Mass murder at Jacksonville video game tournament

Conservative TreehouseJacksonville Landing is a central Jacksonville entertainment complex with a blend of restaurants, bars, and family entertainment. According to local authorities a mass shooting event took place during a Madden Football video-game tournament, in/around the Chicago Pizza venue. Early reports indicate 11 to 15 people were shot; and four people have been reported killed. The shooting suspect is also deceased.

At moments like these, I understand the call for gun control. I don't agree with it, and I know it won't work. But I understand the emotional urge to do something, anything to stop the apparently senseless violence.

I guess the difference is that I can rationally examine the options and identify what won't work. Trying to ban guns won't work. That genie has left the bottle.

I don't really see other good options. Let ordinary people be armed in public, to harden potential targets on a broad base? Helpful, but not a cure, and mostly after the fact.

The one thing we've seen consistently from most of these events is that law enforcement was flagged multiple times about the killers before they committed their final act of violence. Often they had enough red flags to have someone put under mental health observation or convicted of a crime that would have put them on the prohibited list for firearms purchases. (That won't stop someone who is determined, but if there's due process to get on the list, it might stop some of the killers, or at least slow them down).

I feel like the psychosocial forces that have put us in this position aren't even really visible or comprehensible at our present moment. Like there is a vast collective unconscious that has been for the past two or three decades just boiling over and over with the drive to commit mass murder. We see the water bubble and steam, and occasionally a splash of lava breaks the surface ... but mostly, what lies beneath the water of our consciousness is invisible to us.

Something's happening down there, though. I think it's the same thing that's driving antifa to attack people in the streets, maybe the same thing driving the Black Lives Matter riots to burn down their own communities. Is it agitprop? Do the known political forces pushing antifa and BLM somehow leak into the minds of those somewhat less stable and infect them with similarly murderous but less political fervor? Or sometimes it remains political, as the shooting of Steve Scalise at a congressional baseball practice proves.

I think it's going to get worse before it gets better.

UPDATE: Clayton Cramer counters that mass murder isn't new. That's depressing.

UPDATE: True to form, the murderer had previously been hospitalized for mental illness, but it didn't stop him.

This entry was published Mon Aug 27 09:30:58 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger and last updated 2018-08-27 22:50:18.0. [Tweet]

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