Shooter identified in Connecticut, may have targeted his teacher mother; Update: Shooter killed himself, reports of missing girlfriend; Update: Shooter misidentified; Update: “Personality disorder”? Update: Mother shot at home? Update: Guns legally bought by mother

posted at 3:01 pm on December 14, 2012 by Mary Katharine Ham

CNN reports the suspect is Ryan Lanza, a white male in his early 20s. He died in the school, but it’s unclear how he died. CBS News is reporting he’s from the Newtown area, his mother had been living in the area, and some students killed may have been students of his mother, who taught at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

[Updated at 2:11 p.m. ET] CNN’s Susan Candiotti has just reported that a law enforcement official tells her the suspect is named Ryan Lanza and he is in his 20s.

I will not be showing a picture of the shooter because it appears that many, many news outlets and thousands of tweeters distributed the photo of the first Ryan Lanza they found on Facebook, and it was not the correct Ryan Lanza. Tweets a man claiming to be the friend of the incorrectly identified Lanza:

https://twitter.com/Fletch788/status/279668466150166528

I’ll just stand by on this because it’s all very uncertain and I really do not want to accuse anyone other than the actual Ryan Lanza of committing this horrible crime.

I want to be careful about all of this, because details remain hazy, but I will just tell you who’s reporting what and reinforce that reports are preliminary and may change.

CBS News says it has confirmed that Lanza’s mother was a teacher at the school and was killed, but it’s unclear whether she died on school grounds. There were reports earlier in the day that his mother might have been killed in a home connected to the shooter, but CBS is now reporting there is a body at the home connected with the suspect.

The NYT:

The gunman, who was believed to be in his 20s, walked into a classroom where his mother was a teacher. He shot and killed her and then shot 18 students in the classroom. He also shot seven other adults.The gunman then killed himself inside the school. The shooting ranks among the worst in recent United States history.

Update: From local news in Newtown:

The gunman delilberately went to Sandy Hook Elementary School with the intention of killing his mother who was a kindergarten teacher at the school, according to NBC Channel 4.

According to the report, the gunman left a Hoboken, NJ home where there apparently is a victim. It is believed that the gunman then went to Sandy Hook where his mother worked as a teacher and began shooting near the principal’s office. The shooter then went to his mother’s kindergarten classroom and killed her and her students, according to the report.

Update: AP reports police have Ryan Lanza’s brother in custody, but unclear whether it’s just to gather information or as connected in some way.

Update: The President will speak at 3:15 p.m. at the White House, addressing the nation.

Update: With the shooter’s body inside the school, police found two handguns. One was a Sig Sauer, the other a Glock 9mm. In his vehicle, police found a .223 caliber rifle, according to CBS News reporting.

Update: Livestream of the president’s statement will be here. Connecticut Gov. Malloy will speak this afternoon, also. Flags have been ordered to half-staff at the Capitol:

Update: Fox reports they have a source saying both the shooter’s mother and father are dead.

A source told Fox News that Lanza’s mother and father, who were divorced, were also killed. It’s not clear whether Lanza’s mother, a teacher at the school, was killed there or at another location.

Update: AP reports an official saying Lanza’s girlfriend and another friend are missing.

The official also said Ryan Lanza’s girlfriend and another friend are missing in New Jersey.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the official said the suspect is dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Update: In a second press conference, Gov. Malloy said “the perpetrator of the crime is dead as is an individual who the perpetrator lived with.”

Lt. Paul Vance of the Connecticut State Police reported that 18 children were pronounced dead at the scene, two at local hospitals, and six adults were killed. There was one person injured. Vance also said there’s a secondary crime scene in Newtown with an additional “adult victim” at that scene.

Update (AP): There’s a major conflict in news reports right now. According to the New York Post, the shooter’s name is Adam Lanza, not Ryan. Ryan is his brother and is being questioned by police but, per the Post, is not a suspect. The AP, however, says it is indeed Ryan who’s the shooter and that his brother is the one who’s being questioned. Needless to say, treat every last bit of news about this story as unconfirmed for the next several hours.

And judging from my Twitter feed, it’d be wise to stay away from social media altogether.

Update (AP): At the White House, Carney wisely decides to punt the inevitable gun-control debate to next week.

Update (AP): Looks like the Post might have been right about the shooter’s identity. Cops now say the shooter was 20 and that his older brother is being questioned. Adam Lanza is the younger brother according to the NYP.

Update (AP): Fearless prediction, as Twitter fills up with angry liberals pounding the table about gun control: As the story comes out, we’ll find out that the guy responsible displayed many, many signs of mental illness over the past year or so and that they were all but ignored by virtually everyone around him.

Update (AP): Yep, even the AP is now naming Adam, not Ryan, Lanza as the shooter. If Ryan’s blameless in all this, his newly hellish existence got a bit more hellish today thanks to the media.

Reuters claims that another Lanza brother is dead at the family home.

Update (AP): The AP says three guns were found at the scene: A Glock pistol, a Sig Sauer pistol, and a .223 rifle.

