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"...another reason I'm intrigued with the hanged of Salem, especially the women, is that a number of them aroused suspicion in the first place because they were financially independent, or sharp-tongued, or kept to themselves. In other words, they were killed off for the same sort of life I live right now but with longer skirts and fewer cable channels." Sarah Vowell, The partly cloudy patriot.


Okay, that's crazy

So there was a shooting at Virginia tech today, as you know. I just learned that one set of shootings occurred in the dorms at 7am today ... and the campus was kept open. Two hours later the same shooter (or perhaps a second one, they don't know) went to another building (science and engineering?) and shot more people.

The President of the University said they had no reason to believe that after the first shootings that more would occur, and they thought the suspect had left campus. WTF? So just act like everything is normal?

Irrespective of the intelligence on a shooting, if it happened on a campus I was on, I'd want to be notified, and I'd want the school shut down. That seems like a horribly horribly risky decision - one that proved fatal. And if 2 people were killed in the first incident, and over 30 killed (plus many wounded) in the second - you can bet people are going to be up in arms (lawsuits?).

One of my old profs is there. I hope he's okay.

And as upsetting and horrifying this event is, I have to remind myself - far more people are dying in Iraq and Darfur than this.

And onto craziness that (selfishly) directly affects me: my employment paperwork has been lost. Now, this is upsetting for 2 reasons: 1) personal info about me is lost (incl a copy of my social security card and my id!); and 2) so, how long will it take for them to get this all fixed? Argh.

edited to add: some FBI dude was saying, "This was just a regular shooting as of 7:15a.m., so they had no way of knowing he'd go shoot other people." WTF? On a school campus, I don't think any shooting should be treated as "regular." Especially if the shooter takes off ... the FBI dude then said there was no way to close the campus down. Sure there is. You have security and police officers at every entrance, and wandering around, checking the buildings, you send emails to the students, and maybe for something like this (read: potential extreme emergency), you have a special parent email list so parents can take some responsibility for searching for their kids. Any shooting on a campus where the offender is not apprehended should be treated as an extreme emergency.

And I hate how the newscasters are saying, "There's some evidence he was after his girlfriend, indicating it was something 'domestic'." As though because it is domestic, it is unimportant, miniscule, private, and somehow warranted. Yet, in fact this points to how horrifying domestic violence can become, and really highlights why it needs to become more of a national agenda (are you listening Hillary and Barack?).

Violence against women is a huge issue, not cured by making rap music more p.c., as some seem to be indicating post-Imus. It is endemic, it saturates all of our psyches, it is normalized, it is ubiquitous, and it is largely ignored, trivialized, and otherized.


At 7:46 PM, Blogger Dr. Deb said...

Makes me curious too that the campus wasn't immediately put on shut down. Such a tragedy.


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