What caused today's culture of violence & death?

First published in June 1999, this article is just as relevant and vital today.  

The Real Makers of Lethal Weapons Are in Our Schools

By Servando Gonzalez

Author of The Secret Fidel Castro: Deconstructing the Symbol and

The Nuclear deception: Nikita Khrushchev and the Cuban Missile Crisis

"Guns they’ll never find,
‘cuz my lethal weapon’s my mind."   Ice-T

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Soon after the school shootings at Jonesboro, Arkansas, and Springfield, Oregon, were reported, the American media began rounding up the usual suspects: guns and, by implication, the National Rifle Association and the parents who allow their children access to guns. Since then, school killings in the U.S. have become a common occurrence, and both the national media and gun control advocates keep chanting the mantra that access to firearms is the main reason for the killings. The killings, they claim, are a reminder of the terrible price we all pay for the lax gun control laws in our nation.

It is interesting to notice, however, that the self appointed 'gun control advocates' are actually 'selective gun control advocates.' When they talk about gun control, they don't have in mind controlling the guns in the hands of the government, only in the hands of private citizens. In a country where, in a growing fascistic trend, extensive use of all types of guns among government agencies is mushrooming, even UC Berkeley proudly announced the creation of its own SWAT team, none of the gun control advocates seem to care about veritable private armies controlled by the BATF, IRS, INS, FBI and other federal agencies. The purpose for this selective gun control, they claim, is to curb criminality.

But, as history has proved over and over, criminals don't destroy countries, governments do. Nazi Germany, Soviet Russia, Communist China, and Castro's Cuba, just to mention a few, are countries where stiff gun control laws were enacted. Yet, as soon as the gun control laws were in place, people were witness to thousands of their fellow citizens killed by guns, in the hands of government thugs. In fact, the disarmament of its citizens was a precondition for allowing their governments to kill them with total impunity.

The inconsistency of the gun grabbers' reasoning is amazing. The ones that now are blaming guns for the schools' killings are the same people that, faced with increasing teenage sex, decided to provide high school kids with free condoms because, they reasoned, kids were going to continue having sex anyway. These are the same people that, faced with extended drug usage, decided to provide addicts with free hypodermic needles because, they reasoned, addicts were going to continue using drugs anyway. Now, faced with kids killing other kids, I expected from them nothing less than a plan to provide the killers with free guns because, I reason, these kids are going to keep killing people anyway. But no. Because a few kids are killing people with guns, the coercive utopians want to deprive all American citizens from their guns. A very interesting example of convoluted reasoning.

The weak side of the gun control theory is that the famous oxymoron 'guns don't kill people; people do,' is absolutely true. Evidence shows that, though many American citizens keep guns at home, they don't use them to kill their fellow citizens nor do their kids go to school to shoot at their classmates. On the contrary, most legal gun owners believe that human life is sacred, and have passed this belief on to their children.

Once More: Guns Don't Kill People

In early 1981, during my first weekend after moving to Zurich, Switzerland, I went with my family to the main railroad station and experienced a cultural shock. Dozens of civilians, carrying powerful rifles and plenty of magazines full of ammo, were getting in and out of the trains and nobody seemed to pay any attention to it. Later, somebody explained to me that they were reservists going to their monthly military training. Then I learned that most able Swiss citizens keep at home a powerful assault rifle and several hundred rounds of ammunition. Curiously, I have never heard of a Swiss schoolboy using his father's rifle to kill his schoolmates.

The Swiss case is not unique. From 1959 to late-1963 I witnessed a curious phenomenon in Cuba. After the popular victory against the Batista dictatorship, most Cuban citizens were carrying, openly and concealed, all types of weapons, from pistols and revolvers to assault rifles and sub-machine guns. Because most of the people involved in the war against Batista were very young, many of the citizens carrying guns were teenagers. Public schools were doubled as centers for militia training, and they kept at hand all types of guns and ammo. And, surprisingly, those were probably the most peaceful times in Cuba's recent history. Criminality was at the lowest, and violence involving guns was almost unknown. I never heard of a case of school violence involving guns.

By mid 1963, when Castro felt himself strong in power, people were asked to register their guns. A few months later a law was passed confiscating guns in the hands of private citizens. Soon after, criminal actions involving guns increased considerably, particularly criminal actions committed by the Castro government against Cuban citizens.

The amazing fact is that guns, even guns in the hands of trained soldiers in the battlefield, don't kill people. While studying the effectiveness of American soldiers during World War II, U.S. Army Brigadier General S. L. A. Marshall discovered the incredible fact that less than 20 to 25 percent actually took part in battle using their weapons. After interviewing thousands of soldiers, even soldiers who had been in close combat with German or Japanese troops, Marshall and his team of researchers found that 75 to 80 percent of riflemen did not fire their weapons at the enemy, even to save their lives and the lives of their friends. Some of them prefer to die rather than kill the enemy. The reason for this was the strong inborn resistance of human beings to kill a fellow man. Further research revealed that the rate of soldiers firing at the enemy during the Civil War was very similar.

