After each one of these massacres, the perpetrator's picture is plastered on every television news show, published in every newspaper and posted all over the Internet. His name is known all over the world. They analyze his life, post his rantings and make him legendary. Not everyone in America desires to be the next American Idol; some are content to be the next American Idiot. They want to be known — to be remembered — as someone significant and powerful. Often these are copycat crimes where one disturbed fool sees the “fame” that another killer gets and his misguided mind wants that infamy for himself. It's a type of sick celebrity status we can diminish.
The media must exercise restraint and agree to not make the attacker well-known. The debates over gun-free zones, assault rifle bans, mental health care and violent video games can and must continue, but our first agenda must be to decrease this type of horrific crime.
The media can take the starring role in limiting these appalling acts. Simply report the incidents without revealing his name or showing his picture. Don't post his Facebook comments, his blog posts or his insane rants.
Change his notoriety into obscurity. Make him nameless and faceless; then we will see these events decrease. When that happens, we will have the media to thank.