Disappointed enough to kill

| Life in Holland | 5 Comments

A couple days ago, some disgruntled Dutch teenager walked up to a teacher at a high school in Den Haag and shot him through the head. Killed dead just like that. The papers announce that:

'Murat teleurgesteld in Van Wieren', meaning 'Murat (the murderer) was disappointed in Van Wieren (the murdered teacher)'

While such an event is more common place in the United States, here in Holland this tragedy is rare and has hit the community very hard. Everyone is meandering around in complete shock, fearful that the previously stable society is beginning to crack and crumble. Holland is turning into a kind of America.

An interesting difference is this. In America people react with hatred and want to make the suspect fry on the electric chair. They seem to yearn for the spectacle and gain satisfaction from it. Even if he has not been proven guilty.

Here on the other hand, many people feel sorry for the kid and try to rationalize his behavior as a result of a failing society.

The school should have been better prepared, the teachers should have been trained to deal with aggression, etc. Groups of kids are walking around carrying banners with things like "He's not a murderer, he's my friend" written on them. There was even this television program last night where rather than feel bad about the poor teacher that was killed, they sat around sipping on hefty wine glasses and saying how guilty our society should be feeling for letting this happen.

He's just a kid, so I guess it is alright.

To make matter even more complicated, this school has a lot of students with a Turkish and Moroccan background. So that means that everyone is afraid to complain or get on the kid's case, because that would mean we were being prejudice to the Muslim community.

In the meantime, as discussions run rampantly here and there, and the people become fixated on rationalizing life's tragic experiences with logical argumentations, the poor murdered teacher's family sit around home distressed and feeling forgotten.

5 Comments

It does not seem fair that so little regard is being given to the teacher's family and loved ones.
Quite interesting, the extreme in the difference of reactions, though, from what the usual in the USA is. It's a sad trajedy in any case.

Hello there.

"In America people react with hatred and want to make the suspect fry on the electric chair."

Just wanted to let you know that that's a bit of an unfair characterization. There are significant numbers of us over here who don't immediately jump to "kill the guy" in this kind of situation. And for those of us who aren't like that, it's disappointing to see that somehow that's really how we're all being presented to the world.

That being said, I think there certainly has to be a balance between individual responsibility and societal responsibility.

I think the way you characterize America is entirely wrong. For almost all my life, the statement you made about Europe - ""Here on the other hand, many people feel sorry for the kid and try to rationalize his behavior as a result of a failing society." - has been the rule in America, and I do mean RULE. Until very recently, to even suggest that a person (other than a white adult male of course) should be held responsible for his own actions was entirely unacceptable and would make one almost an outcast. In just the last few years, however, the pendulum is starting to swing the other way. Often I hear or read things that sound vicious and mean-spirited but a lot of the time it's just frustration with the attitude that being compassionate to those who are in a difficult situation often means giving a free pass to those who have no desire to rise above their situation in life.

Sorry... posted without proofreading. The last line should say: a lot of the time it's just frustration with the attitude that being compassionate to those who are in a difficult situation should include giving a free pass to those who have no desire to rise above their situation in life.

I think that Lynn has a good point. Look at the O.J. Simpson trial and now how they are dealing with the Michael Jackson accusations. Seems that indeed the pendulum may be swinging back the other way in the States, where people are becoming more fixated on protecting the accused more so because he or she is famous than the real facts of the crime. My intention is not to generalize, but rather to provoke interesting discussion like this.

Leave a comment

Random entries

Here are some random entries that you might be interested in:

Recent Assets

  • flitsfoto-B5H3-IoN-b9E4tr9OrFarmWfWrP5pxuN8AgYw45ABAnqqDrmjSqIc-KKoAQ9Bu_k.jpeg
  • flitsfoto-mjuWdZ1wBk6gJbu9rP7Bu6bETxZplWXFUoEJIA_HfMF0i0MQfgF_y5024mEsOBfH.jpeg
  • Kiffin-10th-hole-2017-05-small.jpg
  • Kiffin-10th-hole-2017-05.jpg
  • ember-rails-and-json-api.png
  • screenshot-www.golf.nl-2017-05-04-15-38-01.png
  • putting-mat.png
  • finished-just-in-time.png
  • Tenerife-flight-path.png
  • listen-to-me-marlon.jpg
  • sneeuwval.jpg
  • frozen-crystals.png

Recent Comments

Golf Handicap

Information

This personal weblog was started way back on July 21, 2001 which means that it is 7-21-2001 old.

So far this blog contains no less than 2288 entries and as many as 1877 comments.

Important events

Graduated from Stanford 6-5-1979 ago.

Kiffin Rockwell was shot down and killed 9-23-1916 ago.

Believe it or not but I am 10-11-1957 young.

Began well-balanced and healthy life style 1-8-2013 ago.

My father passed away 10-20-2000 ago.

First met Thea in Balestrand, Norway 6-14-1980 ago.