I saw this video over the Christmas holiday, and I can’t forget it. I know one of the reasons I love water aerobics is that they play all this rock music of my generation, and it gets us working hard, some even sing along, belting out the lyrics, LLOOLLL, I’m sure we look ridiculous, but oh, we have a great time and it makes exercise time pass more quickly.
This video shows the dramatic effect familiar music has on Alzheimer’s patients, bringing them out of their fog, however briefly, and animating them once again:
“Guns don’t kill people – PEOPLE kill people” say our gun-totin’ friends, smiling smugly, like who can argue?
People using guns kill people more efficiently, i.e., they can kill more people, faster, before they are stopped. People with assault rifles can kill more people even more efficiently.
Who needs to be carrying these guns?
“We need them to protect ourselves!” our gun totin’ friends whine.
From whom? Have you ever needed to use your concealed weapon to protect yourself? No? Why do you think you need lethal protection?
Statistics show that people owning guns are more likely to be shot. People carrying guns are more likely to be shot. People with guns in the house are more likely to shoot someone they know, a family member or friend, than someone from whom they need protection.
Yes, people without access to guns who want to hurt someone can use a knife, or poison, or steal a gun, but the other methods of killing are slower, and likely to attract attention earlier than someone planning a massacre. Guns make killing more efficient. Assault weapons, outside the use of the military and the police, have no place, none at all. Assault weapons take the sport out of hunting. It’s like hunting on one of those private reserves with animals ‘salted’ to be killed. Everyone knows where they hang out; they don’t have a chance against the ego-driven “hunter” (she says with scorn) who wants the thrill of having shot a lion or an elephant. (oops. off topic)
The nation is heavy with hurt. Killing 20 little first graders is horrifying. It’s the slaughter of the innocents. The shooters had access to guns, some of the shooters BOUGHT their weapons legally, some stole them from friends or used guns owned by their parents. Guns kept in the house, or guns kept in the car. These shooters had easy access to guns.
Statistically, they are almost 100% male. If you read through the decades (DECADES . . . ) of entries, you can see it is almost always some kind of testosterone thing. Women have gotten a bad rap; it’s not estrogen that makes these shooters kill, it is TESTOSTERONE.
Here’s the record for school shootings in the United States, it started bad and it gets worse and worse. This is from Wikipedia. God bless the heavy hearts that compiled this sorry history.
History of School Shootings in the United States
The earliest known United States shooting to happen on school property was the Pontiac’s Rebellion school massacre on July 26, 1764, where four Lenape American Indians entered the schoolhouse near present-day Greencastle, Pennsylvania, shot and killed schoolmaster Enoch Brown, and killed nine or ten children (reports vary). Only three children survived.
November 2, 1853: Louisville, Kentucky A student, Matthew Ward, bought a self-cocking pistol in the morning, went to school and killed Schoolmaster Mr. Butler for excessively punishing his brother the day before. Even though he shot the Schoolmaster point blank in front of his classmates, he was acquitted.
An April 30, 1866 editorial in the New York Times argued against students carrying pistols, citing “…pistols being dropped on the floor at balls or being exploded in very inconvenient ways. A boy of 12 has his pantaloons made with a pistol pocket; and this at a boarding-school filled with boys, who, we suppose, do or wish to do the same thing. We would advise parents to look into it, and learn whether shooting is to be a part of the scholastic course which may be practiced on their boys; or else we advise them to see that their own boys are properly armed with the most approved and deadly-pistol, and that there may be an equal chance at least of their shooting as of being shot.”
June 8, 1867: New York City At Public School No. 18, a 13 year old lad brought a pistol loaded and capped, without the knowledge of his parents or school-teachers, and shot and injured a classmate.
 December 22, 1868: Chattanooga, Tennessee A boy who refused to be whipped and left school, returned, with his brother and a friend, the next day to seek revenge on his teacher. Not finding the teacher at the school, they continued to his house, where a gun battle rang out, leaving three dead. Only the brother survived.
March 9, 1873: Salisbury, Maryland After school as Miss Shockley was walking with four small children, she was approached by a Mr. Hall and shot. The Schoolmaster ran out, but she was dead instantly. Hall threw himself under a train that night.
May 24, 1879: Lancaster, New York As the carriage loaded with female students was pulling out of the school’s stables, Frank Shugart, a telegraph operator, shot and severely injured Mr. Carr, Superintendent of the stables.
March 6, 1884: Boston, Massachusetts As news of Jesse James reached the east coast, young kids started to act in the same manner. An article from the New York Times reads, Another “Jesse James” Gang – Word was brought to the Fifth Police Station to-night that a number of boys were using the Concord-street School-house for some unknown purpose, and a posse of officers was sent to investigate. The gang scattered at the approach of the police, and in their flight one drew a revolver and fired at Officer Rowan, without effect, however. William Nangle, age 14, and Sidney Duncan, age 12, were captured, but the other five or six escaped, among them the one who did the shooting. The boys refused to disclose the object of their meeting, but it is thought that another “Jesse James” organization has been broken up.
March 15, 1884: Gainesville, Georgia In the middle of the day, a group of very drunk Jackson County farmers left the Jug Tavern drinking and shooting their revolvers as they headed down the street driving people into their homes. As they approached the female academy, the girls fled the schoolyard into the school where the gang followed swearing and shooting, firing several rounds into the front door. No one was hurt.
July 4, 1886: Charleston, South Carolina During Sunday school, Emma Connelly shot and killed John Steedley for “circulating slanderous reports” about her, even though her brother publicly whipped him a few days earlier.
June 12, 1887: Cleveland, Tennessee Will Guess went to the school and fatally shot Miss Irene Fann, his little sister’s teacher, for whipping her the day before.
