Pennsylvania shooter targeted women


On Tuesday, George Sodini opened fire in a gym outside Pittsburgh, killing three women at injuring at least ten others. It was a crime he had planned for months – and it was a crime that targeted women.
The New York Post has published the full text of Sodini’s blog (read with caution), where – in addition to racist ramblings – he writes about his disdain for women and his plan to kill them.

Time is moving along. Planned to have this done already. I will just keep a running log here as time passes. Many of the young girls here look so beautiful as to not be human, very edible.
…I dress good, am clean-shaven, bathe, touch of cologne – yet 30 million women rejected me – over an 18 or 25-year period. That is how I see it. Thirty million is my rough guesstimate of how many desirable single women there are. A man needs a woman for confidence.

This isn’t the first gender-based misogynist shooting in recent years – in 2006 a gunman went into an Amish schoolhouse (also in Pennsylvania), sent the boys outside and opened fire on a dozen girls, killing three. That same year in Colorado, a shooter sexually assaulted six female high school students he had taken hostage, before killing one of them. When these shootings happened, the only person making the misogynist connection was Bob Herbert at The New York Times.
I’m at least glad to see that the mainstream media is reporting this as a crime against women. The Christian Science Monitor even discusses misogyny as a factor in the crime (can’t remember the last time I saw that word in a mainstream news outlet):

While the gender-equality movement has made strides in the past century when it comes to some of the more blatant forms of societal misogyny, such as banning women from academic and professional settings, misogyny persists in American and other cultures around the world, according to historians.
“This killer fits into a long pattern of males who harbor hatred towards all women, the image of ‘woman,’ and towards individual real women, and who take out their frustration on a female scapegoat,” says David Gilmore, an anthropology professor at Stony Brook University in New York and author of “Misogyny: the Male Malady.”

It’s also important to remember that Sodini’s crime is not so different from the misogynist violence that women face every day. As Amanda writes:

George Sodini was angry at the entire world of “desirable” women for not up and volunteering to have sex with him, and every day anonymous men around the country and world beat, rape, and even kill women because said women were also considered insufficiently compliant, often to unstated demands that women were supposed to just anticipate and fill without complaint.

As ill as Sodini may have been (and it seems clear from his blog and videos that he was indeed sick), we can’t separate this from the larger culture of misogyny and sexism. And also like Amanda, I find it disturbing – and downright frightening – to see how similar Sodini’s writing is to a lot of MRA/NiceGuy ramblings we see so often online. Anna at Jezebel even finds some bloggers in the “pick up artist” world who say if women would have just fucked Sodini, he never would have killed.
So yes, let’s continue to talk about this horrible shooting as a crime against women. But let’s also make sure that we’re discussing this not as an isolated crime – but as one part of an incredibly dangerous, culture-wide problem.

More at The Pursuit of Harpyness, WIMN’s Voices, and Feministe.

Image via Jezebel

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201 Comments

  1. Alexis
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    I a still unable to articulate how I feela bout this. I am incredibly angered, in many ways, by what has happened. I have made to feel unsafe in my own city–and that is something that I have never before let happen. I am angry that this an seems to think he was “entitled” to the “prize” of attention–in a social, emotional, or sexual way–from women. I am angry that this sees to show a continuous pattern of this type of thought process, ot just here but worldwide. And I feel powerless, for once, to stop it. Perhaps this struck a little too close to home for me, but something about this shooting infuriates me and frightens me more than I ever thought it would.
    What are solutions for this kind of thing? What can we do to stop it?

  2. RMJ
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Anna at Jezebel even finds some bloggers in the “pick up artist” world who say if women would have just fucked Sodini, he never would have killed.
    Very astute of Anna. Here’s my paraphrase of that quote:
    “If [incredibly misogynistic statement that creates circumstances and context for mass violence against women], he never would have killed.”
    Hey, maybe if Sodini just hadn’t fired his gun in a crowded room, he wouldn’t have killed.
    Hey, maybe if people didn’t imply that women’s bodies should be immediately accessible to men, he never would have killed.
    And why, exactly, are they concerned about Sodini’s life? It’s not

  3. RMJ
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    Disregard the last sentence – vestige of a misreading of Anna’s paraphrase.

