Unfortunatly, in this case the guy was in college, so there is little the school can force him to do until he commits a crime. Also, they can't talk to the parents due to privacy issues. I heard that one of his English teachers reported his writings to the administration, but their hands were pretty much tied.
Its really a catch 22. If they were to enact measures that would force people to go to counseling for what they write or their lifestyle, people would stop coming to the university, but if they don't then tragedies like this will keep happening.
Hell, its hard enough to do that in public school. If kids start getting sent to the school shrink for being different, they may be ostracized and alienated by their peers, it may even lead to lawsuits by parents.
that's exactly my point. It's a "damned if you do, damned ifyou don't" sort of situation, and until the day comes that we have the ability to crawl inside an individual's head and PREDICT when someone's going to snap, it's basically unavoidable in the long run.
And you're 100% right. Even public school teachers can't start blabbing things about their students without making sur ethey're within legal boundaries and aren't going to offend some high strung parent.
Eh? Am I at risk?! I must admit I have been sent to a shrink, a couple of times, and after hours of paper scantron tests asking about "Voices in my head", I was told I was not the kind of person to go on a killing spree. Well, seeing as I answered "No" to the statement: "I have voices in my head named 'Al' and 'Ebert'", I'm pretty sure that was true. I was sent because someone accused me of saying "I'm gonna kill you" in casual conversation at school. I knew who it was, too, despite the school keeping it anonymous. By the way, probably one of the only questions I answered "Yes" to was "I don't have voices in my head."
Again, my point. There is NO mold for these people. They're ALL different, they ALL exhibited different characteristics, and the parents of these kids will tearfully tell you that "he was quiet" and it could be anybody's child. They're absolutely right. People need to stop creating this mold of a school shooter/killer, and just realize that sometimes..people just snap. Whether it's becuase they're ex-girlfriend pissed them off, or because they had a bad childhood, or because they were lonely and bullied, or because they just plain woke up one morning and decided to do it (that's instability at work), we will never know because only that person knows...and even then, sometimes they even don't.