Thursday, April 19, 2007

Did The Virginia Tech Massacre Happen Because of a Speech Problem?

Could the massacre that took place at Virgina Tech Monday morning be the result of a life-long speech impediment -- and the ridicule of classmates?

Chris Davids, a Virginia Tech senior who graduated from Westfield High School in Chantilly, Va., with Cho Sueng-Hui in 2003, recalled that the South Korean immigrant almost never opened his mouth and would ignore attempts to strike up a conversation.
"Once, in English class, the teacher had the students read aloud, and when it was Cho's turn, he just looked down in silence", Davids recalled. Finally, after the teacher threatened him with an F for participation, Cho started to read in a strange, deep voice that sounded "like he had something in his mouth," Davids said.
"As soon as he started reading, the whole class started laughing and pointing and saying, 'Go back to China,"' Davids said.
{FOX News article}

Could this have been one of the moments Cho referred to in his sometimes incoherent video rants that were mailed to NBC's headquarters just before he murdered 30 people in cold, cruel blood?
"You had a hundred billion chances and ways to have avoided today," a snarling Cho says on video. "But you decided to spill my blood. You forced me into a corner and gave me only one option. The decision was yours. Now you have blood on your hands that will never wash off."
EVERY description I've read or heard regarding Seung Cho says he was quiet; he would not talk and even refused to verbally participate in class. Many think the reason was that he was always angry. I'm starting to think he was extremely self-conscious about a speech impediment -- one that he used as a harbor for the rage that was unleashed on the campus of Virgina Tech Monday morning. Even Cho's family was troubled by his lack of verbal communication as an adolescent.
"We were concerned about him being too quiet and encouraged him to talk more." said an uncle (Cho's mother's younger brother), who requested to be identified only by his last name, Kim. Cho "troubled his parents a lot when he was young because he couldn't speak well, but was well-behaved," recalled his grandfather, who was also identified by only his last name Kim in an interview with the Dong-a Ilbo daily. In a separate interview with the Hankyoreh newspaper, Kim, 81, said the relatives were worried that (as a child) Cho might even be mute.
Stephanie Roberts, 22, graduated with Cho from Westfield High School. "I just remember he was a shy kid who didn't really want to talk to anybody," she said. "I guess a lot of people felt like maybe there was a language barrier." But she said friends of hers who went to middle school with Cho told her they recalled him getting picked on there. "There were just some people who were really mean to him and they would push him down and laugh at him," Roberts said Wednesday. "He didn't speak English really well and they would really make fun of him." {FOX News}
I have seen anger that stems from the frustration caused by speech impediments. I've seen and read about the rage and anger that some people bear -- especially when harassed by classmates or the general public. Seung Cho's video segments, filmed over at least six days, offer audio confirmation that he had a problem speaking clearly. In the often-incoherent video, the 23-year-old Cho portrays himself as persecuted.
Was the perceived persecution caused by his inability to speak clearly or without an accent? Was this the source of the remarks "
You forced me into a corner and gave me only one option. The decision was yours." Did he somehow brood over childhood foolishness & cruelty until April 16th -- and then explode into a murderous rage?

One item of information that would help explain the situation would be someone who could witness to the conversation (or argument) between Cho Seung-Hui and Emily Hilscher early Monday morning. Witnesses says that the two were arguing when Ryan Clark attempted to intervene. Shortly, thereafter Cho shot Hilscher in the back of the head. He also shot Clark in the neck. Both students later died.
Was Emily the object of Seung's affection; one who either made fun of him or refused his advances? Could she and/or Ryan Clark have made comments that Cho perceived as the catalyst for his being backed into a corner?

Maybe someone will come up with a definitive answer to the question of why Cho wrote "Ismail Ax" (or Ishmael Axe) or his arm -- and that will give us further insight?

No one is sure at this point. However, it is now my hypothesis that Cho Seung-Hui may have gone on the shooting rampage as a result of seething anger that boiled over because he suffered from speech problems that lead to much deeper, psychological issues. The end result of which was a horrible psychosis, murder and suicide.

FOR THE RECORD: I am NOT, in any way, blaming the victims for this tragedy. I am merely offering a hypothesis as to why Seung Cho may have given himself a reason to murder innocent people.