Talk:Monash University shooting

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This diff, while very specific, has no citations associated with it, Google finds nothing and [1] says that Boast was actually a kung fu student. So that info is being removed. Thayvian 01:39, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

Influence of media on motivation of attack[edit]

It is accepted that multiple victim shootings are contributed to by media reporting, in the same way as reporting triggers imitative suicides. In the case of this shooting, it occurred at the height of weeks of hysterical reporting of the Washington snipers. It was also committed with handguns, after the 1996 intervention created a new paradigm that 'semi-automatic rifles' were no longer an option for committing massacres in Australia and anti-gun activists had started speaking out against handgun availability. I propose to add the information about the timing to this article. References include:

Beltway sniper attacks

Gun politics in Australia

Copycat effect

Cantor C. 2001 Civil Massacres Ethological Perspectives. The ASCAP Bulletin Vol 2 No 1. 29-31.

Cantor, Mullen and Alpers, 2000 Mass homicide: the civil massacre. J Am Acad Psychiatry Law 28:1:55-63

Cialdini, Robert 2001. Influence: Science and Practice 4th Ed. Allyn and Bacon, pp121-130.

Cramer, C 1993. Ethical problems of mass murder coverage in the mass media. Journal of Mass Media Ethics 9.

Lovibond J. 1996. ‘Hobart gun death related to TV show’, Hobart Mercury, 21/05/1996, Ed: 1, Pg: 2, 511 words. Newstext

Mullen, Paul quoted in Hannon K 1997, “Copycats to Blame for Massacres Says Expert”, Courier Mail, 4/3/1997

Phillips, D. P. 1980. Airplane accidents, murder, and the mass media: Towards a theory of imitation and suggestion. Social Forces, 58, 1001-1024.

ChrisPer (talk) 01:58, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

No mention of acquisition of firearms/legal discrepancies[edit]

There needs to be a clearer outline and far more in-depth research into how exactly a financially-unstable, foreign national who had difficulty speaking English and little familiarity with Australian culture or law, living on a student visa in Australia, a nation with some of the strictest firearms legislation in the world, managed to acquire a private arsenal of handguns and ammunition in a mere 6 months that even long-term, veteran firearm owners/professional shooting competitors in Australia would be hard pressed to match. The process of acquiring a firearms licence in Australia is long and convoluted, and it’s certainly not intended to be easy, nor designed to encourage you to go through with it.

Several of the requirements for handgun ownership in Australia, Xiang did not meet at the time of acquiring his firearms licence:

  • 1. That you are an active and financial member of a recognised sporting shooting club AND recognised shooting association for 6 months before applying for a licence (or for the handgun to be added to an existing firearms licence that does not include handguns). Xiang joined the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia in April 2002, and gained a handgun licence in June 2002; only some 2 or so months had elapsed between these events and there is no mention of the actual, local shooting club he would have had to have belonged to and practiced at, in order to acquire a handgun licence (the Sporting Shooters Association is simply a national firearm owners advocacy group similar to the American NRA).
  • 2. You can only licence one rim fire or centre fire handgun after 6 months of membership AND you can only licence one additional handgun in the subsequent 6 months. (Xiang had 6 after a mere 6 months of membership).
  • 3. In Australia, the final say on any firearms license application rests with the Firearms Officer of the Police Station you submitted the application at. They can reject applications on a variety of ambiguous criteria, and certainly the notion of an urban-dwelling, foreign student, who had hardly resided in the country for more a few years being given carte blanche approval by the authorities for 6 separate handguns for competition shooting (a sport he had just taken up and had extremely little familiarity with) is a remarkably extraordinary occurrence to say the least.

There are other problems with Xiang complying with licensing requirements that logically would have been difficult for him, by virtue of being a foreign student with limited funds and a limited understanding of the country he resided in and its laws, such as: storing firearms and ammunition in an “approved” gun safe installed in your premises (very difficult to do if you don't own your own home), subjecting your gun safes to regular police inspection, competing in a recognised competition at least 6 times a year for your primary handgun category and for any other handguns licensed for a different type of competition you must compete in a recognised competition at least 4 times a year and finally the cost of the licensing, approval and firearms purchasing process (firearms are incredibly expensive in Australia).

There are very scant details about this man's fairly fast and fluid progression into the world of competitive shooting and firearms ownership in Australia, which is a very arduous and expensive process even for Australia citizens with legitimate reasons for owning handguns and long-arms and yet somehow a mentally unstable immigrant seems to have skirted this complicated process with no trouble at all and was fast-tracked for the ownership of not just any run-of-the-mil handguns, but 2 large-calibre revolvers and 4 semi-automatic handguns (semi-automatic weapons are viewed with extreme hesitation and skepticism by Australian authorities and are more difficult to acquire than any other category of firearm in Australia).

Gamer112 (talk) 10:36, 6 April 2014 (UTC)

Thank you for your interest, however you put your finger on the pulse: there "... are very scant details about this man's..." everything. You've been involved in 'contributing' to Wikipedia for long enough to know that everything you've discussed here is original research and that both Wikipedia articles and article talk pages are not to be used as blogs/forums/soapboxes. You haven't even managed to adhere to a neutral tone. This reads as an indictment of foreign students and firearms advocacy (Xiang just happened to slip through cracks in a very solid and well regulated system).
I happened to have been in my office one floor below when the incident occurred. I assure you that I know a lot more about the circumstances, the Victorian legal system, and university policy than you do... but that's WP:OR, so I can't add anything to the article as there are no verifiable or reliable secondary sources to draw on. When you find some, you're welcome to expand the article. (Edit) --Iryna Harpy (talk) 10:21, 7 April 2014 (UTC) In the meantime, I'm collapsing this discussion. --Iryna Harpy (talk) 00:24, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
I wish to add to Iryna Harpy's comments on this OR, that Gamer112 has got a few things arse about. Firstly, 2.5 of the 3 numbered points apply to the law as changed Australia wide after the Monash University shootings so do not apply in this context. At the time he got the licences, normal procedures were followed. There was a local club involved. Gossip had it that the club officials were uneasy about this member, but felt unable to voice their concerns on grounds of possible accusations of racial discrimination. That club has not been attacked in the media but be assured the Police at the time gave them a full investigation.
Second, the argument as presented might be 'OR' in Wikipedia terms but in logic terms it is almost entirely speculation mixed with wrong facts. Versions of this used to be trotted out by people offended at the stupidity of the Government response. I have gone to another country and been licenced there for pistols despite being an Australian; I am a member of an Australian club which welcomes citizens of other countries and happily helps them enter our sport. In both countries we try to grow our sport while attempting to keep out undesirables and teach safe behaviour to all, regardless of race, gender, age or citizenship status. At the time clubs consider whether a member is able to be recommended for a license, the committee have their experience of the person - and a quiet police check - to go on.
I dont think the OR needs to be hidden; we usually just smack down the silliness of conspiracy theorists and untrousered advocates at related sites for the Port Arthur Massacre and Gun politics in Australia.
The part that interests me is, what piqued the person's interest and got him going along to the club? If anyone has knowledge, not necessorily WP:Reliable Source standards, I would appreciate learning it. ChrisPer (talk) 07:14, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
Point taken about collapsing this WP:SOAP. It's not something I've ever done on talk pages before, but this piece of advocacy got right up my nose.
I'm afraid I can't shed any light on what (or who) prompted Xiang to want to join the club. As you can imagine, Monash was a rumour factory extraordinaire for a long time afterwards. What I am an expert on is the university policies at that time. In those terms, I can certainly tell you where much of the culpability lies. --Iryna Harpy (talk) 10:38, 7 April 2014 (UTC)