Six years ago today there was a school shooting at Oikos University in California that led to the deaths of seven people, also injuring three. What was the weapon used in this school shooting? A .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol) handgun that would be deemed a “weapon of war” to most people, since this handgun is also used in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Why do I use the term “weapon of war”? One of the survivors of the Parkland school shooting called the AR-15, the weapon used by the Parkland school shooter, the same name while at a listening session with President Trump. The firearm used in Parkland was specifically a Smith & Wesson M&P15 .223, which has recently been confused for a fully automatic rifle. Automatic rifles have been banned in the U.S. since 1986 under two federal laws.
Why does it matter what firearm is used in a school or mass shooting? The recent protests are the answer. When reflecting on past school shootings and trying to understand why they happen still, the attack at Oikos University in April 2012 is a place to look.
The suspected shooter at Oikos was One L. Goh, who was a former student at the university. He is a native of South Korea who followed his family to the United States as a child along with his two older brothers, who all later became naturalized U.S. citizens. Prior to the attack, Goh’s older brother, who was serving in the U.S. Army, was killed in a car accident. His mother moved back to South Korea where she also passed away.
While Goh was a student at the university, the school reported that he had disciplinary problems, which led to his expulsion prior to the shooting. Howard Jordan, the chief of the Oakland Police Department, said that Goh was angry at the administration after being expelled without a refund of his tuition. While school administrations later made the argument that he wasn’t expelled but simply withdrew his enrollment, One L. Goh was still angry at the university and on the day of the shooting went to the school to address an administrator.
The shooter went to a nursing class and pretended to be taking a test with students, when he suddenly stood up and ordered classmates to line up against the wall. One L. Goh opened fire on a classroom filled with people using a .45 ACP (a semi-automatic handgun) with four fully loaded 10-round magazines (there is a 10-round standard clip for this style of handgun). After opening fire on the classroom, he fled the campus while still shooting and stole one of the victims cars. Later that day he surrendered to authorities five miles from the scene of the shooting.
Today, six years ago, seven innocent lives were taken. I am not taking pleasure in the loss of life as I write this article, but I am pointing out that the wrong argument is being taken up by today’s leftist agenda. The incorrect argument is encouraging legislators to ban a certain type of firearm. The military actually uses the M1911 pistol, which is a version of the .45 ACP. Therefore, did this shooter use a “weapon of war”?
If you answered yes, then you are right. The shooter in this instance used a firearm that is used by men and women in the military; however, this doesn’t mean that we should now make the argument to ban all .45 handguns. The .45 caliber handgun is the carry handgun of choice for many citizens, and it wouldn’t go over well if that style of firearm was under attack.
The purpose of this was to prove the important point that it isn’t the firearm, it’s the person. This shooter had dealt with two deaths in his family, and it was even reported by the local police that he was made fun of for his lack of English speaking skills by classmates.
Lastly, the total amount of rounds shot by the shooter was 32. The police later found the firearm used discarded in a saltwater channel near the university with three empty magazines and eight rounds left in the firearm. Over 100 rounds were fired at the Parkland shooting that led to the death of 17 people, while at Oikos 32 rounds were fired that left 7 people dead. I’m not saying that one instance is more or less tragic than the other, all loss of life is equally horrific. However, this .45 handgun could do just as much damage as the AR-15 did at Parkland.
Therefore, the issue isn’t the firearm, it’s the person. It is the mental state of the person, and in this case as well as Parkland, the shooter was bullied or made fun of. So, why focus on taking my firearm away instead of focusing why there aren’t enough programs in place at schools all across the nation to address bullying.