Sikh Temple Shooting: Why So Many Lone Gunmen?

Wade Michael Page has been identified as the suspected Sikh Temple shooter who killed six worshipers on Sunday before a police officer fatally shot him. Authorities say he had 9/11 tattoo on one of his arms and was a member of white supremacist groups. He was also reportedly a member of several extreme right-wing racist bands, including a band called Blue Eyed Devils. As new insight rolls in, it seems it would be quite fair to describe him as a Neo-Nazi.

Perhaps he blamed Sikhs for September 11th. But Sikhs are not Muslim.

“Not only are we Sikh, we’re not Muslim. But Muslims themselves are not responsible as a group for that,” said a witness to the slaughter.

The Wisconsin Sikh Temple, in the midst of all the this, is continuing to keep its doors open for all who wish to worship.

Isn’t it about time we had a discussion as a nation about why we have so many lone gunmen? Sure, other countries have them too, but we do seem to be at the top of the list. In a span of a couple years, we’ve had the Gabby Giffords tragedy, the deranged Colorado shooter, now this atrocity. The police are calling the latest a hate crime, and it probably is.

This is one of those situations that immediately spin out into multiple areas and brings passionate comments from all sides. Gun control immediately becomes a heated issue. Should guns be banned, clips made much smaller, or is the problem not guns at all?

Michael Moore, NRA member says:

But they are half right when they say “Guns don’t kill people.” I would just alter that slogan slightly to speak the real truth: “Guns don’t kill people, Americans kill people.”

Do we as a country tend to think more than others that things can be settled with violence?

Someone on Twitter wondered if Page had been unemployed for a long time and if that someone contributed to it whatever insane levels of stress built up in him, causing him to blame the blameless then execute them at the Sikh Temple? On the other hand, there seems to be no political motivation for James Holmes shooting 20 people in that Colorado movie theater. Jared Lee Laughner, who shot Congresswoman Gabby Giffords and killed six others, seemed to have a tenuous relation to politics and to reality as well.

Maybe a bad economy combines with people looking for answers. They sometimes find the answers in delusions of their minds, to be followed by voices tell them to do something. Or they stumble across an extremist political group who explains their problems are due to a larger “evil conspiracy”. Plus, and this is crucial, such groups provide friendship and a support system.

Unemployment is high. Our politics are more polarized than ever.  This background of rising tension is clearly pushing some over the brink. But still, this doesn’t explain why the United States apparently has more deranged lone gunmen than elsewhere.