Following the massacre that occurred at Virginia Tech University on April 16, many have come to question their own safety at universities across the country. The profile of a school shooter, once narrowed to a lonely white male high-school student with a fascination with and open access to guns, was quickly re-examined as we discovered the shooter to be 23-year-old Cho Seung-Hui. But before the news had been released that the shooter was Asian, the question on everyone’s mind was whether this catastrophe could have been prevented. This question is a good one, and should be debated, but reflecting on the length of time the press devoted to this subject was unsettling for me.
I remember going to class the morning of the shooting and hearing news reports that two people had been shot at a Virginia Tech dormitory. Upon my return five hours later I was shocked to see the death toll had escalated to 33. Immediately, I wanted to know what had happened and if the killer had been caught. Watching the news, all I could find were reporters asking questions like, ‘Why wasn’t the school placed on lockdown? What time was the first e-mail sent to students? Why wasn’t more done to prevent this tragedy?’
It became clear that I would not learn anything about what actually took place on the campus that could account for the casualty numbers rising; I had to resort to the Internet to try to make sense of all that was happening. After getting a clear account, I was upset at the amount of time the network news channels devoted to placing blame on officials at Virginia Tech
Filed Under: Opinion