June 13, 1889: New Brunswick, New Jersey Charles Crawford upset over an argument with a school Trustee, went up to the window and fired a pistol into a crowded school room. The bullet lodged in the wall just above the teacher’s[vague] head.
The first known mass shooting in the U.S. where students were shot, was on April 9, 1891, when 70 year old, James Foster fired a shotgun at a group of students in the playground of St. Mary’s Parochial School, Newburgh, New York, causing minor injuries to several of the students.
 The majority of attacks during this time period by students on other students or teacher, usually involved stabbing with knives, or hitting with stones.
This section does not cite any references or sources. (August 2012)
There are very seldom reports of mass or multiple school shootings during the first three decades of the 20th Century, with the three most violent attacks on schools involving either arson or explosions.
February 26, 1902: Camargo, Illinois teacher Fletcher R. Barnett shot and killed another teacher, Eva C. Wiseman, in front of her class at a school near Camargo, Illinois. After shooting at a pupil who came to help Miss Wiseman and wounding himself in a failed suicide attempt he waited in the classroom until a group of farmers came to lynch him. He then ran out of the school building, grabbed a shotgun from one of the farmers and shot himself, before running away and leaping into a well where he finally drowned. The incident was likely sparked by Wiseman’s refusal to marry Barnett.
February 24, 1903: Inman, South Carolina Edward Foster, a 17-year-old student at Inman High school, was shot and fatally wounded by his teacher Reuben Pitts after he had jerked a rod from Pitts’ hands to resist punishment. According to the teacher, Foster struck the pistol Pitts had drawn to defend himself, thus causing its discharge. Pitts was later acquitted of murder.
October 10, 1906: Cleveland, Ohio Harry Smith shot and killed 22-year-old teacher Mary Shepard at South Euclid School after she had rejected him. Smith escaped and committed suicide in a barn near his home two hours later.
March 23, 1907: Carmi, Illinois George Nicholson shot and killed John Kurd at a schoolhouse outside of Carmi, Illinois during a school rehearsal. The motive for the shooting was Kurd making a disparaging remark about Nicholson’s daughter during her recital.
March 11, 1908: Boston, Massachusetts Elizabeth Bailey Hardee was shot to death by Sarah Chamberlain Weed at the Laurens School, a finishing school in Boston. Weed then turned the gun on herself and committed suicide.
April 15, 1908: Asheville, North Carolina Dr. C. O. Swinney shot and fatally wounded his 16-year-old daughter Nellie in a reception room at Normal and Collegiate Institute. He then committed suicide by shooting himself in the head.
February 12, 1909: San Francisco, California 10-year-old Dorothy Malakanoff was shot and killed by 49-year-old Demetri Tereaschinko as she arrived at her school in San Francisco. Tereaschinko then shot himself in a failed suicide attempt. Tereaschinko was reportedly upset that Malakanoff refused to elope with him.
January 10, 1912: Warrenville, Illinois Sylvester E. Adams shot and killed teacher Edith Smith after she rejected his advances. Adams then shot and killed himself. The incident took place in a schoolhouse about a mile outside of Warrenville after the students had been dismissed for the day.
March 27, 1919: Lodi Township, Michigan 19-year-old teacher Irma Casler was shot and killed in her classroom at Rentschler school in Lodi Township, Michigan by Robert Warner, apparently because she had rejected his advances.
April 2, 1921: Syracuse, New York Professor Holmes Beckwith shot and killed dean J. Herman Wharton in his office at Syracuse University before committing suicide.
February 15, 1927: Hempstead, New York James O’Donnell, 18-year-old senior at Hempstead High School, shot himself to death on the stage in the school’s auditorium. A suicide note stated that O’Donnell killed himself to lessen the financial burden on his family.
May 18, 1927: Bath, Michigan School treasurer Andrew Kehoe, after killing his wife and destroying his house and farm, blew up the Bath Consolidated School by detonating dynamite in the basement of the school, killing 38 people, mostly children. He then pulled up to the school in his Ford car, then set off a truck bomb, killing himself and four others. Only one shot was fired in order to detonate dynamite in the car. This was deadliest act of mass murder at a school in the United States.
May 22, 1930: Ringe, Minnesota Margaret Wegman, 20-year-old teacher at the local rural school, was shot and killed in the school by 24-year-old Douglas Petersen.
May 28, 1931: Duluth, Minnesota Katherine McMillen, 24-year-old teacher at the Howard Gensen rural school near Duluth, was accidentally shot and killed by a revolver brought to school by a pupil.
February 15, 1933: Downey, California Dr. Vernon Blythe shot and killed his wife Eleanor, as well as his 8-year old son Robert at Gallatin grammar school and committed suicide after firing three more shots at his other son Vernon. His wife, who had been a teacher at the school, had filed for divorce the week before.
September 14, 1934: Gill, Massachusetts. Headmaster Elliott Speer was murdered by a shotgun blast through the window of his study at Northfield Mount Hermon School. The crime was never solved.
March 27, 1935: Medora, North Dakota Emily Hartl, 24-year-old teacher at the Manlon school northwest of Medora, was shot and killed at the school by 28-year-old Harry McGill, a former suitor.
December 12, 1935: New York City, New York, Victor Koussow, a Russian laboratory worker at the School of Dental and Oral Surgery, shot Prof. Arthur Taylor Rowe, Prof. Paul B. Wiberg, and wounded Dr. William H. Crawford at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, before committing suicide.
April 27, 1936: Lincoln, Nebraska, Prof. John Weller shot and wounded Prof. Harry Kurz in a corridor of the University of Nebraska, apparently because of his impending dismissal at the end of the semester. After shooting Kurz Weller tried to escape, but was surrounded by police on the campus, whereupon he killed himself with a shot in the chest.
