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Anyone but me sick and tired of hearing that the Connecticut shooter was homeschooled?

(49 Posts)
sieglinde Mon 17-Dec-12 11:28:21

As if this explained ANYTHING!

Also tired of hearing he was autistic or Asperger's, used interchangeably, Goth, when there are no pictures to back it up, and intelligent, as if that too explained his actions. angry I am not talking of the Daily Hate, but of e.g. the Times.

FivesGoldNorks Fri 28-Dec-12 09:46:32

He must have been homeschooled by his father though, given his mother was a teacher at the school?

yggdrasil Fri 28-Dec-12 09:25:24

Just re the homeschooling thing

Now I think we have to take responsibility for our abject failures as well as our successes. If homeschooling produced Adam Lanza as much as it produced, say Michelle Branch or Thomas Edison, we should be looking and thinking "why" and "how".

However he was only homeschooled for a very short period of time, and my understanding is that during that time he was actually partly enrolled in a university. I'm not really that familiar with the US schooling system but I wonder if it might really have been only a technicality that he were homeschooled-that he was in fact a student elsewhere.

Like another poster, my real concern was that this would, very wrongly indeed, stigmatise people with autism/Aspergers and I'm so glad that it really does not seem to have gone off that way. In fact overall I appreciate that the coverage has been of the victims.

yggdrasil Fri 28-Dec-12 09:19:43

"Others seem to find imposing their values on others to be something they simply cannot resist."

It does get tricky, doesn't it, where there are kids involved? Because those kids need to grow up and be members of society. And a problem with home education is that its possible to live a life which really does not offer any outside perspective. I know home educators who have relatively little contact with those who are not extreme fundementalism Christians, they live in that little bubble and the kids seldom venture outside it. God help those kids if they turn out to be gay.

A majority of home educators take a balanced view of most things with their kids. A minority do not. A minority teach their kids to hate, or at least look down on, people who are not white, people who are not of their religion, gay people, and to see women as having a particular place in their home. I'm happy to foist my views on anyone who wants to listen that this is not healthy or balanced.

Although to be completely fair, its entirely possible to send your kid to a private religious school to much the same effect. I think those parents are equally irresponsible.

JakeBullet Thu 27-Dec-12 15:55:48

I've heard the "survivalist" stuff was untrue.

I am more pissed off by all the "he had Aspergers so was mentally ill" stuff.

Saracen Thu 27-Dec-12 15:19:52

Going off on a tangent, here's an article from a teacher who speculates on a connection between recent school shootings and the killers' early experiences of school:

He isn't exactly arguing that school causes some young people to become mass murderers but he does seem to think that the difficult school environment may push some kids over the edge. If we set this alongside the "loony homeschooler" scenario we could construct what the Daily Mail might call "balanced reporting", LOL.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Thu 27-Dec-12 11:32:32

Agree with Seeker. In this case, him being home schooled was relevant, as it was probably not a positive thing for him, given that his extremely paranoid and fairly unhinged mother possibly spent half the day teaching him how to shoot looters. If he had some mental health problems of his own, or autism, as has been suggested, then having her as his main life influence probably didn't help.

Anyway, the press love a "vaguely unconventional schooling" angle. They can't mention anyone who went to Eton without sticking "Old Etonian X" in front of it, even if it's entirely irrelevant.

seeker Thu 27-Dec-12 11:24:11

Nobody on this thread is doing that, surely?

CatKitson Thu 27-Dec-12 11:15:24

You are absolutely right that homeschooling doesnt give people much in common. I would never seek to impose my views on another family, nor tell them how to live. Others seem to find imposing their values on others to be something they simply cannot resist.

seeker Thu 27-Dec-12 08:55:44

I hadn't heard that he was home schooled. I am just wondering whether you would be equally sick and tired if you had read lots of articles about him going to school?

His education is just one element of his profile. And if he was home schooled because his mother was a survivalist, and terrified of the world and what she thought was coming, then it may actually be an element with some significance. In this particular case. Specifically.

yggdrasil Thu 27-Dec-12 08:42:54

"If people want to live a life with religion at the centre, and teach that to their children, that is their business,"

And I have to say, I'm not sure I agree with this

First off, I do believe that a child has the right to explore different faith/none choices, and I think there can be a problem with a very all-encompassing religious world view of the kind seen among some more extreme homeschoolers: they go mainly to groups with other very religious HSers, they educate using religious texts, they often have no tv etc.

But more importantly, what they are teaching their kids usually is that their kids are right and the rest of us are wrong. I have a particular issue with this when it comes to morality. I don't believe, for example, its ok to teach your kids that gay people are inferior or that women should not hold positions of power.

I don't have any issue with someone who is heavily involved in church life but whose kids have outside influences, and who doesn't teach hate or disrespect. Not at all. I have strong humanist beliefs that I work to pass on to my kids. I think religious beliefs can be positive, or they can be insular, negative and judgmental. I have a problem with the latter.

yggdrasil Thu 27-Dec-12 08:37:33

I actually think that there has been relatively little mention of the fact that he is homeschooled. I have not heard anyone really going for him being homeschooled as an explanation. I also actually think that the coverage of him being possibly autistic has actually been quite reasonable, the idea that autism might have caused him to shoot has been corrected quickly.

Homeschooled kids are all different. But I think this serves as a reminder to us that we cannot be smug about homeschooling, that it can create, or at least fail to halt development of, people who are capable of what Adam Lanza did. TBH, awful as it sounds, it reminds me that just because someone is a homeschooler does not mean I necessarily share any of their other views, and that I can find them absolutely morally repungant as a person. Homeschooling doesn't give us that much in common.

