Houston, we have a problem…
I don’t want to do this.
I have literally been losing sleep over it.
It was about 4 am Monday morning when I received a message from my brother who has lived in Australia for the past 20 years.
In my half sleep stupor, all I could digest was “mass shooting Vegas” and his repeated rant about how Australia hasn’t had one since 1996.
I quickly fell back asleep.
When I say sleep I mean that deep comatose like sleep that usually taunts each of us from 4 am until the alarm goes off. Upon rising, I grabbed my phone and read the message again.
I was now able to absorb the gravity of the words displayed across my smartphone.
“Worst mass shooting in US history”…
I shook my head as if that small gesture would intimate the correct emotional response that should have followed.
I could tell you that I felt a kick to my stomach and a loathing that would make even the devil himself weep.
And that would be a lie.
I felt nothing.
I told you I didn’t want to write this.
After the Sandy Hook mass shooting in 2012 that claimed the lives of more than 20 elementary school aged children, can you blame me?
That one got to me.
It still does.
It’s like my grief reservoir was filled to the top and has never gone down. I simply have no more room for this type of vulgar madness that appears to be getting worse.
Unlike many other sites, I have so far managed to refrain from politicizing the event or offering outlandish conspiracy theories.
Let me be very clear in announcing that I am a defender and advocate for the 2nd Amendment.
What I am not an advocate for is sitting back and doing nothing or hoping that this won’t happen again.
We both know it will.
For those of you who just popped in a big dip of Skoal and think that this article will be one big love fest over gun rights, you are wrong.
Also, please don’t confuse this article in any manner as giving or providing an excuse for the actions that were committed by the shooter last Sunday evening in Las Vegas. I do not know him.
Like you, I want to understand why this keeps happening. Moreover, I want to understand how a person could get to the point where killing a bunch of humans is the only available option.
One of the sick running jokes at the PD where I work is discussing who we think is going to “climb a tower or building and start taking people out”.
Stereotype or not, it’s almost always without fail a white male.
Building a Mass Shooter
I am not a board certified psychologist. I am not tenured professor specializing in criminal behavior.
I’m just a cop who has seen a lot of shit in the real world that has taught me how to size people up and situations quickly.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see the commonalities in almost every active mass shooter incident in the last twenty years.
After some simple reverse engineering, I have come up with the following parts that make up the whole in producing a mass shooter.
1. White Male – In almost every single active shooter mass shooting incident that has no discernible ties to terrorism, the one common thread to start with is the white male. With rare exception, they are typically adults who may or may not have mental health issues.
2. Isolation – They are usually the ones living on the outer fringes of society without any intimate connection with other humans. This goes for both females and males. There is no one he can turn to or show a need for help. They have no friends. They have no connections. They are alone. Technology has made this worse.
3. Detachment – Because of their isolation and feelings of inadequacy, they develop their own universe where feelings begin to erode, both mentally and physically. This detachment helps them deal with their crushing loneliness. Once they have completely detached from these feelings, homicidal or suicidal ideations can take hold. The abundance and proliferation of shooter games has been proven to aid in this detachment.
4. Hopelessness – This one is hard to describe. Almost all human beings have built into their DNA a sense of purpose that drives each of us to have hope that what we are doing has value. When this value is marginalized or lost, the will to keep going becomes greatly diminished. Hopelessness and detachment become almost interchangeable. The light at the end of the tunnel for most of us is all but lost on those without hope.
5. Shamed or ridiculed – This may be the final piece to the puzzle many researchers believe seals the deal on the formation of a mass shooter. Many of the younger white male mass shooters had almost all been universally bullied or picked on. If this is never dealt with, and the other factors mentioned above are present, then a set up for a violent outburst increases exponentially.
Please remember, these are my opinions and observations. In order to try and beat a thing you must first talk about it and identify the common themes.
So there you have it.
Take a white male, when he’s young, bully and shame him. As he grows older make sure you begin depicting him as privileged and dumb.
Also, keep reinforcing the notion that tough guys don’t need to be open with their feelings, especially when they need it most, like when going through a break up or divorce.
Tell him he’s racist and blame him for a majority of the world’s social injustices. Throw in a job demotion or loss to enhance his already isolated and hopeless outlook. Now just add in some un-diagnosed mental illness and an incredibly easy access to rifles, handguns, bump-stocks and ammunition and there you have it…
Or I might be completely and utterly wrong about all of this.
I told you I didn’t want to write this..