I've heard another crazy idea and assignment of blame... if only the men in Norris Hall hadn't been such wussies. Then, they would have attacked and subdued Cho. And the variation on this - all US young people should have two years of compulsory military service and every household should have at least one person trained in the use of firearms. Then, some well trained macho guys could have stopped this. Dr. Laura went so far as to volunteer that her paratrooper son - presumably without a gun on campus - would have attacked and subdued Cho, using his military training.
Well, maybe... but I've seen enough episodes of Alias to know that it takes only a second or two to change a clip in a semi automatic pistol and that long before Dr. Laura's son would have tackled the gunman, he would have been dead.
And as for compulsory military service... what about those of us who have religious objections to the military. As the Anabaptist bumper sticker says - "Loving your enemies probably begins with not killing them." What does it say about a society when we mark adulthood for our young men by training them to kill? What do we expect young people to do when the model they see in our leaders is that we pre-emptively strike the we see as threats and when the threats turn out to be imaginary, continue the course of violence?
Over the last day we have learned that this was a very troubled young man who had been flagged a number of times and evidently was even declared by a court to be an imminent danger to himself and others. That is where we must begin. The mental health system failed him and the rest of the community. The law failed when a young man who had been declared dangerous by the court and at least twice had been reported to the police by young women for menacing actions can go out and legally purchase guns and ammunition. Our leaders failed him and us when the president followed his condolences with a reminder that actions like this won't effect our rights to bear arms and virtually none are calling for even the most measured of gun control laws.