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Just another manic monday

Observations from the Edge
Robert T. Nanninga
North County Times
March 13, 2001


Overpopulation shows itself in many ways. In the Philippines people are living in landfills, eating the refuse of others. In sub-Saharan Africa 18 million people are being sustained on emergency food assistance provided by international relief agencies. In Rio De Janeiro gangs of feral children roam the streets. China's Three Gorges Dam is about providing power for a billions of consumers, and the war in the Balkans is really about too many people fighting for too little space. It is a small world after after all.

Here in America we are only beginning to feel the population pinch, and Andy Williams is just another example of the chaos to come. In a school of 1,900 students Andy was lost in the crowd. Herded like cattle into an educational warehouse, it seemed the only way this fifteen year old could be taken seriously was with a stolen gun. Santana High School is now dripping with counselors. Question: Where were those counselors when Andy needed them?

Now that the media magpies are gone, having flocked to the next incident of cultural carnage, things will return to normal. Parents will be too busy working to meet their children's emotional needs. Guns will still be a readily available option. And kids will still be crowded into classrooms, in fact more so. The numbers are chilling. SANDAG (San Diego Association of Governments) is planning to accommodate a million people in the short term future. I suspect the blood baths will only get more intense.

As with every school shooting, the blame game began shortly after the first shot was fired. Blame the parents, blame the kid, blame the victims, blame rock music, blame television, blame video games, blame the NRA, blame god, and my personal favorite, blame godlessness. No one is to blame, and everyone is to blame. The fact that people keep bringing children into the world, expecting them to raise themselves is really the root of this chaos.

In a world of six billion people Andy Williams found a way to be heard, what bothers me is that people are surprised that San Diego was immune to such activity. Andy's classmates are too young to remember past carnage, but to hear local media feign surprise is offensive to say the least. Reporters trying to milk as much from the tragedy as possible filled air time with idiotic statements like "No one thought it could happen here."

Excuse me but James Huberty gunning down people in a San Ysidro McDonalds showed it can happen here. As did Brenda Spencer when she decided she didn't like Mondays. Homegrown terrorism is nothing new, and the only thing that should surprise us is that it doesn't happen more often. Guns may not kill people, but they certainly help get the job done. And with more guns and people being added to the mix everyday, it is just a matter of time before Southern California becomes suburban Sarajevo.

Kids killing kids is just a sign of the times. America has always been about violence, and without limiting population, schools will continue to be the pressure cookers that send children over the edge.

For those of you keeping score, the Santee shooting also took place on Monday. Maybe we should blame Mondays.

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