Globe & Mail, Canada

[Click Here for More G&M Cartoons]



Finally, an American Cry of 'Collective Sanity' on Guns (O Globo, Brazil)


"'Why did Chris die?' came the contorted voice of Richard Martinez, in an early tribute to his son Christopher, 20. 'Chris died because of craven, irresponsible politicians and the NRA (acronym of the powerful National Rifle Association). When will this insanity stop? When will the country say "stop this madness?"' ... His cry of pain was not a lone one. The words of this middle-aged man, shaken by a wound that he will carry with him as long as he lives, sounded like a collective call, a cry for reason on behalf of life."


By Dorrit Harazim*



Translated By Brandi Miller


June 10, 2014


Brazil - O Globo - Original Articles (Portuguese)

Of the many people thrust into the public spotlight by gun violence, aggrieved father Richard Martinez may be the most effective NRA opponent to appear on the scene. The questions is, will it matter?

BBC NEWS VIDEO, U.K.: The twisted world of Elliot Rodger, May 25, 00:02:26RealVideo

The United States is the only civilized country with an average of three guns per household.


Thousands of residents in a community adjacent to the University of California campus in Santa Barbara gathered to pay tribute to the six victims of the 64th firearms slaughter to occur in the United States in the last 30 years.


This time, on May 23, the killing was in Isla Vista. Around 9:00pm, a 22-year-old male opened fire at random on one of the streets most frequented by university students. He later committed suicide in his black BMW, where the police found three semiautomatic pistols, all legally purchased, and over 400 rounds of ammunition. Before leaving home, Elliott Rodger, the young killer, had already eliminated his three roommates. He killed them with a knife while they slept, and possibly drugged.


"Why did Chris die?" came the contorted voice of Richard Martinez, in an early tribute to his son Christopher, 20. "Chris died because of craven, irresponsible politicians and the NRA (acronym of the powerful National Rifle Association). When will this insanity stop? When will the country say 'stop this madness?'"


His cry of pain was not a lone one. The words of this middle-aged man, shaken by a wound that he will carry with him as long as he lives, sounded like a collective call, a cry for reason on behalf of life.



Reading parts of the 141-page manifesto, a diary written by Elliot, reveal fanciful ideas of power, privilege, race and gender. Dissatisfied by the fact that he hadn't lost his virginity, he had psychotic bouts of misogynist ideology - even after having been treated by a host of mental health professionals. In the last of the many videos he posted on YouTube entitled " Elliott Rodger's Retaliation Day," he narrated the details of his plan for revenge with the serenity of a maniac.


Immediately, Elliot was pointed to as the prototype of the misogyny and sexism rampant in society in general (not just the U.S.), and social media was supercharged with the hashtag #YesAllWomen. The psychological imbalance of the young killer, who defined himself as "the image of beauty and supremacy," was also attributed to a diffuse "syndrome of the rights of the White male." It is worth noting, however, that Elliot was Eurasian on his mother's side - a Chinese woman from Malaysia, and had dyed his hair blonde.


Simplifying in binary terms the identity and experience of a maladjusted youth when it obscures much greater complexity is to miss the tragedy's central issue: the culture of weapons possession in American life.


Other races and cultures also treat women as property - see the stoning of to death of a pregnant woman by her own family, which occurred this week in Pakistan, or the recent kidnapping of 300 schoolgirls in Nigeria. The United States, however, is the only civilized country with an average of three guns per household.


Realizing the impact of Richard Martinez' almost primal scream, many politicians have contacted him to express their condolences. His response was short: "I don't want to hear your condolences. Go to work and do something."


Toward interviewers who wanted to extract pat solutions, Christopher's father responded with unrestrained revolt. "My son died a few days ago and you want answers from me? This is a complex question that involves mental illness, armed violence and violence against women. There are great specialists in each of these areas. Why don't the politicians call them and hear them out? We elect representatives and we invest them with power, but they are a bunch of unprincipled hacks that bow to the NRA."


Like Worldmeets.US on Facebook



Other modern nations like Canada and Britain, grappling with similar massacres, evolved by changing their laws.


The most eloquent example is Australia. Six months after taking over as prime minister in 1996, conservative John Howard received news that shook the nation. A psychologically disturbed man had used a semiautomatic rifle and an SKS assault rifle to quickly kill 35 people in Port Arthur, in the state of Tasmania.


Elected by a center-right coalition with the wide support of a rural electorate with little enthusiasm for gun restrictions, Howard acted quickly, deciding to use the authority of his office to debate the matter and then limit the possession of semiautomatic firearms.


He knew the measure would come at high electoral cost - and it did. The following year his coalition was defeated in local elections, with the winning populist party threatening to reverse the ban. Even so, Howard wouldn't budge. He threatened to submit the issue to a popular referendum to change the Constitution.

Posted By Worldmeets.US


The result: 700,000 weapons in civilian hands (the statistical equivalent of 40 million in the United States) were turned over to the authorities. For 18 years, Australia has not recorded a massacre with any of the banned firearms.


No one is unaware of the profound differences between the two nations, starting with the Bill of Rights, which doesn't exist in Australia, which since 1791 has ensured ... "the right of the people to keep and bear arms" - and today serves as a shield for the NRA lobby.