As a result of Marshall's findings, Army psychologists created new training methods and they were applied in the soldier's training. The results were impressive. During the Korean War the rate of soldiers firing their weapons in combat raised to 55 percent, and it reached 90 to 95 percent during the Vietnam War. What were these methods? Mostly brainwashing the soldiers to believe that what they were killing were not human beings, but pieces of inanimate matter. This was obtained through a process called manufactured contempt, which includes the dehumanizing of the enemy. Another factor that contributed to the high rate of killing in Vietnam was the extended administration of tranquilizing drugs to the soldiers. Does this ring any bells?

A few years ago, when Florida's Dade County passed a law allowing citizens to carry concealed weapons, the selective gun control advocates predicted mayhem and civil chaos. But their predictions never materialized and criminal activity involving guns actually dropped considerably. In Israel's kibbutzs assault rifles and submachine guns are always kept fully loaded and at hand. I have never heard of any Israeli child using his parent's guns to kill classmates.

When somebody uses a car to kill a person nobody blames the car, but the driver. Why, then, when somebody uses a gun to kill a person we always hear the gun control advocates raising their voices? Neither guns nor cars kill people; people do. As the lyrics of a well-known rap song repeats over and over, the most lethal weapon is your mind. Researchers at the North Carolina Center for the Prevention of School Violence seem to agree. They believe that the reason for the current epidemic of school violence has to do with a change in the student's thinking. Now, how did this change in the children's mind come to be?


Lowering the Violence Threshold

In an extraordinary book, On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society, author Dave Grossman takes a look at how conditioning soldiers to overcome the instinctive loathing of killing is the main factor in post-combat stress. He also shows how by lowering the violence threshold contemporary society, especially the media, replicates the army's conditioning techniques. The result is increased violence in society.

When I was a kid I was told that human life was sacred, because it was a gift given to man by his Creator. The command 'Thou shall not kill' included your own life, therefore, suicide was forbidden. Granted, that was a non-scientific fact, just a belief, but it was accepted by most people as normal, civilized human behavior. Even at school, where students were supposed to learn scientific facts, the ones who expressed their belief in the sanctity of human life were not scorned or harassed. But things have changed in America, and not for the better.

Instead of the non-scientific belief that life is a gift, now children are told at public schools the non-scientific belief that life evolved from a piece or matter. Day after day, over and over, teachers hammer in into their student's impressionable minds the unscientific belief that, far from being a miracle, life is just an accident of nature.

There is a practical reason for the teachers' unscientific behavior. The coercive utopians have always seen Judeo-Christian religion as the main obstacle to their plans, so they have been using Darwin's theory of evolution as a handy tool in their battle against religion. Their main goal is to lower the ethical and moral threshold in order to brainwash children to accept their views. But you have to really push down forcefully the moral threshold to have people accept, for example, that shoving one's fist up other person's anus, or kissing other person's anus and eating his feces, is a normal sexual behavior. (If this sounds too gross to you it is only because you have not been attending a public school lately.)

The techniques the brain-washers apply to lower the student's moral threshold are very sophisticated, some of them closely resembling psychological operations used by intelligence services all around the world. For example, most schools have instituted a 'pajama day,' in which students come to school wearing their pajamas. That's seems pretty inoffensive, and no parent would question it. But the 'pajama day' is just the first step for the creation of the 'cross-dressing day,' in which students come to school dressed as members of the opposite sex. The 'cross-dressing day' is actually a 'transvestite day' in disguise. Its only purpose is to lower the student's moral threshold into accepting previously socially unaccepted behavior. After the 'cross-dressing day' has been in practice for several years in a school, nobody would object if some day a student decide to come to school every day dressed as a member of the opposite sex. If somebody raises any questions it would be easy to dismiss it by alleging the student's rights and the fact that everybody does it, at least once a year.

Another common technique they have been successfully applying in some schools is the showing of films like Natural Born Killers, and the use of death and suicide rehearsing, in which student's write suicide notes, visit mortuaries, and even lay in coffins to feel the experience of death are carefully planned psychological conditioning to lower the moral threshold of the student's to accept violence and death as natural. Death and suicide have become a common subject in 'progressive' school curricula. Sado-masochism is an important part of the gay sub-culture.

In their ferocious fight against religion the social engineers have been successful in the de facto banning of Judeo-Christian ethics from our public schools, and a cornerstone of Judeo-Christian ethics is the belief in the sanctity of human life. The result, as we now see, is probably not exactly what they had in mind. But don't let their anti-gun yelling and shouting confuse you. They are not that foolish. They know exactly the real source of the problem, which is not guns or parent's behavior. But, unable to publicly accept the blame for their mistake, now they are blaming us for the results of their gross miscalculation and, with the help of a corrupt, accomplice media, pulling a victory out of the jaws of defeat.

