There was a school shooting at Chardon High School in Ohio yesterday. Five students were injured and two of the injured later succumbed to their injuries. Another remains in critical condition. Police have identified the alleged shooter, and of course, the media and the general public are going to attempt to psychoanalyze him in whatever ways they can.
Personally, I don’t believe that it’s right to blame video games, music, or TV for violent school shootings. There are usually a combination of issues, not just one thing, that can be considered the source of blame for why young teens who perpetrate shootings act as they do.
The alleged gunman in the Ohio school shooting, T.J. Lane, supposedly had family problems, according to a CNN article. Many teenagers who have family problems, or other kinds of similar struggles keep them bottled up inside. They fear they have nobody to talk to, nobody who would understand. My theory is that eventually all the stress of keeping everything inside becomes too much, and the person lashes out.
But family problems are not the universal source of blame for all school shootings. The two perpetrators of the Columbine High tragedy in 1999 came from stable families. Blame was placed on video games, music, movies, and TV, but I believe the real cause of the shooting had mainly to do with the boys’ mental problems, plus the bullying they received at school.
Yes, there may be a great many causes contributing to school shootings, and I’m not saying that we should totally rule out video games, music, etc. as causes… but big issues like family problems, mental health concerns, and bullying seem like they are the true causes. In order to vent, and try to help themselves with these issues, teens might turn to video games, music, etc. for therapy, but those things are probably not going to worsen their existing problems. We can speculate all we want to, create all the theories we want to, and pin the blame on whatever or whoever we want to. But we may never arrive at the total truth.
May the injured victims recover, and may the deceased rest in peace. And may there be justice.