We have such a propensity for violence and mass shootings in the United States, that over 113 million google results turn up in .63 seconds when you type "top 50 mass shootings in the US" into the search bar. Here Rachel Maddow walks us through 50 years of mass killings . . . in schools, theaters, malls, you name it.
So, in light of this, I was not surprised when I read the following headline:
I was especially not surprised that the idiot at the center of this scandal, Elliot Rodger, made a stagey, over-the-top video declaring his murderous intentions - entitled, no less, "Elliot Rodger's Retribution" - before setting upon his victims.
In the video (see article above) he's quite explicit: He's exacting revenge on the mean streets of Santa Barbara all because he can't get laid. No one wants to fuck him.
Clearly Rodger was a man afflicted with a gravely betrayed sense of entitlement. Society had denied him his due pleasures. His spurned advances left him no other choice but to drain the life from the bodies most redolent of those who had rejected him.
Making good on his threats, Rodger is now just one more angry dude to throw on the ever-growing heap of males making history for all the wrong reasons - for externalizing their hatred, for making others suffer the brute force of their moral squalor.
With such lax gun laws, homegrown terrorism is the harvest we reap. It's also why my friend and I jokingly call evening walks in the forested area around her home, "Gunshots in the Dusk." Everybody's gotta a gun out here.
But luckily, few people's hearts are as icy as Rodger's balls were blue.
Coldly, methodically mowing down pedestrians in the street because the ladies don't like you sounds insane but it's not. (Questions regarding his mental health will surely be trotted out to explain away his savagery as is usually the case with white terrorism. Read: "Top Ten Differences Between White Terrorists and Others"). It's not insane because it's to be expected. It takes more than one sick man to produce an atrocity. It takes a sick society. It takes a village like ours to raise a boy to grow up thinking real men treat women with contempt, especially when they don't defer to male desire.
A woman is beaten every nine seconds in the US; an hour of your life contains nearly 60 sexual assaults; every morning is the last morning for the three women killed daily in acts of domestic-violence homicide.
Rich Boy's rampage was as scripted as the lines in the movies his dad directs in Hollywood. He enacted his sadistic pleasures on the stage of patriarchy, remaining faithful to a social order that instructs men to feel superior to women and claim ownership over their bodies. Rodger is a terrorist of the establishment, not a rogue defending some fringe cause. He conformed to centuries-old thinking about women and sex, putting on full display the worst of our society's woman-hating attitudes.
Above all, he accepted the lie that masculinity is tied to virility. Rodger rather kill and die, than live a virgin at 22.
Such madness is the logical conclusion of the cult of self meets Western misogyny meets first world privilege. His horrendous actions hold a mirror to our culture's worst moral failings, exhorting us to not only rethink our ideas about sex and violence, but to re-examine our criteria for manhood.