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Full Version: Another Senseless School Shooting
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I am sure that most of you have heard about the most recent School shooting in Santa Fe yesterday, and I'm hoping that most of you are as dismayed as I am.

This isn't about Gun Control, Democrats vs Republicans, or anything political. It is a request for a call to action!

It seems to me that a common thread in most of these school shootings seems to be children or young adults that are mentally unstable and seeking attention. They know that if they get their hands on a gun and shoot a bunch of defenseless children that their names and faces will be plastered across every TV screen, computer monitor and newspaper in the country.

I could be completely off base, but I believe that a simple and easy solution would be to stop releasing the names of School shooting suspects, or at lest prevent the news media from releasing them.

If the motive in a School shooting is to gain attention and the reward is receiving local and/or national news coverage, then it seems to me that taking away the reward is the best way to prevent the tragedy from happening.

I spent this morning writing emails to Governor's Abbot (Texas) and Cuomo (New York), Kenny Marchant ( my Congressman) and the White House, suggesting the idea of enacting legislation to prevent the release of the names of School shooting suspects, or at least prohibit the news media from releasing them.

If what I've written makes sense to you, and you are as tired and dismayed as I am in hearing about one School shooting after another, I encourage you to write to your local politicians as well
Personally, I don't want the government censoring speech, so I disagree with this, but I understand your frustration.

Also, I've now seen evidence too many times of the media selling a false narrative, so I simply don't trust that I'm getting the full story.
I don't want the government censoring speech either, but I don't consider withholding a suspects name or preventing the news media from releasing that name really relevant to the story anyway and wouldn't consider it censorship. For example, if a Chinese warplane were to attack Guam and kill a bunch of Sailors, I would want to know about it and consider it an important news story, but I could care less about who the pilot was.

It's relevant to publish a news account of a School shooting, but do any of us really give a crap who the shooter is? And, if a shooters main motive for going on a shooting spree is to gain attention, is not publishing their names almost the equivalent of inciting further violence?

The government withholds information from the public on a daily basis when it comes to National Security and anything else that it deems the release of to be of detriment to the country or an individual. Is not the security of innocent children just as important?
Worthwhile idea to pursue. I'll call my boy's office and let them know I want some legislation passed to stop making shooters famous.
(05-19-2018 1:39 PM)mark-in-dallas Wrote: [ -> ]I don't want the government censoring speech either, but I don't consider withholding a suspects name or preventing the news media from releasing that name really relevant to the story anyway and wouldn't consider it censorship. For example, if a Chinese warplane were to attack Guam and kill a bunch of Sailors, I would want to know about it and consider it an important news story, but I could care less about who the pilot was.

Full disclosure: I'm a free-speech absolutist, and only draw the line at violence or the threat of violence. For instance, I think that the NYT should be able to call Tom Hanks a pedophile with zero evidence. Short-term, this might be very uncomfortable, but long-term the public will vote with their dollars and get the media they deserve. Anything short of this risks shutting down speech that other's might find offensive, which is precisely what free-speech is there to protect.

It's relevant to publish a news account of a School shooting, but do any of us really give a crap who the shooter is? And, if a shooters main motive for going on a shooting spree is to gain attention, is not publishing their names almost the equivalent of inciting further violence?

Personally, I agree with you, but I also want the freedom to publish any info that I like without the government stepping in to censor it, because they have yet to earn my trust. Remember, this government that you want to give more power to is the same government that refuses to release info about the Las Vegas shooting, completely bungled the Parkland shooting costing kids their lives, and wants us all to believe that the "Russians hacked the election" (they literally use a nonsensical phrase as their talking point). I just can't agree with handing over power to such an incompetent bureaucracy.

The government withholds information from the public on a daily basis when it comes to National Security and anything else that it deems the release of to be of detriment to the country or an individual. Is not the security of innocent children just as important?

Again, as soon as the government earns my trust, they'll get it. Until then, I think the best action we can take as Americans to secure the safety of our children is to teach them to think for themselves and take personal responsibility. The immediate side-effect of this would be students walking out of school en-mass, as they realize what a scam the 15,000hrs of "public education" is, and that they would be much better off on their own. It's astounding that these factories of violence don't create more shooters, and if you think I'm being hyperbolic, when's the last time you had to ask another person's permission to take a piss?

Finally, I think the reason that the media pushes school-shooting is because they increase learned-helplessness in our society with the subtext that Americans can't even save their own children. This is pure terrorism masquerading as news, but not at all surprising given the source.

Having said all that, if we all just keep discussing this, then I think we'll eventually find some common ground on which to solve these problems.

Thanks for the post, Mark. Cheers!Mrgreen
I agree with you, Mark. I recall reading that there is a spike in activities after the name and story are released. Spike in suicides and other activities. Words have power.

The media will fight the idea because ratings mean money and names and pics bring ratings.
(05-19-2018 2:58 PM)DarkLord1 Wrote: [ -> ]I agree with you, Mark. I recall reading that there is a spike in activities after the name and story are released. Spike in suicides and other activities. Words have power.

The media will fight the idea because ratings mean money and names and pics bring ratings.


Social proof is powerful. There are studies that support your statement in the best selling book 5 rules of persuasion / influence (I don’t recall the name. The classic white cover book) in the social proof chapter.
I agree with the sentiment that the media giving so much attention to the shooters leads to more shooters. I’ll go even further and say that the media’s coverage of Columbine and subsequent shootings has caused a lot of children to die - indirectly. Everyone in the media who participated in the irresponsible coverage does have blood on their hands.

Unfortunately in a free society there is nothing that can be done. First of all a functioning democracy requires absolute free speech. As free speech erodes so does the quality of the democracy. Secondly holding individuals or groups responsible for indirect causation of horrific occurrences also won’t work in a functional democracy because indirect cause and effect is too subjective. Objectively is required to administer justice.

As was said by many people throughout history, “Freedom does not come without a cost”. School shootings would be practical nonexistent living under a tyrannical dictatorship. As for me I would rather live in a free society with all the costs and benifits that come along with it.
Violence is glorified in this country, from TV, the cinema, and video games. Not to mention that we have been at war for so long, that it's "normal". Even the music today is often violence themed.

There is one common denominator, and that's all these kids were in some kind of "prescription" drug.

When will these "DRUG" companies be held liable?

Even Tylenol itself causes a lack of empathy for others.
(05-19-2018 11:42 AM)mark-in-dallas Wrote: [ -> ]...enacting legislation to prevent the release of the names of School shooting suspects, or at least prohibit the news media from releasing them.

That legislation would require a repeal of the 1st amendment.
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