Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Uvalde, Knives And Cars

This is a great thread on the victims of the massacre in Uvalde, TX. It's heartbreaking.

Twitter being what it is, all the usual suspects are out there, standing on the bodies of the dead, yelling at their political opponents.

On the left, there's a great cry in favor of having mentally disturbed teens stab their grandmothers with kitchen knives and then run kids over in the school parking lot with a car. Well, that's what it seems like as the only thing they care about is that a gun was used. It's not the despair and pain in the killer that led him to try to off grandma and then make a stand at the local school, it's the gun.

On the right, there's a great cry in favor of making our kids even more stressed and paranoid than they already by turning schools into fortresses as if they were outposts on the borders of Comanche lands. Well, that's what it seems like when they talk about gun training for school staff. What, are the kids not already sufficiently traumatized by global warming doom-mongering and racial guilt? They need more existential worries?

The killer must have been in intense pain to have tried to kill grandma and then gone to the school to take as many others down with him as he could. Dittos for the 300 who will die of fentanyl overdoses today. Dittos for the drug addicts and mentally ill on the streets of LA, Philly, NY, San Fran and other cities. Dittos for the half of all black high school graduates who are functionally illiterate.

Instead of yelling about policies and programs, which we can't afford anyway because we're $30T in debt, maybe we ought to talk about how meaning, purpose and order seems to be in short supply in our lives while living in the wealthiest nation the world has ever seen.

Here's some yellow Kangaroo's Paw as a palate cleanser. Enjoy!


tim eisele said...

"maybe we ought to talk about how meaning, purpose and order seems to be in short supply in our lives while living in the wealthiest nation the world has ever seen."

Fair enough. To start of with, are there other nations (wealthy or not) that you feel are doing better with meaning, purpose, and order? And are they accomplishing this without developing other problems in their place?

K T Cat said...

Say you decided that Japan has it right. Just thinking about it from an engineering equation, I'm not sure how you change all those variables to get our initial conditions at time t equals to theirs right now. I'm always leery of national comparisons for just that reason.

K T Cat said...

Here's a pretty decent argument not for comparing us to other countries, but comparing us to ourselves from the past. Essay

K T Cat said...

Or, dig this one about the spike in mental health issues in kids because of the lockdowns.

tim eisele said...

1. There are more countries than Japan, many of which have a lot more in common with us than Japan does. Why can't we specifically look for what they might have in common that might help?

2. The Adams essay claims that the problem is "The mainstreaming of nihilism. Cultural decay. Chemicals. The deliberate destruction of moral backstops in the culture. A lost commonality of shared societal pressures to enforce right and wrong. And above all, simple, pure, evil." OK, fine, so does the US actually have those problems to a greater extent than other countries? If so, why? If not, then why don't other countries have the same outcomes as we do?

3. The UPI article, talking about mental health issues, leads with the note that the lockdowns were "increasing the demand for services in an already overburdened system." But, that doesn't address why this was a problem before the lockdowns (and it was). Why was the system "already overburdened"? I don't know what it is like elsewhere, but around here the "mental health system" amounts to one small clinic that, as far as I know, is the only one for about 100 miles. It is easy to overburden a system if you essentially don't have one.