Mass Shooting: The Mirror of Moral Pessimism of The Nation

In the course of this identification — or creation — of adversaries and preparations to kill them, both neo-Conservative and liberal establishments attribute their own practices to those "adversaries" — a "mirror trap." The astonishing recent report of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) which stated that China is preparing for pre-emptive cruise missile strikes on Washington and assassinations of U.S. leaders while invading Taiwan, is typical of the "new Cold War" hysteria. China's very long history shows no such actions; the United States' last 50 years is full of them, and they have multiplied in the last 20. China's Global Times rightly answered the CSIS outrage by naming it "U.S. frightened by its own mirror image."

Mass public shootings of Americans themselves by Americans, mirror that cultural and moral pessimism.

Americans should be frightened by the image of the mass shooters in the mirror: imagining themselves snipers and special forces, ridding themselves of imagined enemies, always with suicide the ultimate goal. All but one of the 25 worst mass shootings in America's history have occurred since 1980. The 1950s and 1960s — with gun laws unreformed, but with the strong pull of scientific and economic optimism and a nation exporting atomic power and looking toward space — saw just six such public shooting outbreaks in 20 years.

In 1999, when the "Columbine massacre" occurred (despite a national assault-weapons ban), EIR Founder Lyndon LaRouche wrote that Littleton, Colorado, had suffered "an omen for our time.... How does one corrupt innocent children into becoming psychotic-like killers? The quick answer to that question, is: Dehumanize the image of man.... It is no oversimplification to say, that once that first step, dehumanizing the image of man, is accomplished, the axiomatic basis has been established, to make war, and killing, merely a childish game..."

And how does one now restore the image of man in the universe, and of a nation helping other nations in development of "the common aims of mankind"? "Winning" actually means "win-win." Commit to the Belt and Road Initiative of great infrastructure projects in collaboration with China and 60 other nations. Launch back into space exploration, as in the Apollo Project, with the other spacefaring nations. See to America's economy before it is hit by another financial crash, by imposing Glass-Steagall on Wall Street and generating development credit as Alexander Hamilton did it.

LaRouche's "four new laws to save the nation" spell this out, and offer the basis for mobilization to use this year's elections for good.

But the 50 years since President Kennedy was killed have been a growing nightmare for America. To return to what it means to be human — the real subject of his 1999 reflection on Columbine — is the fundamental thing.

America’s Culture of Violence Starts with Perpetual Wars

Feb. 26, 2018 (EIRNS)—In a recent discussion, former FBI whistleblower and now member of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) Coleen Rowley addressed the issue of “domestic terror” behind mass shootings, pointing to the media’s role in fostering a widespread “culture of violence.”

In a Feb. 21 podcast discussion with Jeff Schechtman of “WhoWhatWhy,” Rowley stated that, while the FBI liked to look at everything as a simple “Perry Mason detective plot,” the reality of what we are dealing with is something much larger. “The CIA and the Pentagon have been backing, helping make about 1,800 movies,” she said, pointing to titles like the 2014 “American Sniper” and (2012) “Zero Dark 30,” or even, years earlier, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 1984 role in “The Terminator.” “The hero will be someone who’s wronged,” Rowley said, “and then at the end they shoot everyone.... A mentally impaired or emotionally troubled person is seeing themselves as that hero in those movies.... Even with suicide this happens. If a person in a—a friend commits suicide, that often will have such an impact on that group of people that it will spawn copycat suicides.”

“Our culture is doing this,” she insisted, “it’s promoting this violent culture. And of course this is over and above the availability and easy access to weapons.... You put all of those things together and that does not explain the question, ‘Columbine, why is this happening?’ Why are we experiencing an epidemic of mass violence? Again, our news never mentions that because we want to ... compartmentalize this and make it seem as if it’s easily—it’s not us as a culture.”

By pointing to mental illness, or to the easy availability of guns, “you want to make it something that doesn’t reflect badly on our culture.”

In addition, Rowley pointed out the influence of the “perpetual war” on the society. As far back as the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, Timothy McVeigh was “a product of Gulf War One,” as was Washington Beltway sniper John Muhammad in 2002. Two studies have now shown that veterans are “twice as likely” to become one of these mass shooters. She continued to tick them off: the 2016 Dallas, Texas ambush of police (killed 5, wounded 9); the 2013 D.C. Navy Yard shooter (killed 12); and more. “This is twice as likely.” (The Feb. 14 Parkland, Florida shooter was a junior ROTC member, though not a veteran per se.)

When then-Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge pointed to “violent video games” as a cause of mass shootings, “he got hushed up right away,” she observed, instead of beginning a necessary discussion.