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"gothic" killer in Montreal

Freaker's picture

The nutjob in Montreal who shot up the college was into "goth" and posted a journal on vampirefreaks.com - I am sure that this will do wonders for the image of goths everywhere since it's so representative of "the" culture. 

I mean, I am sure that most of us on the board own several guns, lots of ammo and are really only 2 more traffic jams from blowing away our co-workers or random students.

I wonder why the media didn't classify some of the other mass-murders as white-bread or catholic or whatever.  Odds are they'd certainly tag Islamic on there if they could since it's in the collective consciousness as a "dangerous" set of beliefs.

This should spin off some more ludicrous news stories.

Believe me Val, I share very similar views. It goes a lot deeper than that I think. Parents are also just as fearful when it comes to discipline. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to say parents should beat their kids or berate them incessantly, but that fear does hang over their heads compared to when I was a child.

Schools as well as parents need to deal with bullying a lot harsher than they are now. But the kids that are being bullied also need to be dealt with, from a psychological sense. And this is what I was talking about in regards to peers as well as parents paying attention to changes in ones 'normal' demeanor if they are being bullied.

As for the governments gun control laws, or lack thereof, anyone with a firearms safety certificate can purchase as many rifles as they want. It's just typical beuracratic nonsense. As long as you can jump through the hoops they've setup you can have as many guns as you wish. They definately need to add a psychological component to aquiring weapons like this. We aren't the US yet, but the differences aren't really that great either.

Ya really wanna know?  I think we started to get too soft, and as a result, kids are now getting harder.  In school, teachers are now discouraged from giving out F's because it "hurts students' self-esteem".  They don't fail kids a grade or expel them as much as they used to, because everyone is afraid it will damage the kid psychologically.  (A previous boyfriend who was studying to be a high school teacher in BC ran some of the grading criteria by me one night, and it is a LOT different now than when I was in high school - it's a lot easier to avoid a failing grade these days.)  Better to fool the child into thinking he's doing OK when he really isn't, I guess - and thus not preparing him for the real adult world of hard work, brief successes, and harsh failures. 

Well, I think it is backfiring.  I think it is telling our kids it's OK to not "try",  it's OK to be bullies and get away with a weak scolding (because harsh punishment would damage self-esteem), and as a result our kids are turning into misguided creatures.  I hate discipline as much as the next person, but when you're not in a good place, ya gotta be told and ya gotta be dealt with appropriately.  Sweeping problems under the carpet simply isn't working. 

Also...

Somehow the Canadian government either didn't notice or didn't care that someone under the age of 25 had at least 3 firearms registered in his name, who was not a member of the military, did not own any hunting licences, was not a member of law enforcement, and did not own a farm or fishing boat (where firearms are permitted to deter animals who will endanger the crop/catch).  Should a red flag have gone up at some point, maybe?  I think that sort of thing should start to, if it currently doesn't.

Was watching CBC tonight and seems there's a lot of copy-cat threats going on up and down the st. lawrence. I believe the count was at 5 as of today. I'm sure we all saw the reports on the 15yr old who posted threats, regarding school in QC, on VF. At least someone did something about this one.

But Val is right. VF has pretty much been branded as a place where those who have quite a few issues will now start to gather. This is only going to escalate I fear.

With all the recent studies showing that the youth today are growing up in such a completely psychologically damaging media fed environment, one has to ask the question if this doesn't have something to do with the rise in such crimes. I seem to remember the biggest thing schools worried about, when I was in high school, was youth suicides. Now it seems we have to worry about sending our kids off to school each morning and wonder if they'll coming home or get the phone call/knock on the door no parent wants to recieve from police. I'd really like to know where the social safety net was for these youths? Where were their friends and peers, not to mention their parents? How could something so blatantly obvious not have been noticed by the people around them?

I was surprised to NOT see a ban on images of weapons and violence/gore on VF after all was said and done.  If it were my site, I'd have done that lickety-split.  No, getting rid of images like that won't stop psychos from using the site, *but* it might take some of their sick fun away and bore them enough to leave the site. 

If you ask me, by lack of doing anything in reaction to this, VF is telling me it wants to be exactly what its name implies:  Vampire (horror, gore, blood, violence, surreal/fantasy) Freaks (abnormal, malformed, irregular, shunned by society).  If that doesn't say "psychos come here" I don't know what does.  If VF doesn't want these guys on the site, they had better start pulling their socks up and doing what they can to turn people like that off. And for starters, how about adding some policies on violent images and adding a "report this image" link under every photo?  A site with membership that huge relies on the goodwill of its members as much as on the policing of its mods.  If members feel it's OK to report disturbing things, the mods can react a lot faster.

