This video does a nice job of capturing several forms of cultural insanity:
I have a relative, a very bright and outgoing young girl, who for several years was afraid to use the bathroom at school, because when she was SIX YEARS OLD she was told that, if she was in the bathroom when an “active shooter” showed up she should stand on the toilet to make herself as invisible as possible, as the classroom doors would be locked.
That this kind of thing is considered an acceptable response to the risks created by giving murderous almost-always white almost-always men/boys easy access to semi-automatic weapons is an indictment of the entire political, legal, and media culture.
Speaking of the latter factor, here’s the Dayton shooter’s former girlfriend on some of his obsessions:
A couple of drinks later, Connor asked me if I saw the video of the synagogue shooting. As someone who makes a point to never watch those videos, I hadn’t. So, he pulled out his phone and I was too drunk to care that I was watching it. Thankfully the bar was too loud for me to hear what was going on. Connor gave me the play-by-play of what was happening. . .
There was one night in March or April that he called me. He was out in Illinois playing a gig with his metal band, Menstrual Munchies, [ed: JFC] and he got super drunk. Most of the time I couldn’t understand what he was saying. Connor was naturally a mumbler with a low voice, but then to add drunk slurring on top of it definitely made it a struggle to understand him. I did catch bits and pieces among his topic jumping that he wanted to hurt a lot of people. He didn’t have any specific plans. I wrote it off as being a sad, drunk man who was afflicted by unchecked symptoms of mental illness. Under normal, sober circumstances, I didn’t believe he would feel like that. . .
The next red flag was the letter. We had plans to go grab lunch one day, and he asked if he could drop off a letter to one of his friends that had just moved into town. I said sure, that’s sweet. . . When I pushed the subject further he told me that that was his ex-girlfriend’s house that he found through a picture on her Facebook. . . .I asked to read the letter. I don’t remember the exact words, but it was something to the effect of “Welcome to the neighborhood. You can’t outrun your past. Signed, Your Neighbor.” I asked him about that, about if he knew how messed up that was. He tried to downplay it as a joke. But I knew it wasn’t, so I pushed further. He admitted that sometimes he got uncontrollable urges to do things. The only other example of those urges that I remember is burning down an abandoned building with his friends. He told me that he always felt terrible afterward. I took that opportunity to try and show him a coping method. We pulled into a parking lot, jammed the letter in a hole under a parking block, and lit the letter on fire, watching it to make sure the pieces didn’t fly off and start a wildfire.
Here’s a story about the shooter’s involvement in the “pornogrind” metal music scene, which apparently “is known for sexually violent, death-obsessed lyrics and dehumanizing imagery depicting women.” (That’s putting it mildly. Warning: the linked story is really sickening).
It seems likely that the Dayton’s shooter’s rampage was directly triggered by media coverage of the El Paso massacre. There’s no easy answer to the question of what to do about that factor. The fact that somebody directly inspired by the president of the United States’ hate speech towards Hispanics decided to murder 22 people as a result should be a huge story in and of itself, as should be the apparent fact that the coverage of that massacre immediately inspired a copycat mass murder.