I have searched the boards for any mention of this incident, and haven’t found any, so I am starting this thread as “breaking news”.
On October 17, an 18-year old student of the Polytechnic College in Kerch, Crimea, killed 15 fellow students and 5 teachers with a shotgun and a pipe bomb before killing himself. There were also 74 wounded.
The school in question is a high-school level institution for the formation of technicians (the perpetrator was a 4th year student following courses on becoming an electrician).
The perpetrator was said to have been a rather weird individual. When he was a kid he tortured cats for fun (an aircraft-sized red flag right there), and was described as being a loner who recently had become obsessed with explosives and had begun taking along a bayonet to school.
(And in the aftermath of this event, of course Putin would say that this was the fault of “globalization” and of deleterious Western influences. The only thing left was to say that the West was sapping and impurifying all of the precious bodily fluids of Russian citizens).
In any case, quick link with generic info on the event:
I don’t think that’s a fair assessment of what Putin was saying. From here:
That’s a far cry from saying the West is “sapping and impurifying all of the precious bodily fluids of Russian citizens”.
Which part of his quote to you disagree with?
That the recent phenomenon of school shootings began in the US.
That school shootings in the USA are reported and discussed across the world via the internet.
That, in certain places on the internet, school shootings are glorified and applauded.
That such places on the internet can be influential to mentally disturbed youth.
That humanity–Russia, the US and everyone–is not properly reacting to this growing crises.
Putin is a smart politician and his public speeches seem to show it. In my opinion, he uses double language in that he includes phrases and statements that allude to what his supporters want to hear (shootings in schools originate in the US) on the one hand and develops a discourse whose general, vague message his supporters will ignore because they know it is targeted to an international audience on the other hand. Meantime, Putin diverts people’s attention from other likely possibilities: (1) the Crimean college shooting may have nothing to do with any external influence, or (2) the Crimean college shooting may be the expression of the defective Russian ruling since they appropriated the peninsula, or (3) the Crimean college shooting may be the result of the combatant and militaristic activity in the region supported and fueled by Putin himself.
Well, as I mentioned, the “sapping and impurifying” thing, he didn’t say. However, that put aside…
…When Putin mentions “globalization” and “Western influence” (of whatever type), those are dog whistles for his base, referencing the narrative that the West is a corrupting influence that will go against everything that is good and pure. And his base laps this up. And, like all good dog whistles, they allow for plausible deniability if challenged on them. A bit like how, during Soviet times, “rootless cosmopolitans” was understood to mean “Jews” and was a term used to accuse them of lack of loyalty to the Soviet state.
My ex-wife is Russian. She is intelligent and well-educated. And last time we met, a couple of months ago, she said to me that she was real happy that our daughter stayed with her in Russia to be educated because Western education was, essentially, nothing but a factory to produce filthy, filthy homosexuals and people who have zero concept of proper values and dignity; nothing but hedonists and parasites.
My ex-mother in law is the one who basically goes all General Ripper in that respect, and she is definitely saying the “sap and impurify our precious bodily fluids” thing (well, obviously not with those words, but the intent is the same): she is a firm believer in conspiracy theories about the evil West poisoning defenceless Russians with tainted products (and that was why Saint Vladimir Putin imposed an embargo on EU agricultural products a few years ago). Oh, and my ex-mother in law is also an intelligent and well-educated person (she is an Engineer).
Those are the narratives that have been put forward from the Russian government, and lots of Russians (especially Putin supporters) lap it up. Putin’s words, I can guarantee you, will have been interpreted by his base in the sense mentioned above.
But it is nothing new, of course. Historically, Russia has ALWAYS been mightily suspicious of the West (also during Tsarist times), and has always felt that the West exerced some kind of corrupting influence that had to be avoided. Add to that that, traditionally, the Russian (and Soviet) government has always seen foreign policy and diplomacy as a zero-sum game, and this leads to really aggressive behavior in those spheres.
(My credentials: Ex-wife and daughter who live in Russia and are both Russian citizens, have been regularly visiting Russia at least once a year since 1993, lots of contacts there - of all types).
JoseB’s post is great, but I want to point out your summary is not good.
For one, you left out the entire thesis: that globalization is the cause of this shooting. You thus ignore that each of his posts are supporting that point.
So, for instance, he’s not saying “school shootings started in the US.” He’s saying “The reason for the shootings in Crimea are the shootings in the US.” He’s saying the reason for the shooting is that the US has taught people that shooters are some sort of heroes. He is saying the shooting is not Russia’s fault, but bad things are happening all over the world because of the US shootings.
I don’t agree with any of his message. The rest of the world are not having these problems, meaning what happened in the US is not causing shootings. And there is no way in which avoiding globalization would fix any of this. Reducing the amount of US media would not stop this.
Had he just said that it’s possible that the shootings in the US could have been an influence, I would not argue with that. But that is not what he was doing.
He was completely deflecting blame, saying that the primary cause was other countries like the US. It can’t be that Russia has some of the same problems, like easy access to guns and poor mental health. Nor could the economic conditions be to blame. Hell, not even “the killer was a psychopath.” Because he apparently only learned that from the US.
There are plenty of people who believe school shootings in the US are caused, in part, by violent video games, violent movies, glorification of violence on the internet etc. If that is true, then it follows that these same video games, movies, websites, etc. would be of similar influence to at risk youth in other countries if and only if those same video games, movies, websites, etc are available to that country through globalization.
I’m not saying he’s right, but the statement itself is not fallacious. Without taking into account Putin’s ideals, politics, and secret dog whistles, the statement is no more absurd than any of the thousands of political statements we’ve come accustomed to following school shootings.
Well, yea. That’s how it’s supposed to work. He presented an idea, and then backed it up with premises and logically consistent arguments. You should try it.
Denying the antecedent! Just because another country influenced by US media has not yet had (or never will have) a school shooting does not mean that it plays no part in school shootings. Can you not see the error of this argument? What do you believe is the cause of school shootings? Anything you could answer can be easily shown to exist in hundreds of thousands of schools across America and the world. Your argument is as silly as someone saying, “All these other schools don’t have a problem, meaning that isn’t causing school shootings”. Silly, right? They were bullied? Hawaii schools have bullies, but no school shootings (yet), so that can’t be the cause. It’s guns? Wyoming has lots of guns and little restrictions, but they haven’t had a school shooting. So it’s not the guns. It’s violent video games? North Dakota has violent video games, lots of guns, and school bullies—but no school shootings. So it can’t be any of those things. Right?