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Monday, April 16, 2007

The Latest: 33 Dead, Another 29 Wounded

posted by on April 16 at 14:00 PM

after today’s shooting at Virginia Tech. It is the deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.

From ABC News:

Law enforcement officials tell ABC News they believe there was a single gunman, firing at least two 9mm semi-automatic pistols. They said he may have been wearing a bulletproof vest.

It is unknown at this time if the guns had standard or extended clips, which can fire as many as 30 shots before the gun has to be reloaded.

The gunman, whose identity has not been released, is among the dead. Campus police would not say whether the shooter had killed himself.

From the BBC, there’s this scary account from a student:

The sound did not register immediately, even though it was startlingly loud.

When it started again seconds later, the girl sitting by the door decided to close the door.

She peeked out into the hallway, and saw the shooter, so she immediately closed the door shut.

Three other students moved a table that was in front of the room and barricaded it against the door.

A few seconds later, the shooter tried to open the door, but my classmates kept it well shut, as they held the table against it.

The shooter shot the door twice at chest level, which resulted in two holes in the door, one of which hit the podium in the front of the classroom and the other continued out the window.

Meanwhile, over at Instapundit, one of the right’s biggest bloggers, this was up shortly after news of the shooting broke:

Nobody seems to know much yet on what happened. These things do seem to take place in locations where it’s not legal for people with carry permits to carry guns, though, and I believe that’s the case where the Virginia Tech campus is concerned. I certainly wish that someone had been in a position to shoot this guy at the outset.

Expect this to be a common theme among the right in the week ahead. Guns don’t kill people, but people with guns kill other people with guns. Everybody needs guns. Guns, guns, guns.

And over at Americablog, a commenter writes:

I know it is too early for comments like this (really, my prayers are with those people in Blacksburg)—but I just have to say it. 30+ kids killed and who knows how many injured and this is all we’re gonna hear about for weeks. But is it really that outrageous compared to what’s going on in Iraq every day? Politicians say Iraq is ok and no worse than any city in America—and the media for the most part don’t hold them accountable for comments like that. If there were consistency, this Tech thing wouldn’t be that big of a story.

President Bush, meanwhile, has already delivered some remarks:

Our nation is shocked and saddened by the news of the shootings at Virginia Tech today. The exact toll has not yet been confirmed, but it appears that more than 30 people were killed and many more were wounded.

I have spoken with Governor Tim Kaine and Virginia Tech President Charles Steger. I told them that Laura and I and many across our nation are praying for the victims and their families and all the members of the university community who have been devastated by this terrible tragedy.

I told them that my administration would do everything possible to assist with the investigation and that I pledged that we would stand ready to help local law enforcement and the local community in any way we can during this time of sorrow.

Schools should be places of safety and sanctuary and learning. When that sanctuary is violated, the impact is felt in every American classroom and every American community.

Today our nation grieves with those who have lost loved ones at Virginia Tech. We hold the victims in our hearts, we lift them up in our prayers, and we ask a loving God to comfort those who are suffering today.

Thank you.

RSS icon Comments


School shooting hell. It's the worst mass shooting of ANY kind in US history.

Posted by Fnarf | April 16, 2007 2:31 PM

And it's not just Instapundit. Check this.

Posted by Gabriel | April 16, 2007 2:45 PM

And of course, Malkin.

Posted by Gabriel | April 16, 2007 2:47 PM

Lest we forget, Bush's first officially released statement included a statement of support for gun rights. First thing he can think of is the right to bear arms. Only a couple hours after that can his speechwriters cobble together a statement of sympathy for the hundreds of friends and family members about to undergo the worst weeks of their lives.

Posted by Switzerblog | April 16, 2007 2:52 PM

The analogy with Iraq is this: the people who think that America would be safer if everyone had a gun and could carry it with them anywhere and at all times are, by and large, the same people who think that we should restrict our foreign policy to military actions; that the peace is only secured through constant demonstration of might. They are incredibly dangerous fantasists. When there is an awful shooting like this, they say that they wish they had been there with their gun so that they could have taken care of business. They're always the heroes in their own minds, oblivious to reality and to suffering.

