilian prevented violence by simply having a gun). Statistically, gun deaths (homicides and suicides) have been dropping for the last 20 years anyway and there's some evidence that it may have been a generational spike.
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Old 2007-04-18, 09:14   Link #117
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Originally Posted by Toua View Post
Objects they are, but they are first and foremost tools for killing people. If you want to use that gun efficiently, you have to aim for the torso to raise the chances of defending yourself (if you're talking about self-defense). Probability of the target being killed by your bullets: Pretty high.
You are quite right.

However, while most people would never want to take a human life, most would also agree that it is better to take the life of an attacker than to let that attacker kill an innocent person.

If it were always merely the weighing of one life versus another, it might be easy to say that submission is best (although over time natural selection would select the sorts of people that attack others...), but it often isn't merely one life versus another. If some one had done the heavy, sad job of shooting the murderer at Virginia Tech as soon as he started, the expense of his one life would have meant MANY more people would be alive today.
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Old 2007-04-18, 10:04   Link #118
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Isn't all these gun talks in the wrong thread...?

I'll say it again: It doesn't take a gun to defeat a gun weilder. Another factor has to be involved, though; courage. Every one of us has a "fight or flight" instinct, and it's natural that we would normally listen to the flight part. It doesn't matter whether there's a gun or anything else available to use to stand up against the shooter in Virginia Tech if everyone's responding to their flight instincts.
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Old 2007-04-18, 10:16   Link #119
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Phew....just read the whole thing on wikipedia. I usually don't give a damn to the news but school shooting incident always leave a scar in me. I still can't get use to this sort of stuff. I mean...why kill all those innocent people out there when you're the one having problems? I'm kinda sick of people killing other innocent lives because of their frustration towards.....what? Life? This killer....this South Korean student....I'm pretty sure a hell load of people will be cursing him right now. Even I'm doing the same thing before I read wikipedia's profile on him. Apparently, there's something terribly odd about this killer, even before he attempted this massacre. I mean....didn't anyone tried to help him even after knowing his attitude....his behaviour. Sure...there's a professor that tried to help him but failed but didn't his classmates tried to like, talk to him or something? I read that there's a Korean club or something there right? Why didn't anyone there tried to help him? I'm sure things will be different if he met someone he'll be able to open up to.
The killer must be pretty desperate (and pessimistic) about life to commit such a thing. Even so, he shouldn't involve so many people in it. What's he thinking?

My second doubt is....where the hell did he get the money to buy the guns? I'm not from America or any countries that allow the carrying of guns so can someone please enlighten me on this? I always have the mindset that you'll need quite an amount of money to get a gun there. And didn't anyone check whether he's a student before selling him the gun?

And btw, anyone checked YouTube? Is it just me or most of the comments are pretty racist in nature?
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Old 2007-04-18, 10:23   Link #120
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Originally Posted by Kyuusai View Post
No one can ever be blamed for not knowing the details of the regulations, because they're overly complex and changed at the whims of the ATF. I, myself, just learned about this after I was corrected by some one on another board who pointed to the official documents.

Filing the serial numbers off was, indeed, weird. I can't imagine that his actions would be logical, though. I don't think we can really expect to get into his head without a very solid understanding of abnormal psychology....

I'm really relieved to hear about some of the student actions. The lack of reported heroic acts, especially in a post-9/11 America (ugh, I swore I'd never use that phrase, but it's appropriate) was disturbing to me. I'm glad to know that some of the students gave it their best.
Agreed. Many news site says that Cho was awkwardly strange, often depicting suicidal tendency. Taking pictures of girls, stalking them. Taking pictures isn't so bad but when it's hidden it gets sorta rather creepy, then stalking is pretty terrible too. But this does not mean that that person will go on a killing spree and massacre 30+ lives.
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