With the release, last week, of detailed report on the tragedy, the Sandy Hook shooting is back in the headlines. On December 20, 2012, 20 year old, Adam Lanza, shot his sleeping mother in the face four times, drove to the elementary school, slaughtered six women and 20 children, aged 6 and 7, then killed himself.
What drives boys and men to monstrosities, massacres, and mass murder?
The inordinately affluent, dysfunctional Lanza’s have been put under a microscope and the whole world should look thorough it. The Office of The Child Advocate, in Connecticut, said of Adam Lanza, “…. his severe and deteriorating internalized mental health problems… combined with an atypical preoccupation with violence… (and) access to deadly weapons… proved a recipe for mass murder.”
Millions of parents follow a formula hoping to create the next Mozart, Gretzky, Einstein, Fung…, but few are successful. Their children, hopefully, have, at least, learned discipline and developed a work ethic. If you want to make a mass murderer, however, get the Lanza’s cookbook and follow their recipe, to a tee.
Pitiful Adam Lanza was disadvantaged right out of the gate. Adam was on the autism spectrum, had OCD, anxiety, depression, he was anorexic, germaphobic, ostracized, and obsessed with violence. Perhaps, however, Adam’s biggest challenge were his parents.
With better circumstances, Adam Lanza, and his victims, may have been saved.
Raising Adam was challenging, no doubt, but his problems were exacerbated by home life. His father was distant, then absent, and his mother over-indulgent. Adam’s parents brought him to several specialists, hospitals, and schools. It seems they were looking for an instant cure, silver bullet, magic potion… to fix their son, which was impossible. Never did they follow through on therapy, or medication, always giving in to their obstinate, difficult boy.
Overly indulged children are not happy. They don’t know it, but children want, need, and crave structure, rules, order, and learning. Children thrive when they are challenged, encouraged, and taught that life is hard, but working harder sets you free.
There is no joy without discipline.
Adam Lanza, who got whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted it, was miserable.
Adam was born in 1992 and his parents separated in 2001, when he was nine. His father, Peter, a successful accountant, was living with his second wife in Manhattan, at the time of the massacre. When he died, Adam had not seen his father or older brother in years. Peter didn’t talk to his son, just sent money.
Adam lived with his mother, but, by the end, they, mostly, communicated via email. Adam didn’t go to school or work, he stayed in his basement all day, everyday, playing video games and researching massacres.
Had anyone taken an interest, they would have seen, easily, his dangerous rage. In school and at home, Adam wrote fantasy stories about murder and violence. In his bedroom, he spent years creating a 7 X 4 spreadsheet of hundreds of mass murders and the weapons used to commit them.
In the last months of his life, Adam’s only real human connection was going to a shooting range with his gun-loving mother. Nancy legally, wantonly, gratuitously, gluttonously purchased pistols, rifles, and ammunition; amassing a home arsenal Pablo Escobar would have admired.
Nancy allowed her profoundly disturbed, violent minded, angry, undisciplined child unfettered access to the weapons cache.
Adam was as proficient with real weapons as he was with video ones: in less than five minutes, he fired 156 bullets, in the school. All his victims, but two, were shot multiple times.
After two years of silence, Peter Lanza, Adam’s father, spoke to the New Yorker, in 2014.
It is easy to pity a man, who is wracked with guilt and shame. Peter Lanza wishes his son had never been born. Adam’s suicide tells us he wished likewise. Adam Lanza was also a well-armed, well- trained killer, dying to lash out.
Twenty sweet, little kids and six brave women, from Sandy Hook Elementary School, are dead.
Whose fault is that?
The Chicken Comes Home to Roost - by Kevin Somers
There was always a roof right over my head
I was well-dressed and sufficiently fed
But, my childhood was not exactly ideal
You brought me up as though I were veal
At that time in your history
I wasn’t, at all, a priority
I was displaced by a precious career…
It was power and money you, really, held dear
I came unto you at a terrible time
There were palms to grease and ladders to climb
So you bought me a gadget that looked like a gun
And taught me that slaughter is the best form of fun
I was left all alone like uncommon litter
With violent video games as my sitter
Tethered to screens, like a calf to a pole
I was dragged right into a dark violent hole
Before I was ten, I knew it was best
To put one in the brain after two in the chest
And you wonder why my mind is messed
I must say, dear Parents, I’m not impressed
Shooting, slashing, blasting, clashing, cutting, killing…
I learned that murder is awfully thrilling
I spent all my youth with a big blinking screen
It seems, looking back, entirely mean
You raised me up in a freaky war zone
I was saving the world, but all on my own
I killed and I killed and I killed some more
It was, I was taught, it was how I keep score
Day after night and night after day
I swivelled my thumbs and you called it play
My body went soft and my brain of no use
Quite clearly that was a form of abuse
The kids at my school call me a freak
They say I am awkward, useless, and weak
They speak of me often, with so much to say
But, it was you, dear Parents, who made me this way
You bought me a pistol, without a trifle
Then another, then a rifle
I’ve fallen in love with the cold, killing steel
No longer virtual, these things are real
I’m finally filled with requisite fuel
The rage and the means to shoot up a school
Mother and Father, from bad news to worst:
I am going to kill you two, first