Posted by Gabriel | April 16, 2007 2:59 PM

Regarding Bush's last remark: I really don't see how we can ask a loving God to do a fucking thing. If God didn't step in to keep the gunman's bullets from hitting these 30 innocent people, then why should we think he'll step in to comfort the suffering? The answer better not be "Because enough of us ask him to." And it's not about free will: God had to let this horrible person fire his guns, but there's no free-will-requirement that he had to hit what he aimed for.

Sorry if this seems like a tangent, I just couldn't let Bush's remark pass. If events like this one today don't make you question God's existence, fine. But at the very least events like this show that it's senseless to "ask a loving God" to do anything: either God never steps in to affect us at all, or God doesn't exist, or God's not loving.

Posted by Ben | April 16, 2007 3:04 PM

I don't get instapundit's comment... does he wish that there are armed guard everywhere, or that civilians be allowed to retaliate?

On the one hand he envisions a Police State, on the other hand he envisions a land where everyone is armed and has, not only the means, but the will (which is more frightening) to shoot another human being at the earliest sign of trouble, without necessarily any training to use the least violent response necessary... Both these visions are frightening.

How can he account for them!?

Posted by John At Work | April 16, 2007 3:15 PM

Ben @ 6,

Humans are the only creatures on Earth that beg a non-existent supernatural authority figure to change their physical reality.

Sad, but true.

Posted by Original Andrew | April 16, 2007 3:16 PM

Yeah, imagine if this happened every f'ing day, like in Baghdad. Except instead of just being shot, the students were TORTURED first. And instead of committing suicide, the attacker(s) vanished back into the populace, so you didn't know when they'd strike again (ala D.C. shooters). Not to diminish the tragedy of this, but if I'm looking for consolation, Shrub's impish mug ain't where I'm turning to.

Posted by him | April 16, 2007 3:17 PM

Original Andrew (#8) not that I disagree with you, but you can't prove that (unless your last name is Doolittle and you have a Doctorate in Animal Husbandry).

Posted by elswinger | April 16, 2007 3:31 PM

I've already posted this link elsewhere, but I'll do it again, as this is a perspective worth reading. Now is not the time for sanctimony.

Posted by Gomez | April 16, 2007 3:57 PM

well gomez, you have a point in that link: either we have to allow people to arm themselves, or we rely on an effective police force or security force to take over the responsibility, or we destroy every gun in the world. i vote for the second option as the most feasible, but then that would require police and security to be made up of competent, brave, prepared and reasonably intelligent people. good luck with that paradigm shift. call me an idealist.

Posted by ellarosa | April 16, 2007 4:20 PM

Classically Liberal wrote:

"If only 10% of the people at Virginia Tech had concealed weapon permits it is unlikely that this man could have continued on two hours later to execute another huddled batch of unarmed victims."

I take issue with this assumption.

Posted by John At Work | April 16, 2007 4:27 PM

Oh my gog. On Headline prime on CNN some lady named Pat is this spokesperson hero to tell us all Its the movies, Its Hip Hop, Its internet porn and its Video Games that are causing this by making us numb dumbdowned insensitive to violence and unsensual zombies. We are all doomed. Boycott Hip hop and entertainment industry.
More abstinence education Yay lady save us.
And I'm sure there are going to be more freaks like her that take this angle.
WTF lets just stop everything we do and enjoy just to turn our lives at college and life in general to suit this ladies needs. she's a criminal profiler too. What a quack.
Please people don't let this viewpoint about our society get out of hand and let these culture warriors and censorship authorities brainwash you into thinking like that.
please I beg of you all. This tragedy sucks, but it is not friggin video games or violent movies or football advertisements. If you do then cartoons and comics are next, and manga.
And I really like manga.
If this is the case then how come Japan which churns out tons of this entertainment and video games has not one incident like this occuring every damn day over there like this lady says is going on here?