Update (AP): This cuts to it:

And this:

Update (AP): Ace is right that the typical mass murderer is a mentally-ill sad-sack loser who’s bad at work, bad with women, and who finally snaps in frustration at his own momentous loserdom. Usually it’s a break-up or a pink slip that sets him off and usually the targets are strangers. Not this time, though: The shooter’s just 20 years old and he went to the trouble of driving to his mother’s school to kill her — and 20 kids — after allegedly killing other family members at home. That’s an odd combination of specific and random targeting. What exactly was the crux of this guy’s grudge?

Update (AP): For what it’s worth:

Ryan Lanza, 24, brother of gunman Adam Lanza, 20, tells authorities that his younger brother is autistic, or has Asperger syndrome and a “personality disorder.” Neighbors described the younger man to ABC as “odd” and displaying characteristics associated with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Update (AP): The list. Imagine.

“The teachers wrote down the names of all the children,’’ said Monsignor. Robert Weiss, the pastor at St. Rose of Lima in Newtown. “The ones who were unaccounted for, those parents went to another room and wrote their names on a list.”

“It was around, obviously,” he added, “the number that passed away.”

Update (AP): Nightmarish details from People magazine, who spoke to a mother of one of the students at the school:

According to the woman, the shooter, who is confirmed dead at the scene “went into the [principal's] office, started arguing, and he killed people in the office,” before going into a classroom.

Another parent visiting the school at the time tells PEOPLE he “could hear shots in the hall and glass breaking.” And an NPR interview with one of the school’s teachers revealed that the school’s PA system was on the whole time, amplifying the shots throughout the school.

Update (AP): Against all odds, the shooting continues to get more bizarre:

The shooter, who sources identified as Adam Lanza, 20, shot his mother in the face at their home in Newtown, Conn., then went to nearby Sandy Hook Elementary School where she taught and gunned down her entire class, according to sources…

Vance also said that a “deceased adult” was found at a “secondary crime scene,” though he declined to elaborate.

The thinking until now was that he had some sort of insane grudge against mom that led him to follow her to school, kill her in the classroom, and then open fire on the kids around her as collateral damage. Not so, if Fox’s sources are right. His mother was already dead at home before anything happened at the school. For whatever lunatic reason, after killing her he felt obliged to get in his car, drive down there, and then start shooting at kindergarteners.

The other mystery is who the “deceased adult” was at the other “secondary crime scene.” Reuters reported earlier that it was Lanza’s brother, but cops now say no. Who was it?

Update (AP): Info on the guns from Fox News, per Johnny Dollar:

Update (AP): CNN backs up Fox’s report that the guns were legally purchased by Lanza’s mother, and claims that the rifle was found in the trunk of a car parked at the school. Did he only use the two pistols during his attack, or did he have the rifle out at some point before returning it to the car? And if he didn’t have it out, why not? Seems like, if you’re of a mind to commit a mass shooting, you’d want to use the biggest weapon you have.

Like Greg Pollowitz, I’m eager to hear the progressive policy solution to a nutcase stealing his law-abiding mother’s legally-bought guns.

Update (AP): I’m clicking around on Connecticut’s judicial website of gun regulations to see how many violations this guy is probably guilty of under current law. After a cursory five-minute search, I’ve got at least 10. One: Assuming mom didn’t lend him the two pistols and rifle, he’s guilty of three counts of theft. Two: He’s guilty of three counts of possessing a weapon on school grounds. Three: He may be guilty of two counts of criminal possession of a pistol or revolver. Lanza reportedly had a “checkered past” and had been a “troubled youth for most of his life.” We don’t know how checkered because his juvenile records are sealed, but if he was “convicted as delinquent for the commission of a serious juvenile offense” then that’s two more violations, one for possessing each pistol. Four: Per NBC, concealed-carry permits aren’t granted to anyone in Connecticut under the age of 21. That means two more violations for the 20-year-old Lanza for carrying the two pistols. (You don’t need a permit to carry a rifle.) Oh, and if Wikipedia is accurate, Connecticut police are fully entitled to seize weapons in someone’s possession without a warrant if they have probable cause that the suspect is mentally unstable or likely to commit a crime. Go surf around on the gun-laws site and see what else you find. There’s probably stuff I missed.

The obvious objection to all of this is that none of these laws would have kept the guns out of Lanza’s hands. They’re all useful in prosecuting a killer after the fact, not in stopping him beforehand. In that case, what’s the solution? You can’t ban Nancy Lanza from owning a pistol; she has a constitutional right, per the Supreme Court’s Heller decision. Ban Glocks and Sig Sauers, then? Ban any family from owning more than one weapon? Ban any family from owning a weapon if the state determines that a member of the family seems a little too eccentric for comfort?

Update (AP): Mary Katharine e-mails with thoughts:

From earlier, in the second presser, Lt. Vance said two handguns were found w the body and the rifle in the car.

A couple points. If you were of a mind to go into a school w guns concealed somehow–as he might have, considering this started apparently w an altercation in the office instead of going straight to the classroom–you’d likely wanna just carry the two handguns. The rifle would limit mobility and couldn’t be concealed and the handguns would give you plenty of rounds and portability.