June 4, 1936: Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, Wesley Crow shot and killed his Lehigh University English instructor, C. Wesley Phy. Crow went to Phy’s office and demanded that Mr. Phy change his grade to a passing mark. Crow committed suicide after shooting Phy.
September 24, 1937: Toledo, Ohio 12-year-old Robert Snyder shot and wounded his principal, June Mapes, in her office at Arlington public school when she declined his request to call a classmate. He then fled the school grounds and shot and wounded himself.
This section does not cite any references or sources. (August 2012)
May 6, 1940: South Pasadena, California. After being removed as principal of South Pasadena Junior High School, Verlin Spencer shot six school officials, killing five, before attempting to commit suicide by shooting himself in the stomach.
May 23, 1940: New York City, New York Infuriated by a grievance, Matthew Gillespie, 62-year-old janitor at the junior school of the Dwight School for Girls, shot and critically wounded Mrs. Marshall Coxe, secretary of the junior school.
July 4, 1940: Valhalla, New York Angered by the refusal of his daughter, Melba, 15 years old, to leave a boarding school and return to his home, Joseph Moshell, 47, visited the school and shot and killed the girl.
September 12, 1940: Uniontown, Pennsylvania, 29-year-old teacher Carolyn Dellamea is shot to death inside her third grade classroom by 35-year-old William Kuhns. Kuhns then shot himself in the chest in a failed suicide attempt. Kuhns had reportedly been courting Dellamea for over a year but the relationship was ended when Dellamea discovered that Kuhns was already married.
October 2, 1942: New York City, New York “Erwin Goodman, 36-year-old mathematics teacher at William J. Gaynor Junior High School, was shot and killed in the school corridor by a youth.
February 23, 1943: Port Chester, NY Harry Wyman, 13-year-old, shot himself dead at the Harvey School, a boys’ preparatory school.
June 26, 1946: Brooklyn, New York A 15-year-old schoolboy who balked at turning over his pocket money to a gang of seven youths was shot in the chest at 11:30 A.M. in the basement of the Public School 147 annex of the Brooklyn High School for Automotive Trades.
November 24, 1946: New York City A 13-year-old student at St. Benedict’s Parochial School, shot and fatally wounded himself while sitting in an audience watching a school play.
February 5, 1947: Madill, Oklahoma 1st grade teacher Jessie Laird, 40-years-old, was shot to death in her classroom, during recess, by her estranged husband, Ellis Laird, 62-years-old. Laird then fatally shot himself.
December 24, 1948: New York City A 14-year-old boy was wounded fatally by an accidental shot from the .22-caliber rifle of a fellow-student … the youth was shot in the head when he chanced into range where Robert Ross, 17, of Brooklyn, was shooting at a target near a lake on the school property.
March 11, 1949: New York City A 16-year-old student at Stuyvesant High School was accidentally shot in the arm by a fellow student who was ‘showing off’ with a pistol in a classroom.
November 13, 1949: Columbus, Ohio, Ohio State University freshman James Heer grabbed a .45 caliber handgun from the room of a Delta Tau Delta fraternity brother and shot and killed his fraternity brother Jack McKeown, 21, an Ohio State senior.
This section does not cite any references or sources. (August 2012)
April 25, 1950: Peru, Nebraska Dr. William Nicholas, 48, president of Peru State College and Dr. Paul Maxwell, 56, education department head, were shot to death at their desks by Dr. Barney Baker, 54-year-old psychology professor. Baker was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot at his home on campus.
July 22, 1950: New York City, New York A 16-year-old boy was shot in the wrist and abdomen at the Public School 141 dance… during an argument with a former classmate.
March 12, 1951: Union Mills, North Carolina Professor W. E. Sweatt, superintendent and teacher at the Alexander school, was shot to death by students Billy Ray Powell, 16, and Hugh Justice, 19. The assailants had been reprimanded by Sweatt, and they waited for him as he locked his office door.
June 4, 1951: New York City, New York Carl Arch, a 50-year-old intruder to a girl’s gym class, was shot and killed by a police officer, at Manhattan’s Central Commercial High School.
November 27, 1951: New York City, New York David Brooks, a 15-year-old student, was fatally shot as fellow-pupils looked on in a grade school.
April 9, 1952: New York City, New York A 15-year-old boarding-school student shot a dean rather than relinquish pin-up pictures of girls in bathing suits.
July 14, 1952: New York City, New York Bayard Peakes walked in to the offices of the American Physical Society at Columbia University and shot and killed secretary Eileen Fahey with a .22 caliber pistol. Peakes was reportedly upset that the APS had rejected a pamphlet he had written.
September 3, 1952: in Lawrenceville, Illinois After 25-year-old Georgine Lyon ended her engagement with Charles Petrach, Petrach shot and killed Lyon in a classroom at Lawrenceville High School where she worked as a librarian.
November 20, 1952: New York City, New York “Rear Admiral E. E. Herrmann, 56 years old, superintendent of the Naval Postgraduate School, was found dead in his office with a bullet in his head. A service revolver was found by his side.
October 2, 1953: Chicago, Illinois 14-year-old Patrick Colletta was shot to death by 14-year-old Bernice Turner in a classroom of Kelly High School in Chicago. It was reported that after Turner refused to date Colletta he handed her the gun and dared her to pull the trigger, telling her that the gun was “only a toy.” A coroner’s jury later ruled that the shooting was an accident.
October 8, 1953: New York City, New York Larry Licitra, 17-year-old student at the Machine and Metal Trades High School, was shot and slightly wounded in the right shoulder in the lobby of the school while inspecting a handmade pistol owned by one of several students.