Posted by summertime | April 16, 2007 4:27 PM

And where were the Va Tech police during that shooting, ella? He capped his first victim at 7:15 am, and didn't cap the rest until 9:15, in a separate building several hundred yards away. A call was placed not long after the first shooting, so they definitely knew a gunman was on the loose, armed and dangerous. And yet, he got into a classroom unencumbered and executed a bunch of students before anyone showed up to stop him.

Some good the police did there! This is, among other things, a collosal failure of law enforcement.

Posted by Gomez | April 16, 2007 4:57 PM

Hindsight is 20/20 Gomez. All indications from the first early incident pointed to the fact that the gunmen had fled the area. We still do not know whether the two are related. So let's please stop:
Police bashing
Gun bashing
God bashing
Bush bashing
Culture bashing
Until we get more facts.

Posted by raindrop | April 16, 2007 5:04 PM

In what possible way is sub-literate, rank right-wing buffoonery a "perspective worth reading"?

Posted by Fnarf | April 16, 2007 5:12 PM

Gomez talking out of his ass again? He don't need no stinkin' facts! Never has, never will.

Posted by Stan | April 16, 2007 5:17 PM

16, even if the cops thought the gunman had left the area, why did it take them 2 hours to pay a visit to the scene? makes no sense. i guess there's some missing info, yes, but what could possibly explain THAT? i wonder how many jaw-dropping accounts of law enforcement failure i have to read on a weekly basis before i start to understand why our citizens are so content to let them be so generally lame. it's not like they don't get paid well and have good benefits on the public dime, after all.

Posted by ellarosa | April 16, 2007 5:39 PM


Dang it! I was hoping she was going to blame it on the islamofascists.

Posted by keshmeshi | April 16, 2007 6:08 PM

Adding to 19, I took a look at the MSNBC timeline. The second "spree" lasted around a half an hour. The guy was walking around a building for 30 minutes killing people. WTF were the cops doing all this time? Even if it took them 10 minutes to get to the scene, it doesn't seem like it should take that long to get a team together to get in the building. Obviously details are sparse, but at this point, it seems like the police response was slow and the university was negligent in not locking the campus down. I'd envision some major lawsuits coming out of this.

Posted by sleestak | April 16, 2007 7:18 PM

I am a Virginia Tech alum, and attended classes in that building, so it hits me a bit close to home. I am for gun control, but don't think this is a gun control issue. Similar shootings have happened around the world in countries with strict gun control laws. I am anti Iraq war, but I don't think it's a fair comparisson except to point out that every time someone is killed it effects someone. If anything, this is a social and psychological issue. You cannot stop every guy that wants to kill people. A guy went nuts and killed alot of people.. Like Columnbine, there were probably warning signs.. we need to start addressing these things in a social and mental health context before it happens.

Posted by JB | April 16, 2007 9:58 PM

I also want to add, that people should not be so quick to jump at blaming the university and police. VT had extremely good security when I was there. It's all but impossible to respond to this type of incedent. It takes time for the 911 calls, and the police were in the building and through the chained doors in about 1 minute after ariving. It's not their fault and it's not the universities fault.

Posted by JB | April 16, 2007 10:18 PM

Umm, left wingers are using this for political purposes as well. Whenever something like this happens, people always come out in favor of tighter gun control laws.

Posted by Andrew Hitchcock | April 16, 2007 11:40 PM

I can't believe that law enforcement officials didn't do things differently. It will be interesting to look at a time line of events. I don't blame the police just whoever coordinated or managed this terrible situation as it happened.

The gun man is ultimately responsible. Not the police.

24 look at your NRA and right wing bloggers , W and your peers calling for a change to LOOSEN gun control laws.

