At the risk of vexing people who’ve seen enough about the shootings at Virginia Tech, I thought I’d pass on some messages about Jamie Bishop (a German professor at VT and son of sf writer Michael Bishop) from an unlikely source–it surprised me, anyway: the Classics-L listserv.
Re the killer:
The images (from photos and video) in Cho’s package addressed to NBC didn’t tell me much. But his words, as he rambled on the soundtrack, suggested to me that the guy might have been schizophrenic. One of the American media’s famous pseudo-conversations is taking place even now about gun control. But if Cho was mentally ill (as seems possible), the real issue here is not whether we need more or less guns.
There are hundreds of thousands of schizophrenics in the US living in private infernos, unnoticed or at least unhelped because their pain turns inward and they hurt themselves or their families, not random strangers. Cho may or may not have been insane, but our treatment of the mentally ill is certainly crazy.