Corygal Thu 20-Dec-12 11:17:21

Well, seeking an explanation for the inexplicable is always going to make the people who do it - the papers, here - look stupid. But we all do it.

Plus he's dead, which is going to make any genuine investigation into his psyche pretty difficult. As is his mother.

EldritchCleavage Thu 20-Dec-12 11:12:45

In the face of horror a lot of people fix on facts, however peripheral, that they can use to distance themselves from the perpetrator (and the victims too, often). 'He did it because ...' 'It wouldn't happen to me because I'm not...'
Very common, and in some ways understandable, but ultimately irritating because ti gets in the way of a proper understanding of what happened. The whole 'Oh, you can spot paedophiles, they are scruffy loner old men who look deeply weird' assumption is another facet of this.

CatKitson Thu 20-Dec-12 11:05:48

Travellincolor, he murdered little boys too.

If people want to live a life with religion at the centre, and teach that to their children, that is their business, and certainly not an indicator that they are somehow a bad family or letting their children down. If there are people who are worried about security in schools, I would say they are not entirely paranoid, all things considering, particularly in the US, and again, other people need to but out of the private life of families unless a crime is being committed.

It is very easy to point the finger at families who vary from the norm, when in fact noone knows why he did this.

Sieglinde, my dd was bullied very badly, and Im so sorry to hear your son suffered the same. Of course people generally get the blame for their child being a victim as well, or else the child gets told to toughen up and learn to take a joke. I think THAT is where people need to be looking, rather than Christians, preppers or homeschoolers.

littleducks Thu 20-Dec-12 11:04:52

I haven't heard that he was homeschooled. I have seen te 'autitic' an 'intelligent' comments.

I think so much is unknown as authorities need to investigate without giving much away so media are reporting the tiniest details, which are often wrong (the wrong mans name released shock mother being a teacher/hm being let into school etc)

I read yesterday that his mum thought he was seriousl mentally ill and wanted to get him committed, also that he was taking an anti psychotic drug that has some suspiciou side effects..........not sure if that wil turn out to be true. I suspect those things ar more likely to be a cause than being homeschooled or 2/3 years.

TravelinColour Thu 20-Dec-12 10:57:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TravelinColour Thu 20-Dec-12 10:56:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HoHoHokeyCokeyPigInAPokey Thu 20-Dec-12 10:53:32

I hadn't heard that, but to be honest i have tried to avoid the news coverage as it is so distressing.

ImaginateMum Thu 20-Dec-12 10:51:37

I am totally sympathetic toward home-schooling, and think in the right hands it is the most wonderful and appropriate choice.

I think you cannot deny though that there is a sub-section of US home-schooling families that make the choice because of extreme religious or paranoid views.

It is not fair if all home-schoolers get tarred with the same brush, but I think you just need to practice thinking "another place, another family, not about me".

sieglinde Thu 20-Dec-12 10:43:47

I think you are 100% right, Cat. Being bullied and witnessing bullying have almost destroyed my son.

CatKitson Thu 20-Dec-12 10:17:03

Oh, Ive been quite irritated by some posts on here in the past, which have been incredibly judgmental towards home edders. That said, Im glad noone has specifically blamed this tragedy on him being homeschooled on and off.

Real school is not great at all in my experience. Im doing a far far better job at home, and Im not boasting, Im telling the truth. Socially, emotionally, academically, what I can provide alongside home ed groups is far superior to what they would get in a school setting. Apart from that I KNOW they are safe with me, and I put everything into school. We can also break up when we want, which means today they are making lovely homemade decorations for the house, and sewing their own christmas stockings.

What really fucks kids up is the bullying and peer pressure imho, and home ed puts an end to all that.

Each to their own though, as long as Im left to live how I want to, and raise my kids how I see fit.

sieglinde Thu 20-Dec-12 09:31:20

nothing specifically on mumsnet, no. But we have our enemies here as well. If you post off this particular area about HE, flames are not unusual IME. We are selfish, weird, controlling, too competitive, not socialising our children properly, blah blah. angry sad That said, I have had EXACTLY your experiences.... why 'real school' is considered so great is an utter mystery to me.

CatKitson Wed 19-Dec-12 21:51:30

Sieglinde, my oldest went to "real school", and the results were awful. Bullied, learned next to nothing, low self esteem. Within months of her being home schooled she had caught up to and overtaken her peers academically, and was a much happier child. No child of mine will ever go to a "real school". If my right to homeschool was threatened, I would fight.

I havent seen anything specifically on mumsnet blaming home ed even partially. Have you?

sieglinde Wed 19-Dec-12 12:27:22

I certainly can, and I agree. I homeschooled my son, now 18, and am currently HEing my daughter, now 12. They both went to 'real' schools some of the time; the results were pretty awful in every way.

It's nice that so many of you are laid-back about this; I think we have to fight our corner a bit harder than some have suggested.

Jojobells1986 Wed 19-Dec-12 10:19:06

sieglinde Because the ramifications of that would be costly & time consuming. Clearly it's much simpler to blame the crazy mum! How dare someone think their child isn't receiving the best care/education when it's being provided by the professionals?! Of course this kind of thing was bound to happen when she took it upon herself to think she knew what was best for her own child!

(Can anyone tell I'm planning to home-ed? wink)

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