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Thread: Email I just got from Charles Steger

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    February, 2009

    Dear Students, Parents, Colleagues, and Friends,

    Our university campus has again been touched by tragedy in ways we could little have imagined before April of 2007. Before the terrible events of 2007, we had never witnessed a student homicide on the campus of Virginia Tech. The murder of graduate student last month in the Graduate Life Center (GLC) stirs anew the trauma we continue to experience from April 2007.

    The fact that any murder happens anytime in a peaceful place like this is newsworthy. Because of our recent history, it surely commands attention. Many, we are sure, are wondering 'Why us?' 'Why at Virginia Tech?' These events are troubling when seen against the backdrop of the normally serene college environment. Indeed, that may be why it is especially jarring; college campuses are and remain one of the safest places in America.

    While rare, homicide on college campuses does occur. The violent crime rate on college campuses is less than 15 percent of the nation's average. Over the last eight years, on the 4,200 college campuses in this country, where more than four million people study, there has been an average of 17 homicides per year. In comparison, there are more than 12,000 homicides per year in this country. Indeed, 80 people are killed every day by firearms alone in the United States.

    Many things are different on our college campuses today than they were pre-April 2007, including our mindset.

    - At Virginia Tech we have added 11 positions to the VTPD and now have a 70-person police and security force.
    - We have added positions in the Cook Counseling Center and the Dean of Students Office.
    - The university has added, and continues to add, safety features throughout campus. Among them are electronic message boards in classrooms, emergency notification systems, the addition of locks on classroom doors, and residence halls locked around the clock.
    - University officials continue to work very closely with each other to identify and evaluate students in need. The Threat Assessment Team and the Care Team meet regularly to assist students with problems in school or personal life. The Threat Assessment Team also intervenes when it appears that an individual could be a threat to self or others in our community (students, employees, or visitors).
    - The university works closely with the Community Service Board in ordering commitments of students in need of immediate counseling, (Temporary Detention Orders).

    During an emergency the university can use several notification methods, including VT Alerts. More people within the university have been trained to issue emergency alerts through the university emergency notification system. First-responders can assess the scene and determine whether an immediate alert or notification should be issued by the police department.

    Students are required to 'opt-in or opt-out' during each course registration period. Parents can subscribe to the VT Alerts through their student's account. Students are able to select up to three emergency notification methods including text message, cell phone, land phone, or non-university e-mail. One of those three methods could be a parent. However, remember we use this system primarily as an alert to those here in need of emergency information. If parents wish to remain apprised of campus events, we suggest subscribing to the daily Virginia Tech Daily E-mail or RSS feeds available at www.vtnews.vt.edu.

    Yet, all these safety features and programs did not stop the violent crime in a campus coffee shop in the GLC last month. The quick response by our campus police, just a little over a minute after receiving the 911 call, tragically could not stop the deadly assault.

    After the GLC homicide, the suspect was immediately apprehended. Still, the university notified the community within 35 minutes of the first 911 call with about 40,000 emails, which were distributed in minutes. The VT Alerts, which relies on multiple cell phone carriers and external service providers, sent 60,000+ messages in 33 minutes. We continue to look for ways to reduce notification time, but we must realize that instantaneous communication with 35-40,000 people on the move in town and on campus is not feasible.

    Regrettably, I also find it necessary to address some troubling commentary directed to the university leadership via e-mail, on blogs, or in letters-to-the-editor. Virginia Tech is an open and accepting community including many races, ethnicities, and cultures from around the world. We believe firmly that this diversity enriches the educational experience of all of our students. There is no evidence to suggest this death was in any way ethnically motivated.

    Moreover, it is important to note the international student community at Virginia Tech has an outstanding law-abiding history and reputation. Compared to their percent of the student body, our international students generally are extremely under-represented in terms of offenses brought to the university's judicial system. Nationally, the Bureau of Justice statistics point out that Asians are ten times less likely to commit homicide than whites in the United States. We reject any suggestions that condemn an entire class of people, particularly those with a strong law abiding reputation on our campus.

    Virginia Tech is located in a small community. We are not regularly visited with violent crime like urban-based universities in many cities around the nation. For that reason, any violent crime, but particularly one such as this, shocks and deeply moves us all. It challenges our community to offer support to one another and challenges our thinking as a nation. We trust, however, that our principles of mutual caring and respect will allow us to pick up and move on. Thank you for your understanding and support as we join together to do so.

    Sincerely,


    Charles W. Steger, President



    Why he felt the need to include that statistic in an email about a murder committed with a knife on a campus where guns aren't allowed escapes me...
    [/code]

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    [quote]Hmmmm. I think the Grapeshot bug just got me. Quote all messed up.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    [quote]SaltH2OHokie wrote: Why he felt the need to include that statistic in an email about a murder committed with a knife on a campus where guns aren't allowed escapes me...
    [code]

    Citizen's Reply: Maybe someone can dig up his e-mail and call him on it.

