Health and Medicine

A Few Thoughts About Another Goddamn Shooting

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Land

I had every intention of writing a polemic on the American Empire’s latest shit show in Venezuela this week, another erudite contemplation on the sour virtues of imperialism in some violent dirt floor theater, time zones away from my small town tranny middle class existence. But this week violence came to visit me through the all too common place spectacle of the active shooter situation. It’s so fucking cliche that I bite my tongue just saying it out loud but you really do feel like that’s a problem that happens somewhere else but not here.

‘Here’ for me is Central Pennsylvania, in the foothills of Appalachia where the Rust-Belt gives way to Amish country. It’s an area where the most heinous thing on the evening news is typically some meth-pocked trailer urchin shaking his girlfriend’s baby to sleep or maybe the latest round of kids coming public about their sexual debasement at the hands of Penn State or the Catholic Church. But last week was different. Last week an angry young veteran came to a Ramada Inn bar with a gun and his girlfriend. He only left with one in his hand. After badly wounding his lover and brutally murdering two innocent bystanders, the 21 year old killer raced off in his Mazda only to crash it at an intersection in front of my grandmother’s nursing home. In a daze, he stumbled away on foot and murdered an 84 year old man next door before turning his weapon on himself and blowing his own face off.

For what? Four people dead, another grievously injured. And why? Nobody seems quite sure. We may never be. The shooter had a common story. White, middle class, no record aside from a recent DUI that may have put his hopes for a future in the military and law enforcement in jeopardy. Always a quiet kid, no violence, no broken home, no tour overseas. What possesses such a human being to obliterate himself and everyone around him? What is the source of this hidden vein of black rage that could only come to the surface in a irruption of senseless savagery?


1 reply »

  1. That close to home? Yeesh….I agree, you should get a gun of your own. BUT use it wisely. Regardless of whether a gun is registered or not, regardless of whether it was an act of self-defense, you’ll always face a harsher punishment for using a firearm than if you were to fight unarmed. Especially if you were born a biological male, even if you do identify as more feminine. The law discriminates against that Y chromosome.

    Unfortunately, there really is no easy solution to prevent these shootings. I know my spiel gets old, but I firmly believe most of our modern problems result from overpopulation and overcrowding, as if we have this instinct to drive ourselves into near-extinction. In experiments with rodents and primates, overcrowding resulted in a vàriety of behavioral changes, including a particular pattern seen in mostly males, but also some females: isolation and introversion, allowing oneself to be bullied or abused, until a sporadic burst of violent activity. No social intervention can really prevent this, only prolong the inevitable. And possibly make it worse.

    Not sure why exactly this happens, probably multiple reasons though. Invasion of space and privacy, the increasingly aggressive (and variously asexual OR hypersexual) behavior of females, lack of a meaningful place in an overcrowded society….I always compare the economy to ecology. As more money is printed, the value of each individual banknote decreases; likewise, as more people are born, the value of each individual person decreases. Food and space aside, there isn’t enough meaning in life to go around.

    This is why I often trivialize shootings and other “mass” deaths. One person, two people, even a thousand people….Just a drop in the bucket compared to our population of 7+ billion. That said, those 4 people killed could’ve been YOUR family. MY family. While I don’t think these events justify legal action against owners or users of firearms, I totally understand why they instill a sense of fear and helplessness.

    Which is exactly why most of these killers act out: a sense of helplessness. They can’t hunt for meat, they can’t find a mate, they can’t defend their territory, they can’t protect their families, so their instincts tell them to kill whoever takes their food, sex, space, or privacy. These killers don’t deserve hatred, torture, imprisonment, or the sick joke we call psychiatric treatment. These would be a waste of time and resources. No, these killers deserve the same thing their victims receive: pity and death. Because these killers are victims too. Always remember, that could be any of us. On either side of the gun.

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