  4. Crumpet
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    What disturbs me most is how this incident seems to have brought out the misogynistic bloggers and other writers (thank you Jezebel!) who want to take this opportunity to blame feminism for anything bad that happens to women. The message being that they’ve all been there (scorned by the evil temptresses) and can identify with his pain and rejection. Feminism has obviously made us all think a little too highly of ourselves to the point where we think we have a right not to go out with someone who obviously wants us very badly yet makes us uncomfortable. See, if you don’t succumb to the altar of the male ego you just may end up being shot, so think twice the next time you turn down that overbearing guy at the bar with too much cologne!

  5. jeana
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    It’s interesting to me that men who despise women rape, abuse, and/or kill them. No matter how much a female may despise men, you don’t see those same actions. Females don’t attack stranger men because they can’t get dates. Females don’t kill random stranger men because they are angry with men in general. And no matter how annoyed feminists are with the Patriarchy, we don’t maim, mangle, or murder men in revenge. What is it about the male gender that they take out their anger on stranger females?

  6. Athenia
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    A few questions/comments:
    1) This is TMI, but I feel it needs to be said: Ironically, the night before he killed, I was an emotional mess cuz *I* really wanted to have sex and lamented about how there were no guys throwing themselves at my feet. Of course, I don’t go and shoot guys because of it.
    2) Is this really about women? I mean, it just seems more about masculinity i.e. “A man needs a woman to feel confident”…a man isn’t a man unless he’s having sex with women….a man solves problems with guns and violence.
    3) I was taught that sex is drive….like hunger. Is there some way we, as a society, talk about sex as a basic human need? Of course, not all people feel sexual, but I feel like we always talk about sex as something “nice” not something that drives people nuts (literally and figuratively) when they don’t get it.

  7. DeafBrownTrash
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    What a cowardly, mysogynistic crybaby. Oh boo hoo, he couldn’t get a date or get laid! May the killer rot in Hell.

  8. RMJ
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Socialization.
    Women are taught to avoid taking their anger out violently. We are taught to take anger at men out on ourselves, not others. Some don’t follow that, but most do.
    Men are taught to channel their anger and misogyny violently. They are taught to take their anger out on oppressed bodies, not themselves.

  9. Kate
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    If anyone is in the Pittsburgh area, please come out to the vigil tonight, organized by The Women and Girls Foundation. Thank you.
    http://kdka.com/local/LA.Fitness.shooting.2.1116276.html

  10. baddesignhurts
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    i’m uncomfortable talking about this case without discussing the role his obvious mental illness/isolation played. yes, there are some larger issues at play, but i see that more in the reactions others have had to this case, i.e. “women shoulda dated this guy so this wouldn’t have happened so it’s your fault bwhahaha”.
    this guy was fucking sick, and isolated, for a long time, and he made cries for help, and no one noticed. this is in no way saying that anyone besides the killer is to blame for the incident, but undiagnosed/treated mental illness is just as much a social problem as misogyny.

  11. FrumiousB
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, we are just supposed to go up to guys and drop trou to service their needs! They deserve it for being well dressed and clean shaven! Oddly enough, I have been actively trying to find either a boyfriend or a casual buddy, and have been rejected, sometimes with insults for no added charge, by a whole lot of men. How can I fulfill my societally mandated role of providing poon to men in need if they won’t take me up on it?

  12. FrumiousB
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    And women are not taught that we are entitled to men’s bodies the way men are taught that they are entitled to ours.

  13. NapoleonInRags
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Incredibly Foxnews.com is even using ‘misogynist’ as a label for the shooter.
    I think much of the mainstream media coverage has exceeded my expectations in that respect. On the other hand, I don’t advise anyone reading the comments that have been posted in response to many of these stories…

  14. cattrack2
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    To Jessica’s point about talking about this through the larger lens of misogyny, one way to do that is to talk about the misogynist’s need for control. Sodini was articulating his frustration at being unable to control women. Women were essentially property to him. Well, rape is the same thing: The need by a misogynist to control women. I’d love to see a post/article about how the control angle manifests itself in different ways (some violent some not) and ultimately even in a mass murder. For instancce, what I don’t think broadly resonates with Americans is the notion that the Pro Life position is a patriarchal attempt to control women’s bodies. I don’t know that such an article could connect that kind of control to this act, but it’d be interesting to see it.

