After reviewing two prominent books about the role of music in the school shootings which take place in their stories, I have decided to write about my own novel, "He Was Weird." Before I launch, I would like to point out that, originally, I read both "Nineteen Minutes" and "Endgame" while I was writing my own story out of fear of being accused of plagiarism. Those fears were put to rest quite quickly although reading about the role of music on those stories gave me ideas for my own in that regard.
Mark, the protagonist from the story, is never really into music. In fact, in one scene, he states that Marilyn Manson is Satanic. Therefore, you, the reader, don't really get much insight into his musical tastes because there is none to get. However, after Mark carries out his big atrocity by shooting up his school, it doesn't stop some people from insisting that he was driven to his crime by music. During a phone in radio programme, some caller insists that he Marilyn Manson and violent video games were the reasons behind Mark's killing spree. Even the talk show host downplays those comments.
The argument that music was at fault for Mark's school frenzy doesn't end with the radio phone in. Maybe one of the officers from the Ramsgate Police Department was listening to the broadcast because when they go to Mark's house and confiscate his things, they do so with the idea of him being under the influence of films, games or music. Sadly for them, they find nothing to substantiate their claim. The only computer games they find are the Age of Empires games and an ice hockey game. Though that doesn't stop some from stating that Mark's amazing ability to play the Age of Empires games influenced his decision to shoot up his school. As a result and I'm going off track a little here, parents of the victims try to use it to get a teacher at the school fired and one tries to sue Microsoft. The same goes for films. The only two they find are for "Saving Private Ryan" and "A Bridge Too Far." Both are bloody World War II films but no one would want to admit that they were an influence on a school shooting. Although watching those films before the big day does help de-sensitize Mark to all the blood he sees when he shoots everyone. That leaves music. Well, the police only find two CDs belonging to Mark. One his a commercial rock sounding band called the Guiding Lights and the other is a hardcore thrash metal band called Demonslayer. However, despite the different genres, both bands have one thing in common, they're both Christian rock bands! After a couple of songs about Jesus on both CD's, the cops have to conclude that music couldn't have influenced Mark to shoot up his school.
After much thought and four posts, I am left to conclude that music has very little or nothing to do with anyone shooting up their school. There are other factors as to why this happens and often the case, as in the three books, it is bullying. Unfortunately, most people don't want to accept that bullying may have something to do with it and find it easier to blame music no matter how preposterous it might sound. I think that until something changes, then music will continue to be wrongly blamed for terrible tragedies.
To buy He Was Weird, go to: https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1487691409&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
Published by Michael Lefevre