May 15, 1954: Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Putnam Davis Jr. was shot and killed during a fraternity house carnival at the Phi Delta Theta house at the University of North Carolina. William Joyner and Allen Long were shot and wounded during the exchange of gunfire in their fraternity bedroom. The incident took place after an all-night beer party. Mr. Long reported to the police that, while the three were drinking beer at 7 a.m., Davis pulled out a gun and started shooting with a gun he had obtained from the car of a former roommate.
January 11, 1955: Swarthmore, Pennsylvania After some of his dorm mates urinated on his mattress Bob Bechtel, a 20-year-old student at Swarthmore College, returned to his dorm with a shotgun and used it to shoot and kill fellow student Holmes Strozier.
May 4, 1956: in Prince George’s County, Maryland, 15-year-old student Billy Prevatte fatally shot one teacher and injured two others at Maryland Park Junior High School in Prince George’s County after he had been reprimanded from the school.
October 20, 1956: New York City, New York A junior high school student was wounded in the forearm yesterday by another student armed with a home-made weapon at Booker T. Washington Junior High School.
October 2, 1957: New York City, New York “A 16-year old student was shot in the leg yesterday by a 15-year old classmate at a city high school.”
March 4, 1958: New York City, New York “A 17-year-old student shot a boy in the Manual Training High School.”
May 1, 1958: Massapequa, New York A 15-year-old high school freshman was shot and killed by a classmate in a washroom of the Massapequa High School.
September 24, 1959: New York City, New York Twenty-seven men and boys and an arsenal were seized in the Bronx as the police headed off a gang war resulting from the fatal shooting of a teenager Monday at Morris High School.
This section does not cite any references or sources. (August 2012)
February 2, 1960: Hartford City, Indiana Principal Leonard Redden shot and killed two teachers with a shotgun at William Reed Elementary School in Hartford City, Indiana, before fleeing into a remote forest, where he committed suicide.
March 30, 1960 Alice, Texas Donna Dvorak, 14, brought a .22 target pistol to Dubose Junior High School, and fatally shot Bobby Whitford, 15, in their 9th grade science class. Dvorak believed Whitford posed a threat to one of her girlfriends.
June 7, 1960: Blaine, Minnesota Lester Betts, a 40-year-old mail-carrier, walked into the office of 33-year-old principal Carson Hammond and shot him to death with a 12-gauge shotgun.
January 4, 1961: Delmont, South Dakota Donald Kurtz, 17-year-old senior at Delmont High School, was fatally wounded by a .22 caliber bullet from a rifle. The shot, intended as a sound effect for a school play, hit him in the chest during a rehearsal just minutes before the play was to take place.
October 17, 1961: Denver, Colorado Tennyson Beard, 14, got into an argument with William Hachmeister, 15, at Morey Junior High School. During the argument Beard pulled out a .38 caliber revolver and shot at Hachmeister, wounding him. A stray bullet also struck Deborah Faith Humphrey, 14, who died from her gunshot wound.
August 1, 1966: University of Texas Massacre Charles Whitman age 25, climbed atop the observation deck at the University of Texas-Austin, and killed 16 people and wounded 31 during a 96-minute shooting rampage.
November 12, 1966: Mesa, Arizona Bob Smith, 18, took seven people hostage at Rose-Mar College of Beauty, a school for training beauticians. Smith ordered the hostages to lie down on the floor in a circle. He then proceeded to shoot them in the head with a 22-caliber pistol. Four women and a three-year-old girl died, one woman and a baby were injured but survived. Police arrested Smith after the massacre. Smith had reportedly admired Richard Speck and Charles Whitman.
January 30, 1968: Miami, Florida 16-year-old Blanche Ward shot and killed fellow student Linda Lipscomb, 16, with a .22-caliber pistol at Miami Jackson High School. According to Ward, she was threatened with a razor by Lipscomb during an argument over a fountain pen, and in the ensuing struggle the gun went off.
February 8, 1968: Orangeburg, South Carolina In the days leading up to February 8, 1968, about 200 mostly student protesters gathered on the campus of South Carolina State University, located in the city of Orangeburg, to protest the segregation of the All Star Bowling Lane. The bowling alley was owned by the late Harry K. Floyd. That night, students started a bonfire. As police attempted to put out the fire, an officer was injured by a thrown piece of banister. The police said they believed they were under attack by small weapons fire. The officers fired into the crowd, killing three young men: Samuel Hammond, Delano Middleton, and Henry Smith, and wounding twenty-seven others.
May 22, 1968: Miami, Florida Ernest Lee Grissom, a 15-year-old student at Drew Junior High School, shot and seriously wounded a teacher and a 13-year-old student after he had been reprimanded for causing a disturbance.
January 17, 1969: Los Angeles, California Two student members of the Black Panther Party, Alprentice Carter and John Huggins, were fatally shot during a student meeting inside Campbell Hall at the University of California, Los Angeles. The motive of the shooting regarded who would own the school’s African American Studies Center. The shooter, Claude Hubert, was never to be found but three other men were arrested in connection with the shooting.
November 19, 1969: Tomah, Wisconsin Principal Martin Mogensen was shot to death in his office by a 14-year-old boy armed with a 20 gauge shotgun.
The two most notable U.S. school shootings in the early 1970s were the Jackson State killings in May 1970, where police opened fire on the campus of Jackson State University and the Kent State shootings also in May 1970 where the National Guard opened fire on the campus of Kent State University.
The mid to late 1970s is considered the second most violent period in U.S. school history with a series of school shootings, most notably were;
December 30, 1974: Olean, New York, Anthony Barbaro, a 17-year-old Regents scholar armed with a rifle and shotgun, kills three adults and wounds 11 others at his high school, which was closed for the Christmas holiday. Barbaro was reportedly a loner who kept a diary describing several “battle plans” for his attack on the school.