Granted, the belief in the sacredness of human life is not a scientific fact, but, even from just the practical point of civilized life in this planet, it is a very useful one. Apart from any religious consideration, it is evident that believing in the sacredness of human life has a strong redeeming social value. But kids who came to public schools holding that value are systematically ridiculed and psychologically harassed. Instead of the Judeo-Christian ethics, students in our public schools are spoon-fed with situational ethics: 'If you feel good doing it, then it is OK. Do it.' Therefore, if you feel good lying, stealing, having sex, particularly homosexual sex,, or taking drugs, then it is OK. Do it. But, in their rush to lower the moral threshold to gain acceptance for their behavior, they forgot the ubiquitous law of unintended consequences. The coercive utopians apparently failed to realize that they were opening a Pandora's box and we are paying for their mistake.

The fascist social engineers are masters in semantic deception, which in plain English means using a fancy, misleading term to name an activity quite different from the one the name suggests. So, they created outcome-based education, constructivism, block scheduling, site-based management, team teaching, Socratic dialogue, holistic grading, and the rest of the tools that, allegedly, were going to improve our system of education. The reality is that all of these supposedly educational techniques are just tricks created to be used as a smoke screen for covering their actual indoctrination and brainwashing activities. The fact that they have been acting for so many years with total impunity has convinced them of their cleverness and our stupidity.

Using the tricks of their trade, the social engineers entrenched in our public schools have been working hard brainwashing the students behind their parent's backs. To reach their goal they use techniques that range from proven methods of psychological brainwashing to the administration of psychogenic drugs. You'll be surprised to know the number of students who are taking drugs administered by the school's nurses, allegedly because they suffer from 'attention deficit/hyperactive disorder.' Prozac and Ritalin, some of the drugs of choice, are known for their wide range of side effects.

The main effort of the social engineers entrenched in our schools is directed to modify the students' behavior into accepting, among others, the belief that human beings are just pieces of highly evolved matter. Now, if one of these pieces of evolved matter has something you want, why not destroy it? If some of those pieces of evolved matter hurt your feelings or do something you don't like, why not get rid of them?

The cardinal principle of situational ethics, as currently taught in our public schools, is that if you feel good doing something, then there's no reason for not doing it. Creating a high sense of self-esteem, the social engineers claim, is paramount, and doing whatever makes you feel good is the key for reaching a high sense of self-esteem. Some witnesses testify that the students who went on a killing rampage to their schools were feeling real good. I bet that, at least while they were pulling the trigger shooting at unarmed victims, the schoolboys turned into assassins were enjoying a very high feeling of superiority and strong self-esteem.

Authors H. Stream and L. Freeman, in an insightful book called Our Wish to Kill, probe America's homicidal obsession, examining everything from 'wilding' incidents to serial killers. They conclude that actual killings are simply tangible expressions of the hundreds of thousands of murders that are fantasized in our minds but never committed. One of the functions of the Judeo-Christian and other religions, at some time shared by schools, is to raise the threshold of violence, making it morally unacceptable and, therefore, difficult to commit. Lately, however, schools have joined the media in pushing down the violence threshold, making it morally easier and simpler to commit.

After the massacre at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, President Bill Clinton has been busy throwing a smoke screen on the true causes of the killings. According to Clinton, the responsible for the creation of the monsters next door are guns and parents. But Bill Clinton, a natural born liar, knows better. The roots of this recent trend in school violence are to be found in the Arkansas brainwashing labs, whose three main elements, AGATE (Arkansas Gifted and Talented Education), the Arkansas Governor's School and the Arkansas School of Mathematics and Science, are the aberrant creation of none others than Bill and Hillary Clinton. It was there, and not at the student's homes, where the seed of violence and death was planted for the first time in the minds of impressionable children. It was there where the brainwashing techniques were first tested and fine tuned for many years. Now, the brain-washers are pushing for its nationwide implementation.

The national media, Hollywood, computer game designers, death metal bands, television and, particularly, 'progressive' teachers working hard at brainwashing our children at the public schools, are the true makers of lethal weapons. They are the ones who have created the abominable monsters who unmercifully kill other human beings. Sometimes the monsters use guns, though knives, poison, explosives, baseball bats and rocks have also been used as murder tools. The media, Hollywood, computer game designers, death metal bands, television, teachers, and not the parents and gun makers as some claim, are the ones who are poisoning our children's brains, turning their minds into lethal weapons. Now, because they have absolutely no decency, the makers of lethal weapons want to use the problem they have created to carry out two of their cherished agendas: taking guns from the citizen's hands and curtailing parent's rights even more.

Far from disappearing, school violence in America will keep rising, and this is just the beginning. The nationwide implementation through Goals 2,000 and other Federal Government programs of the brainwashing techniques tested in Arkansas and now successfully applied in many public schools will bring momentous consequences to the future of this nation.

*Servando Gonzalez is a Cuban-born American writer. He is not a member of the NRA.

More biographical information will be added.