Posted by biggie j | April 17, 2007 7:52 AM

BS this the "worst mass shooting in US History" ... Are you people THAT DAFT??? WAY WAY more folks have been shot to death at one time on more occasions than would be easy to collect details on very quickly (many are likely lost in the anals of history) Hello! You guys recall all "indians" slaughtered? Or when the "Indians" had access to firearms, all the Yanks THAT slaughtered? ie Little BigHorn. Or the little battles we had amongst ourselves? Anyone recall learning about those? Hint North South? ... Quantril's raiders? I was gonna mention Texas also but that technically was in it's pre official US possesion status.

Posted by Doug | April 17, 2007 10:53 PM

Regarding the rants against God that always seem to come up when someone supposedly "innocent" meets their apparently untimely demise.

Maybe these responses could be somewhat appropriate if those accusing God of being unrighteous and unmerciful for allowing all the death in the world were truly ignorant of the real situation. And Lord knows there is an abundance of people supposedly representing the truth of the Bible and God's economy who are SO WRONG and are doing such a diservice to their fellow man by saying things like "God loves everbody" and other such happy horse $#!T! The REAL Truth is the EVERY SINGLE THAT DIES or gets hurt or sick in WHATEVER way it happens is fully deserving of not only that but also an eternity in HELL! Excuse me did I say every single person? There was ONE and ONLY One who ACTUALLY of his own right deserved NONE of those things. It was only through the fact that He voluntarily took upon Himself ALL the sins of each and every person He came to save (Please note clearly that neither I nor the Bible is saying that He took the sins of ALL people because that is a lie and is NOT taught in Scripture!) And having taken on the sins of all of His ELECT (sinners apparently just like everyone else chosen by God for no reason clear to any of us ... in fact sinners that would NEVER EVER of their own choosing turn to God in full confession of their situation and begging for undeserved mercy Christ laden with the sins of His elect (ALL of His elect from the past back to Adam and the present when He was at calvary and those in the future all those chosen out since then right up to the last day when this world will be destroyed.