February 12, 1976: At Detroit, Michigan’s Murray-Wright High School, about six intruders, who according to police looked like junior high students or younger, entered Murray Wright. According to the police they were searching for a student who had “stolen one of their girlfriends.” Two teachers discovered the intruders and asked them to leave. A security guard escorted the intruders down a hallway as about six Murray-Wright students followed the intruders as they were leaving. Outside of the door to the school, two of the intruders brandished guns and fired into the group., shooting and injuring five students. One of the injured was treated and released and the others were treated at Henry Ford Hospital.
June 12, 1976: California State University, Fullerton massacre, where the school’s custodian opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle in the library on the California State University, Fullerton campus killing 7, and wounding 2.
February 22, 1978: Lansing, Michigan After being taunted for his beliefs, a 15-year-old self-proclaimed Nazi, kills one student and wounds a second with a Luger pistol.
January 29, 1979: Grover Cleveland Elementary School Shootings, California, where 16-year-old Brenda Ann Spencer opened fire with a rifle, a gift from her father, killing 2 and wounding 9.
The early 1980s saw many single shootings, similar to the 1970s:
April 7, 1982: Littleton, Colorado, Deer Creek Jr. High School The gunman, 14-year-old Jason Rocha, was a student at Deer Creek. Rocha shot and killed 13 year-old Scott Darwin Michael.
The early 1980s saw only a few multi-victim school shootings, including:
January 20, 1983: St. Louis County, Missouri Parkway South Middle School The eighth grade shooter brought a blue duffel bag containing two pistols and a murder/suicide note that outlined his intention to kill the next person heard speaking ill of his older brother, Ken, to school. He entered a study hall classroom and opened fire, hitting two fellow students. The first victim was fatally shot in the stomach, and the second victim received a non-fatal gunshot wound to the abdomen. He said, “no one will ever call my brother a pussy again,” then committed suicide.
According to the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence, in the United States, from September 1986 to September 1990:
At least 71 people (65 students and 6 school employees) had been killed with guns at school.
201 were severely wounded by gun fire.
242 individuals were held hostage at gunpoint.
According to a 1987 survey conducted by the American School Health Association, ” 3% of the boys reported having carried a handgun to school at least once during the school year; 1% reported carrying a handgun on a daily basis.”
The late 1980s began to see a major increase in school shootings, including:
May 17, 1984: Des Moines, Iowa While students in a French class at Southeast Polk High School were taking a test in the hallway, a 17 year old boy shot and killed a 16 year old female student before firing a single shot into his own head, killing himself.
January 22, 1985: Goddard, Kansas James Alan Kearbey, 14, armed with a M1-A semiautomatic rifle and a .357-caliber handgun, killed principal Joseph McGee and wounded two teachers and a student at his Junior high school. He pleaded no contest and served seven years in a state youth facility.
September 4, 1985: Richmond, Virginia At the end of the second day of school at East End Middle School, a 12 year old boy shot a girl with his mother’s gun.
October 18, 1985: Detroit, Michigan During halftime of the homecoming football game between Northwestern High School and Murray-Wright High School, a boy who was in a fight earlier that day pulled out a shotgun and opened fire, injuring six students.
November 26, 1985: Spanaway, Washington A 14 year old girl shot two boys fatally, then killed herself with a .22-caliber rifle at Spanaway Junior High School.
December 9, 1985: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania At Archbishop Ryan High School for Boys, a 22 year old Mental health patient took 6 students hostage with what ended up being a starter pistol. No one was hurt in the ordeal.
December 10, 1985: Portland, Connecticut At Portland Junior High School, the Principal was having a heated discussion with a 13 year old male eighth grader when he locked the boy inside an office. The student then pulled out a 9mm firearm and opened fire. The bullet shattered the glass door and struck the left forearm of the secretary, and the glass injured the Principal. The boy fled for the 2nd floor, where he shot a janitor in the head. The boy then took a seventh grader hostage. The boy’s father and another family member came to the school and talked to him over the intercom system. After 45 minutes, he tossed the gun out a school window and was taken into custody.
May 16, 1986: The Cokeville Elementary School hostage crisis In a ransom scheme, David and Doris Young, both in their forties, took 150 students and teachers hostage. Their demand for $300 million dollars came to an abrupt end when Doris accidentally set off a bomb, killing herself and injuring 78 students and teachers. David wounded John Miller, a teacher who was trying to flee, then killed himself.
December 5, 1986: Fergus High School Lewistown, Montana A student shot and killed a substitute teacher in a classroom at his high school, then wounded a vice principal and two classmates. The 14-year-old student, who was armed with a large-caliber revolver, was arrested at his home after his parents turned him over to police following the 1:22 p.m. shootings at Fergus High School
March 2, 1987: De Kalb, Missouri Honours student Nathan Ferris, 12, killed a classmate and then himself.
April 16, 1987: a student at Detroit, Michigan’s Murray-Wright High School entered the school parking lot and shot 17-year old Chester Jackson, a junior running back, in the head, killing him. He attacker went into the gymnasium and shot 18-year old Damon Matthews, a basketball player, in the face. Tomeka Turner, an 18-year old, was wounded. Risen said that Turner’s injuries occurred “apparently in the school’s corridors as the attacker fled the building.”
December 16, 1987: Mayde Creek High School near Katy, Texas A 15-year-old boy, Ramesh D. Tumalad, apparently despondent over love, shot himself to death in his Algebra class as his classmates looked on. The girl with whom he was having romantic problems was among those in the class. The shooting occurred about 10 a.m.; the teacher was standing near the door taking attendance when Ramesh, seated in the rear of room, shot himself. There were about 25 pupils in the class. 
May 20, 1988: Winnetka, Illinois 30 year old Laurie Dann shot and killed one elementary school student and wounded five others, then took a family hostage and shot a man before killing herself.
