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Social media: The slums of the Net

Welcome to your new reality America... Pennsylvania... Schuylkill County.

 Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold shot and killed 13 people and injured 20 at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999...

They were called the 'trench coat mafia' in the media. With this newfound glory of fame that the killers reached, copycat threats reigned across the country from sea to shining sea. I was a senior that year. Thankfully my stay in the school world was coming to an end. But from April through June of 1999, Cardinal Brennan and North Schuylkill faced almost daily bomb threats, shooting threats, and evacuations as a result. It became so commonplace that year, when the siren in the school went off, people treated it as a second recess in the school day. since then have forced school shootings into the commonplace of American thought. We are at a point now where a body count ranging in more than a dozen makes new. Less? Maybe a byline in print. Maybe a snippet on the evening news. Media wants blood.. they want numbers. Their news vans will only travel when there is a massacre.. And the same old sort of events will happen, just about in this order.
  1. Shooting.
    1. Multiple gunmen reported.
    2. One gunmen killed/apprehended.
  2. Blame.
    1. Conspiracy theory!
      1. Paid actors!
      2. Crisis actors!
      3. Planned killing!
    2. Drugs
      1. Presciption
      2. Past counsleing
      3. Doctors who do not help or ignore problem
    3. Gun
      1. Taken from parents
      2. Purchased legally after background checks
  3. Aftermath
    1. Media
      1. Blame guns
      2. Blame medicine
      3. Blame video games
      4. Blame politicians
    2. Citizens
      1. Demand gun control
      2. Ask for teachers to  be armed
      3. Ask for a ban on certain medicines
  4. Social media
Bodies of the dead are being buried in Parkland Florida, but threats of horror are occurring all across the United States. In Pennsylvania, multiple districts have been closed multiple days. Close by, Berwick saw threats. York was closed for almost last week in its entirety.

 A student from Wormleysburg has been arrested and charged with making terroristic threats after saying he'd "shoot up" his school and kill anyone who told on him, Lower Allen Township police said.. Meanwhile in York, PA: Investigators are serving an unknown number of social media companies with warrants to gather information to whoever made threats of violence against students and staff.


 This week in my local district, there was a threat on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. This weekend, a post was made on social media and spread abundantly about a newfound threat on Monday February 26... It was spread so far and wide that the North Schuylkill School District issued a statement to parents late Saturday that it was aware of the threat and working with law enforcement to determine its validity...

 This is where my son goes. Where lots of kids go. And undoubtedly if you are reading this is Washington State, Iowa, Ohio, or Maine, you are potentially seeing similar issues. School districts suddenly under attack not by actual events, but by social media and the viral spread that messages have. So perhaps the aging me harkens back to the happier past of the Internet because I long for it..

Back when AOL Instant Messenger competed with ICQ for the attention of the youth. Social media--the way we know it today--was not even in the twinkle of the eye of a young high schooler named Mark Zuckerberg/ Fast forward to the events of our modern age? It would seem that Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and all the rest have become tools for the modern societal breakdown. The Internet is vast and amazing.

But the socials?

They seem like the plague of the net.. like the slums of a city. Like the eloquent example of the breakdown of the society at large.... These recent threats will come and go. And then there will be more. And then there will be another school shooting at some unknown location in the vast reaches of these 50 states, and we will do it all again.

 What caused all of this? I heard one theory that it is the long-term effect of NAFTA, lack of jobs, neighborhood breakdown, heroin epidemic, and then the eventual school shootings from an gun-enthused and unemployed by depressed populace. I don't know. At all. Do you? I cannot comment, or opine, on matters of insanity.

 This situation is so insane that I cannot even conjure any rational thoughts despite my attempts. ...I have said before and will say again, if nothing changed after 1st graders were gunned down in Sandy Hook, perhaps nothing even will.

 What in always conclude with is how horrid and sad that it must be for a parent to bury a child, for a child to attend the funeral  of a friend, and a teacher to lose a student in such depravity and violence. And even if someone wants to hear more, that's just about all I can say. No sense, at all, can be made of it. We are a human species.

Intelligent enough to reach vast empty spaces of our universe, and yet backwards enough to hate and kill. Can I make sense of that?

No.. And neither can you.



Mystery continues on why the Sunspot solar observatory was shut down

Sunspot apologizes for the continued closure of the facilities,” a statement on the observatory’s Facebook page said on Sunday. “The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) is addressing a security issue at the National Solar Observatory facility at Sacramento Peak, New Mexico and has decided to temporarily vacate the facility as a precautionary measure..

And that is just about all the public knows about why the FBI shut down the observatory within notice warning or after-event statements..
But online, theories rage into the night as to what caused the FBI to sweep into the town, close down the space observatory along with the town post office, and ever let anyone back in.. The entire observatory is reportedly empty at this time—employees obviously gone but some Twitter reports state that the actual equipment and other items have been taken away as well.
Major media is rightly paying close attention to the hurricane along the East Coast,  but lost in the Atlantic sh…

Intrigue in China: Where is Fan Bingbing

From CNN:

Fan Bingbing, one of China's highest-paid and most bankable stars, has appeared in both Chinese and Western films, including the multimillion-dollar X-Men franchise. Across the country, her face once adorned thousands of advertisements, her star power used to sell a galaxy of luxury brands, from Cartier to Louis Vuitton. She was a regular sight at major award shows and fashion ceremonies. In 2015, Time Magazine named her China's "most famous actress."  But the film star hasn't been seen in public since early June, when, according to a post on her verified social-media account, she went to visit a children's hospital in Tibet. In an article by state media Securities Daily on September 6, which was later deleted, the publication said Fan had been brought "under control and about to receive legal judgment." No official statement has been made as to Fan's whereabouts, or any potential criminal charges against the actress.  However, in a country …

Mulder and Scully still have the sunspot case

The internet firestorm over the sudden closure of the Sunspot Solar Observatory went worldwide within the last 10 days..

As of yesterday, there was finally an official statement of some form as to why. But the statement is not going to end the rampant speculation -- these types of events get their fodder from "official statements" that fail to answer directly reasons why events occurred.The group that manages the Facebook page for the New Mexico facility say they are cooperating with on an ongoing criminal investigation..The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy said "we became concerned that a suspect in the investigational potentially posed a threat to the safety of local staff and residents. For this reason, AURA temporarily vacated the facility and ceased science activities at this location."AURA said it was their decision to vacate...
The sheriff in town offers a different opinion, of course.. initially when the facility closed Benny House told …