Monday, 26 May 2014

California Shooting: The Missing Element

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After a year of planning his revenge on sorority sisters who had ignored him, causing him “pain” and “suffering," Elliot Rodger, a 22-year-old student living in Isla Vista, California, began his killing spree at 9:30 p.m. Friday night. It ended 10 minutes later when Rodger, confronted by armed force, took his own life. In the wake were 12 separate crime scenes with seven people killed and 13 more (including a bicyclist and a skate-boarder) injured, some seriously.

Calling it a “chaotic, rapidly unfolding convoluted incident,” Sheriff Bill Brown added:

It’s obviously the work of a madman....

There’s going to be a lot more information that will come out that will give a clearer picture of just how disturbed this individual was….

[It was] premeditated mass murder.

The spree began at Rodger’s apartment, where he murdered his three roommates with a knife. He then shot three females in front of a sorority house near the campus of UC Santa Barbara and moved on to a deli, where he fatally shot another student. He then drove downtown, where he fired at two pedestrians, slowing down in front of a 7-Eleven long enough to wound another female. He ran a red light, hitting a bicyclist and a skateboarder. Finally, when confronted and challenged by armed sheriff's deputies, Rodger took his own life.

Diagnosed with “highly functional Asperger syndrome” as a youngster, Rodger was at the time of the shooting taking a number of prescription drugs including Xanax and Vicodin.

Prior to the shooting, he left plenty of evidence regarding his thoughts and intent. A video he posted on YouTube so unnerved his mother that she called social services in early April. When officers arrived at his apartment, Rodger presented himself as a model citizen, so friendly, open and transparent that the officers concluded that he was a “perfectly polite, kind and wonderful human [being].”

In his carefully crafted 141-page manifesto entitled “My Twisted World," however, Rodger noted that underneath that warm, friendly exterior was a cold-blooded murderer who had long been planning his retribution. From that manifesto Rodger wrote of the incident:

After only a week ... since I uploaded those videos on YouTube, I heard a knock on my apartment door. I opened it to see about seven police officers asking for me.

As soon as I saw those cops, the biggest fear I had ever felt in my life overcame me. I had the … fear that someone had somehow discovered what I was planning to do, and reported me....

The police interrogated me outside for a few minutes, asking me if I had suicidal thoughts. I tactfully told them that it was all a misunderstanding and they finally left.

If they had demanded to search my room, that would have ended everything. For a few horrible seconds I thought it was all over....

Thankfully, all suspicion of me was dropped after I took down the videos from YouTube, and the police never came back.

In the video he entitled “Elliot Rodger’s Retribution,” he stated:

You girls have never been attracted to me. I don't know why you girls aren't attracted to me but I will punish you all for it. It's an injustice, a crime because I don't know what you don't see in me, I'm the perfect guy and yet you throw yourselves at all these obnoxious men instead of me, the supreme gentleman. I will punish all of you for it. [laughs]

In the words of Massad Ayoob, for decades a student of criminal behavior, it's also the behavior of a psychopath, a misogynist, and a narcissist. Here’s more from Rodger’s rant to prove it:

I take great pleasure in slaughtering all of you. You will finally see that I am, in truth, the superior one, the true alpha male. [laughs] Yes, after I have annihilated every single girl in the sorority house, I'll take to the streets of Isla Vista and slay every single person I see there. All those popular kids who live such lives of hedonistic pleasure while I've had to rot in loneliness all these years. They all look down upon me every time I tried to join them. They've all treated me like a mouse….

You think I’m unworthy of you.... If I can’t have you girls, I will destroy you. [laughs] You denied me a happy life and in turn I will deny all of you life. It’s only fair. I hate all of you.

Janet Napolitano, the former head of the Department of Homeland Security and now UC Santa Barbara president, expressed sympathy without understanding:

I am shocked and deeply saddened by the news of a mass shooting last night in the Isla Vista area near UC Santa Barbara....

This is almost the kind of event that’s impossible to prevent and almost impossible to predict.

Rodger’s parents were equally appalled, according to their attorney:

My clients’ mission in life will be to try to prevent any such tragedies from ever happening again.

This country, this world, needs to address mental illness and the ramifications from not recognizing these illnesses.

Anti-gunners are having trouble turning the horror into a story supporting their agenda for more gun control. After all, a knife was involved in three of the murders, and Rodger's BMW was also used as a weapon. And in his car were 10-round magazines, allowed under California law to limit the mayhem in the event a criminal decides to launch an attack. The police found 41 such magazines. 

So far as we could tell, however, not one of those reporting on the incident in the mainstream media even so much as breathed a word on how such incidents, springing from the evil heart of a twisted individual, could be limited. It was only when Rodger was confronted with armed resistance that the killing spree ended. If students in Isla Vista or on the nearby campuses of UC Santa Barbara or Santa Barbara City College (where Rodger was a student) had been allowed to defend themselves with deadly force, the outcome likely would have been vastly different. It might not even have taken place at all as Rodger was too intelligent not to know that some of his intended victims would return fire, if they could. But they couldn’t. They were sitting ducks.

How much longer will such massacres — killing sprees inside “gun-free zones” more accurately called “criminal-safe zones” — take place until common sense replaces political correctness?

 Photo: AP Images

A graduate of Cornell University and a former investment advisor, Bob is a regular contributor to The New American magazine and blogs frequently at www.LightFromTheRight.com, primarily on economics and politics. He can be reached at

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