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-   -   Interesting quote on mass shooters (http://www.rpgwatch.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19228)

crpgnut January 16th, 2013 17:22

Interesting quote on mass shooters
This was credited to Morgan Freeman, but he since has denied it.

“You want to know why. This may sound cynical, but here’s why.

It’s because of the way the media reports it. Flip on the news and watch how we treat the Batman theater …shooter and the Oregon mall shooter like celebrities. Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris are household names, but do you know the name of a single *victim* of Columbine? Disturbed people who would otherwise just off themselves in their basements see the news and want to top it by doing something worse, and going out in a memorable way. Why a grade school? Why children? Because he’ll be remembered as a horrible monster, instead of a sad nobody.

CNN’s article says that if the body count “holds up”, this will rank as the second deadliest shooting behind Virginia Tech, as if statistics somehow make one shooting worse than another. Then they post a video interview of third-graders for all the details of what they saw and heard while the shootings were happening. Fox News has plastered the killer’s face on all their reports for hours. Any articles or news stories yet that focus on the victims and ignore the killer’s identity? None that I've seen yet. Because they don’t sell. So congratulations, sensationalist media, you've just lit the fire for someone to top this and knock off a day care center or a maternity ward next.

You can help by forgetting you ever read this man’s name, and remembering the name of at least one victim. You can help by donating to mental health research instead of pointing to gun control as the problem. You can help by turning off the news.”

GhanBuriGhan January 16th, 2013 17:45

I tend to agree that there is definitely a meme thing goin on - this idea is like a virus traveling around and finding new disturbed minds to infect again and again.
But it's a bit simple blaming "the media", don't you think? It's to a large part simply human nature to be facinated by the horrific.
And would we really want media to distort reality by NOT reporting on these things or analyzing the reasons for the killing, or the motivation of the Killer?

And by the way, I don't know about the american cases, but I definitely remember media coverage exclusively dealing with the victims in case of the Utoya shooting in Norway, often very respectful, too.

Of course the last sentence then jumps to conclusions that are hardly warranted (although I will always support more money for research, and watching less TV, heh :) )

jhwisner January 16th, 2013 17:52


Originally Posted by crpgnut (Post 1061179911)
This was credited to Morgan Freeman, but he since has denied it.

Well yeah because it wasn't him. People do shit like that all the time - take a relatively well thought out statement on something and lie by pretending someone famous and/or of some import said it. I suppose that's because some people are just so damned proud of how clever they think they are they just can't let their words stand on their own so they feel they need to lie and attribute their thoughts to someone whose name attracts the attention they feel they themselves really deserve.

Its a shame because the actual author of that quote makes some good points (though I don't precisely agree with the wording of the last bit.) The vulture-like behavior of the 24-hour news networks over tragedy and the way in which they tend to give these fame-seeking psychos far too much of exactly what they want is certainly frustrating.

BillSeurer January 16th, 2013 19:28

The news business has always been that way. Look all the way back to Rome where scandal columns (which were actually posted on real columns) were what everyone read.

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