September 26, 1988: Greenwood, South Carolina In the cafeteria of the Oakland Elementary School 19 year-old James William Wilson Jr., shot and killed Shequilla Bradley, 8 and wounded eight other children with a 9-round .22 caliber pistol. He went into the girls restroom to reload where he was attacked by Kat Finkbeiner, a Physical Education teacher. James shot her in the hand and mouth. He then entered 3rd grade classroom and wounded six more students.
December 16, 1988: Virginia Beach, Virginia Nicholas Elliott, 15, opened fire with a SWD Cobray M-11 semiautomatic pistol on his teachers at the Atlantic Shores Christian School. His first shots struck teacher Karen Farley in the arm; when she went down he killed her at point blank range. Nicholas then injured Sam Marino. He turned the Cobray toward his classmates, but the gun jammed and he was quickly subdued by M. Hutchinson Matteson, a teacher, before he could fire another round.
January 17, 1989: Cleveland School massacre of Stockton, California where 5 school children were killed and 30 wounded by a single gunman firing over 100 rounds into a schoolyard from an AK-47, in which the perpetrator later took his life.
From the late 1980s to the early 1990s, the United States saw a sharp increase in guns and gun violence in the schools. According to a survey conducted by The Harvard School of Public Health, “15% [of students surveyed] said that they had carried a handgun on their person in the past 30 days, and 4% said that they had taken a handgun to school in the past year,” a sharp increase from just five years earlier. By 1993, the United States saw one of the most violent periods in school shooting incidences.
May 1, 1992: Olivehurst, California Eric Houston, 20, killed four people and wounded 10 in an armed siege at his former high school. Prosecutors said the attack was in retribution for a failing grade.
According to the National School Safety Center, since the 1992-1993 U.S. school year there has been a significant decline in school-associated violent deaths (deaths on private or public school property for kindergarten through grade 12 and resulting from schools functions or activities):
1992–1993 (44 Homicides and 55 Deaths resulting from school shootings in the U.S.)
1993–1994 (42 Homicides and 51 Deaths resulting from school shootings in the U.S.)
1994–1995 (17 Homicides and 20 Deaths resulting from school shootings in the U.S.)
1995–1996 (29 Homicides and 35 Deaths resulting from school shootings in the U.S.)
1996–1997 (23 Homicides and 25 Deaths resulting from school shootings in the U.S.)
1997–1998 (35 Homicides and 40 Deaths resulting from school shootings in the U.S.)
1998–1999 (25 Homicides from school shootings in the U.S.)
1999–2000 (25 Homicides from school shootings in the U.S.)
According to the U.S. Department of Education, in the 1998-1999 School Year, 3,523 students (57% High School, 33% Junior High, 10% Elementary) were expelled for bringing a firearm to school.
The late 1990s started to see a major reduction in gun related school violence, but was still plagued with multiple victim shootings including;
January 12, 1995: Seattle Washington A student left school during the day and returned with his grandfather’s 9mm. He wounded two students. The incident is portrayed in the documentary Cease Fire.
October 12, 1995: Blackville, South Carolina A suspended student shot two math teachers with a .32 caliber revolver.
November 15, 1995: Lynnville, Tennessee A 17-year-old boy shot and killed a student and teacher with a .22 rifle.
February 2, 1996: Moses Lake, Washington Two students and one teacher killed, one other wounded when 14-year-old Barry Loukaitis opened fire on his algebra class.
February 19, 1997: Bethel, Alaska Principal and one student killed, two others wounded by Evan Ramsey, 16.
October 1, 1997: Pearl, Mississippi Two students killed and seven wounded by Luke Woodham, 16, who was also accused of killing his mother. He and his friends were said to be outcasts who worshiped Satan.
November 27, 1997: West Palm Beach, Florida Conniston Middle School 14-year-old John Kamel was fatally shot in the chest at 8:40 a.m. outside school on a sidewalk by 14-year-old Tronneal Mangum after an argument over an Adidas watch that Mangum had taken from Kamel.
December 1, 1997: West Paducah, Kentucky Three students killed, five wounded by Michael Carneal, 14, as they participated in a prayer circle at Heath High School.
December 15, 1997: Stamps, Arkansas Two students wounded. Colt Todd, 14, was hiding in the woods when he shot the students as they stood in the parking lot
March 24, 1998: Jonesboro, Arkansas Four students and one teacher killed, ten others wounded outside as Westside Middle School emptied during a false fire alarm. Mitchell Johnson, 13, and Andrew Golden, 11, shot at their classmates and teachers from the woods
April 24, 1998: Edinboro, Pennsylvania One teacher, John Gillette, was killed and two students wounded at a dance at James W. Parker Middle School. Andrew Wurst, 14, was charged.
May 21, 1998: Springfield, Oregon Two students killed, 22 others wounded in the cafeteria at Thurston High School by 15-year-old Kip Kinkel. Kinkel had been arrested and released a day earlier for bringing a gun to school. His parents were later found dead at home, shot to death by their son
June 15, 1998: Richmond, Virginia One teacher and one guidance counselor wounded by a 14-year-old boy in the school hallway
December 10, 1998: Detroit, Michigan One professor killed by a graduate student. 
April 20, 1999: Littleton, Colorado 15 students (including 2 shooters) and one teacher killed, 27 others wounded at Columbine High School. Eric Harris, 18, and Dylan Klebold, 17, had plotted for a year to kill at least 500 and blow up their school. At the end of their hour-long rampage, they turned their guns on themselves.
May 20, 1999: Conyers, Georgia Six students injured at Heritage High School by Thomas Solomon, 15, who was reportedly depressed after breaking up with his girlfriend
February 29, 2000: Unidentified 6-year-old offender in Michigan school shooting. 1 student fatality.
