Sad day in Aurora. I view this as an inevitable and rare consequence of an open society, which does not causes me to rethink my position on gun control or much else. Guns are banned in some places and not others without a significant effect on violence. Violence usually has a very different face than these high profile incidents, in any case, and it seems to have a lot more to do with fatherless children and demographics and a lack of willingness to lock up repeated bad actorse. Further, this guy seemed to have some other capabilities, like methodical planning and making bombs, that made him particularly dangerous in light of his intelligence and the time he had on his hands.
He does, however, seem to have something in common with the LA Fitness Shooter, the Va Tech Shooter, and the Psycho Navy Pilot Shooter: social awkwardness that led to a major lack of luck with women (and people in general) and culminated in unbearable frustration and loneliness. In a society that celebrates the self coupled with a dating market that is highly skewed to a handful of winners (at least on the male side of things), his life seemed meaningless and full of disappointment. He was further handicapped with an Aspergerish edge too, as were the others I mentioned. Perhaps, he was beginning to suffer from Schizophrenia, which commonly manifests in one’s early 20s. I suspect his interest in neuroscience and the like may have had something to do with his internal demons; lots of people who are borderline nutty or depressed or have other mental health issues seem to pursue psychology or related fields. But most of all we seem to have a person who turned his anger and frustration at his own life outward. He’s not crazy, strictly speaking, and certainly not as crazy as the schizoid Jared Loughner, just selfish and frustrated and lacking in a strong conscience. Thankfully, most guys in his position don’t cause too much harm to society through some anesthetic combination of video games, pornography, and alcohol. But there are legions of his kind, just as there an order of magnitude more people, mostly women, on antidepressants due to the unsustainable lack of social support and Darwinian currents of our highly individualistic society.