Saturday, October 30, 2010

12 year old plots to kill students, family...

I just found this article moments ago, and this one. The articles talk of a 12 year old boy who plotted the murder of at least 20 of his fellow middle school students. He had guns and a list with names of kids he wanted to kill, and was probably just waiting for the right moment. Incredibly, parents of the targets on the list now play victim in the media. The boy's plot was discovered after he allegedly 'bullied' girls on the bus to school, and threatened to kill. But what drives a young boy to a point where he wants to kill other kids? That's the question people should ask, instead of seeing the boy as a deranged potential killer. Surely, this boy has psychological problems, and his home situation is probably not ideal, but this boy is also clearly a victim.

If a kid plans to kill a whole list of other kids it's not because he thinks these kids wear the wrong clothes, or that he just doesn't like them. It is because he was systematically being bullied. This boy was driven to a point where he could only see one way out of his predicament, and that was by killing his tormentors. The sad part is that now he's being portrayed in the media as an aggressor, while he was the victim for a long time. I don't know this boy, and I just read a a few articles about him, but from the elements I take out of these news articles I can understand his story.

I wrote it.

Just scroll down, and you'll understand that I know what I'm talking about. My novel PAINTING BY NUMBERS is this exact story. While Seth, the protagonist in Painting by numbers is two years older, I'm fairly certain that he and the boy from Carnation WA have a lot in common. Of course, Seth has some additional problems that are his own, but I read the Carnation boy was living with an adoptive mother and recently tried to strangle his 12 year old sister, so I think it's safe to conclude that he was having some serious problems at home as well. I wrote Painting by numbers partly from my own experiences with bullying, and I have been at a point where I just wanted to kill all my tormentors as well. I never got that far, but I can understand someone who does.

If people would just take a closer look at this boy and his motivations, they may see what was really going on. In the last few weeks bullying has been getting a lot of media attention, but apparently not enough. If schools would pay more attention to bullying, and systematically pick out the bullies and educate them, some kids may possible be stopped from committing suicide, and boys like the one in Carnation WA won't be driven to make hit lists of their bullies, and being labeled as aggressors instead of as victims.

What is even more sad is that this boy is in a juvenile detention center right now, instead of a specialized psychological treatment facility. I'm fairly certain the boy has been put on medication, but I wonder what impact juvy hall will have on him. Surely it won't help getting him back on track. Since he hasn't committed any actual crimes, he will probably soon be released, and then what? I fear that if this boy is not properly treated by experts rather than the community shrink, this is not the last time we will hear of him.

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