Sue Klebold to speak at mental health conference. Who’s paying?

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When word of Sue Klebold’s book was being made public it was stressed that all the proceeds from the book were being donated to mental health charities. At the time I speculated that there is more than one way to cash out. Is public speaking one of those ways?

Klebold is scheduled to be speaking at a mental health conference in June in Alexandria, Virginia. One has to wonder if she volunteered or does she now have a speaking fee.

Sue Klebold blames guns for Columbine

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Recently the Washington Post published a column entitled ‘If guns had been harder for my son to buy, Columbine might not have happened’ by Sue Klebold, the mother of Columbine coward Dylan Klebold. No doubt this was done to coincide with the release of her book.

In the opinion piece she talks a good game about mental health issues but still tries to deflect the blame from her murdering spawn.

There were the deep depression and suicidal thoughts that he had been living with and that I was unaware of. There was his distorted belief that he was unloved and unlovable. There was the bullying that made him feel like an outsider at Columbine to an extent I will never know. There was his friendship with Eric and the ways each reinforced the anger and pain of the other.

But let’s just gloss over Dylan Klebold’s criminal behavior prior to the murders and the fact that he was bullying a special needs student.

However mostly in the piece she blames the ease of access to guns as a main factor of the Columbine shootings…

Having said that, I still cannot help but believe that Dylan and Eric would not have been able to take the lives of so many if they had not had such easy access to guns. As I later learned, Dylan and Eric — both of whom were minors — secretly attended a gun show where they bought the shotguns they would use in the massacre and met a young man who sold them a TEC-9 semiautomatic pistol.

She seems to be giving the impression that Klebold and Harris walked into a gun show and some how purchased the shotguns legally but that’s not how it happened.

Robyn Anderson, a friend of Klebold and Harris, bought the shotguns and the Hi-Point 9mm Carbine at The Tanner Gun Show in December of 1998 from unlicensed sellers. Because Anderson purchased the guns for someone else, the transition constituted an illegal “straw purchase.” Klebold and Harris bought the TEC-DC9 from a pizza shop employee named Mark Manes, who knew they were too young to purchase the assault pistol, but nevertheless sold it to them for $500.

So in effect they bought the guns illegally off the street, you know, like criminals. The gun control laws you’re imagining only effect gun dealers and do nothing to stop people from selling guns illegally and no gun control law will. As I’ve said before it’s harder than ever to procure guns but school shootings still continue not because of the supposed ease of access if guns but because of entitled and selfish kids who emotionally can’t handle life and their lax parents who are more concerned with being a friend rather than being a parent.

It seems she really hasn’t changed her tune from when she said that she had nothing to apologize for.

10 questions for Sue Klebold

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In the wake of the recent interview with Sue Klebold on 20/20 Alan Pendegrast of Denver based alt-weekly Westword has written a piece entitled SUE KLEBOLD: TEN QUESTIONS COLUMBINE KILLER DYLAN KLEBOLD’S MOM WASN’T ASKED.

By all means please go to the Westword site and read it as they are questions that should not have only been asked but should be answered.

However I am going to abuse fair use here because I think these questions should be saved for posterity. I’m posting them behind the cut but I take no credit in writing them as they are the property of Westword.
Continue reading “10 questions for Sue Klebold”

Trench’s thoughts on Sue Klebold’s 20/20 interview

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I finally got around to watching “Silence Broken: A Mother’s Reckoning”, the interview Diane Sawyer did with Sue Klebold on 20/20 that aired this past Friday. If you missed it and have a cable subscription you may be able to watch it here. Or if you’re a cord cutter like me it should be available for everyone on Friday. In a word I was not impressed.

While I was impressed that she made no excuses for her coward of a son I still feel like she just doesn’t get it. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think that Sue Klebold is solely responsible for not preventing Columbine. Columbine was a perfect storm of failure between the parents and law enforcement. Like the story said they all had pieces to the puzzle so I believe they all share some responsibility. I still believe she missed some obvious signs and did not take some actions that should have been taken. For example if your son asks you to buy him a gun and you suspect that he might be having mental health issues then that should be taken more seriously then I think it was. Not to mention the fact that she decided to stop searching his room in his senior year was another mistake. Columbine was planned a year in advance. You can not tell me that nothing would have been found if the room had not been searched in that time. Also the school notified her of the violent story that her son had written that she chose not to follow up. While that may not have been a sign of the impending tragedy it should have been a sign that her son needed professional help. Sue Klebold also said that she didn’t blame the Harrises who in my book deserve more blame than the Klebolds which leads be to believe that she herself feels no blame. That harkens back to 2004 when she said “I haven’t done anything for which I need forgiveness.”