Also of interest, if the mom’s rifle was indeed legally purchased, that means it’s NOT an “assault weapon” unless she had it purchased and registered pre-1993. CT bans “assault weapons,” so both that fact and the fact hers likely wasn’t one makes the call for Assault Weapons Ban reinstatement pretty tendentious, right?

Update (AP): Good lord. Lanza’s father learned what his son had done … from a reporter:

“Is there something I can do for you?” he said.

When the reporter told Lanza his address had been linked to the shooting in Newtown, Conn., on the other side of Fairfield County, he “took the news as a blow — his face turning from patient to surprised and horrified” before declining to comment, rolling up his window and driving into the garage, according to the Hearst Connecticut report.


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Ephesians 6
New International Version (NIV)

6 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— 3 “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”

4 Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

The Armor of God
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:19 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

An assault weapons ban, as ridiculous as that concept is in the first place, would’ve solved nothing here. None of the weapons alleged to have been used by the apparent whack job in this case are so-called “assault weapons.”

As usual, a liberal is never interested in the facts, wanting to use the deaths of children instead to achieve their political ends. Disgusting.

TXUS on December 14, 2012 at 7:19 PM

….I just have no words.
libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

If only this were true

Rio Linda Refugee on December 14, 2012 at 7:20 PM

i still have to reply to those SOME… sorry if you get caught in the crossfire…

nathor on December 14, 2012 at 7:16 PM

But why? You do realize that you will NOT change their mind, and they won’t change your mind, so it seems like a waste of time and a pointless exercise.

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:20 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Wait, so the AWB prevented the school massacre in Jonesboro, Arkansas?

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:21 PM

TXUS on December 14, 2012 at 7:19 PM

Never let a tragedy go to waste….

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:21 PM

Such a sad, sad tragedy. Prayers for those parents and related family members. And those that must enter or have entered the scene of the classrooms. God gives those special gifts, just as He does the Doctors and Nurses.

The worst thing for the Moms & Dads is the total shock of hearing that their child/children are deceased. Hopefully they will have family members that they can talk with so as to not contain this inside; that’s so important.

May God Bless each and everyone that must deal with this.

bluefox on December 14, 2012 at 7:23 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.
libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

From reports so far, no actual assault weapons were involved in the crime.

LegendHasIt on December 14, 2012 at 7:09 PM

You really don’t understand liberals, LegendHasIT, do you? The point of liberal policy isn’t to solve actual problems, it’s to feel good.

Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation and it’s a war zone in that city. But they feel good, so that makes it okay.

Burke on December 14, 2012 at 7:23 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.
libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

When was the last time you wrote the President about his use of drones?

CW on December 14, 2012 at 7:24 PM

There is no doubt that you’re often the reason that a Hot Air thread sucks…

blink on December 14, 2012 at 7:12 PM

Heh. Very true.

Night Owl on December 14, 2012 at 7:24 PM

Lots of *coughs…gun control here in Chicago, that’s not working out for many of the black/latino gangbanger teenagers killed by other black/latino gangbanger teenagers here this year. It’s the culture, it’s the society, it’s the no accountability, no responsibility, blame it on anyone else but myself mentality and broken families.

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:24 PM

I don’t understand atheism or the people who have lost their faith. It seems like a dark way to look at the world.

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:17 PM

Why do you think that atheists are so adamant that they are right and everyone else is wrong? They need affirmation that their dark version of the world is right.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Hey professor junior—-Care to compare and contrast firearms crime rates since the expiration of the so wonderful AWB in 2004? I already know the answer just want to hear your take.

arnold ziffel on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Someone needs to incarcerate this crazy nutter before he acts out: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Hollywood/2012/12/14/fans-game-rapper-malkin-death-rape

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

I’m not a gun expert, but, I thought Sig Sauers and Glocks were handguns.

If that is the case, you could have gone out yesterday, picked up every assault weapon in the country and melted them down and you would not have prevented a single one these deaths today.

Given that, your comment appears to be a bit of a non sequitur.

JadeNYU on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

The Liberal fantasy of banning weapons will work out exactly as well as the banning of illegal narcotics has.

Further, an “assault weapon” wasn’t needed to commit this crime. And all that was needed to prevent it was three trigger locks … or a six hundred pound safe like the one in my den.

M240H on December 14, 2012 at 7:26 PM

Autism is not “fake”. I’ve seen it firsthand in a 3 year old. 3 year olds don’t fake. It wasn’t often but he could get violent at times towards his sisters. Never figured out what triggered it. No reason was apparent. I studied it a great deal and there seem to be so many manifestations of it, different levels and forms.

wolly4321 on December 14, 2012 at 7:17 PM

My father claims my brother was angry from birth. He’s not autistic though.

I don’t claim that “Autism” is “fake” but it is defined (as far I as I know) mostly through behavior and there is a wide range of “normal” behavior. What is considered “normal” depends somewhat on societal expectations.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:26 PM

spare the rod, spoil the child ; ) I bet more than a few of us posting here got out butts tanned more than once when we were growing up and it didn’t hurt us at all. In today’s “enlightened” society people don’t blink at abortion on demand, a million a year, but don’t you DARE spank your child for misbehaving! In FACT, don’t even grade their papers in red ink, it’s debilitating to the little darlings *sniffs…/sarc

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:27 PM

Prayers, too, for the forensic people who have to process a crime scene littered with slaughtered babies.

