Nothing new under the sun

Sent from a friend who I’m sure wishes to remain anonymous because he likes to sell real estate.

Bath School Massacre, 1927. 1927, by the way, arrived seven years before 1934, when the National Firearms Act banning machine guns was enacted. Violent video games were in their infancy and autism hadn’t been invented, yet nonetheless, and despite the availability of a genuine “assault rifle”, this mad man chose dynamite, with equally devastating results. Excerpt from full article:

Bath SchoolThe Bath School disaster is the name given to three bombings in Bath Township, Michigan, on May 18, 1927, which killed 38 elementary school children, two teachers, and four other adults; at least 58 people were injured. The perpetrator first killed his wife, and committed suicide with his last explosion. Most of the victims were children in the second to sixth grades (7–14 years of age[1]) attending the Bath Consolidated School. Their deaths constitute the deadliest mass murder in a school in United States history.

The bomber was the school board treasurer Andrew Kehoe, 55, who was angry after being defeated in the spring 1926 election for township clerk. He was thought to have planned his “murderous revenge” after that public defeat; he had a reputation for difficulty on the school board and in personal dealings. For much of the next year, a neighbor noticed Kehoe had stopped working on his farm and thought he might be planning suicide. During that period, Kehoe carried out steps in his plan to destroy the school and his farm by purchasing and hiding explosives.

Kehoe’s wife was ill with tuberculosis and he had stopped making mortgage payments; he was under pressure for foreclosure. Some time between May 16 and the morning of May 18, 1927, Kehoe murdered his wife by hitting her on the head. On the morning of May 18 about 8:45, he exploded incendiary devices in his house and farm buildings, setting them on fire and destroying them.

Almost simultaneously, an explosion devastated the north wing of the school building, killing many schoolchildren. Kehoe had used a timed detonator to ignite dynamite and hundreds of pounds of incendiary pyrotol, which he had secretly planted inside the school over the course of many months. As rescuers gathered at the school, Kehoe drove up, stopped, and used a rifle to detonate dynamite inside his shrapnel-filled truck, killing himself, the school superintendent, and several others nearby, as well as injuring more bystanders. During rescue efforts at the school, searchers discovered an additional 500 pounds (230 kg) of unexploded dynamite and pyrotol planted throughout the basement of the south wing. Kehoe had apparently intended to blow up and destroy the entire school.


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19 responses to “Nothing new under the sun

  1. Anonymous

    “Both the left and the shooters agree that the people should not have guns”.

    Maybe it’s because both the left and the shooters prefer their human targets defenseless.

    Also, take a wild guess, which of these two lines would make a preferred headline for both:

    1 – Heavily armed shooter opens fire at school, kills many children and teachers

    2 – Heavily armed shooter opens fire at school, instantly killed by armed teacher

    Incidentally, line 2 describes the outcome which 100% parents of those children would prefer.

  2. Anonymous

    armed teacher. great

    clearly there are many , many gun nuts that read your blog.

  3. 3g

    Does anyone remember Anders Beivik on Norway. Killed about 77 teenagers on an island off Norway. Picked them off as they tried to get off the island. Such a sporting fellow. Does Norway have any gun laws?

  4. Peg

    If we could vaporize every gun on the planet, that would be my choice. (Sorry Chris and your fellow hunters.) Of course, that will never happen.

    So – if you want to deal with reality, you must face a nation with roughly 300 million guns. And a 2nd amendment. And the best ways to handle those realities.

    Sadly, though my sentiments lie with those of my liberal friends, I’m able to read and think and judge consequences. After all that, it seems that many of my “gun nut” buddies are closer to the truth. If we ban guns too much, all we’ll do is end up with the bad guys having them – and the good guys helpless to stop them. So – perhaps we should honestly look at rational gun laws, ENFORCING decent ones on the books (I read that prosecution of failures to enforce gun laws have fallen woefully under Obama!) – plus revamping some of our mental health laws.

    I’d like to wipe out stupidity, avarice, cheating and a whole host of other evils, too – but so far, we haven’t had much luck with ridding the world of those either.

  5. Libertarian Advocate

    Peg: I’d like to wipe out stupidity, avarice, cheating and a whole host of other evils, too – but so far, we haven’t had much luck with ridding the world of those either.

    Ha! The left would never side with you on wiping out avarice and cheating, why its their way of life.

  6. Anonymous

    Schools do not even want to administer an epipen (self injectable epinephrine) to kids that are at risk of anaphylaxis. My son has a severe nut allergy and I have had the misfortune to see him in a life threatening state at Greenwich Hospital before we diagnosed the problem. If they can not handle the liabillity about injecting a child with a needle well good luck getting the unions, school districts etc. to agree to pay and train teachers in the use of firearms. And god forbid a teacher accidentally kills a colleague or a student if there is an apparent attack.

    • Libertarian Advocate

      Alas, you’re probably right about that, and there’d likely be no liability exclusion language in any enabling legislation that a superb lawyer and a wincing judge couldn’t thwart.

  7. Fred2

    ” well good luck getting the unions, school districts etc. to agree to pay and train teachers in the use of firearms”

    Why would you do that? That should be strictly up to the teacher on their own dime. No need to get *anyone* else involved.

    Other than removing the prohibitions.

    Frankly given the fabulous safety record exhibited by armed civilians ( compared to , say, the police) in the US I’m not terribly concerned. Might something happen? Yes. Is it more than vanishingly unlikely? No.

    And as to liability, it rests in the shooter, not in any organization validly allowed a normal right to be exercised. I mean really, if you drive down the sidewalk running over people, is Ford, or the town, liable? Is the town liable because I shot someone within city limits? Is Company X liable because an (ex) employee comes back and goes postal? ( I know I’d be royally pissed if it happened and I got tagged because I specifically wasn’t allowed exercise the ability to be legally armed – had I the desire.)

  8. Off Campus Education

    With remarkable on-line courses, video links to a classroom, etc. HOME SCHOOLING may actually be a viable option. We need to rethink the cost of education anyway. Your kid will be safe. Almost any kid could get an affordable education from his public library and some extramurals. Forget the prom and horrible school lunch.

    • Libertarian Advocate

      You are a troublemaker aren’t you? Better watch out before Randi Weingarten engages a cement cobbler to fit you for concrete galoshes. ;-

  9. Anonymous

    so sad god bless the children they didn’t even have a chance, like you and me bless us and all, how did it get so messed up, lets try to fix in any way we can