AUTHOR: Beth TITLE: What Is This Sickness? DATE: 3/23/2005 09:22:00 AM ----- BODY:
Survivor waits outside a hospital. AP photo.
So fucking naive man, so fucking naive. Always expecting change when I know nothing ever changes. I've seen mothers choose their man over their own flesh and blood, I've seen others choose alocohol over friendship. I sacrifice no more for others, part of me has fucking died and I hate this shit. I'm living every mans nightmare and that single fact alone is kicking my ass, I really must be fucking worthless. This place never changes, it never will. Fuck it all. --final post on the Livejournal belonging to Jeff Weise, 16, who shot nine students at his middle school, his grandparents and himself in Red Lake, MN, yesterday
Trying to understand these perennial school massacres is like trying to pin down a blob of mercury. As soon as you think you've found the root cause of these seasonal murder sprees, your perspective shifts, things move, and you're back where you started--baffled, saddened, utterly lost. I can identify with what the kid is saying above. I felt a similar way when I was a teenager--many, I think, do. Being an adolescent means you're waking up to the ways of the world, seeing things that happen like "mothers choos(ing) their man over their own flesh and blood...others choos(ing) alocohol over friendship," without a sense of adult perspective to deal with it. Adolescence, for many, is about discovering the massive ugliness at work all around you while at the same time feeling utterly powerless to effect change--you can't vote, you have little of your own money, for most of it, you don't have your own car or a license to drive it. You are becoming aware of your loss of innocence, but have yet to develop the resources or means to feel fully actualized in the world. But. While I can identify with the sense of loneliness, directionlessness, frustrated outrage in the post above, becoming actualized through bullets is something that never crossed my mind--never crossed the mind of anyone I've ever known. And that's still a wide gulf in my understanding. How is that settled upon as an option? That's a blank spot, maybe a blind spot in my mind--I can't see it, can't even visualize the thought process that would lead someone to that "solution." Are there really some kids so completely unimaginative that shooting people is the only way they can see to hold some dominion over their circumstances? do they come about? How do they escape notice, aid, salvation? How are they left to die a moral death? How does the simple fact not get across that adolescence...ends?