May 26, 2000: Lake Worth, Florida Lake Worth Middle School Florida teacher Barry Grunow was fatally shot by his student, 13-year-old Nathaniel Brazill, who had returned to school after being sent home at 1 p.m. by the assistant principal for throwing water balloons. Brazill returned to school on his bike with a 5 inch Raven and four bullets stolen from his grandfather the week before. Brazill was an honor student. Grunow was a popular teacher and Brazill’s favorite.
August 28, 2000: University of Arkansas shooting at Fayetteville, Arkansas 2 student fatalities.
September 26, 2000: Darrel Johnson, 13, offender in Louisiana school shooting with 1 student fatality.
March 5, 2001: Charles Andrew William, age 15, offender in California school shooting, 15 wounded 2 of which died.
March 30, 2001: Donald R. Burt Jr., age 18, offender in Indiana school shooting with 1 student fatality.
September 24, 2003: John Jason McLaughlin, age 15, offender in Minnesota school shooting with 2 student fatalities.
February 2, 2004: Unidentified offender in Washington, DC school shooting with 1 student fatality.
May 7, 2004: Unidentified 17 year old offender in Maryland school shooting with 1 student fatality.
March 21, 2005: Jeff Weise, 16 year old offender in Minnesota school shooting. Fatalities include 1 teacher, 5 students, 1 security guard, 2 relatives.
November 8, 2005: Kenny Bartley, age 15, offender in Tennessee school shooting with 1 principal fatality.
October 6, 2006: Charles Carl Roberts IV, a 32 year old a milk truck driver, murdered five Amish girls and injured five others before killing himself in an Amish school in the hamlet of Nickel Mines, in Bart Township, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.
April 16, 2007: Seung-Hui Cho, age 23, offender in Virginia Tech University shooting. 32 students and faculty were killed, along with another 17 students and faculty injured in two separate attacks on the same day.
Main article: Virginia Tech Massacre
February 27, 2012: (Chardon High School shooting) T.J. Lane, 17, took a .22-caliber pistol and a knife to Chardon High School and fired 10 shots at a group of students sitting at a cafeteria table, killing 3 and wounding 2.
August 27, 2012: Baltimore, Maryland Robert Gladden, 15, allegedly took a double barrel shotgun to Perry Hall High School and shot a 17 year old senior with Down syndrome in the lower back.
September 26, 2012: Stillwater, Oklahoma Cade Poulos, 13, shot himself in the head right before classes started at Stillwater Junior High School.
November 30, 2012: Christopher Krumm, age 25, offender in Wyoming school shooting with bow and arrow, 1 teacher, 1 relative and self.
December 14, 2012 (Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting) Adam Lanza, age 20, killed 20 children and 7 adults – including his mother who worked at the school – before committing suicide.
It’s COLD this morning, 42°F, 5°C, and I have donned my long pink flannel nightgown. I grew up in flannel nightgowns, which are not very attractive, but they are nice and warm. When they are brand new, they are too hot, my current one is about half-old, and I have one that I know I need to part with – it is so thin it tears at the slightest encouragement – but I love them when they get old and thin, LOL!
Once I make the leap to scrap one of these trusty flannel nightgowns, they are great for polishing silver. I know, I know, who polishes silver anymore? My sister Big Diamond says she puts her silver in the dishwasher, and uses it every day because people just don’t entertain formally as we once did.
Living in a place that’s warm most of the time, my flannel nightgowns don’t get a lot of wear and are lasting a lot longer than they used to. Ditto all my beautiful winter clothes. Vanity, vanity, I spent money of beautiful wools in Germany, Austria and England for hard winters back in Edmonds, WA, and now I have a closet full of beautiful winter clothes that I rarely get a chance to wear. Today, I can pull out an old friend and wear it!
It is a nice, cool, wonderful day in late October, and today I am going to make the annual fruitcakes with my Mom’s old recipe. I always set a target date of 31 October, and try to make them somewhere in that week so they will have time to mellow in the refrigerator.
The recipe is my Mother’s, although she says she barely recognizes the result. I can remember as a little girl in Alaska sitting at the kitchen table and cutting dates with scissors, taking the seeds out and cutting the rest into pieces, and then the prunes. For a long time I was not fond of dates or prunes, LOL! They were STICKY!
Now, dates and prunes come in packets already pitted, and you can even buy date pieces (I don’t) so you don’t have to cut them up. The Cuisinart does a great job, makes all that cutting into small pieces a 10 second task. It takes longer to load and clean the Cuisinart than it takes to chop the dates and prunes.
I watch the stores for the candied cherries and citron, and use a lot. After all, it’s supposed to be a FRUITcake, isn’t it? The first one is ready by Thanksgiving. I make a few larger ones to use during the holidays, and several smaller ones to give as gifts, but only to people who really like fruitcake and won’t use it as a doorstop. They are dense, and heavy as bricks, LOL.
Yesterday, AdventureMan brought home a couple of his friends from the garden club. Wouldn’t you know, I had just poured a bottle of brandy over the raisins and microwaved them to soak overnight, so the raisins in the fruit cake would be plump and tasty. As they all walked in, the house reeked of brandy. I could imagine them wondering if Adventureman’s wife was hitting the bottle that early in the day. Not only was the sun not over the yardarm, but wasn’t even near.
I hope to have them all baked and wrapped and stored by tonight.
UPDATE: Mission accomplished
From the bone chilliing 47 degrees mid-day on my arrival, the temperatures in Seattle flew up up and up. By Sunday, the American Mother’s Day, the temperatures were up 30 something degrees, in the mid to high 70′s, and Monday and Tuesday were the same. Good thing we got most of the heavy sorting and tossing andhauling done during the beautiful, but cooler weather before the weekend.
