Commenter TT wrote the following under an earlier post:
I would not be surprised if we see more school shootings as copycat phenomena.
The evidence is, and there is science on this, that it is the massive news coverage that motivates these shooters. The kids and adults who commit these mass shootings all have one constant: deep-rooted feelings of insignificance.
A properly adjusted person does not confuse and conflate infamy with fame. But it is a country of 350,000,000 with even a tiny fraction of people who do, you have a problem.
Look at social media. There are people who will profoundly embarrass and shame themselves to get notoriety. It’s a staple of certain reality TV shows where some otherwise utterly insignificant people will behave like complete fools, making a mockery of themselves for attention.
We know the progression of this phenomena with mass school shootings:
1) In 1977, and republished again in 1985, Stephen King (under a pseudonym) writes a popular novel about a kid bullied in school who then exacts revenge, in school, with a gun. King lionized this kid as an insignificant bullying victim who strikes back (like he did with “Carrie”).
2) There were at least four school shootings where the shooters had the book or credited it with the idea for their shootings. The media give extensive coverage to the shootings and shooters.
3) The evidence is so clear that King withdraws the book.
4) The Columbine shooters, referring to both the book and the media coverage of the actual school shootings, vow to commit one even bigger.
5) Other future shooters reference and fixate on the prior shootings and the media coverage of them.
The problem isn’t guns. More than half of the households in America have guns. Yet our total lethal violence rate (suicide+homicide by all means) is far lower than many developed democracies with no civilian-owned guns at all.
The problem is clearly not AR-15s or “assault weapons” since the largest US school shooting — by far –was accomplished with a pistol. Pistol/s are far more lethal in a school environment since the shooter can move within a school building or campus undetected by security as the shooter, as Seung-Hui Cho did at Virginia Tech to maximize the number of victims.
The problem, in fact, is the gun control lobby. As with blaming guns on suicide rates (when the evidence shows removing guns may actually increase suicides because it creates more non-gun suicides, initially undetected and classified as accidents), blaming guns for mas shootings diverts attention from he root cause: mental illness.
In fact the gun control lobby has actually blocked funding for mental health funding and armed school guards by poison-pilling legislation that would help, but holding it up if it doesn’t include gun bans on their agenda.
The gun control lobby also works to keep these shootings and shooters in the news. Maintaining 24-hour news coverage is a stated strategy of the gun control lobby following incidents like Parkland and Santa Fe. This rewards school shooters.
The ACLU is also at fault. They have filed and fought over 40 major cases in the US, creating national legal precedents since the 1970’s, making it far more difficult to detain, hold, evaluate and order treatment for people suffering from mental illness. These efforts are exactly coincident with beginning with of these shootings. The EU, Canada, Australia and others have between 50% more to 200% more persons who receive mandatory treatment that does the US.