  15. erica
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    I am genuinely curious as to why crimes like these aren’t also considered a “hate crime” Does anyone have the answer? Is it a legal technicality thing? Or is it that sexism is so pervasive that if we started classifying this sort of thing as hate crimes there’d be too many to count? Does anyone know the reason that a crime that’s so clearly hateful committed against women purely because of their gender isn’t classified as a hate crime?

  16. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    COuldn’t have been said better. Even if you followed the stereotype that men want sex and women want marriage/babies, it would be inconceivable that a woman would shoot up a room full of men because no one ever proposed and gave her the babies she watned.

  17. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

    Couldn’t have been said better. The man reeked with entitlement as though he was owed something.
    Even if you followed the stereotype that men want sex and women want marriage/babies, you’ll never see a woman shooting up a room full of men because no one ever proposed to her and gave her the family she craved.

  18. MM
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    While I have felt relieved that most news outlets have talked about this in terms of misoginy, I think this has to do largely with WHY he targeted women, rather than the fact that he did it.
    He killed women in an aerobics class, a place that even the most blatant sexists don’t object to women going to, because they “too beautiful.” This is a level of woman hating that even Fox News can recognize. I fear it would have been very different, as the examples cited by the OP demonstrate, had he targeted women in a setting that misgonists object to, such as an educational institute. In short, he hated and killed women who weren’t doing anything identified with feminism (other than rejecting him, which can also be associated with things other than feminism, such as purity), so even Fox News paid attention.
    Also, lest any one think I am calling aerobics and beauty anti-feminist, I am an aerobics instructor who loves gyms, I just don’t specifically associate them with feminism.

  19. cattrack2
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    If he hadn’t killed himself I believe he in fact could & would be charged with a hate crime.

  20. SaraLaffs
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    I read the portion of Sodini’s blog that the NY Post put up, and he reminded me a lot of the guys in those True Forced Loneliness videos up on YouTube – same sense of entitlement, same blaming their problems on being rejected by women. Some of the TFL guys are downright scary in their hatred of women. I keep thinking, if women are so awful, why do you want to be with us so badly?

  21. spike the cat
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    I was taught that sex is drive….like hunger. Is there some way we, as a society, talk about sex as a basic human need? Of course, not all people feel sexual, but I feel like we always talk about sex as something “nice” not something that drives people nuts (literally and figuratively) when they don’t get it.
    Sure let’s talk about it. Might I continue with the hunger analogy?
    Imagine feeding a starving community by showing them how create an environment conducive to harvesting food, yet some of them angrily refuse because they want sushi.
    Or imagine that you have food for everyone and a few people decide to hide some of the food and hoard it for themselves. And instead of folks getting upset about hoarding of the food, they instead glorify hoarding food and aspire to do it as well.
    This is the general mentality that we are dealing with.
    (please forgive the food analogies, no disrespect to the victims and to women in general)

  22. Monica Shores
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been waiting for Feministing to post about this, and I feel really grateful for the community here when it comes to events like this… The MRA response Jezebel links to is entirely predictable and unsurprising, but still horrifying. I don’t know why I was reading the comments and filling my head with that toxic crap but I was mesmerized by how terrible some of those men seemed. Sometimes it’s hard work to remind myself that all men aren’t like that—even though I know plenty of sweet, wonderful guys who I care about deeply and are the living examples that most men aren’t cheering on murderers.
    I’d like to hate the killer but, in the video, I just feel sorry for him. He seems so lonely and desperate to change his state, although he can’t figure out a successful way to do so. I don’t think he ever took on any real tools to do so, because—as has been pointed out—he only seems to operate on the level of thinking women would somehow call in his lap if he just looked the right way or made enough money. And we all get those messages all the time: be thin enough, smell good enough, buy the right crap, and you’ll never be lonely again. I just wish our society was better at fostering compassion and connection, and encouraging it in healthy ways. That includes, of course, erasing any sense of entitlement to the affections of another human being, and putting the focus on what we can offer others rather than what we can demand or expect from them.

  23. Elixir
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    This.
    I know men who have this sense of entitlement and who have claimed to identify with the killer. This adds a whole level of scary onto it.
    They talk about us as if we are commodities to be bought and sold. The men I know (not friends, friends of the boyfriend unfortunately for me), have said that women fit into two categories: The sluts who put out and the bitches who put out to everyone but me.
    Oh and these aren’t Bill O’Reilly types, these are supposedly progressive liberals.

