Small Town Values

[UPDATE] 2:

This shooting has prompted calls in Australia for tourists to boycott the United States. America’s international reputation is one of a violent, gun prevalent place where innocents are routinely slaughtered in the streets, and incidents like this only exacerbate that image. I can’t imagine any parent sending their kid to school here.

[UPDATE]:

Friend of the Blog Joe M. tells me that Halliburton was founded in Duncan, Oklahoma. So it all makes so much more sense now. The thread of violence that runs through American life has a symmetry all its own. These things become become shockingly predictable. Here’s another example: Newtown, Connecticut is home to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, trade association for the firearms industry.

Coincidence? Or synchronicity?

—————————————–

This story haunts me, not just because of the randomness of it, but because there’s still this crazy idea that somehow small towns are a better place to live than big cities. And maybe there’s more to this story than we’re being told, I dunno. It just defies common sense:

An Australian baseball player out for a jog in an Oklahoma neighborhood was shot and killed by three “bored” teenagers who decided to kill someone for fun, police said.

Christopher Lane, who was visiting the town of Duncan, where his girlfriend and her family live, had passed a home where the boys were staying and that apparently led to him being gunned down at random, Police Chief Danny Ford said Monday. A 17-year-old in the group has given a detailed confession to police, but investigators haven’t found the weapon used in last week’s shooting, the chief said.

That teen and the others – ages 15 and 16 – remain in custody, and Ford said the district attorney is expected to file first-degree murder charges Tuesday. It wasn’t known if the three will be charged as adults or juveniles. They are to appear in court Tuesday afternoon.

“They saw Christopher go by, and one of them said: ‘There’s our target,'” Ford said. “The boy who has talked to us said, ‘We were bored and didn’t have anything to do, so we decided to kill somebody.'”

He said they followed the 22-year-old Lane, a student from Melbourne attending college on a baseball scholarship, in a car and shot him in the back before driving off.

Ford told the television station KOCO in Oklahoma City that one of the teens said they shot Lane for “the fun of it.”

I can’t imagine what this young man’s family and friends are dealing with, especially being so far away. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Duncan is a small town of 22,000 and the neighborhood where the incident occurred was described as “leafy” and “upscale.” The alleged shooters were all minors — ages 15, 16 and 17. The parents are in denial and claim their kids are innocent.

Upscale neighborhood? Bored teens? How the hell did they get their hands on a gun in the first place?

The Duncan newspaper says two of the teens were known to local police. And that’s the thing, you’re stuck in a small town, you’ve got nothing to do, you’re basically looking for trouble. Usually that means cow tipping and setting hay bales on fire. For these kids it was murder.

What’s that old saying? “Idle hands are the Devil’s workshop” …

22 Comments

Filed under gun violence

22 responses to “Small Town Values

  1. GregH

    Guns don’t kill people, bored teenagers from Oklahoma kill people. Focus legislation on the *real* source of the problem: bored Oklahoma teens. Arrest them and deport them to LA or NY !!!

    • I wondered if all they wanted was to shoot someone to watch them die why they didn’t just play one of those violent video games we’re always told is the root of this evil… fire up the Mortal Kombat 3, watch all the people die you want!

  2. Mary Wilson

    In this GOP/TEA country, run now by the gun makers, gun smugglers, gun profiteers, the NRA, speaking for all of these fools, has so denigrated the value of human life, that NO SHOOTING of a human being is a shock to the masses, who have been brainwashed and told they MUST support the 2nd Amendment, no matter how many people DIE from gun violence. The gun crazies now even insult and ridicule the victims’ FAMILIES who work to try and prevent more shootings. I would bet money, if I had any, that the parents of these 3 ‘bored’ teens were NOT involved in their lives at all…and I assume they all owned firearms…if not, these kids knew who did have guns or had the money to buy some. And part of this hatred of human beings goes back to January 2009 when the NRA, the TEA PARTY and those who fund them started repeating the lies of the campaign…that “Muslim Obama will take ALL your guns, etc”. This outrage should be spread by MASS Media and not ignored….because the next victims are around the corner…in your neighborhoods.

