Yesterday in Taft, California a 16-year-old student at Taft Union High School shot a classmate before being talked out of further violence by a teacher. Before I go on did this make much of a ripple in the national media yesterday? I was out of commission with flu and unless they start making internet toilets that you have to view through the bowl I was pretty much incommunicado yesterday. Not to mention it was hard sifting through the news on this one because mostly everything mentioned either Sandy Hook or assault weapons. More on that later. For once, I’m not going to link to any articles because the details seem to change every 15 minutes anyway but here’s what we supposedly know.
The 16-year-old shooter was supposedly a loner and outcast. By some reports, he would verbally go off about random things when nobody was talking to him. Other reports say that he was even talking about the shooting the day before it happened but no one took him seriously.
He entered a classroom and shot his victim in the chest with what reports believe to be a pump-action 12 gauge shotgun. Supposedly he fired off another shot that missed his intended second target. The teacher in the classroom, Ryan Heber, was able to talk the gunman into surrendering his weapon.
Most reports say that the victim was a football player who bullied the shooter. Don’t take that as gospel just yet. I’ve read reports that said the shooter called out his victim by name and other reports that said he was silent. The shooter may or may not have smirked when pulling the trigger. The victim may or may not have apologized for bullying the shooter after being shot. The names of the shooter and victim have not been released by police yet. Yes, they are out there but until the media or police release the names you will not see them here. The shooter may have been previously suspended for having a hit list.
The gun supposedly belonged to the shooter’s older brother and the shooter supposedly had additional shells on his person.
Noticed I used the word supposedly a lot and “reports said”. That’s because with most if not all school shootings incorrect information is usually disseminated to the masses first before any kind of real verification. Unfortunately, the first details no matter how factual or not are usually the ones that stick in the minds of most people even more than a decade later.
The other thing is you cannot even remotely compare this to Newtown. The only thing they have in common is that a shooting took place in a school. Other than that there is no comparison. You can’t paint all school shootings the same except for the fact that all school shooters are self-entitled cowards who can’t resolve their inadequacies without resorting to violence.