How will Cho Seung-Hui’s Virginia Tech shooting effect Asian Americans?

by Peter Nguyen

Cho Seung-Hui Picture of Virginia Tech Shooting

In the deadliest shooting rampage in U.S. history, Cho Seung-Hui, a 23-year old Korean student, was out on a mission to kill his ex-girlfriend and her new boyfriend. America doesn’t know much about Asian Americans other than the racially-profiled stereotypes described in the media with Model Minority traits like being quiet, hard working, family oriented, and intelligent. Unfortunately, finally when Asians do get in the news, it’s for one of U.S. history’s deadliest tragedy.

One source stated:

According to unconfirmed rumors available to The Reference Frame, the killer was a 6-foot tall male Asian – I suppose East Asian – student between 20 and 25 years from Radford University whose girlfriend from Virginia Tech left him. He had two guns (at least one of which was a 9 mm caliber handgun) and wore a vest – probably a bulletproof vest – with
too much ammunition as well as a maroon cap and a black leather jacket.

In the morning around 7:15 am, he went to her dormitory in the West Ambler Johnston Hall. She was not there so he shot her roommate and the residential assistant. They didn’t shut down the university, so he continued and tried to find the ex-girlfriend and her new boyfriend in the classroom of the Norris Hall (engineering) a few hours later. He didn’t know the exact location, so he has visited a few classes, lined up all students against a wall, and shot them one by one – and then himself by a shot into his head.

CNN reported:

The gunman who killed 30 people at Virginia Tech’s Norris Hall before turning the gun on himself was student Cho Seung-Hui, university police Chief Wendell Flinchum said Tuesday.

University officials said they were still trying to determine if Cho was responsible for an earlier shooting at a dormitory that left two dead.

However, Flinchum said ballistics tests show that one of the two guns recovered at Norris Hall was used at Norris and at the dorm.

Cho, a 23-year-old South Korean and resident alien, lived at the university’s Harper Hall, Flinchum said. He was an English major, the chief said.

Cho was a loner and authorities are having a hard time finding information about him, said Harry Hincker, associate vice president for university relations.

What can we learn from this now? What are your thoughts on the motives of how might Asian and/or American culture have played a role in this? How can relationship heartaches lead to such a an extreme massacre? Many sources said he was constantly teased and harrassed by other students. Was this out of racial frustration?

This goes against most mainstream Americans stereotypical beliefs of Asians. So will Asians be more racially stereotyped and bigoted in America or will this event give America more perspective on how Asians don’t fit in one stereotypical box? Maybe even break down some racial walls?

After the Columbine shooting, that didn’t have America thinking about how corrupted white Americans are, they just concluded that there are some bad people in this world. I doubt if race will be overlooked. Most importantly, how can we all grow from this incident?

Speak your mind, we all want to listen…