So don't say idiot stuff like "Where was any loving God when people were being killed" because ultimately NO ONE is killed without God's consent. The wonder is that He is allowing ANYONE to live for ANY time period whatsover! Notice We are ALL gonna DIE?? Hello!! When someone dies the take home lesson is NOT "Why in the world would a righteous God allow THAT?" The real lesson is "What if that had been ME??? ... WHERE Do I stand in God's sight? And what will become of ME in eternity? --I'll tell you friend there is no instant pudding "invite Jesus into your heart sometime before you die and things are hunkydorie" That is one big fat church LIE. But there ae threads of great hope in the Bible for anyone "with ears to hear" Jesus said "...My Sheep Hear my voice and come to me..." He said "ALL that the Father gives me SHALL come to me" and I am taking the liberty to reword this part because I can't recall verbatim (please do look it up for yourself) He said in so many words that those that the Father give Him when they do come to Him He will not turn away... in another place it says He that began a good work (in you meaning in one of His elect) faitfull to complete it. And a wonderous promise that almost sounds like invite to anyone (and it is to "anyone with ears to hear") God says that if anyone will seek Him with all their Heart and all their soul they SHALL find Him! So what stops anyone reading of these evidences of hope and of salvation through a loving God from seeking Him with all their heart? Today if you will hear His voice harden not your heart ... that is a directive in Scripture. Let God be true and EVERY man liar. Don't trust ANYTHING you hear from the lips of mankind ... not me, not the richest TV evangelist, not the nicest most sincere representatives of ANY religion ... trust ONLY the Scriptures ... the BIBLE 66 "books" that GOD wrote by the hand of people chosen and directed BY HIM. The Book so powerful and so amazing that it has been the most influencial and published Book in the history of mankind. The idea of mass printing was literally invented FOR the Bible! ALL of the world's MAIN MAJOR religions either are directly spun in response to Scripture (including ISLAM)OR they at least pay homage to Christ and reflect strongly of central teachings on how mankind ought to treat each other don't steal, don't kill,don't lie, play nice ... AND in spite of the ridicule and critisism that know it alls continue to direct toward Scripture and despite the HATRED of man of it's teachings it nevertheless remains protected through the ages with the most utilized "versions" of the original text remaining virtually unchanged, this being born out through refrences in ancient surviving texts and whole manuscripts. Where there are found to be texts that are obviously changed in relation to the majority of the texts used, they are typically isolated and were obviously NOT accepted by the majority of various churches even though said churches may have held different views. God has not allowed His Word to be lost or corrupted over time. All one needs do is use a Bible where the translators used the Authorative most widely accepted historically body of texts and attempted to reverently carefully translate and include every single word of the origninal without adding words of their own. The best English example of this is the King James Bible. And don't be lured by naysayers that point out things like the fact that it originally contained the Roman Catholic "apochraphal" books and that some churches used those too in that day. The fact is that there was tremendous political pressure to include those along with the Holy Scriptures because of the power of the Roman church. But just as soon as was possible they were yanked OUT never to be included again. It is one more snare of Satan that is easy to spot. I mean just consider for example the word "apochrapha" means "false" ... even the most watered down definition is more like "alien" Believers then understood that they were NOT authoritative and the best thing that anyone who really knew better even said about them was that they might be a helpful commentary at times or something of that nature. Just forget the apochrapha, forget the book of mormon, forget the several generations of heavy editing done by the Jehovah Witness, Forget the Jewish religion's total ommission of the "New Testament" and forget ANY interpretation from ANY religion sect or person that either adds or takes away from Scripture if they don't aggree that the Bible ALONE and in it's entirety is the complete final authoritative Book given to us By God. Some churhes are subtle in how they ADD to Scripture, rather than offering another BOOK they instead will offer people telling of a dream or vision supposedly revelation from God DO NOT BUY IT!!! Or else they might provide some evidence of a "miracle" performed By God ... ALL miracles of the Bible are teaching revelations of God and so any today would be also ... but there are NO OTHER REVELATIONS by God after the Bible is complete and that includes miracles ... well except the best miracle which is the miracle of salvation and THAT IS still happening today! All this other "extra Biblical" crud is just WRONG and decietful. Mercifully God has made it SO easy to know where truth is .... Just ONE SINGLE PLACE and right at the end of the Bible Revelation 22:18 and 19 He seals the Book as complete and orders that it not be added to nor taken away from ... that is God's premise from the beginning of Scripture and He says as much elsewhere in Scripture also but only right at the end is it so obvious by context of all that Revelation is saying and by it's directive that the Bible at that point is COMPLETE... DONE... TRUST IT AND IT ALONE! Beg God for mercy of salvation for faith to KNOW in your heart what to trust. And don't stop begging ... He IS merciful and IS saving a great many THAT is a fact!! Jonah did not want the people f Ninevah to be saved and so although the only portion of the Gospel that the Bible indicates God commanding Jonah to share with the people of Ninevah was a warning that "in forty days Ninevah will be destroyed" Jonah did NOT AT ALL want to tell them THAT! WHY? Because He KNEW How merciful God was and did not want them saved ... somehow he knew or feared that if He told the Ninevites what was comeing they might repent of thier sins and beg God for mercy! Because of that Jonah tried to NOT go there but God made sure He did and sure enough after warning the Ninevites they DID repent and DID beg and MANY were saved!! God WILL get the truth to the right ears and the those ears will HEAR and will repent and beg for mercy!! That makes typing all this worthwhile if He would even let it stand online long enough for ONE of His elect to read it and to be drawn by something of His Word and to be saved! What a privilege if He would ever use MY feeble efforts!

All the VERY BEST wishes and prayers to anyone who manages to read this!


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Posted by Jonney_dhw | April 27, 2007 5:53 PM

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