As Bellbrook High school classmates of Connor Betts, the 24-year-old registered Democrat and mentally ill gunman who open fired on a busy Saturday night crowd in Dayton, Ohio, to murder nine people including his own sister, confirm that he had a long history of threatening behavior, the legacy media and their confusing but predictable politicians once again hype up the grief and use the opportunity to pander for votes by criticizing the president and advocate for legislation to infringe on the right to bear arms guaranteed to all citizens by the U.S. Constitution instead of focusing on the serious failures of the public education system with at least an obvious inability to recognize or properly deal with mentally ill students as well as the significant disadvantages of an entrenched centrally controlled system versus one controlled by a free market. Imagine the concern you might have for each of your students if your school funding was directly connected to your reputation and your ability to attract new students based on your past performance as a school.

A past friend of Betts, Hannah Shows, said, “The way that I would describe Connor Betts and the way that a lot of my classmates have validated with me that we would describe Connor is that he was someone who enjoyed making people feel afraid. And he was somebody who made me feel afraid when I knew him as a teenager. He did threaten me. He had a way of looking at people, glaring at people. He’s always loved violence and he’s always loved guns and even outside of myself, personally, and before I think his behavior started with the girls in Bellbrook he always loved to imitate guns and shooting people. And he would look at people and imitate shooting or other violent acts. He was the type of person that loved the shock value.”

As the world’s greatest free market success story experiencing problems with mentally ill citizens especially some with firearms, America should seriously wonder why we apply the failed centrally controlled socialism model to our education system when we instinctively know that individuals with a profit motive have already demonstrated their ability to develop the most cost-efficient and wonderfully effective solutions. Could it be that our highfalutin education establishment is so entrenched it’s beyond criticism and gets a pass just because its full of well-educated voting bureaucrats with a common interest in protecting their system. Remember learning George Bernard Shaw saying, “Those who can, do; those who cannot, teach.” Meanwhile, Connor Betts as a junior was sticking out like a sore thumb, with one suspension from his public high school for unacceptable behavior when the school found his list of names targeting girls in the school and then subsequently suspended him, this time for an entire year.

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Ms. Shows said, “They found the list of girls’ names. As somebody who is, I was on his list, I was spoken to about it. I was never told anything specifically about what types of plans he had in it and I know there’s a lot going around right now about whether or not it was a rape list or shooting list and I don’t know if there’s anything to substantiate that. I was never told anything specific, just that there were detailed enough plans on hurting people that it was enough to have him removed from the school. And I know that everyone that I know of on that list was someone that he had expressed romantic feelings for.”

Remember that most of these mass shootings have taken place since 1980 when public schools began utilizing all kinds of new strategies to improve their effectiveness including medicating students with vast quantities of drugs like Ritalin for mental ailments with names like Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and that now, according to a December 2018 article in the Pacific Standard, titled “The US Suicide Rate Is at Its Highest in a Half-Century,” new Center for Disease Control data suggests suicide is becoming more commonplace in America while a November 2018 Psychology Today article titled “The College Student Mental Health Crisis (Update”) speculates that this massive rise is likely a function of both more accepting attitudes about reporting distress and seeking and receiving treatment, and actual increases in stress, anxiety, and depression and other related problems.

Ms. Shows said, “Believe people when they speak up about things. Believe survivors, believe children, believe women. So many of these things got brushed under the rug either as not real or even if they’re real they’re not taken seriously. Like if you just don’t give him the attention that he wants it will go away. And now we have learned through so much pain that it does not just go away.”

Includes reporting from Pacific Standard, the Associated Press, and Psychology Today.

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