  24. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    This incident has really struck a nerve with me. One frequently reads horror stories of men in other countries throwing acid in women’s faces because the women (or their families) rejected an offer of marriage.
    Here in the U.S., you have stalking, domestic violence and murder of the partner and often her family–and now, random mass murder. It was very telling that initial media questions–and my thoughts too–were whether he was aiming at an ex-girlfriend who used the gym. We’re so used to that kind of story that, if that had been the case, I doubt the media would have lingered over his online blog and backstory.
    On a more personal level, this freaked me out because it made me wonder, “Should I have been friendlier to that annoying man who wouldn’t leave me alone at the gym?” “Should I have let him chat with me then passingly mentioned having a boyfriend–thus revealing that I’m unavailable and, just as importantly, have a ‘male protector?’”
    Instead, after he’d accosted me for a ten-minute long monologue about himself and how “comfortable” he felt “sharing” with me, I made it very clear that I did not want his attention. Especially when, while at an open market not far from the gym, I heard someone calling insistently at me (“Miss! Miss!”), discovered it was him, and looked so visibly displeased that he turned around and walked away without another word.
    When it comes to our public safety, we women are always told to go with our gut and ignore the socialization to “be nice.” “Being nice” could cost us our lives if we try to accommodate abusers, random kidnappers, serial killers, etc. I’ve always prided myself for having a tough, take-no-shit attitude when walking down the street.
    Now, we have to worry about not being nice enough because if we don’t accommodate, we might get shot?

  25. preppy
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    i just googled True Forced Loneliness and my mind is completely blown.

  26. Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    The Women and Girls Foundation of Southwest PA will be holding a candlelight vigil tonight, Thursday, Aug. 6th at 5:30 p.m. at the City-County Building to offer support and non-denominational prayers to the victims and families of this tragic and senseless event.
    WGF, community organizations and elected officials will be in attendance. All are welcome.
    If you live in the Southwest PA area, please attend if you can. You can also help support WGF in honoring the victims by passing this information to your friends and networks. For questions or more information, please contact WGF info@wgfpa.org.

  27. Athenia
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

    Wait, so aspiring to be a food hoarder is the same as aspiring to be The Man Who Does Violence Against Women?
    Sorry, I got a little lost in your analogy. ^_^;;

  28. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    This perfectly fits the definition of a hate crime.
    It was very telling that initial media questions–and my thoughts too–were whether he was aiming at an ex-girlfriend who used the gym. We’re so used to that kind of story that, if that had been the case, I doubt the media would have lingered over his online blog and backstory. (I’m sure there’s also tittilation over his revelation that he hadn’t had sex in 19 years, etc. “What man admits to that?!”)
    This time, however, instead of a “personal crime of passion” (domestic violence or murder of the partner and often her family), the perpetrator upped the ante by coolly planning then murdering a complete group of strangers because they represented the “Single Woman.”
    A hate crime, as opposed to a personal crime, has the result of striking fear in the broader community from which the victims came. Who among us isn’t a little more afraid after Tuesday?

  29. Elixir
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I made the mistake of reading the Salon comments to a Broadsheet post about street harassment once. One type of comment that kept coming up was about this anger that men felt when they saw a pretty woman walking down the street. They felt that she was trying to control them by eliciting a sexual response and then rejecting them. They wanted that control back.
    It was the type of comment that makes me feel sick to my stomach.
    Your experience with the pushy man is something I’ve never known how to effectively deal with. It doesn’t happen that often but when it does I always have to ask myself “How can I firmly let this man know I’m not interested but not elicit an angry, threatening response from him”.
    It’s a lose-lose situation for us. Be nice and “lead them on”, be firm and you’re a bitch who now could get shot.

  30. Renee
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Once again there is feministing telling one part of the story. Yes, three women were killed and ten were injured and I agree that the misogyny of this crime certainly needs to be discussed but how is it that you feel fine to discuss this terrible incident without ever once mentioning race? Come on..seriously. You are fine with ignoring the racist vitriol in his comments and reduce this to simply a matter of gender? Way to practice intersectionality.

  31. Icewyche
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t think Faux News even KNEW the word “misogyny”. Excuse me while I go check for flying pigs.

