The father of a schoolboy stabbed by a deranged attacker, holds

his son's blood-stained shirt, in Chenping, Henan Province, Dec. 14.




From Chenping to Newtown: 'Don't Let Children Go to School in Fear' (022 China, People's Republic of China)


On the same day Alan Lanza went on a rampage with an assualt rifle in Newtown, Connecticut, killing 20 children and six adults, half a world away, in China's Henan Province, a deranged man entered an elementary school and attacked children with a knife, injuring 22. In this article from China's state-controlled 022 China, columnist Li Guohui argues that at every level, ' friends, relatives, communities and societies' have failed to properly care for the mentally ill, which he suggests is the root cause of such attacks.


By Li Guohui [李国惠]


Translated By Casey Patrick Reilly


December 21, 2012


People's Republic of China - 022 China - Original Article (Chinese)

Parallel attacks on children in America and China: On the same day Alan Lanza went on a rampage in Newtown with an assualt rifle, killing 20 children and six adults, a deranged man in China's Henan Province entered an elementary school and attacked children with a knife. Twenty two were injured, including the child above. In China, thanks to the fact that the attacker used only a knife, no one was killed.

BBC NEWS VIDEO: Attacker at school in China's Henan Privince injures 22 children, Dec. 14, 00:02:00RealVideo

On the morning of December 14th, in Gunagshang county, Henan Province, a man slashed 22 students, some of whom were seriously injured. The preliminary determination was that the attacker was a man suffering from mental illness and experiencing an intermittent neurotic episode named Min Ying-jun [闵应军]. A few hours later, more tragic news emerged.


At an elementary school in the American state of Connecticut, a shooting took place in which as many as 28 people were killed, including 20 children. Law enforcement officials say that the attacker, Adam Lanza, may have had a personality disorder, and his family added that he may be autistic, and furthermore was undergoing drug treatment.


On this day, dozens of innocent children experienced a murderous tragedy - an unforgiveable and heinous crime! But as we grieve the innocent lives extinguished, and rage at the cruelty of such an indiscriminate slaughter of the innocent, there are mysteries that remain to be solved.


Whether or not Min Ying-jun suffered some kind of neurotic episode, why would he go to an elementary school to attack children with a knife? What was Adam Lanza's motive for killing his mother - and why after killing her, did he take four types of firearms to her elementary school and do such violence?


[Editor's Note: Early reports were that Lanza's mother taught at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. As it turns out, she never did.]


The police forensic investigation may yet help resolve this puzzle. As we await the facts, this is an issue that demands further reflection: why do certain people with mental illnesses eventually resort to crime? And why do safety barriers around schools so often prove ineffective?


China graphic of the attack on Chenping schoolchildren.


In recent years, many disturbing incidents involving out-of-control mentally ill people have occurred, and reports of deranged individuals killing and injuring others have almost continuously been a topic of discussion. Statistics show that 10 percent of all such incidents involve the mentally ill. The social harm that results from this cannot be ignored. A China Central Television news survey showed that every year, mentally ill people are involved in over 10,000 incidents of serious violence.

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And as noted earlier, situations like these are not unique to China. This July this year, there was a massacre in the U.S. city of Denver. Neighbors of the suspect John Holmes, said he was withdrawn, and his lawyers said he was undergoing psychiatric treatment. And last year in July, a bombing and shooting in Norway's capitol of Oslo killed 77 people and injured more than 80. The “maniac" responsible was said to be suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.


Looking around the globe, the number of mental patients with personality disorders has gradually risen, and their friends, relatives, communities and societies have failed at every level to provide the proper care and concern. If a "fuse" is unexpectedly lit, a "bomb" will explode. At that moment, these apparently meek lambs may turn into mighty butchers. Therefore, in order to create a more harmonious social environment, there must be stepped-up intervention with mentally ill people. Earlier mechanisms for prevention are a matter of great urgency.


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A mother and her son, who was stabbed in the head at

a primary school by a deranged attacker, in Chenping

village, Henan Province, Dec. 14.


How professional and scientific is treatment? Are psychological intervention mechanisms timely enough? In order to "keep watch" on mentally ill patients, outside of traditional medical and psychological approaches, should mental health be recognized as a social problem - and are family, friends, and society at every level, giving enough attention and supervision? Are lawmakers and officials paying enough attention? Can people with mentally illnesses be permitted to override the lives of the rest of the population? All of these questions must be urgently answered.


Furthermore, school security should not be overlooked. The opportunities Min Ying-jun and Adam Lanza had to take such malicious action against children are not unrelated to weak security. Perhaps if they were equipped with the necessary human, material and technological protection, and it was ensured that the job of providing school security was taken more seriously, "devils slipping into school" could be more effectively prevented, and a safer barrier for children's lives could be erected.


In recent years, frequent gun attacks have repeatedly struck the nerves of Americans and the wider global public, and after each shooting, an intense debate on gun regulation ensues. The popularity of gun culture in the United States has deep historical roots. For more than 200 years, Americans have used their guns to secure freedom and order. But damage to public safety due to gun ownership cannot be ignored, which is why the movement to "ban guns" has never disappeared.


But apart from the fact that the United States constitutionally guarantees the right to own a gun, the National Rifle Association and other interest groups impede gun control, and both politial parties contribute to making the issue of firearms more complicated. And a segment of the "pro-gun faction" opposes all government controls over firearms. So regarding this attack, even though Obama was choked up by tears and said he was "heart broken" a number of times, he has yet to take a clear position on the topic of gun control.


Gun control is a complex issue, and is unlikely to be resolved anytime soon. In contrast, "not letting our children go to school afraid" is an issue much easier to solve.




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Svenska Dagbladet, Sweden: In Wake of Newtown, Swedes Must Rethink School Openness
La Repubblica, Italy: The Whole World is Newtown
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Liberation, France: To 'Prove' Himself, Obama Must Go Beyond Assault Weapons
El Universal, Mexico: Newtown: A Tragedy Foretold
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Die Tageszeitung, Germany: The NRA: America's ‘Deadliest’ Lobby
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Le Quotidien d’Oran, Algeria: The Troubling Profile of a 'Bushian Terrorist'
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[Posted by Worldmeets.US Dec. 21, 2:19pm]