The problem is that the profiles of the eventual killers fit too many young men to be of much use. It may be a good idea for secondary schools, colleges and universities to establish programs to keep an eye on the misfits, to try to counter social exclusion that drives some of them to the edge. Some unhappy young men can be coaxed back into a healthy life this way.
The problem is that this method of anticipating the identity of the killers is sure to be a crap shoot most of the time. Next year or five years from now, we’ll go through the same agony in the aftermath of a mass shooting at another school.
Perhaps the shooter will be a student of that school, but maybe not. The warning signs in the behaviour of the killer that should have been obvious, will go innoticed because there is no way to monitor the nation or the whole planet that closely. The governments don't have the budget for that and the planetary dictatorship necessary to accompliish this would never be accepted by the population. So, we have to admit that in most democracies, there is little or nothing to do, to prevent the next mass shooting.
One way to get at the problem would be serious gun control, but although it will perhaps bring better results, it is not perfect. The shooter could always purchase the gun illegally on the black market. There is always this possibility. Even if we vote a law that would mandate the confiscation of every restricted weapon in the land, there will always be ways to evade such a confiscation or avoid the restrictions of the gun registry. The Dawson school shooting was not halted by the gun registry, therefore it is useless and should be scrapped. All the played out rhetoric about guns not being responsible for how they are used will be heard once again. Sensible people will respond to past tragedies by saying that we need the Gun Registry more than ever and perhaps a ban on handguns. Surely, we could be suspicious of responsible people who hesitate at registering their guns. Guns kill, so why do shooters of the nation insist that to register their guns hurts their basic freedom?
The Canadian gun culture is influenced by the gun culture in the United States. In the U.S., the National Rifle Association and millions of gun owners cling to their right to own guns, a right protected in the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. American gun advocates have an interpretation of history from ancient to contemporary times whose moral is that an armed citizenry is a free citizenry. They accuse those who want gun control to promote an unduly expansion of the power of the state, and ultimately facilitate the coming of a dictatorship. The gun lobby speaks for a highly defined constituency of overwhelmingly white male gun owners and their sympathisers, who advocate a right-wing foreign- and domestic politicy. The lobby defends the right of citizens to own and carry semiautomatic weapons and armour-piercing bullets.
But Marc and Cho were so good looking dashing with their guns and firing, Clint Eastwood was so cool with his .44 magnum, and what about this dream .475 Wildey Magnum, a wet dream for the likes of Marc Lepine! All quite true my friend, what we would gain in practicality and safety, we would lose with less mythology, less colorful, less dashing and less iconic. Safety and comfort can be so boring! But never fear, we will always have television, and Gozilla and John Wayne to entertain us!