That's really the only issue I have with the site to be honest. I understand they have 600k registered users, but doubt they're all active accounts since there's quite a few looky loos that have probably registered and never went back, myself included. Either way, the admins and mods have a responsibility, not only to the site/boards but also to the community, to be vigilant in what they allow. I can pretty much guarantee if this site had as much traffic that Atratus would increase the ammount of mods here.

Darkline, yes, VF seems to be a meeting place for kinder goths, mansonites and the like, who have no idea what gothic culture actually consists of. I beleave this is mostly due to the media the site gets. VF has never been a goth site, it's supposed to be an 'underground industrial goth' community. In my time on VF, a I have seen a lot of people removed for behaviour such as Mr.Gill's. Including one guy who made a claim to be one of the 'Devil's Rejects' and several people with serious racial issues. The bigest problem is that the mods realy heavily on people reporting issues, and some profiles just don't get hits. I'm not making excuses for them, and I do think that modding should be upped.

I read in the Province, a few samples of posts that Mr. Gill had posted. Some of them were stuff that I'd be surprised to see here. However, like Puck said, VF is has many more registered members and it's probably harder to moderate it.

You can defend VF all that you want Puck, I would expect everyone here to do the same if someone snapped and they were affiliated with this site. VF on the other hand has been linked now to 3 cases of murder and suicide over the last few years, Mr Gill's being the worst case, let alone all the uneducated wannabes that frequent the boards and site. As far as I'm concerned, and I know many others share the same sentiments I do, a site like VF allows it's users to post asinine pictures and statements, like Mr Gills, and that's gothic how? A youth posing with assault weapons is in no way goth, his sentiments and statements are in no way goth and even his appearance and choice of clothing style is in no way goth. Why was it that the admins and mods allow this to become entrenched in their circle? And why didn't they attempt to purge these types of images and sentiments from the site/boards?

Yet who does the mass media look to when this happens? The site and people they supposedly associated with and the things they've posted, which were obviously not modded, as well as pictures that they've posted. VF did nothing but set the gothic scene up for having the fingers pointed at us. VF does little to nothing to break this negative stereotype or even remotely attempt to educate young people what goth actually is rather than letting them follow blindly with preconceived notions that are completely off the mark.

Interestingly enough, I was going to study journalism in college after I graduated high school in 1997. The reason why I decided against it was because of the cut throat competition and because of all these stories about generalizing different sub-cultures. Then, the death of Princess Diana sealed the deal for me. I remember when I was in grade 12 at Centennial in the spring of 1997, there was a drive-by shooting infront of the library by kids using a pellet gun. Not sure what the reason was, but the goths and skids were targeted. I was a skid at the time, but luckily was in class when it happened. No one was seriously hurt that I know of. Days later, the Coquitlam Now newspaper ran a story grouping all kids into sub-cultures; goth, skid, skater, homie, preppie, yuppie, etc. They just went on assuming everyone fits into a subculture, and that there was some kind of turf war at the school between all the groups because of some isolated incident commited by idiots. Now I will admit, Centennial was very cliquey (sp?) when I went there, but I'm not sure what it's like now. Does anyone go there? What's it like now?

That's the really sad thing esquire. I used to moderate an Everquest board hosted by fileplanet/gamespy a few years back. This was when that 20-something guy had commited suicide in front of his computer and the everquest login screen was displayed on the screen when he was found. The Australian CBC was doing research and contacted me. We were in daily correspondence for at least a week prior to them airing the segment. They sent me a copy, burned to CD, and it was one of the most well thought out segments I've ever heard. They touched far more on his mental health issues and why his mother, who knew he was suicidal, didn't do anything to help him. Yet the N American mass media just ran with the fact that Everquest could possibly cause the same thing in others if parents didn't stop them from playing.

But this type of sensationalism has been around for decades. I can remember back in the 70's when it was AD&D that was coined dangerous. It's just progressively gotten worse since then.