    You know, ask him if this sort of free-associative thinking is what passes for thought in his ivory tower.(Sumthin' funny going on with the quote feature on this thread.)
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member TexasNative's Avatar
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    Citizen wrote:
    Sumthin' funny going on with the quote feature on this thread.
    I think it's your CKI (Chair-Keyboard Interface).

    All kidding aside, you're right, using the quote button on this thread causes some strange things to happen. I had to work really hard to make it look at least kinda right.

    ~ Boyd

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Best quote from Master Steger's open letter:

    "Yet, all these safety features and programs did not stop the violent crime in a campus coffee shop in the GLC last month. The quick response by our campus police, just a little over a minute after receiving the 911 call, tragically could not stop the deadly assault."

    I might add "and never will."

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    80 people are killed by firearms a day, but how many livesare saved by firearms a day?

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    All those "safety features" they've added are all passive systems, and I'm including the additional police force. The police force on that large of a university is unable to patrol every free space effectively.

    One thing that I believe would be effective is a student body that is willing and ABLE to defend themselves.

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    He probably got it from the NYT. Yeah, unbiased, I know.

    http://www.nytimes.com/imagepages/20...H_GRAPHIC.html

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    eyesopened wrote:
    All those "safety features" they've added are all passive systems, and I'm including the additional police force. The police force on that large of a university is unable to patrol every free space effectively.

    One thing that I believe would be effective is a student body that is willing and ABLE to defend themselves.
    Gasp -That advocates personal responsibility.

    This university will never willingly allow students to think and act freely for themselves. They cannot be trusted to make such life altering decisions. Therefore the school reserves the privilege of ignoring the facts for itself.

    Being asked to defend one's life with a cell phone and a scream is the heighth of stupidity and arrogance. Lay down and wait - the police will be there with their guns and chalk.



    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Regular Member razor_baghdad's Avatar
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    Paerhaps a few emails or phone calls might assist the president in a re-look at his views??

    Office of the President
    210 Burruss Hall
    Blacksburg, VA 24061

    E-mail: president@vt.edu

    Phone: (540) 231-6231



    :shock:





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    I hear he doesn't even look at emails with subjects such as "concealed carry" or "fire Bryan Steinspring"

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    How about fire Wendell Flinchum requests? Steger and Flinchum should have been gone long agobut the activists want to close the gun show loophole instead. So much for keeping priorities in order.

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    hsmith wrote:
    80 people are killed by firearms a day, but how many livesare saved by firearms a day?
    Roughly 1/2 are suicides, many others are gang-bangers/drug dealers.

    And Japan's suicide rate is 3x that of the U.S., WITHOUT GUNS!!!

    Their favorite method is a mixture of bleach and ammonia to make chlorine gas out of household chemicals.

    Very sad, but guns do not cause suicide. And neither does Clorox.

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    Got that same email, and it did strike me as strange in several ways. As I was reading it I could tell he was building up to some kind of a gun statistic and BAM there it was. Wasn't that surprised but it was odd - not very discrete or convincing if there was supposed to be some kind of message in it.

    And being asian, I was caught off guard by the little anti-discriminatory warning. Not offended, I just think he's trying too hard to cover too many bases. Maybe it's just the people I'm around, but no one (that I knew) was all that concerned about the circumstances surrounding the incident - except for the bit where a bunch of people just stood around.

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    Regular Member richarcm's Avatar
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    SaltH2OHokie wrote:
    While rare, homicide on college campuses does occur. The violent crime rate on college campuses is less than 15 percent of the nation's average. Over the last eight years, on the 4,200 college campuses in this country, where more than four million people study, there has been an average of 17 homicides per year. In comparison, there are more than 12,000 homicides per year in this country. Indeed, 80 people are killed every day by firearms alone in the United States.
    I love how the author compares the 17 deaths per year on college campuses to the 12,000 deaths per year in the country. Several things amuse me about this. The most obvious is that the author states that there are 4 million people on these college campuses. Well there are over 300 million people in the country. Then you do have to realize that college campuses are generally made up of wealthy, educated, motivated people. The low death rate has nothing to do with the campus' safety but the fact that most people on college campuses are less prone to risk their education/career by taking part in criminal activity. Which is also a good defense for allowing these same educated, wealthy and motivated students to protect themselves as they can once they step foot off campus.

    And obviously you really have to break down the death statistic provided for the nation as a whole. Does it include the same homicides already accounted for on these college campuses? Suicide? Does it include gang activity? Illegal immigrants? Drugs? Previous offenders?

    Also do they dare compare crime such as rape, sexual assault, burglary, and assault/battery to that of the national average? I bet statistics of their serene and tranquil campuses would possibly rival that of many not so pleasant areas of the nation.

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    "While rare, homicide on college campuses does occur."

    And how many of those involve decapitation? Only Virginia Tech has the honor of a mass killing spree and a decapitation as separate incidences.

