Archive for the 'usa' Category

Virginia Tech Shootings

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

News broke today that at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), 4 hours away from where I am, a gunman shot 32 people before committing suicide.

Jason Easley on the Blogger News Network wrote:

I have a feeling that the tragedy that occurred today at VA Tech is going to lead to a reopening of the gun control debate in the United States.

Gun control isn’t a debate in my mind — it’s a no-brainer: guns should not be widely accessible. Period. Then again, I’m not American.

After laying out both sides of the debate by quoting various political figures, he went on to say:

The person who carried out this attack could have just as easily used a bomb as a gun. Because of the lack of campus security, this was a unique incident that should not be lumped in as part of the gun debate. I have always thought that if someone is intent on killing they will find a way. Removing all guns isn’t the answer, but I do think that we need to ask ourselves why does the U.S. have so many more violent incidents like this compared to the rest of the industrialized world. It isn’t an easy question to answer, and I don’t think the solution is as simple as taking away all the guns. I am far from what would be considered a “gun nut,” but to me it is clear banning guns, except assault weapons, isn’t the answer. I think our societal problem rests more in the hearts of the individuals that carry out such actions than in the instruments that they use to kill others.

Sounds like a vicious cycle to me.

1. Gun advocates defend their right to own guns in the name of self-defense. 1
2. But easy accessibility to guns leads to violent crimes. 2
3. Violent crimes makes people insecure, though insecurity is force-fed to the consumers in this fear-driven society.

The cycle continues…

This reminds me of a clip in Bowling for Columbine:

1 I find it hard to believe that anyone would walk out of the gun shop thinking “if someone breaks into my house, I’ll scare him away with my gun.” It’s more like “I’ll kill the bastard!”

2 One might argue that guns could not be linked to shootings. I think that’s objective BS that won’t hold up against the conscience.

America 101

Monday, March 5th, 2007

Many of you knew that I was moving to the US — I’ve been saying it for months. So, I finally made the move and am glad to announce that I’m officially here, and am settling in quite well.

Some photos are in order.

After spending a night at Aelvin’s place in NJ, I flew to Washington Dulles Airpot on Saturday 10th of February and arrived at the Hertz car rental to pick up my month-long rental car. I paid for an upgrade and they were nice enough to give me a 2007 Camry, only travelled 1,400 miles.

Next, I went to the apartment to sign the lease and get the keys to move in.

Living room looking at the balcony.

Bedroom

Washer and dryer nicely tucked in a closet

Kitchen

Bathroom

Balcony

View from balcony

Same view on Valentine’s day

Same view on Sunday 25th Feb

View of my apartment block. My unit is the balcony on the third floor.

Across the street from my apartment compound.

When viewed from my balcony on Sunday.

Snow flakes on my car window while driving to work.

On the evening that I arrived, Les and Kim were nice enough to bring me an air mattress and Sony flat screen TV plus some essentials all the way from Baltimore. That was a life saver, thanks guys!

The first weekend was Chinese New Year and since Monday the 19th Feb was President’s Day. Seeing that it was a long weekend, I decided to drive up to NJ to spend with Aelvin and his family. It was a nice and quiet one, but I didn’t take any photos except on my way back (using my brand spanking new Blackberry Pearl):

Along Interstate highway I-95

In the tunnel near Baltimore

And if you’re curious as to what my place and surrounding is like, here’s a satellite view:

This satellite map shows you how to get from my apartment to my work place. Yep! 6 minutes and a traffic light later, I’m there!

That’s it for now!