So far I haven’t written about the latest mass murder and the latest mass murderer, Elliot Rodger.
That’s because there is a certain repetitiveness to these horrific crimes and the reaction to them. A young and angry perpetrator. Blaming his crime on something else: the failure of the mental health care system, the parents, the police, the school, society. Propagation of his message by the internet, and then subsequently by the MSM. Speculation about whether he was on psychoactive drugs, and if so what role that might have played. The predicable cries for gun control—particularly far-fetched in this case because his first three murders were committed with knives, and some of his victims’ injuries were caused by him mowing them down with a car.
I repeat what I’ve often said before: it is easy to see, ex-post-facto, that something should have been done about this guy. There were certainly plenty of warning signs. But they only look unequivocal after the fact, not before, and everyone who presents with this kind of behavior cannot be locked up, and certainly can’t be locked up forever. Elliot Rodger looks to me (after seeing a couple of moments of the video he made, and reading about it) to have been a psychopath, and psychopaths cannot be deterred except by incarceration, and that can’t be done in the absence of a crime. It certainly can’t be done indefinitely in the absence of a heinous crime.
I only watched a couple of seconds of the Rodgers video; I stopped because it was almost unbearable to watch it. He emanated such pure evil I did not want to look on it any longer. But it’s a mistake to think Rodger seemed that way in his ordinary life prior to the killings. He probably had developed a false front, not entirely effective (many people seemed to sense he was deeply troubled) but effective enough to accomplish the goal of presenting himself as less dangerous than he actually was.
Unfortunately, I see no way to have prevented this.
[ADDENDUM: More here about the actions of the police in their prior interview with Rodger, and his parents frantic efforts to stop him in time. This is also of interest; it seems that one problem was that the parents’ intense concerns about earlier videos were not conveyed properly to the police who went to interview Rodger, and he was able to fool them. It also seems as though the suspicion at that time was that he was mostly suicidal rather than homicidal, and Rodger was very canny in dealing with them.]