Another thing that was mentioned that I don’t agree with was the FBI profiler who laid a large amount of blame on violent media such as movies, music and video games. In my opinion it’s not the amount of violence that kids may be exposed to but a generation of parents who aren’t preparing their kids emotionally for the real world.

One thing that I did agree with that was brought up was the stigma that seeking psychiatric help carries with it. I was suicidal as a teen and my parents knew it yet they never considered getting me any professional help that I desperately could have used. They, like a lot of parents, were probably more concerned about what the neighbors thought rather than how I felt. If people felt less stigmatized in seeking professional help for their kids or even themselves it would go a long way in preventing tragedies like Columbine. If Sue Klebold’s book could at least help fight that stigma then maybe she’ll have finally done some good.

20/20 to air interview with mother of Columbine killer

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This coming Friday ABC News will be airing their interview on 20/20 that Diane Sawyer did with Susan Klebold, the mother of Columbine coward Dylan Klebold. They’re calling the episode “Silence Broken: A Mother’s Reckoning”. That’s because the airing of the interview coincides with the release of Klebold’s book “A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy”. You’ll have to forgive me if I don’t believe any actual reckoning will take place. I’ve posted about all this before so please indulge me while I copy and paste some of Sue’s greatest hits.

From my initial post on when the book was first announced

In the past during rare times that she has spoken to the media she has made excuses for her, her husband Tom and their hellspawn. In 2004 she told the New York Times that “I haven’t done anything for which I need forgiveness.” In 2009 in an essay she wrote for O Magazine she basically admitted how clueless she was when it came to her son and again she admitted as such in a 2012 book about children who commit crimes. So you’ll have to forgive me if I think the book is going to be anything but more of the same.

But I hear you say “She’s not being paid for the book.” Of course she isn’t, not directly anyway. The only reason the proceeds are going to charity is because the families of the real victims of her son would raise holy hell if she took even a penny. That doesn’t mean there aren’t other ways to get compensated especially if the book takes off.

Then from my post about when the 20/20 interview was first announced

Too many news shows these days try to portray criminals as victims or falsely accused and a number of gullible viewers believe whatever is spouted from the mouths of talking heads which in turn is helping to lead to a society where no one is held responsible for their actions. As having said before that she has nothing to apologize for, Sue Klebold will be their champion.

And I wrote that months before people were starting to be deceived by Making a Murderer.

Susan Klebold is not brave, she doesn’t deserve sympathy and she’s certainly no victim. For the past 17 years she’s been nothing but the poster child for not taking personal responsibility whether it be for her or her cowardly demon spawn.

Mother of Columbine killer to give TV interview

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Sue Klebold, the mother of Columbine coward Dylan Klebold, is set to have an interview with Diane Sawyer aired om ABC in February of 2016. The date of the airing is set to coincide with the release of her book which I first wrote about here. The book is entitled “A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy.” All proceeds from the book will go to charity and mental health research.

I’ve said all I wanted to say about the book in my previous post however it seems that the interview is already being set up as an excuse fest with this quote from ABC…

Journals kept by Klebold, who was reportedly in a program for highly intellectual students and was his father’s chess partner, revealed that he had grown increasingly shy in his teenage years. He was bullied and had turned inward to journals.

I guess we have to go through this at least one more time. There is no evidence to indicate that Klebold or his scumbag buddy Eric Harris were ever bullied. Conversely there is plenty of evidence that they were the bullies themselves.

Too many news shows these days try to portray criminals as victims or falsely accused and a number of gullible viewers believe whatever is spouted from the mouths of talking heads which in turn is helping to lead to a society where no one is held responsible for their actions. As having said before that she has nothing to apologize for, Sue Klebold will be their champion.

The Columbine Basement Tapes have been destroyed

Former JeffCo. Sheriff Ted Mink
Former JeffCo. Sheriff Ted Mink

This story is actually two months old and I apologize for taking so long in posting it.

If you’ve followed anything about Columbine since that fateful day in 1999 you may have heard of the ‘Basement Tapes’. These were videos made by the Columbine cowards Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold that not only contained their ego-maniacal rantings but also detailed their plans for the school. For years the tapes had only been seen by law enforcement and a handful of journalists. If the tapes had ever been made public some like myself believe that they could be studied to see how school shootings like Columbine could be prevented. Instead former Jefferson County Sheriff Ted Mink had the tapes destroyed, in 2011 without any media notification.