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:28 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Interesting. You know no ‘assault weapons’ were used in this event, right? So what’s your point, nitwit?

Liberals who continue to demand an assault weapons ban – and other gun laws that already demonstrably have no affect – I just have no words.

That you’re ignorant is already beyond doubt – that you’d come and post something so openly stupid and irrelevant is truly, even for you, a WTF moment.

Midas on December 14, 2012 at 7:29 PM

Why do you think that atheists are so adamant that they are right and everyone else is wrong? They need affirmation that their dark version of the world is right.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Misery loves company…they’re going to he!!, they’d like to take as many people with them as they can ; ) Just like Satan.

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:29 PM

And, finally, to the one who’s apparently had a ‘lost motherland moment’…

You think the “police” will protect you, or yours? Where have you been living the last 20-30 years? Police REact. That won’t stop a damn thing anyone dreams up do harm to your or yours.

Honestly, this entire trauma is heart-breaking to most of us, and I’m thankful for that bit of news. Again, my family’s heart goes out to those who have lost, and injured loved ones. Now, it’s just senseless to me. Unless and until I learn more, I can’t say why.

But I can say that when families are destroyed, when politicians remove God from every thing imaginable, when it’s seen as a ‘right’ to destroy life in the womb–well, that’s sure to come back ten-fold.

I thank God each and every day that hubby and I raised our son before all this b/s masticized.

He’s 36 now, unmarried, no children, and to borrow a phrase: “for the first time in my adult life”…I’m fairly sure I’m glad I don’t have to worry about grandchildren being the slaves of this government.

G’night all. May God keep these children, their families, these educators and their families in His care.

jersey taxpayer on December 14, 2012 at 7:29 PM

No, you choose to reply to those SOME – probably because you want to pick the argument with them.

blink on December 14, 2012 at 7:23 PM

or they wanted to pick an argument with me…

this was the argument that started this all:

this is the first generation to be raised with God out of the public realm.

unseen on December 14, 2012 at 4:42

PM

You have a point.

kingsjester on December 14, 2012 at 4:43 PM

i am very much neutral on the gun rights\gun control thing, but to blame this on lack of religion seems a very low blow.

nathor on December 14, 2012 at 4:49 PM

nathor on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

Fighting against stricter gun laws is another political loser position. Like gay marriage, you may not like it, but it is the way the country is going. And every time you have a mass shooting – especially one where the guns were all legal – it just loses the gun nuts that much more support.

You can’t crack down on those with mental illnesses. Besides, anyone can snap at any time. But you can crack down on their ability to easily pick up a gun when they do.

Yah, I know. If you give up your guns, then how will you stop those Bilderberg black UN helicopters from terrorizing you and your family. You got me, there. Good point.

keep the change on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

whatcat on December 14, 2012 at 7:12 PM

I don’t understand atheism or the people who have lost their faith. It seems like a dark way to look at the world.
Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:17 PM

I can understand it if they aren’t “evangelical crusaders” and don’t feel the deep urge to “protest too much” .That pretty much betrays what is actually driving them – they don’t really believe their own claims.

As you alluded, the normal reaction would be of the “live and let live” variety.

whatcat on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

Someone needs to incarcerate this crazy nutter before he acts out: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Hollywood/2012/12/14/fans-game-rapper-malkin-death-rape

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

A person’s enemies are like x-ray machines. You can’t see what’s inside someone, usually, but if you can get a list of the people who hate them, you can get a pretty good idea of who they really are.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:31 PM

In FACT, don’t even grade their papers in red ink, it’s debilitating to the little darlings *sniffs…/sarc

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:27 PM

I did a semester of grad work and taught Fresh Comp.

We were not allowed to use red ink marking COLLEGE students’ papers so we wouldn’t make them feel bad.

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:31 PM

That pathological liar Blumenthal and the “governor of CT” are in church using a candle light vigil as a photo op. Stay classy there.

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:32 PM

Why do you think that atheists are so adamant that they are right and everyone else is wrong? They need affirmation that their dark version of the world is right.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Do you believe that all atheists are like that?

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:32 PM

God Bless and keep you in the palm of His Hand Jersey Taxpayer.

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:32 PM

Someone needs to incarcerate this crazy nutter before he acts out: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Hollywood/2012/12/14/fans-game-rapper-malkin-death-rape

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

What a pig. I hope Michelle is heavily armed. More likely mr. game will be gunned down by one of his criminal buddies over a drug deal.

Night Owl on December 14, 2012 at 7:33 PM

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:31 PM

oh sheesh I didn’t realize it extended to grown babies in college!

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:34 PM

A person’s enemies are like x-ray machines. You can’t see what’s inside someone, usually, but if you can get a list of the people who hate them, you can get a pretty good idea of who they really are.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:31 PM

The enemy of my enemy is my friend.