  32. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    Sorry for the double post. I got an error message, and made a few edits and tried to upload it again.

  33. revsolcialist
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    I wanted to say one thing about sex drive being like a hunger drive. Lack of food can kill you (as can lack of water, oxygen, and in some places, clothing/shelter). Lack of sex cannot. The need for sex is not the same as the need for these other things. A lack of sex sucks, but it does NOT “drive people nuts” and it certainly doesn’t drive people to kill.

  34. Icewyche
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    Renee, no one is arguing that the guy wasn’t a sexist, racist asshole. But racism is irrelevant in the context of what happened. Sodini didn’t shoot up a room full of African-Americans or Latinos or Asians. All of his victims by design were women, and white women at that, and he targeted them because they wouldn’t sleep with him.
    Not everything is about race.

  35. Crumpet
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Well, I’ve always said a man won’t call you a whore…….until you STOP fucking him.

  36. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Thanks so much for your input. Michael Kimmel in “Guyland” extensively quotes men who feel that women are intentionally “harassing” them by looking “beautiful” then “spiting” them by rejecting them. Of course, if women didn’t brush their hair, shave their underarms, and look generally presentable, then we’re considered dour trolls who can’t land a man.
    It’s comforting to hear that other women struggle with this balance. I still occasionally see that man at the gym, but he doesn’t speak to me anymore. I wonder if it’s because he: 1) got a girlfriend, 2) just plain realizes I’m not interested, or 3) thinks I’m a total bitch. Why should I care what a total stranger thinks? Well, that’s not a dumb question, is it?
    I’d love any additional advice from other women who have to deal with this!

  37. revsolcialist
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    “Not everything is about race.”
    Wow! Way to be dismissive of racism. That’s such a ridiculous ending to any comment that I don’t even feel like I can address the rest of your comment.

  38. Crumpet
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    Well, I’ve always said a man won’t call you a whore…….until you STOP fucking him.

  39. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    An interesting tidbit: 48-year old George Sodini wanted “young women.”
    Fox News (can’t believe I’m citing them, but thanks for the tip, Napoleoninrags) says he “inexplicably talks about relationships with younger women — 10 to 20 years younger.” He had a book titled, “Date Young Women,” which I assume isn’t for young men in the same peer group as those “young women.”
    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,537649,00.html?test=latestnews
    A NY Times article references Sodini’s diary entry in which he mentions a neighbor’s “‘beautiful college-aged girl’ leaving Ms. Cowen’s home, apparently Ms. Cowen’s 22-year-old daughter.”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/06/us/06shoot.html?ref=us
    So, this asshole wasn’t rejected by women. He rejected women his own age then raged over the fact that the ones young enough to be his daughter weren’t throwing themselves at him.

  40. Elixir
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    That is so true!
    It can be so illogical. I have had men call me a whore when I’ve turned them down! How does that even make sense?!
    Also I guess the other issue is why “whore” is an insult in the first place, but I suppose that is an issue for another day.

  41. alixana
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Creepy, sounds a lot like the sort of attitudes Hugo Schwyzer often blogs about when it comes to certain older men and their sense of entitlement about having younger women.

  42. VickyinSeattle
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    Sodini definitely made racist comments. He stated that black men always get “the best white hos.” (WTF?) Given our country’s historical pathology over black men with white women, it definitely taps into the old white male fear/resentment of supposedly more virile black men taking white women.
    At the end of the day, though, when you look at the nature of the crime, his racism was an accessory to his misogyny. Sodini didn’t rant on and on about black men blocking his access to white women. He obsessively raged at women for depriving him of his much-deserved sex and company. He walked into the gym specifically to kill women–not black men or interracial couples.

  43. Elixir
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

    This.
    We see this happen over and over again with Nice Guys (TM), where they reject women who aren’t conventionally attractive and then moan about how women never want them! So by this logic, the only women who are women are the conventionally attractive ones and the rest of us are chopped liver?!
    Nice Guys (TM) have entitlement coming out of their ears!

  44. alixana
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    If the guy was being both misogynist and racist, wouldn’t it make sense to assume that there’s some sort of interrelation there?
    I’ve only heard the vaguest mentions so far that he said racist things as well, which means that (at least the ones I’ve read) news sources aren’t seeing it as something worth talking about. Which is definitely something to criticize.