    Virginia Tech is now on the cutting edge of College murders instead the cutting edge of technology.

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    Virginiaplanter wrote:
    "While rare, homicide on college campuses does occur."

    And how many of those involve decapitation? Only Virginia Tech has the honor of a mass killing spree and a decapitation as separate incidences.

    Virginia Tech is now on the cutting edge of College murders instead the cutting edge of technology.
    Good point.

    Why is that? What are they doing to foster this dangerous environment?

    Some hard questions need to be asked. Maybe do a crime analysis of VT compared to other colleges/universities in the state.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    If I lost 32 or 33 members of my "family" because of my policies, I would never allow myself to speak publicly on the matter again. I would hang my head in shame and spend the rest of my life in a dark, private place. Alas, that would be the honorable thing.

    The ONLY acceptable thing for the VT president is to publicly apologize for his part in contributing to the problem and resign.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Grapeshot wrote:
    If I lost 32 or 33 members of my "family" because of my policies, I would never allow myself to speak publicly on the matter again. I would hang my head in shame and spend the rest of my life in a dark, private place. Alas, that would be the honorable thing.

    The ONLY acceptable thing for the VT president is to publicly apologize for his part in contributing to the problem and resign.

    Yata hey
    I like this thinking.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member richarcm's Avatar
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    I wrote my concerns to the head of the campus police a while back but never heard anything in return.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Citizen wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    If I lost 32 or 33 members of my "family" because of my policies, I would never allow myself to speak publicly on the matter again. I would hang my head in shame and spend the rest of my life in a dark, private place. Alas, that would be the honorable thing.

    The ONLY acceptable thing for the VT president is to publicly apologize for his part in contributing to the problem and resign.

    Yata hey
    I like this thinking.
    Charles Steger wishes to bask in the radiance of good things that happen during his tenure but wash his hands of the blood of complacency and fault unusual events by unusual, unforseen people. He is the Captain and ultimately the one who must bear the blame.

    The Captain of his ship is responsible not only for the vessel but for the lives of all aboard.

    How many naval careers have been scuttled for lack of proper attention to this detail and frequently rightfully so IMO.

    Colleges are carefully constructed pens for the lambs and the wolves WILL find a way in which to feed. The lambs need sharp TEETH - other direct suitable means to STOP the wolves. The shepherd's crook is worthless against the wolves.

    Yata hey

    PS - I have not yet really begun to rant.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Regular Member Neplusultra's Avatar
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    Grapeshot wrote:
    Citizen wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    If I lost 32 or 33 members of my "family" because of my policies, I would never allow myself to speak publicly on the matter again. I would hang my head in shame and spend the rest of my life in a dark, private place. Alas, that would be the honorable thing.

    The ONLY acceptable thing for the VT president is to publicly apologize for his part in contributing to the problem and resign.

    Yata hey
    I like this thinking.
    Charles Steger wishes to bask in the radiance of good things that happen during his tenure but wash his hands of the blood of complacency and fault unusual events by unusual, unforseen people. He is the Captain and ultimately the one who must bear the blame.

    The Captain of his ship is responsible not only for the vessel but for the lives of all aboard.

    How many naval careers have been scuttled for lack of proper attention to this detail and frequently rightfully so IMO.

    Colleges are carefully constructed pens for the lambs and the wolves WILL find a way in which to feed. The lambs need sharp TEETH - other direct suitable means to STOP the wolves. The shepherd's crook is worthless against the wolves.

    Yata hey

    PS - I have not yet really begun to rant.
    Yep, my next door neighbor, at one time, was a naval captain. Some ship was in the news as having run aground, no real damage. He said that captain's career was over. And rightfully so I guess. Too many other able people standing in line to take the job. But the armed forces are different than civilians I guess. In the armed forces you're talking about lives, perhaps tens of thousands, when talking about bad decisions and policies. In civilian life you're more used to only talking money. We need to emphasize that this issue is about lives, maybe yours.

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    hsmith wrote:
    80 people are killed by firearms a day, but how many livesare saved by firearms a day?
    1.5 million / 365 = 4109 and change



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    razor_baghdad wrote:
    Paerhaps a few emails or phone calls might assist the president in a re-look at his views??

    Office of the President
    210 Burruss Hall
    Blacksburg, VA 24061

    E-mail: president@vt.edu

    Phone: (540) 231-6231

    :shock:

    Done. I attached a copy of Gun Facts 5.0 to the email.


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    Regular Member Neplusultra's Avatar
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    vbnative73 wrote:
    razor_baghdad wrote:
    Paerhaps a few emails or phone calls might assist the president in a re-look at his views??

    Office of the President
    210 Burruss Hall
    Blacksburg, VA 24061

    E-mail: president@vt.edu

    Phone: (540) 231-6231

    :shock:

    Done. I attached a copy of Gun Facts 5.0 to the email.
    Great, saved a copy for myself!

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