I had to walk home the long way today because someone got shot. Bayswater is apparently now the Hood.
(They weren’t actually badly injured – it’s not even entirely sure that they were shot by a gun at this point, as opposed to maybe a slingshot, or a small meteorite)
If you’ve got a strong stomach, have a look at this Jezebel article concerning the ‘community’ that produced UCSB shooter Elliot Rodger.
Lessons From a Day Spent With the UCSB Shooter’s Awful Friends
Reading it over is actually pretty terrifying for me, because I can see how easily I could have ended up as one of those sociopaths. I’m an aspie – an aspie who wasn’t diagnosed until in my late 20s – and as a consequence have always had massive problems with relationships, socialising and sex. I can see the kind of thought processes these guys are operating, and in a lot of ways they’re startlingly similar to the way I thought as a teenager and young adult.
The big difference is that where these individuals turn their rejection and rage outwards against society and women (mostly at women, 99% at women) I turned mine inwards. I reached the conclusion that there was something horribly wrong, not with society, but with me, and that I deserved to be shunned and neglected (as I saw it). I was the deformed monster lurking beneath the Opera House, the misbegotten construct fleeing to the Old Mill, or the cancer hiding amongst the healthy cells and it was right and just that society try to destroy me, for the crime of being broken.
It was a pretty horrible way to exist. It’s little short of a miracle that I didn’t end up self harming. I think my (at the time) strong religious faith went a long way to helping me hold it together. I found Isaiah 53 (“a man of sorrows acquainted with grief”) comforting – if not necessarily in a spiritual way then in the way it framed the idea of suffering and rejection as something grand, poetic and meaningful.
Nowdays – years later – I’m slowly getting better. It’s a long term job, you don’t just snap out of years of delusional, destructive thinking overnight. I still have plenty of issues, but on reading the kind of sick thought that can result from my kind of social dysfunction I can only be thankful that I *did* turn my anger and confusion inwards. I’d rather suffer a lifetime of pain and self loathing that burn out in a short lived blaze of hatred and violence, anyday.
Here’s some otters playing with a keyboard…