For 11 consecutive years, U.S. firearms sales have grown with no sign of abating. In 2013, there was a nine percent increase. For 2014, the expectation is for even more sales with the "Year of the Woman" campaign to attract women being promoted by the weapons industry.


Even so, some states, like Connecticut, New York, and even California, have already taken some steps toward limiting the purchase of semiautomatic weapons by those convicted of violent crimes. It's the least of the least.


Also of note: the same week as the Isla Vista killings, four U.S. schools in different states received threats of imminent shootings.


*Dorrit Harazim is a journalist.


Huanqiu, China: 'Imagine if Chinese Had Access to Guns' Like Americans Do!
Folha, Brazil: Why Does Half the World Imitate 'Peaceful' Newtown and Aurora?
Guardian, U.K.: Piers Morgan is Right: America's Gun Laws Need Radical Overhaul
O Globo, Brazil: U.S. School Shootings and the 'Externalization of Evil'
Elsevier, The Netherlands: In or Out of America, Gun Laws Cannot Control Sick Minds
News, The Netherlands: Arms Industry Profits or Innocent Life: Americans Have to Choose
022 China, China: From Chenping to Newtown: 'Don't Let Children Go to School in Fear'
Prensa Libre, Guatemala: Cowboys and U.S. Gun Culture: Reaffirming Heroism and War
Estadao, Brazil: Obama Must Follow Victoria Soto: Only Action, Not Tears, Saves Lives
Svenska Dagbladet, Sweden: In Wake of Newtown, Swedes Must Rethink School Openness
La Repubblica, Italy: The Whole World is Newtown
Rzeczpospolita, Poland: No One Dares Deny Americans their Guns
Liberation, France: To 'Prove' Himself, Obama Must Go Beyond Assault Weapons
El Universal, Mexico: Newtown: A Tragedy Foretold
Die Welt, Germany: Turn Kindergarten into Fort Knox? Go Ahead!
Fokgames, The Netherlands: Newtown and Video Games: There in NO Connection!
La Jornada, Mexico: Newtown: Gun 'Barbarism' that Cannot be Removed by Legislation
RDS, Canada: After Newtown Killings, Sport Must Takes a Back Seat to Healing
The Tribune, India: U.S. Must Better Protect Sikhs, Other Religious 'Soft Targets'
IBN Live Video: Indian Sikhs React to Temple Slaughter in Wisconsin
Guardian, U.K.: Sikhs Say Attacks on Community are 'Collateral Damage' of 9/11
The Hindu, India: India seeks more security for religious places in U.S.
Elsevier, The Netherlands: How in the West and East, Mass Murderers are Bred
Liberation, France:America and Firearms: ‘How Many People Have to Die?’
Die Tageszeitung, Germany: The NRA: America's ‘Deadliest’ Lobby
Izvestia, Russia: Batman Shootings Elicit No Fear from Russia Film Execs
Khaleej Times, UAE: Colorado: ‘Big Brother’ U.S. Had Best Tend to its Own House
Saarbruecker Zeitung, Germany: Bloody Acts Like these ‘Cannot Be Prevented’
La Jornada, Mexico: 'Violence and Barbarism' in Retrograde United States
Berliner Morgenpost, Germany: Anders Breivik: Europe's Own Osama bin Laden
Le Quotidien d’Oran, Algeria: The Troubling Profile of a 'Bushian Terrorist'
DNA, France: Terrorism in Toulouse and the ‘Currency of Hate’
Sydsvenskan, Sweden: After September 11, We 'Lost What We Wanted to Defend'
Polityka, Poland: America in Anger's Clutches
Beijing Youth Daily, China: Making Sense of America's Right to Bear Arms
Frankfurter Rundschau, Germany: Virginia Tech One Year On: The 'Silent Scandal'
New Straits Times, Malaysia: Don't Just Blame Virginia Tech …
Kitabat, Iraq: 'Thank Allah the Virginia Killer Wasn't Muslim'
La Jornada, Mexico: Virginaa Tech: An American Tragedy
NRC Handlesblad, Netherlands: Americans Distrust State Monopoly on Violence
JoongAng Daily, South Korea: The Legacy of Cho Seung-hui: A Lesson to Koreans
The Korea Herald, South Korea: Koreans Feel Collective Guilt Over the Massacre
La Jornada, Mexico: Rejecting U.S. Drug War is Essential for Mexico's Survival
Xinjingbao, China: Information Society Triggered Massacre
China Daily, China: A Nation Cannot Be Tarred by a Single Killer
La Jornada, Mexico: The 'Paths of Death' Lead to Washington
La Jornada, Mexico: A Culture of Violence …
O Povo, Brazil: Virginia Tech: Sign of Our Wounded Civilization
Khaleej Times, UAE: Shooting Shows Something Ails America 'At its Core'

Al Watan Voice, Palestinian Territories: Fort Hood: 'Muslims Can't Be Trusted'

Dar Al Khaleej, UAE: America's 'Black Knights' and the Fort Hood Tragedy

Le Temps, Switzerland: 'Double Lesson' at Fort Hood

Khaleej Times, U.A.E. Fort Hood Shooting: 'Don't Pin It on Faith'

Hurriet, Turkey: Shooting at Fort Hood and the Role of Muslim Clerics

The Telegraph, U.K.: British Muslims Debate the Fort Hood Killer



blog comments powered by Disqus





















































Posted By Worldmeets.US June 10, 2014 8:29pm