Sheriff Mink is of the mind that the tapes would only generate more copycats. While the tapes would be masturbatory fodder for the columbiners and mutants the secrecy of the tapes have not prevented copycat shootings. Red Lake, NIU, and Virginia Tech were all nothing more than copycat shootings since all of the gunmen had some bizarre case of hero-worship for Harris and Klebold. The mystery of what exactly was on the tapes has probably caused the ‘legend’ of Harris and Klebold to grow since the tapes are open to speculation and their followers have some very active imaginations.

This also follows a familiar tactic of keep information about the shooters out of the public hands by government officials. Back in 2008 U.S. District Judge Lewis T. Babcock ordered the depositions given by the gunmen’s parents in a wrongful death lawsuit be sealed in the National Archives for 20 years. I wouldn’t call this a conspiracy but it does feel like something is being intentionally hidden and not just to prevent copycats. Unfortunately we won’t have an inkling of what that is for another 13 years.

The bullied school shooter myth still needs busting even in 2014

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In the wake of the Marysville-Pilchuck High School shooting Vox.com looked into the bullied school shooter stereotype. What did they come up with? I think the title of the article kind of gives it away.

“Think school shooters are usually bullied and unpopular? You’re wrong.”

It makes me wonder if people will read it with an open mind or just dismiss it so they can continue to live with a comfortable lie.

Anyway, friend of the site, and Columbine author, Dave Cullen was interviewed for the article and once again brought his A-game to the discussion when it came to discussing the Columbine cowards.

“Everybody knows who commits these kind of murders. They’re outcasts, typically goth or other sorts of kids that dress funny and live on the fringes,” Cullen said. “That’s well known. It’s also wrong.”

“It’s complete nonsense,” Cullen said. Both shooters had a healthy circle of friends. Their social calendars, which were released to the public, were “packed.” They went bowling every Friday, and they typically occupied four lanes — enough for 16 people.

There’s also “no compelling evidence,” Cullen explained, that the shooters were bullied more than anyone else or that bullying drove them to the shootings. “We have their journals and videos,” Cullen said, adding that they “never mention bullying” directed at the shooters.

The article goes on to state that depression and mental illness are the main causes of school shootings. It was suggested that schools should hand out questionnaires to students to monitor for signs of depression. I’m afraid that while it may assist in getting some kids some help there are definite flaws by doing this. The first that a lot of kids with problems at home will lie so their parents won’t be notified by the school. Another problem is that any kid with depression will be labeled a potential school shooter and that doesn’t help anyone. Lastly, I don’t want to see depression become an excuse at trial for criminal behavior like bullying and Asperger’s have become in the years since Columbine.

Getting back to the bullying aspect I also wanted to add that this article is a great example of how school shootings have actually done a disservice to the victims of bullying. As I’ve said before now people are more concerned about finding the next shooter than actually doing anything about bullying.

ABC News gets the Columbine effect right, then gets it very wrong

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Please watch the following video from ABC News in its entirety. You can also watch it at their website.

This was a segment by correspondent Pierre Thomas for ABC News’ This Week With George Stephanopoulos. I thought Mr. Thomas did a great job at first discussing the copycat shootings that were inspired by Columbine. It said all the right things without glorifying the guilty. I greatly appreciated how it was pointed out that a lot of the shootings had to deal with mental illness. I wish they would have said something to make seeking mental health treatment less stigmatized but it’s a start. Then at about the 4:12 mark it goes completely off the rails.

At that point Mr. Thomas interviews one Dillon Cossey. Cossey pleaded guilty in 2007 to plotting an attack against Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School at the age of 14. At this point in the interview the bullying trope is brought out. It’s like there’s a mandate for all American media that if you’re talking about school shootings you have to mention bullying in the piece whether it’s factual or not. If Cossey was bullied it didn’t happen at the school he was attending at the time because Cossey was being home-schooled at the time of his arrest.

Another thing that should have been brought up about how to stop some of these shootings is parenting. I would say just about all the shootings that were committed by juveniles could have been prevented if the parents just paid closer attention to their kids, stopped trying to be their friend instead of their parent, and having a modicum of common sense. If your kid has an unhealthy obsession with mass murderers it’s not ‘just a phase’. It means they are in need of psychiatric help. As an example of what not to do we’ll go back to Dillon Cossey. His parents were both arrested after his arrest because they were the ones who bought him a .22-caliber handgun, a .22-caliber rifle and a 9-millimeter semiautomatic rifle.

You get an E for effort ABC News. Maybe next time how about a little more fact checking and a little less dissemination of misinformation?