We had a lovely Mother’s Day, Mom got to sit out in the sun, under a huge umbrella, got to play with her great grandchildren, had all her children surrounding her. It was a gorgeous sunny day in a beautiful setting. We all had a lot of fun.
To add icing to the cake, I had the great luxury of time with my best friend from college, time to sit around and catch up, philosophize, all the things we did before husbands and children came along. Now we have as much to talk about as ever, and the great luxury of time in this trip to get to know all the little things, too. What a great blessing. Back to Pensacola, and gearing up for the next big trip!
I found this article on the National Public Radio Health Page; with the title Why a Teen Who Talks Back may have a Bright Future. It has to do with teaching your teen to talk problems through confidently; researchers found teens who could express themselves confidently had a greater likelihood of turning down offers of illegal drugs or behaviors.
It is interesting to me, too, that the Dutch who had the courage to shelter the Jews during the Holocaust were those who had learned to think independently as teenagers.
If you’re the parent of a teenager, you likely find yourself routinely embroiled in disputes with your child. Those disputes are the symbol of teen developmental separation from parents.
It’s a vital part of growing up, but it can be extraordinarily wearing on parents. Now researchers suggest that those spats can be tamed and, in the process, provide a lifelong benefit to children.
Researchers from the University of Virginia recently published their findings in the journal Child Development. Psychologist Joseph P. Allen headed the study.
Allen says almost all parents and teenagers argue. But it’s the quality of the arguments that makes all the difference.
“We tell parents to think of those arguments not as nuisance but as a critical training ground,” he says. Such arguments, he says, are actually mini life lessons in how to disagree — a necessary skill later on in life with partners, friends and colleagues on the job.
Teens should be rewarded when arguing calmly and persuasively and not when they indulge in yelling, whining, threats or insults, he says.
In Allen’s study, 157 13-year-olds were videotaped describing their biggest disagreement with their parents. The most common arguments were over grades, chores, money and friends. The tape was then played for both parent and teen.
“Parents reacted in a whole variety of ways. Some of them laughed uncomfortably; some rolled their eyes; and a number of them dove right in and said, ‘OK, let’s talk about this,’” he says.
It was the parents who said wanted to talk who were on the right track, says Allen. “We found that what a teen learned in handling these kinds of disagreements with their parents was exactly what they took into their peer world,” with all its pressures to conform to risky behavior like drugs and alcohol.
Allen interviewed the teens again at ages 15 and 16. “The teens who learned to be calm and confident and persuasive with their parents acted the same way when they were with their peers,” he says. They were able to confidently disagree, saying ‘no’ when offered alcohol or drugs. In fact, they were 40 percent more likely to say ‘no’ than kids who didn’t argue with their parents.
For other kids, it was an entirely different story. “They would back down right away,” says Allen, saying they felt it pointless to argue with their parents. This kind of passivity was taken directly into peer groups, where these teens were more likely to acquiesce when offered drugs or alcohol. “These were the teens we worried about,” he says.
Bottom line: Effective arguing acted as something of an inoculation against negative peer pressure. Kids who felt confident to express themselves to their parents also felt confident being honest with their friends.
So, ironically the best thing parents can do is help their teenager argue more effectively. For this, Allen offers one word: listen.
In the study, when parents listened to their kids, their kids listened back. They didn’t necessarily always agree, he says. But if one or the other made a good point, they would acknowledge that point. “They weren’t just trying to fight each other at every step and wear each other down. They were really trying to persuade the other person.”
Acceptable argument might go something like this: ‘How about if my curfew’s a half hour later but I agree that I’ll text you or I’ll agree that I’ll stay in certain places and you’ll know where I’ll be; or how about I prove to you I can handle it for three weeks before we make a final decision about it.”
Again, parents won’t necessarily agree. But “they’ll get across the message that they take their kids point of view seriously and honestly consider what they have to say,” Allen says.
Child psychologist Richard Weissbourd says the findings bolster earlier research that finds that “parents who really respect their kids’ thinking and their kids’ input are much more likely to have kids who end up being independent thinkers and who are able to resist peer groups.”
Weissbourd points to one dramatic study that analyzed parental relationships of Dutch citizens who ended up protecting Jews during World War II. They were parents who encouraged independent thinking, even if it differed from their own.
So the next time your teenager huffs and puffs and starts to argue, you might just step back for a minute, take a breath yourself, and try to listen. It may be one of the best lessons you teach your child.
The Tiger’s Wife was the perfect book to get me from Pensacola to Seattle, and through the Atlanta airport, full of bustle on a Sunday, packed flights, no quiet, no privacy. Thank God for a good, engrossing book, that takes you totally out of where you are to a world where things are not always what they seem.
The book is set in an unnamed country in East Europe which has just come out of a war, and the main character and her best friend are en route across a border which did not exist before the war, on an aid mission to immunize children who were once neighbors, and are now in a different country.
The primary relationship in the book is the bond between a young girl and her grandfather, and the stories he tells her as they walk up to the zoo, the Jungle Book he reads to her as they visit the animals, and the stories she finds for herself as she participates in the post-war rebuilding. It is a fascinating book because what she is writing about is not always what she is really writing about; the stories and legends and experiences are metaphors for another reality and a life lesson.
I don’t want you to think that this is one of the mindless airport books I sometimes tell you about. If it were, I would tell you “this is not great literature; this is an airport read.” Not this book. This book is literature. This book has meaning, and events you will think about and talk over with other readers long after you have finished the book.
In the back of The Tiger’s Wife is an interview in which one of my favorite new authors, Jennifer Egan (A Visit From the Good Squad) interviews Tea Obreht about her writing process, her life, her vision, etc. Fascinating reading, too, and also reader’s guide questions help you see things you might need to see and might otherwise miss.