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM

May God Bless each and everyone that must deal with this.

bluefox on December 14, 2012 at 7:23 PM

Local radio guy here in CA. started talking this morning about seeing his own first grader off to school today and the unbelievable and unbearable sadness that all those families must feel. He started choking up as I’m sure his audience did.

arnold ziffel on December 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM

Yah, I know. If you give up your guns, then how will you stop those Bilderberg black UN helicopters from terrorizing you and your family. You got me, there. Good point.

keep the change on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

The Gulags were just a deluded part of someone’s conspiracy theory?

sharrukin on December 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM

Why do you think that atheists are so adamant that they are right and everyone else is wrong? They need affirmation that their dark version of the world is right.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Do you believe that all atheists are like that?

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:32 PM

I know atheists that are not like that. :)

. . . that’s actually a description of the new anti-theist set, anyway.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM

I can understand it if they aren’t “evangelical crusaders” and don’t feel the deep urge to “protest too much” .That pretty much betrays what is actually driving them – they don’t really believe their own claims.

As you alluded, the normal reaction would be of the “live and let live” variety.

whatcat on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

IMHO, Atheism is a religion to them. And they have to bash true believers, they don’t believe in God, so no one should be allowed to believe in GOD.

How they want to ban cross, prayer in school, religious references during sporting events, etc.

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:36 PM

But why? You do realize that you will NOT change their mind, and they won’t change your mind, so it seems like a waste of time and a pointless exercise.

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:20 PM

sometimes we just cannot help ourselfs in engaging in pointless exercises…

nathor on December 14, 2012 at 7:36 PM

Nazi: Those Jewish death camps didn’t exist

SparkPlug on December 14, 2012 at 7:37 PM

It’s statements like this that confuse people who aren’t familiar with autism.

Many, many children can get violent towards other children (hitting, kicking, pulling hair, etc.) sometimes.

blink on December 14, 2012 at 7:21 PM

I think it comes down to being able to control such emotional outbursts. Yes, many children can get violent towards other children sometimes. But when you can’t get the child to stop hitting or kicking then it becomes something else.

That being said, we know very little about what really happened in Sandy Hook. We don’t even know for a fact that the shooter was autistic. The media has done a very good job of taking bits and pieces and coming up with neccessarily correct conclusions. For example, the shooter’s dad is alive and the shooter’s brother was not the guy detained in the woods by the school. The mom was shot in the face at home and not at the school. Yet these were all “facts” freely reported throughout the day.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:37 PM

Blink- not my intention. I hear ya. However his mood swings were different. I’m not suggesting it’s inherant in all cases. But living with him in this case I think it was. There was no trigger. Out of the blue. You are right, it’s highly misunderstood. All I am saying is that I saw one case of it. Maybe it was 1 out of 10,000. or now maybe 2. and I in no way suggest it’s thier fault.

wolly4321 on December 14, 2012 at 7:38 PM

Fighting against stricter gun laws is another political loser position. Like gay marriage, you may not like it, but it is the way the country is going. And every time you have a mass shooting – especially one where the guns were all legal – it just loses the gun nuts that much more support.

keep the change on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

You might wish to look at and compare public opinion polls from the 1980s/90s and today. You might also want to look, for example, at the applications for CCWs in Colorado ON THE DAY AFTER THE AURORA SHOOTING.

The numbers do not support your contention.

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:38 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.
libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

The “assault weapon” wasn’t used jacka$$. Try again.

jawkneemusic on December 14, 2012 at 7:38 PM

I don’t understand atheism or the people who have lost their faith. It seems like a dark way to look at the world.

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:17 PM

I went to church every week and sang in the choir until I was 14. I didn’t think much about it but at 14 I went to confirmation. About a year or so *after* confirmation, I thought about it and decided that the minister didn’t really seem to take any of it very seriously.

So I thought some more and decided that if God existed then whether or not I believed in God would not make any difference to God. So I am an atheist. I am *not* agnostic.

However, most of what Christ preached is sensible and some of the ideas are revolutionary. The evidence of their success cannot be refuted.

I’ve read C.S. Lewis’ “On Miracles” and I disagree with some of the logic of some of his arguments. However, I do not believe in miracles so that does not affect his principal point.

As for looking at the world, I am by nature quite optimistic.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:39 PM

An emotional President Barack Obama vowed on Friday to “take meaningful action, regardless of the politics,” to prevent future tragedies like the shooting massacre Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

Despicable, clueless and divisive, as usual, along with the HA trolls.

libfree, you don’t ever deserve to live free, you clueless or intentionally obtuse one.

Schadenfreude on December 14, 2012 at 7:41 PM

Stayed out of the debate all day because because. Evil is. It wasn’t the guns. It was the evil. Drugs? Probably. Evil, without at doubt. Pretend, all who want, that it wasn’t evil. Evil is. Evil lives. Evil did this.

Limerick on December 14, 2012 at 7:41 PM

I know atheists that are not like that. :)

. . . that’s actually a description of the new anti-theist set, anyway.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM

Atheism, like Christianity, like Islam, cannot be judged on individuals because its not an individual opinion. It must be judged based on what it does when it has the upper hand and has taken hold of a society or a nation.

sharrukin on December 14, 2012 at 7:42 PM

Ace is right that the typical mass murderer is a mentally-ill sad-sack loser who’s bad at work, bad with women, and who finally snaps in frustration at his own momentous loserdom.

