21 April 2007

The VA Tech Incident

by W Avery M:
I think the main thing to focus on in this particular incident is the failure of the system to address obvious symptoms. I am not a proponent of treating the symptom instead of the disease, but the blatant dismissal of an obvious problem is appalling.

As I understand it, there was a history of anti-social and depressive behavior dating back to high school. In addition, there was more than one restraining order and mandatory counseling ordered by VT. The problem is no one cared that he didn’t show up. You cannot blame society, the media, or video games for this one, it all falls back to the inadequate mental health systems we have in America. Would this have prevented this tragedy? Maybe, maybe not, but at least a professional would have been seeing the signs of a coming breakdown in a weekly session.

To be entirely honest I am surprised someone did not report the guns sooner. At W&M, as at any state school, students are not allowed to keep guns on campus. I would have if I had been allowed to, though I probably would not have carried it to class.

With all the videos he had made I am blown away that no one ever saw the weapons. I find it deplorable the media has turned this into an arms issue because it is not. After all, he didn’t use assault weapons and sawed-off shotguns, he was just using pistols.

It is an issue of many institutions dropping the ball on numerous fronts and a person sadly slipping through the cracks till he hit the bottom. He wasn’t insane, insane people don’t buy a gun 4 months before they shoot someone, insane people jump you bare handed and try to chew your arm off. I am not trying to make light of the tragedy but the guy was just troubled and no one cared enough to help.

W. Avery M is a 2004 graduate of William & Mary College. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and behavoiral science, and he is my son.

No comments: