His motive, according to testimony described by The Associated Press, is to counter the increase in national college and university shootings by allowing the student body and faculty to arm themselves.
Moreover, Kelly feels that the University Board of Regents prohibition of guns on campus is a violation of Second Amendment rights. The issue, however, is not constitutional.
The broader issue is the power of the gun versus alternatives to gun violence. The implication is that campus shooters are crazy and just looking for somewhere and someone to randomly shoot. Since campus shootings usually end in suicide, it is difficult to know if this is true.
There is evidence that it is not so simple. Insociologists Rachel Kalish and Michael Kimmel analyzed three school shootings — two at colleges, Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois, the same college shootings cited by Sen.
Kalish and Kimmel found that the shootings had consistent patterns. Prior toschool shootings were largely Local Sluts Ridgeway AK by younger minority males, did not involve a large killed because of the weaponry involved and did not necessarily result in death by suicide of the shooter.
An example is the Bethel High School shooting in which the principal and another student were killed at close range with a shotgun by thenyear-old Evan Ramsey.
Ramsey remains in Spring Creek Correctional Center serving dual life sentences. The shootings Kalish and Kimmel analyzed indicate a different pattern.
They were frequently gay-baited although none were openly gay. They were teased and rejected by women.
The shooters were quiet, introspective, studious and increasingly viewed themselves as outsiders scorned by the cool and the on fleek. At some point they snapped, brought an assault weapon to campus, shot up a classroom and killed themselves. What makes these campus shootings different from minority shootings or terrorist attacks, Kalish and Kimmel argue, is a sense of cultural entitlement among American males.
Humiliation is emasculation, and an aggrieved man feels entitled to right the wrong by enacting the American heritage of violence.
In Old West mythology, the cowboy had a six-shooter on his hip and a carbine in his saddle bags. Injustice was dealt with by individuals acting alone. Unlike a six-shooter or a carbine, an assault rifle makes it possible to do a lot more damage in a short time. Local Sluts Ridgeway AK shooters feel they have the right to kill and then to kill themselves. An armed faculty and student body may make a temporary difference in campus suicide shootings.
That assumes the faculty and students practice regularly hours a week and are police-trained to make the virtually instantaneous decisions about whether or not to shoot hundreds of hours. If a campus is armed, my guess is that suicide shooters will simply switch to suicide bombing to make their warped point. What Senate Bill will likely do is create a new kind of campus shooting — impulse shooting.
Colleges are not idyllic ivory towers where students and faculty think high thoughts and then have tea. Colleges are tense places where sleep-deprived students often work a 40 hours a week, take care of kids and go to school full time.
Substance abuse is common, anger is frequently just under the surface. Younger, tenure-track faculty are under immense pressure to meet expectations or be fired. A loaded gun in a backpack will easily become the means for an exploding psyche to end it all. We have created a false mythology that the gun is the answer.
In the midst of an epidemic of intolerance, we will be better off trying to understand the causes and alternatives to violence, rather than perpetrating the means to enact it. Alan Boraas is a professor of anthropology at Kenai Peninsula College. This column was ly printed in the Alaska Dispatch News on Feb. Community and economic development are two sides of the same coin.
Before charting a course, though, we need to know our starting point. The world is rapidly changing around us, and to have any hope of a bright future we need to accept that every community must adapt in its own way to global economic tides, rather than whistling in the dark and doing nothing or making futile, wasteful efforts to avoid those tidal changes. Having grown up in the economically devastated Appalachian coalfields, I learned early that positive economic development and strong educational opportunities are crucial to the health of every community.
When good, middle-class jobs dry up or the workforce lacks hope for a more prosperous future, people become stressed by economic worries and have little interest, money or energy for anything other than ensuring that home and mortgage remain together. The past hundred years constantly reteach us that political tolerance and consensus, environmental protection, art, culture and similar values prized by Western democracies often fail when people doubt their long-term economic security.
When economic fears deepened during the s and s, democracies faltered as radical politics arose on both the left and the right everywhere.
Hitler rose to power in Germany, Japan embarked upon a militaristic path of conquest, and both fascism and communism attracted many followers in the United States and Western Europe. The roots were real economic issues that put people on edge and made grand but ill-considered radical authoritarian solutions seem plausible and socially acceptable.
Those who can flee often do so, deepening the decline.
Economies based on the extraction of natural resources are particularly vulnerable. Without the outside money generated by our local primary industries,Alaskans could not readily feed themselves, let alone buy a new car or truck. One cannot live on love alone.
The central Kenai Peninsula traditionally had several diverse primary industries — oil exploration and production, commercial fishing, petrochemical manufacturing at Agrium and Tesoro, and tourism based on guided hunting and fishing. Although necessary for healthy communities, a booming economy is not enough. A community needs to be a pleasant place to live, one that attracts and retains residents by its quality of life. An uncontrolled economic boom is just as destructive as a dying economy and with a hard crash at the other end.
Dickinson, North Dakota, formerly a graceful and prosperous college and farming community, became so distorted by the Bakken oil boom that even my brother-in-law, a Marine and former Montana logger, got out of that now-rough town as quickly as possible.
In the end, what counts most are greater cooperation, energy and participation by everyone, rather than passively consuming what others provide. Thankfully the beetles and forest fires have saved us a lot of work and reduced millions to nothing.
After all, the trees are in the way of our development projects and obscure visibility of homes and businesses. Unfortunately, many in our community have stubbornly retained some of these ghastly obstructions on their properties. Woe to those ignoramuses who consider them to be an asset worth keeping!
Not until our peninsula is finally tree-free, can we cease from our labors of eliminating this widespread malfeasance. Sound rational? I hope not, but I sincerely fear that there may be those out there who actually feel this way. They certainly act this way.
Our peninsula landscapes prove it. Has anyone else noticed this rapid transformation? Does anyone care? The character of our peninsula is changing from a rural forested environment, to an industrialized barren environment.
Gravel lot after gravel lot has been created for development or sale in our communities and elsewhere. The DOT continues to strong-arm its way down the highway right-of-way corridors, slashing and clearing hundreds of feet back from the highway pavement, mowing down every tree it possibly can, simply because it can.
Some homeowners who have depended on tree buffers to retain privacy and to cut down highway noise and lights from passing cars at night have begged the DOT to please agree to leave just a few trees, or to limb them instead of cutting them down.
They were never even notified of the project until the chainsaws showed up at their doorsteps. Many of these homes existed before the highway right of ways were platted and later expanded, leaving the homeowner with no alternative than to pray that they could retain buffers as long as possible. But there is no mercy shown or given. This practice of expansive setback cutting became apparent when the DOT cut the forest dramatically back on the east side of the Sterling Highway Local Sluts Ridgeway AK Clam Gulch and Ninilchik.
This was apparently to create openness for sunlight to thaw the highway pavement as well as to make it possible to see moose farther back from the highway.
It was not needed for the gas line project, as many assumed. They are also doing this to most borough-maintained side ro. They do not inform residents, either. They have recently embarked on a similar project public not notified between Skyview High School and Clam Gulch.
It looks terrible. I have news for the DOT. This clearing obviously in increased brush — moose browse, no less!
And it grows to sufficient height in two years to hide the moose. Now we have increased risk of moose accidents, instead of lessened risk.
In fact, I recently hit a moose that was feeding in one of these cut-but-regrown right of ways, as it suddenly emerged from the brush and dashed onto the road. As for the sunlight factor, this cutting is only effectively allowing for more sunlight onto the pavement in late fall and early spring.
Sight distance for drivers on the highways is the other reason for the extreme cut setbacks.