Again… I am speaking here with a small degree of authority on this subject. I have over 17 years in social services. Nearly 6 years working as a mental health caseworker. about 2 of those years, I was working crisis in the evenings. I have worked with suicidal people. I have assisted in committing people involuntarily. I have an understanding of what is going on in the mental health community and that is why I left it.

If this man has mental disorders and is on medications for those disorders the chances are high that he has a caseworker and that he was seeing a psychiatrist and a therapist.

Just like nearly everyone of these shooters the past several years.. because I have blogged about this very thing time and time again.

If he has a psychiatrist and a therapist and a caseworker then he has most likely made statements suggesting or outright saying he wanted to kill people or kill himself or go out in a blaze of glory. He may have been saying this repeatedly and nothing was ever done but change his medications or give him more therapy or increase his visits with his caseworker.

Now they may say he was a loner…. but if he was on these meds and had a disorder… he was not a loner. There was a whole government mental health agency behind him and knew what he was capable of and did little or nothing to stop it. It is not entirely their fault… it’s just that the system is broken.

When I was a caseworker committing someone was considered a failure. Especially if it was done repeatedly. We have emptied the mental health hospitals and put people who need the safety of a hospital (for their safety and our safety) we have emptied these hospitals and placed them in the communities. It is called normalization. It is liberal feel good therapy.
And when these people go on the rampage they have been saying they were going to do all along… they are called “loners’ or whatever and the big government agencies who knew about it all along walk silently back into the shadows and nothing is said or done about it.

JellyToast on December 14, 2012 at 7:42 PM

I know atheists that are not like that. :)

. . . that’s actually a description of the new anti-theist set, anyway.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM

Therein is the difference.

Those that come here to mock rathor than debate are simply anti-theists. They hate theism and theists.

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:43 PM

davidfrum @davidfrum

Shooting at CT elementary school. Obviously, we need to lower the age limit for concealed carry so toddlers can defend themselves.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:43 PM

IMHO, Atheism is a religion to them. And they have to bash true believers, they don’t believe in God, so no one should be allowed to believe in GOD.

Yeah, “misery loves company”. I would say there is no such thing as an “atheist”, it’s more an individual’s reaction formation as a means to maintain an illusion of emotional & intellectual stability.

How they want to ban cross, prayer in school, religious references during sporting events, etc.
Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:36 PM

They certainly do seem very obsessed with the Judeo-Christian version of God.

whatcat on December 14, 2012 at 7:43 PM

keep the change. Certainly sounding like a lefty troll… Apparently, the only thing thhat would have prevented this tragedy was if the CT authorities went to law abiding citizens houses and confiscated legal guns. I think this is ultimately a liberal wet dream but even they know that it isn’t going to happen.

Also, while some conservatives are afraid of black helicopters, there are many who want guns for more.mundane concerns. Lots of women get concealed carry permits and I could see how it provides women living alone.with safety. And I could.definitely see how a women with an abusive ex might want a piece.

Illinidiva on December 14, 2012 at 7:44 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

You up for sealing the borders to keep those guns out?

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:44 PM

Fighting against stricter gun laws is another political loser position. Like gay marriage, you may not like it, but it is the way the country is going. And every time you have a mass shooting – especially one where the guns were all legal – it just loses the gun nuts that much more support.

keep the change on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

Who’s a gun nut? Someone who cherishes our 2nd amendment rights? Just because the moral decay of our nation has facilitated the dumbing down and acceptance by some, of abhorrent behavior, doesn’t mean it’s right. To youse your example, homosexuality isn’t something new, it’s been around for thousands of years, doesn’t make it right now, just as it wasn’t then..*shrugs….”For evil to flourish, it only requires good men to do nothing.”

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:44 PM

Why do you think that atheists are so adamant that they are right and everyone else is wrong? They need affirmation that their dark version of the world is right.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Do you believe that all atheists are like that?

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:32 PM

I know atheists that are not like that. :)

. . . that’s actually a description of the new anti-theist set, anyway.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM

To a certain extent we need to differentiate between atheists and the faithless. The faithless simply don’t believe in a higher being. Atheists can’t abide by the fact that there are others who do believe in a higher being.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:45 PM

If only one or two of the teachers or admins in that school had been carrying today, legally or illegally (likely the latter, given CT’s draconian gun control laws), there would’ve been a number of families with their little ones in their arms tonight. That, to me, is whole nother tragedy.

TXUS on December 14, 2012 at 7:45 PM

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
—Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759.

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:46 PM

You can’t ban Nancy Lanza from owning a pistol; she has a constitutional right, per the Supreme Court’s Heller decision.

Then they go after for the real prize. Repeal the 2nd Amendment.

El_Terrible on December 14, 2012 at 7:46 PM

Clearly, we must ban killing children. IT’S THE ONLY WAY!

RedNewEnglander on December 14, 2012 at 7:47 PM

To model our political system upon speculations of lasting tranquility, is to calculate on the weaker springs of the human character.
—Alexander Hamilton

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:47 PM

To a certain extent we need to differentiate between atheists and the faithless. The faithless simply don’t believe in a higher being. Atheists can’t abide by the fact that there are others who do believe in a higher being.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:45 PM

Faithless sounds pejorative.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:48 PM

I’ve read C.S. Lewis’ “On Miracles” and I disagree with some of the logic of some of his arguments. However, I do not believe in miracles so that does not affect his principal point.