  45. spike the cat
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Nah. That’s Ok. I’m specifically talking about the “biological drive” aspect that you brought up and how some folks in our culture feel it should be implemented.
    Hoarding comes about with the idea that 50% of the population should be somewhat chaste sexual gatekeepers, while another 50% is entitled to as many partners as they can manage; besides the arrogance of it, this goal of course is rendered nearly impossible because of the constraints placed on the gatekeepers.
    Overall it is a pretty undemocratic way of looking at something that folks argue is supposed to be a basic human drive, wouldn’t you say?
    The analogy isn’t meant to go beyond that. ;)

  46. TroubleBaby
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

    Yes. I think the book title I read on Jezebel was something like “How to Date Young Women for Men Over 35.” They also write about how he posted on message boards asking people what they would think if they saw an older man with a “very young girl,” etc.
    I mean, I don’t know why I’m surprised, it’s obvious these men don’t want real companionship and relationships with real women, but still…”I’m 50 years old and so lonely and I haven’t had sex in decades and everyone rejects me and I’m desperate but NO I WILL ONLY DATE HOT 20 YEAR OLDS!” Boggles the mind. I’ve also noticed that a lot of those Forced Loneliness, Nice Guy type guys always bring up how women always go for the jerky jocks, handsome rich guys, whatever and won’t give them the time of day because of their looks – isn’t that shallow? But then they don’t want to date an “ugly” girl with a nice personality either.

  47. Renee
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    Not everything is about race?
    Yeah I would agree with you however this incident definitely had a racialized element and you ignore it at your own peril. Sodini was not just threatened as a man but as a White man I won’t fill up the comment thread debating this issue with you, however I will offer this link explaining exactly what race has to do with this.

  48. bogger
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    I think it’s deeper than “boo hoo women hate me so I’m gonna get myself a gun.” He had a deep rooted mental disorder in my opinion. In his blog he repeatedly mentions the shortcomings of family support in his youth. His brother that bullied him, his mother that was demanding and bossy and his father that was a “useless sperm donor”.
    He was sick, that’s why he wasn’t with women. He wasn’t very specific, but I’m sure the women he was with noticed something wrong with him in that respect and rejected him. Had nothing to do with looks. Women can bypass looks if you have a good personality and a caring nature (I can personally attest.) 99.999999999% of guys will never do this. There was no way to stop it. There will always be a fringe of “spooky” factors that no one can explain. People want things cut and dry with little proper definitions where nothing can go wrong. But that’s a whole ‘nother animal.

  49. LindseyLou
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    That balance is definitely something I struggle with. I have long felt that, by being friendly to extremely socially awkward men, I am running the risk of unwanted romantic attention. I’ve also felt hostility when I don’t reciprocate.
    I even have my own guy-at-the gym story. This guy tried to chat me up in the pool when I was swimming laps. I thought I made it clear that I was maintaining conversation merely to be polite. (Actually, I was making a concerted effort to be friendly as I’ve told that I’m too hostile when men approach me.) The next time I was there he asked me out, and I politely declined. When I saw him again I was waiting for a lane to open up, and he said he’d save his lane for me. Then he added, “No obligation.”
    I didn’t even know what to say, but I definitely felt some hostility from that statement. As if I did something wrong by turning down a guy I had no interest in.
    This shooting incident really got me thinking. I have long felt rejected by men because I have almost never been asked out or approached by someone I’m interested in. But I always blame that on ME and my (perceived) inadequacies. It’s interesting that men blame someone external, but it’s still the woman getting the blame. It’s been really alarming to discover I sometimes share this tendency. What did society DO to us, anyway?

  50. Icewyche
    Posted August 6, 2009 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    Oh, for crying out loud. Does EVERYTHING have to be about race? Yes, Sodini made a lot of racist remarks on that vile screed he called a diary, but the overwhelming bulk of his hatred was directed at WOMEN.
    I’m not “dismissing” racism or anything else, but show me where ANYTHING about Sodini’s massacre was racially motivated. He may have ranted about how “bruthas” could each have three white women of their very own, but he wasn’t gunning down a room full of black men, was he? There are a lot of evil, hateful, despicable things that happen in this world because of racism, but this slaughter wasn’t one of them.

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