The Reasons Behind the Shooter: At Some Point, It Doesn’t Matter WHY

The Reasons Behind the Shooter: At Some Point, It Doesn’t Matter WHY

By Don Hall

Life is far more complicated than we want it to be.

We want the narrative to be that of Star Wars or a good, solid western: Good Guys vs. Bad Guys. The epic quest against the Forces of Evil. The trouble with that is that it is rarely the case.

In this era of storytelling, we want to understand why someone would get a weapon and randomly kill other people. We want to dig into the psychology of what could bring someone to behave with such evil and malice. The idea is that if we understand the Why, we can do something to prevent it in the future. Yet, we often don’t. What we do instead is to allow our cave drawing comprehension of why to create excuses.

“You don’t know my neighborhood so how can you tell me anything about gangs? These are people who have been strapped to an economic racist society and have no other options. If they get guns and shoot each other, it is a cry for justice.”

All that may be true but when that gang member carjacks my mother or mistakenly guns down an innocent kid, I don’t give a fuck about the why.

“He was a Marine veteran with serious PTSD and didn’t know what he was doing.”

Sorry. Don’t give a shit.

If a rabid dog attacked people, mangling them in the streets, it may be interesting to wax on about the abuse the dog suffered at the hands of other people but that intellectual ruminating doesn’t stop the dog from biting down on a four-year old’s arm hard enough to crack the bone, does it?

As complicated as life is, as terribly complex the system of intersectionality and psychological barriers we face is, there is a simplicity to embrace.

If they didn’t have guns, they couldn’t kill people so easily.

This is not a value judgment on anyone’s state of mind. This is not a moral argument. This has fuckall to do with the hardships someone has gone through that brought him to a point where shooting someone seems to be the only recourse.

Simple math. If he didn’t have a fucking gun, those people would still be breathing.


Make it harder to own a firearm in peacetime. Especially for men because there just aren’t a lot of women running around shooting people.


Then deal with the societal issues.

Notes from the Post-it Wall | Week of November 4, 2018

Notes from the Post-it Wall | Week of November 4, 2018

Incredulity as Default Emotion

Incredulity as Default Emotion