    • GregH

      The price of freedom is random, deadly violence and lots of accidental shootings. Freedom ain’t free, buddy.

      • The tree of liberty must be watered from time to time with the blood of kindergarteners and random bystanders.

      • GregH

        The Tree of Liberty in the South, planted firmly in the hallowed ground of States Rights, bears strange fruit – in this generation too.

      • Mary Wilson

        Greg, your mention of “strange fruit” ? Are you familiar with the song? It was first recorded in 1939 by Billie Holiday…’Strange Fruit’, one of the first anti-racist songs in the country…but it is so compelling, the words and especially the video added later…depicts the ‘fruit’, the black folks hanging from trees. It was later re-recorded by singer Nina Simone…disturbing and hard to watch.

  3. Mnemosyne

    I have to admit, when I heard this story, my first thought was that the kids had smoking crystal meth, though they could also have “just” been drinking. But I guess that would come out later, if true.

  4. deep

    “This wouldn’t have happened if he was armed”

    and

    “An armed society is a polite society”

    … I’m sorry for pooping here.

    • GregH

      And if he had had eyes in the back of his head, that would have helped too, since they shot him in the back.

      • Mary Wilson

        To DEEP, not Greg. Greg, you prove my point…thanks!

        Not sure what you mean, deep? There has not been one shooter, and I follow all the murders, accidental and intentional…who have been ‘polite’ as they blasted away to kill or maime another human being. You need to man up and admit this country is being led by the evil Kochs, all the gun makers…to arm, even the crazies, to the teeth. Most don’t even have the sense to apologize for their ignorance. If you know of any polite shooter, please…let me know.

      • GregH

        @ Mary – Deep is just pretending to be a troll – he forgot the sarcasm symbol. You are preaching to the choir. 🙂

      • deep

        Sorry Mary, I think I’ve fooled you before with my sarcasm. I keep forgetting to use the #Sarcasm tag.😉

      • Mary Wilson

        OK, Deep; I get it now. And Annie, we live in a State that embarrasses us every single day because our ‘government officials’ keep proving with their idiotic racist hatred and gun lunacy that they do not watch or understand ANY facts and only watch FOX. And we have MANY ‘accidental shootings, per week here, because of the NRA rants and lies about WHO should be allowed to purchase and own firearms…2 days ago, a parent’s AK-15 “accidently discharged”, and in a room FILLED with ammo, caused explosions that killed the parent and his 12-year old son. IN addition to all the INTENDED gun murders (many in my own city), we have one of these ‘accidents’ PER WEEK. But as our State is controlled by the TEAs who are owned by the NRA funders, our ‘gun laws’ are so lax that soon we will have to buy a gun, mandated by the gun crazies.

      • yeah, I found his [/snark] tag laying about three posts further down.

        *reattaches tag*🙂

  5. AnnieMouse

    As a resident of an east-coast megalopolis, I have to say I’m really, really sick and tired of the ‘only people from small towns have values’ schtick the reichwing and Fox-followers parrot. People are people; some are vicious idiots, and some are friendly and harmless.

  6. democommie

    Well, you know who else lives in a small town? That’s right, our pal, Chief Kessler.

  7. Pingback: Tennessee Gun Report | Southern Beale

  8. democommie

    I notice that when I see a post about one of these crimes that teh gunzloonz are either notable by their absence or, if they comment, immediately go to the default position of “…cold, dead fingers.”. Ot1h, I think that they might want to, instead, have a conversation about “sensible regulation” and keeping gunz outta the hands of people with poor impulse control. Otoh, I think that they are saying to themselves:

    “WTF, the guy was a goddamned furriner, they SHOULD shoot him!”.

  9. Off Topic but values oriented:

    Free Bradley Manning.

    “The US will never be able to lecture world again about the value of transparency and press freedoms without triggering a global laughing fit.”-G Greenwald

  10. I always wonder what we take for granted…I’m pretty willing to bet that none of these kids’ parents ever gave one moment’s thought to, say, paying for the kid’s college education. Because it was just never on the table.

    but that’s me guessing.