Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Saddest Surprise

Last week Helsinki was so sad and grey – like the whole Finland.

A young (18-year-old), desperate man got crazy and killed nine people including himself at school in Jokela, quite near Helsinki.

This has been an exceptionally shocking massacre for some reasons in particular: because it was a massacre, because the murderer was so young, because he had claimed to be a "fan" of the Columbine murderers (or at least accepting what they did), because he had written about his plans and published the texts in the net in advance (had even received comments), and because all this took place at school.

And because all this took so many people by surprise.

The ones in power who have been opposing funding (mental) health care of the young with public, tax-payers' money, they are really to blame here. The growing number of suffering teenagers, and even younger ones, has been discussed for decades, and yet, the situation has not improved significantly. Probably even worstened – but that is difficult to say, despite this catastrophy.

The internet does not kill anyone. The crazy and depressed people do. But the internet can still have some alienating impact in young people's minds. The lonely and the sad can get even more estrangered by accessing really violent and terrifying material.

Perhaps the key is not to leave anyone so totally alone.

But now I sincerely hope the media will stop enjoying the crisis for a while. Otherwise it will be nearly impossible for the youngsters in Jokela to continue with their lives.

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