There are politicians from both parties, media outlets and pundits who will spin the story of Karl Halverson Pierson, 18, who has been identified as the high school student who brought a shotgun into Arapahoe High School in Centennial, Colorado, on December 13th. Pierson wounded a fellow female student and then killed himself.
Jim Hoft, from the Gateway Pundit states, “Pierson, an indoctrinated 18 year-old, was a committed socialist who hated Republicans.” Hoft quotes Zahira Torres and Yesenia Robles from The Denver Post who reported:
The teenage gunman who entered Arapahoe High School Friday afternoon and shot two fellow students with a shotgun was outspoken about politics, a gifted debater and may have been bullied for his beliefs, according to students who knew him.
“He had very strong beliefs about gun laws and stuff,” said junior Abbey Skoda, who was in a class with the alleged shooter her freshman year.
Thomas Conrad, who had an economics class with [the shooter] Pierson, described him as a very opinionated Socialist*…
…”He was exuberant I guess,” Conrad said. “A lot of people picked on him, but it didn’t seem to bother him.”
In one Facebook post, Pierson attacks the philosophies of economist Adam Smith who through his invisible hand theory pushed the notion that the free market was self-regulating. In another post, he describes himself as “Keynesian.”
“…I was wondering to all the neoclassicals and neoliberals, why isn’t the market correcting itself?” he wrote. “If the invisible hand is so strong, shouldn’t it be able to overpower regulations?”
Pierson also appears to mock Republicans on another Facebook post, writing “you republicans are so cute” and posting an image that reads: “The Republican Party: Health Care: Let ‘em Die, Climate Change: Let ‘em Die, Gun Violence: Let ‘em Die, Women’s Rights: Let ‘em Die, More War: Let ‘em Die. Is this really the side you want to be on?” (emphasis added)
According to the UK Daily Mail, “In other [Facebook] posts, he touted his support for gay rights and made fun of Republicans but then also wrote on Facebook that he did not believe that President Obama did not deserve a second term in office. His friends and fellow seniors Carl Schmidt and Brendon Mendelson told The Post that his political views were ‘outside the mainstream’.”
Some will spin that he had a gun, a shotgun to be specific as recommended by Vice President Biden. Others will spin his easy access to public school grounds and the idea that no one on campus of this high school was armed, including the debate coach Pierson was pursuing for kicking him off the debate team. Others will point to his political leanings, while others will grieve and wring their hands wondering what to do next.
Colorado seems to have its share of student shooters. Perhaps those things done in Colorado to stop this kind of incident are not working?
That is the bottom line. Doing the same thing and expecting different results is a form of murderous madness.