As for looking at the world, I am by nature quite optimistic.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:39 PM

You realize that not believing in miracles is a presupposition?

The concept of a miracle, define as a suspension of natural laws (usually time), violates no real of logice. Just as the notion of a Triune God does not violate logic.

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:48 PM

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:39 PM

I would say that being “agnostic” is the safer belief. That way you can’t really be wrong. Kinda like Nate Silver’s election model, eh.

But on a serious note, that is the only reason you LOST your faith?

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

You up for sealing the borders to keep those guns out?

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:44 PM

Obama giving them to the Mexicans…to the ME brothers of his…

Schadenfreude on December 14, 2012 at 7:49 PM

To a certain extent we need to differentiate between atheists and the faithless. The faithless simply don’t believe in a higher being. Atheists can’t abide by the fact that there are others who do believe in a higher being.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:45 PM

I am an atheist. I also happen to be one of the biggest defenders of religion and the right of individuals to practise their faith freely that you will EVER meet.

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:49 PM

[The Constitution preserves] the advantage of being armed which Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation…(where) the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.
—James Madison,The Federalist Papers, No. 46.

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:49 PM

I went to church every week and sang in the choir until I was 14.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:39 PM

Going to church has nothing to do with faith.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:49 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.
libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Despicable. Now get your sorry ass over to Morehouse and straighten those fine folks out!

Bmore on December 14, 2012 at 7:50 PM

You realize that not believing in miracles is a presupposition?

The concept of a miracle, define as a suspension of natural laws (usually time), violates no real of logice. Just as the notion of a Triune God does not violate logic.

davidk on December 14, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Lewis’s argument is that for a Christian, belief in miracles is equivalent to belief in God. My education is mostly math and physics …

When I see a suspension of natural laws, for myself, I may have to reconsider.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:50 PM

In DFW today the police were at every school, every bus stop, every crosswalk. God bless us all in our efforts to make this the last, and God help us all that we can.

Limerick on December 14, 2012 at 7:51 PM

If only one or two of the teachers or admins in that school had been carrying today, legally or illegally (likely the latter, given CT’s draconian gun control laws), there would’ve been a number of families with their little ones in their arms tonight. That, to me, is whole nother tragedy.

TXUS on December 14, 2012 at 7:45 PM

Yes. You are correct.

VegasRick on December 14, 2012 at 7:52 PM

whatcat on December 14, 2012 at 7:43 PM

That’s interesting and it fits what they appear to be doing. They are obsessed with banning other people right to worship God.

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:52 PM

Going to church has nothing to do with faith.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:49 PM

My point was that up until then, I had memorized most of the service and listened to lots of sermons but I had not really though about whether what I was being told was true or not.

My father was surprised that confirmation was at 14. For him it was 18. I think the logic had been that you can’t really be confirmed until you are sufficiently grown up. I presume the age was lowered because the church (Anglican) was already losing members … they don’t really seem to believe in anything very much any more.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:53 PM

Bringing religion into a murder thread – I guess it’s true, never let a crisis go to waste.

OldEnglish on December 14, 2012 at 7:53 PM

I’ve read C.S. Lewis’ “On Miracles” and I disagree with some of the logic of some of his arguments. However, I do not believe in miracles so that does not affect his principal point.
As for looking at the world, I am by nature quite optimistic.
gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:39 PM

I suggest you read Mere Christianity. You cannot believe Jesus had something meaningful unless you’re willing to believe he is who he says he is. Either he’s a liar, a lunatic or the Lord. Why would you listen to the ramblings of a liar or a lunatic?

jawkneemusic on December 14, 2012 at 7:54 PM

Faithless sounds pejorative.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Maybe. But if you have no faith in a higher being, is there a better word than faithless? IMO, it would really depend on context on how the word is used.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:54 PM

“The Constitution shall never be construed….to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms” (Samuel Adams, Debates and Proceedings in the Convention of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 86-87)

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:54 PM

CHEYENNE, Wyo. – A man who killed his father in front of a computer science class at a Wyoming community college was a “borderline genius” ups… Read more

CASPER, Wyo. – The son of a Casper College professor killed his father inside a classroom on the campus after stabbing the teacher’s girlfriend to death at the couple’s nearby home, police said today.

Chris Krumm, 25, shot his father, Jim, in the head with a bow and arrow shortly after 9 a.m. Friday, Casper Police Chief Chris Walsh said. Despite being shot through the head, the elder Krumm fought back, giving the four to six students inside the class time to escape.

“The courage demonstrated by Professor Krumm is absolutely without equal,” Walsh told reporters at a press conference. “Maybe that will bring some comfort to people.”

Police don’t know exactly what followed, but said at some point, the 25-year-old suspect stabbed himself multiple times. Then he drove a large knife into the 56-year-old professor’s chest, Walsh said.

Whack jobs will find a way.

CW on December 14, 2012 at 7:55 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Do you have the capacity for embarrassment?

