As Adrian Hong correctly concluded in the Washington Post, Koreans Aren't to Blame. Yet, there is something quite refreshing about people showing a sense of social responsibility, instead of ducking it and angrily passing the blame.
Imagine if President Bush was to suddenly express a “feeling of apology for the tragedy caused. “ Here’s the letter I would like to see.
Mind you now that I’m not saying that Cho Seung-Hui wasn’t responsible for his actions. He was. What Cho did wasn’t because he was a Korean or that he had autism or because he was picked on. Cho did what he did because he chose to do it. Just look at how long he planned and what effort it took to commit the horror he systematically and methodically unleashed.
Where I’m at fault is that I didn’t do my job when it came to homeland security and fighting terrorism. What if it had been one of Osama’s thugs that had been doing the shooting with some real firepower? Mercy, Cho was only packing a .9 millimeter and a .22 and he was still able to have scored 33 kills. He could have just easily had bought himself high-powered assault rifles. He could even have bought a .50 caliber sniper rifle and blown heads off from a mile away. There’s nothing stopping any American al-Qaeda operative from legally buying all the firepower needed to top Cho’s score.
If instead of pursuing my grandiose fantasies I had done my job, every American citizen, community, school and workplace would know what to do if an act of terror was committed. But instead of telling people that they needed to help take responsibility after 9/11, I told them to return to life as normal and go shopping at the malls. Don’t worry about fighting terrorism. Leave it to the government, I said. The government might not be worthy of being trustworthy when it comes to doing anything good like saving drowning and starving people in New Orleans but big government can be fully trusted to protect its citizens from violence.
What double messages I have been sending. Telling the poor to take responsibility while never taking responsibility for anything myself. Well, it’s time I finally started standing on my own two feet.
For starters, let me take responsibility for another act of terrorism on American soil. If my Department of Homeland Security had done its job then officials at Virginia Tech would have had a plan in effect to deal with such a scenario. Every school in America would have similar plans. Every American would know what to do if terrorists struck.
Allow me also to express my deep regret that American society has become a dog-eat-dog society. Too many people believe kindness and consideration to be weaknesses. Too many people believe fame, money and success are all that counts. If you’re not the winner then you’re a loser. As president, I am responsible for the mood of the country. As a Christian, I am ashamed at the anger and hate that I have help fanned these past years. As a man, I am embarrassed by all the anger on the airwaves expressed by males, the grand majority of them whites. I also can’t help noting that males are the ones doing the shooting.
So thank you, President Roh Moo-hyun, for causing me to realize a sense of responsibility for my actions. I will now try to do what I should have done years ago: secure the homeland. I will try to unite, instead of divide, and inspire, instead of conspire. I will try to secure the peace instead of making my legend as a war president.
the George W. Bush we’ve never known.