Who do I blame for the Virginia Tech gun massacre? The psychiatrist who let Seung-Hui Cho get away. Cho was taken into custody on December 13, 2005 after having harassed two women. Neither young woman pressed charges, but Cho underwent a psychiatric evaluation that had declared him mentally ill. Unfortunately, the psychiatrist in charge of his evaluation decided outpatient therapy would work for Cho and that he was not an imminent danger to himself or others and a district court judge agreed with this evaluation and did not overturn it.
This meant, when ordering his guns, Cho was assumed to have had a clean record. Had Cho had an inpatient stay at a mental health facility on his record, both state and federal law would have denied him the gun purchase.
By all means, this is not the only concern. I do feel that for all our rules and regulations, gun purchases are all too easy. Guns are seen too much as a commodity in American society. The Second Amendment gives us the right, but does anyone seriously think that if the Founding Fathers knew what our society was to become, they'd still be talking about an easy right to bear arms? Please. Mentally competent, law-abiding people have the right to a gun, but they should have to jump through several hoops, each one higher than the other, to obtain one. And I think it's a shame that we see sensible gun control — gun control that does not deny Second Amendment rights to those who see the need for a firearm — as a liberal vs. conservative issue. We should be able to file this one under common sense.
However, gun crime in and of itself might not be such a problem if not for the fact that we are fed a high-violence media diet which rots our brains. It isn't of course just America that has this culture of violence. The two extremely violent films that had inspired Cho's rampage were South Korean. However, any society that allows a million-and-one versions of videogames such as Grand Theft Auto as a capitalist right just might be inviting problems. Never mind how such videogames (not to mention gangsta rap, along with many films and TV programs) glorify outrageous violence. These forms of media do desensitize people to violence.