Why the hell?


So apparently I have to void that entry.

They say it was a Korean guy who did the shootings, so you have to take back what you said.  Korean TV news said so.  He went to “study abroad” when he was in 2nd grade.  Which, to me, looks suspiciously like “move”.  US news confirmed Asian student.  Koreans say Korean so I’m willing to believe.


–A reliable source, on the record on Gmail chat.



Today I’m not going to say anything critical about Korea. While they, as a population, may hit their students, exaggerate, IMO, the importance of image, age, and social status, and not deal well with minority populations or people of mixed Korean heritage, I cannot imagine someone walking into a college German class in Seoul with a handgun and shooting everyone before blasting himself in the face. Is there any other country in which mass violence is committed against its own citizens in the absence of extra-governmental armed militias, mass poverty, or starvation –serious civil strife– and with the frequency we see? I find myself thinking, “What is wrong with us?” Is it just my lens?

At lunch, Mrs. Jang asked if I had seen the news. I said at the end of our meal that it makes me angry sometimes how much violence we have for no reason.

Usually this goes the other way, it is I who respond to some fault in Korean society with, oh we have it in America too, or respond to a criticism of the US with, I’ve seen it here too. It’s my job to make them believe we are more common than different.

She said “Sometimes I am angry, too; we have in Korea. ”

I was, not touched, really, but interested that she would feel compelled to do the same thing; though maybe she was thinking of the high profile cases in which Americans committed violence against Koreans and was simply agreeing.


One comment

  1. everyone needs to graduate and move away from college campuses. I hate watching this shit on the news and then wondering if so and so is still alive.

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