It’s a long, long way from 1966 to 2007. Too long for the MSM to remember anything useful. As they blather on today about the need for more gun control, look at the remembrances from last year at a Texas television station:
Gordon Wilkison is retired from the news business now, but in 1966, he was a photographer for KTBC, the only television station in town. It hadn’t been that long since Wilkison had left the Army.
That’s why when Charles Whitman opened fire from the University of Texas Tower on Aug. 1, 1966, Wilkison wasn’t afraid as long as he had cover.
“I wasn’t being anybody’s hero but I had a good 75 mm lens on my Bolex [camera]. That’s what got the shots,” he said.
It was Wilkison’s shot that captured the definitive images of the tragedy – the shots of gunfire from the Tower, the shots of a wounded, pregnant Claire Wilson on the hot pavement. He also interviewed students who risked their lives to rescue fellow students.
“There was a lot of heroics that were going on then, same thing was going on over on the Drag. When they brought the armored car out to take out one of the wounded persons, [Whitman] was just firing left and right then. It was a good idea and I thought they’d never get the guy in the truck,” Wilkison said.
News footage was shot on film back then with cameras that were very heavy. Wilkison didn’t have a tripod so he had to hold the camera steady as bullets fired around him…
Seventeen people were killed and nearly three dozen others were wounded by Whitman, who fired from the Tower’s 28th-floor observation deck.
That was August 1966. It was later discovered that Whitman had a brain tumor. In the note he left behind, it is obvious he knew something had gone seriously wrong.
Now fast forward to January 2006:
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A bill that would have given college students and employees the right to carry handguns on campus died with nary a shot being fired in the General Assembly.
House Bill 1572 didn’t get through the House Committee on Militia, Police and Public Safety. It died Monday in the subcommittee stage, the first of several hurdles bills must overcome before becoming laws.
The bill was proposed by Del. Todd Gilbert, R-Shenandoah County, on behalf of the Virginia Citizens Defense League. Gilbert was unavailable Monday and spokesman Gary Frink would not comment on the bill’s defeat other than to say the issue was dead for this General Assembly session.
Virginia Tech spokesman Larry Hincker was happy to hear the bill was defeated. “I’m sure the university community is appreciative of the General Assembly’s actions because this will help parents, students, faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus.” [emphasis mine -D]
Most universities in Virginia require students and employees, other than police, to check their guns with police or campus security upon entering campus. The legislation was designed to prohibit public universities from making “rules or regulations limiting or abridging the ability of a student who possesses a valid concealed handgun permit … from lawfully carrying a concealed handgun.”
The legislation allowed for exceptions for participants in athletic events, storage of guns in residence halls and military training programs.
Last spring a Virginia Tech student was disciplined for bringing a handgun to class, despite having a concealed handgun permit. Some gun owners questioned the university’s authority, while the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police came out against the presence of guns on campus. [a bit territorial, hmm? -D]
In June, Tech’s governing board approved a violence prevention policy reiterating its ban on students or employees carrying guns and prohibiting visitors from bringing them into campus facilities. [outlaw the guns so only the outlaws will have them. More help from the Marching Morons]
You can’t miss the note of superior self-congratulation here, can you? The Rule of the Enlightened over the unwashed, dangerous masses. Simply issue an edict and the governing board of Tech has “prevented violence.” Everyone is safe now from those nasty guns [noise offstage. Someone is vomiting into the bushes by Norris Hall].
Too bad journalism majors don’t have to do double duty with some delving into American history (the real version, not the p.c. pap infecting colleges today). Or maybe someone could just inoculate them against the virulent hubris from which so many of them seem to suffer – and which makes them insufferable for the rest of us.
Who wants to bet on how many of the MSM will be interviewing the Brady Bill bunch about gun control, and how many will be talking to the survivors of the University of Texas shooter? What do you think the ratio will be?
Except for Texans, I’ll bet it runs about 50::1 for the Brady Bunch talking heads.
When it comes to the MSM, bet on ignorance and wonder if it’s willful.
Thanks to Tushar for noticing the date mix up. That’s 1966,folks, not 1996. I made the two changes — Dyslexic Dymphna