Another Day, Another Campus Shooting: One Dead, Three Injured, Yawn
Somehow this has become routine
There was another shooting on a college campus Friday, this time at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff (disclosure: Yr Dok Zoom's alma mater). It occurred at about 1:20 a.m., in the parking lot of a residence hall that houses most of the campus's fraternities and sororities, following what police said was a "confrontation" between two "student groups," although we're pretty sure they weren't the Chess Club and the Debate Team. According to NAU Police Chief Greg Fowler, at some point things turned into a fistfight, and 18-year-old freshman Steven Jones pulled a gun and fired "multiple shots," hitting four other students, killing one. The victims were identified by NAU administration as Nicholas Piring, Nicholas Prato, and Kyle Zientek; the deceased student is Colin Brough, whose picture was tweeted by Phoenix TV station ABC-15.
He looks like a nice kid. Like he was a nice kid. Could a frat boy have a better name than "Brough"? Then again, he got into a fight.
But let's not talk about guns being a problem, because maybe Steven Jones was in fear for his life. We need guns to keep us safe, after all, and this is made clear by the simple fact that however the fight got started, Colin Brough is dead and Steven Jones is alive. Also, this wasn't a mass shooting, merely an ordinary killing that happened on a campus, so let's not make a big deal about it. It also proves that more gun laws won't ever work, since NAU prohibits all firearms and live ammunition on campus, and concealed carry of handguns is restricted to those over 21 in Arizona, so Jones was already a criminal and not a responsible gun owner. As of yet, nobody's claiming that allowing concealed weapons on campus would have made the situation better, but you know they will. Also stickers. As far as we can tell, more guns would have resulted in more bodies full of bullet holes, which may be upsetting, but not nearly as upsetting as the prospect of restrictions on gun ownership.
Stuff happens, you know.
Perhaps this wouldn't have happened if the dormitory had window stickers promising that anyone trying something funny with a gun would be shot. Pity there were no windows in the parking lot.
Because Jones was taken into custody almost immediately, there was no campus lockdown; NAU counseling staff went to the dorm where the shooting happened at 2:30 a.m. to provide assistance to students, friends, and witnesses. The campus counseling center opened early Friday morning, too. So since America is never going to do anything about guns -- we may as well acknowledge that this really is just going to go on forever, because if Sandy Hook didn't change our politics, nothing will -- Yr Wonkette would advise college students to consider a career in providing therapy for PTSD, a likely growth field. And also maybe to never leave your room. They're doing great things with online education, we hear.
Former congresswoman, and shooting survivor, Gabby Giffords sent her condolences, for all the good it will do.
Also, we suppose we should credit Arizona Republic columnist E.J. Montini for finding a slightly new way to frame the topic of campus shootings: If we're so upset when college students get blown away by guns, what does it mean that we're not similarly outraged by the much larger numbers of young men who aren't in college, but also end up just as dead from gunshot wounds?
Simple answer: Obviously some lives are more disposable, and they were just punk thugs anyway. Maybe if Fox News yells about black-on-black crime some more, we can avoid dealing with the enormous flow of illegal guns from straw purchases and theft from legal gun owners.
In the meantime, please buy more guns, because there are scary people out there, and you don't want to be a victim, do you?
Update: As several commenters note, the NAU shooting was only the first of TWO fatal campus shootings today; the other was at Texas Southern University:
An 18-year-old freshman college student is dead and another person is injured after a shooting at Texas Southern University. The southeast Houston campus is no longer on lockdown. Houston police say two suspects are in custody and they are looking for a third person [...]
Texas Southern University President John M. Rudley confirmed the shooting as well as the fatality and said guns are too "easily accessible."
So get ready for some genius in the Texas Lege to call for TSU's president to be fired or the school's budget line zeroed out, for America.
Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.