I was once told by the police that there was nothing they could do about the boy who broke into my house and left me things because they didn’t get involved in domestic disputes.
I was forced by a teacher to go talk to him about how upset he was about me calling the police because, as she put it, “Girls shouldn’t call the police on their boyfriends.” and when I said, “He’s not my boyfriend,” she stared at me blankly and just said, as if I were speaking gibberish, “But he says that you are.”
That was a long time ago and in that time, laws about stalking have changed, incidents of rape have decreased over half, things are better. We understand, we say we understand, that women don’t cause men to beat us or rape us or stalk us or kill us.
Men choose to do this and men can choose not to. We know that men can choose not to do this, because the vast, vast majority of men are not abusive, stalking, raping, murdering assholes.
And when we blame women for what happens to them, or when we blame all men–boys will be boys–for what a fucked up few do, we are letting the evil bastards off the hook.
This time, let’s not do that.
Most folks are wondering how Cho Seung-Hui could have killed two people early in the morning and still been wandering around campus to kill more people once classes started.
One reason is exactly what Blackamazon says it is:
Students were prevented from being warned and properly protected because the first shootings were dismissed as a domestic dispute.
Do you get that? Don’t you feel that right in your gut? We’re used to believing that a man who kills “his” woman isn’t a threat to anyone else. He’s done the violent act; now we just have to investigate and find him. But he’s not a danger, we believe, any more.
Why even bother to cancel classes? You have a dead woman and a dead man. Clearly, clearly, he killed her and then killed himself.
It’s like Blackamazon says–that’s one way misogyny hurts us all. We have a narrative in our heads, one we’re used to seeing played out over and over again, on our televisions (news or entertainment), and so when we’re confronted with that in real life, we don’t know what else to see, but a man and a woman gone wrong.
Nothing worth upsetting other students about.
This is the face of the teenage student who may have sparked the biggest gun massacre in US history.
It is thought she was the ex-girlfriend of the unnamed killer who then went onto kill Emily’s neighbour 22-year-old Ryan Clark who had tried to help.
Just fuck that.
What a cowardly, bullying bit of reporting that is. The person who sparked this event was Cho Seung-Hui, not anyone who was the target of his wrath. And to say “It is thought…” Thought by whom? Name your sources. Let’s meet these jackasses that would blame the victim in all of this.
Are there things the university could have done differently? Maybe, but who knows? If he hadn’t bought guns, maybe he’d have bought fertilizer and racing fuel. Every single person who was killed could have, at any point before that made another decision–stopped to go to the bathroom, slept in, ran instead of blocking the door, not responded to cries for help, put a knife in her purse, taken a wrong turn, waited for that light to change instead of gunning it through the yellow–but only one of them knew that that was the day he was going to open fire on his fellow students.
And, at the end of this, no second-guessing is going to change that. Nobody but him knew they were making decisions that would lead to death. Nobody.
We can analyze what happened, and we should. We can make plans based on what happened, and we should. But at the end of the day, only one person is responsible for this.
Put his picture on the front page of the paper. Name him. Invite folks to gawk at him and wonder what he did that led him to that place.
But this is not Emily Hilscher’s fault and fuck anyone who insinuates that it is.