Night Owl on December 14, 2012 at 7:55 PM

To a certain extent we need to differentiate between atheists and the faithless. The faithless simply don’t believe in a higher being. Atheists can’t abide by the fact that there are others who do believe in a higher being.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 7:45 PM

Your categories are probably right, but the labels might need tweaking. Let me make the argument, and you can toss it if you like: :)

Most anti-theists refer to themselves as atheists, sort of usurping atheism in the sense of demanding it have a contemptuous posture toward theists. But that posture isn’t required by atheism. And atheists that don’t have that posture still use “atheist” — which makes it blurred. (But not any more blurred than the Klan lighting crosses, or something.)

So it’s useful to try to use atheist/anti-theist. You are going to lose some people using atheist/faithless.

I think. Just talking.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:56 PM

Bringing religion into a murder thread – I guess it’s true, never let a crisis go to waste.

OldEnglish on December 14, 2012 at 7:53 PM

Christians bother you eh? *laughs Throws some Holy Water on you. I bring religion into every thread, what’s wrong with that? It’s a principle guiding force in my life.

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:56 PM

Bringing religion into a murder thread – I guess it’s true, never let a crisis go to waste.

OldEnglish on December 14, 2012 at 7:53 PM

You just bring more simplistic babbling while finding another opportunity to express your bigoted views. Babble on.

CW on December 14, 2012 at 7:57 PM

Bringing religion into a murder thread – I guess it’s true, never let a crisis go to waste.

OldEnglish on December 14, 2012 at 7:53 PM

Thou shalt not kill

True. What possible connection could there be?

sharrukin on December 14, 2012 at 7:57 PM

Yah, I know. If you give up your guns, then how will you stop those Bilderberg black UN helicopters from terrorizing you and your family. You got me, there. Good point.

keep the change on December 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM

Why do you want to prevent people from defending their lives and the lives of their families from criminals?

Do you hate people that much?

And your last sentence – quoted above – is probably one of the most stupid statements on this thread.

Solaratov on December 14, 2012 at 7:57 PM

“Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?” (Patrick Henry, 3 J. Elliot, Debates in the Several State Conventions 45, 2d ed. Philadelphia, 1836)

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:57 PM

But on a serious note, that is the only reason you LOST your faith?

Raquel Pinkbullet on December 14, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Well, as Happy Nomad pointed out, I was probably not really old enough yet to *have* any real “faith”. So in some sense you could say I didn’t really “lose” it.

I am definitely an atheist though. My wife is Lutheran and she claims to believe in God but, IMO, I believe more than she does. I am far more interested in such things anyway. Our children have no religious education at all but they went (their choice) to an Opus Dei (Catholic) private high school and they appear to accept almost entirely the Catholic moral teachings.

gh on December 14, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Conservatives who continue to block an assault weapons ban….I just have no words.

libfreeordie on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Do you have the capacity for embarrassment?

Night Owl on December 14, 2012 at 7:55 PM

Obviously not.

Resist We Much on December 14, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Show me the gun that shoots just to shoot. I’ll gladly melt it in the furnace.

Limerick on December 14, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Do you have the capacity for embarrassment?

Night Owl on December 14, 2012 at 7:55 PM

That’s a negative. Even if someone posted a picture of the time he went after a $5 hooker at a truck stop on Facebook, he’d just call the poster racist.

MelonCollie on December 14, 2012 at 7:58 PM

*lose some people in conversation, in the sense that they won’t understand you properly.

Axe on December 14, 2012 at 7:59 PM

Don’t forget the first murder recorded, cain/abel…

DebraChicago on December 14, 2012 at 7:59 PM

Here’s the other thing…. HIPAA laws.

If this shooter was in the mental health system and did not want his mother to know he had been suicidal or was making threats… because of HIPAA..no one in the agency could tell the parents. Even if he was living with them. Now.. I do not know the HIPAA laws in that state. There is a national HIPAA law and each states have their own. And as I understand it.. the state laws superposed the federal laws on this.

But in my state when I was a caseworker… if my client didn’t want me to communicate anything to a parent. I couldn’t. Period. Unless that client specifically said “I am going to kill my mother on this date at this time with this gun I have right here” We had no duty to inform. And if he said it and changed his mind 5 minutes later saying he wouldn’t do it… I could not, under direction by our agency, inform.
Now.. if he had made vague threats… “I want to kill someone. I have mom and dad.” Under my agency..we still.. under our state law.. could not inform that parent.

If the client just kept repeating vague feelings of wanting to kill someone… and mom and dad called one day to see how he was doing. All I could say was “He’s doing fine.” Under the law. That was it. anything more was a Civil Rights violation with a huge 5 figure fine.

So mom and dad.. depending on the mental health agency this shooter was involved with.. may have only ever been told “He’s doing fine.” when in fact.. he has been spewing repeatedly how he wants to kill people.

This is why the libs want us to look at the gun! If we look at the gun.. we won’t look at all the other things that have influenced this shooter and is influencing the culture. Failed Psychiatry. Failed Therapy. The failed education system. Taking god out of schools. Abortion. Just to name a few.

JellyToast on December 14, 2012 at 7:59 PM

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