Nearly 24 hours on, a lot of what happened in Newtown, CT is still difficult to fathom, but I think we can conclude a few things.
- Nearly everything we read initially turned out to be wrong. I had read that they shooter was the father of one of the students, but was only 20 years old. I had also read that the dead mother was a teacher at the school and that the killer killed her in front of her students, then mowed them down. I also read that the killer's name was actually the name of the killer's brother. I also read that the killer's father had also been killed, someplace in New Jersey. At this writing, it appears that the only thing that is true among all the initial things I read is the age of the killer. This is the modern news cycle in action.
- I am also reading that the killer had some sort of "personality disorder" and that it is somehow related to autism or Asperger's Syndrome. This isn't especially helpful. I know many people who have dealt with autism and Asperger's, including people within my extended family. I have also dealt with mental illness in my immediate family. It's an awfully complicated subject and there's a lot to suss out. If it turns out that the killer was dealing with these issues, it would have meaning, but it won't necessarily explain why he did what he did.
- Of course whenever a mass shooting happens, especially within a school building, there's always a call for more gun control, or confiscation, or something. It's not going to happen. Guns aren't going away and it's a crank fantasy to assume that they ever will. If you want to know why, read up on Thermopylae. I believe the term is rendered as ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ. And anyone who says they are going to take "meaningful action" is posturing. And anyone calling for "immediate action" is doing something worse than posturing. ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ, Mayor Bloomberg.
Cross-posted and comments welcome at Mr. Dilettante's Neighborhood.