Darkline had an excellent point, young journalists nowadays are in a very competitive field. I'm not making excuses for them at all. They all want to be the one who breaks the big story. I remember listening to Pete Rose talking on a sports talk radio show about when he played baseball in the 1970s. He said back then, the players and reporters were all friends and they could go out for dinner or beers after a game or in the offseason and these reporters would never go behind their backs and report anything they said about their personal lives or anything. But now, the general public is so nosy, they all need to know what people do in their day to day lives. I'm using baseball as an example here, reporters constantly bothering Barry Bonds or Jason Giambi mainly because they're the two most often tied to steroid controversy. Similarly with this Chek6 reporter, they seem to be anxious to break a big story and to get a big payday.

Ahem, as a member of VeeEef, I feel the need to do a bit of defending. This is a site with over 600, 000 ACTIVE members from around the world. It is moderated to a great degree, but you CAN'T controle every one. It's really a matter of cause and effect, there are a LOT of mature, sensible people on VF, but it has a repuatation, so obviously kids with missconceptions feel it is the right place for them.

If we are to play the blame game, then a web site should be the last in line to take the brunt. I guess biggest problem is that the ones who need help the most are always the ones who slip through the cracks.

This was a sad event, it'll be even sadder if people to infact start steriotyping goths as mass murderers. The one thing people always seem to forget is that there will always be one or two bad seeds, no matter where you look. The catholic/christian church turned out Hitler and a string of child sex offenders, soldiers in the American Army(regardless of wether or not they have seen battle) have repetedly proven to be an unruly bunch(and yet they still get HANDED weapons...) and occasionally one or two model citizens turn out to be serial killers. My assumption is that it all boils down to whats easier to identify. Why would the media sensationalize some one you can't indentify?

Someone from check6, here in Victoria, actually went as far as to randomly pick registered email addresses from the user base at gothvic.com to get them to appear on TV. Do I expect any modern day journalist to be responsible on not attempt to jump on the sensationlism bandwagon to increase profits and ratings? No.

Someone posted [url=http://www.canada.com/chtv/vancouverisland/story.html?id=7e2... story as a fine example of how the mass media jumps to conclusions and makes outright false statements. Whatever happend to responsible journalism and actually doing more than a  bare minimum of research before printing such rubbish? I was so taken aback by the blatant misinformation and typical need for mass medias need to label this fool as a goth, that I emailed the so called journalist and requested he set the record straight. The following is the content of the email I sent.

Good day,

Your story concerning the Montreal murder rampage is atypical of what I would expect from any mass media outlet. Sensationalism and labeling. This kid was NOT a goth, vampirefreaks.com is actually frowned upon by the goth scene accross Canada as well as the US. The people that use that site are considered kindergoths, childish and unbalanced miscreants that label themselves as something they're not.

I've been involved in the Gothic scene since the late 70's. You seem to mistake mental illness, which is obvious he suffered, for being goth and murderous. The people I know in numerous goth scenes accross Canada and the US are intelligent, eloquent and no different that anyone else except in the way they dress and the music they listen to. Marylin Manson is not gothic music...period.

Did you even consider talking to anyone that runs any local Canadian goth sites/message boards before printing the rubbish you did? There are sites and message boards that cover pretty much every major city in Canada where like minded gothic music fans gather to plan events and get togethers and discuss all sorts of normal everyday activities. Anyone that is of the aforementioned kindergoth mentality is shunned in these communities. We do not want to be affiliated with murderous rampages based on a single incident by someone who obviously had mental health issues.

I am personally requesting your story be edited to reflect on the actual person that caused all the grief in Montreal, as well as any mental health issues he may have had. You should also be focusing on this kids family and why they didn't get him the help he obviously needed. They are actually more responsible for the outcome in Montreal than any music scene.

Brian Pinkerton

A.K.A. Darkline

Moderator @ gothvic.com

It all goes back to people either fearing what they don't understand or they've been taught a certain thing and conditioned to work this way. Remember a while back those two kids committed suicide in Vancouver? They were into "the scene" and of course the newspapers blew it all out of proportion saying every goth is going to commit suicide. Had the kids been "normal", the papers would have been singing a different tune.

Oh great, Jet is going to be fighting the bad press AGAIN. There was an interview last night on the CBC with this white clad bleach blond who saw the whole thing. Nothing against her, I totaly feel bad for her because of what she went through, but I knew as soon as she was asked to describe the shooter she was going to say "goth". Thankfully she didn't, instead just "I know it seems like a steryotype, but the long black trenchcoat, lots of facial piercings".

And Freaker, white bearded catholic just doesn't work for mass murderer, they aren't half as easy to single out as 19, dressed all in black with facial piercings.

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