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Gym Shooter Targeted Women

Gym Shooter Targeted Women

Last week a tragedy at LA Fitness gym outside of Pittsburgh left 3 women dead and 9 others wounded.  George Sodini, 48, opened fire at an aerobics class in the gym after planning his attack for months, a plan whose target was clear: women. 

After a so-called lifetime of rejection from the opposite sex, Sodini developed an intense hatred of women ultimately culminating with his shooting rampage and suicide. An online diary reveals his detailed plan and growing rage toward women. (You can read an edited version of Sodini’s diary here)

The diary recounts Sodini’s failure with women and frustration with rejection as he documents the months leading up to the shooting. Below are some excerpts:

“I dress good, am clean-shaven, bathe, touch of cologne – yet 30 million women rejected me…”

“Flying solo for many years is a destroyer.”

“Every evening I am alone, and then go to bed alone. You women were brutal when I was younger…”

“I never even spent one weekend with a girl in my life, even at my own place.”

“Women just don’t like me. There are 30 million desirable women in the US (my estimate) and I cannot find one. Not one of them finds me attractive.”

“I was reading several posts on different forums and it seems many teenage girls have sex frequently. One 16 year old does it usually three times a day with her boyfriend. So, err, after a month of that, this little XXX has had more sex than ME in my LIFE, and I am 48. One more reason.”

“There is something BLATANTLY wrong with me that NO goddam person will tell me what it is.”

Yes, something was very “blatantly” wrong with Sodini. And something is very wrong with the amount of violence directed towards women for the simple fact that they are women.

A New York Times op-ed about the shooting this weekend writes about the“barbaric treatment of women and girls that has come to be more or less expected” in “a society saturated by misogyny.”

“Life in the United States is mind-bogglingly violent. But we should take particular notice of the staggering amounts of violence brought down on the nation’s women and girls each and every day for no other reason than who they are. They are attacked because they are female…”

“…We would become much more sane, much healthier, as a society if we could bring ourselves to acknowledge that misogyny is a serious and pervasive problem, and that the twisted way so many men feel about women, combined with the absurdly easy availability of guns, is a toxic mix of the most tragic proportions.”

I couldn’t agree more. 

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Photo by Jeff Swensen, Getty Images - http://www.philly.com/inquirer/local/20090806_Pittsburgh_gym_shooter_wrote_of_rejection.html

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179 comments

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5:16PM PDT on Sep 14, 2009

Why is it, every time a tragedy happens,someone comes out of the walls wanting to band guns? I'm telling you right now, guns are not the issue. Never have been, never will be ,because if a person wants to kill,it won't matter if every gun on the planet is destroyed. He or she will kill regardless. They will use a knife or club or rock or piece of glass, or whatever they can find to do the job.
What we need to focus on instead of guns is the violence period. How to stop it. How to protect ourselves and or loved ones from it.

5:33PM PDT on Sep 1, 2009

I feel very sorry for the victims of the gunman, as well as for the families of the victims. I do not feel sorry for him at all-I don't give a damn if he had lifelong rejection fron women. I've also had lots of rejections over the years, well guess what, I don't feel sorry for him at all & I hope he rots in hell. That schmuck knew DAMN WELL WHAT HE WAS DOING.Perhaps he ignored, or wasn't aware of this--whatever happens to defines 10% of who you are, the remaining 90%? How you go about handling it, this fellow evidently picked the absolute crappiest ways of handling it.I've gone to counseling to discuss my personal issues & recieved decent feedback. Dating & making female friends gradually got easy for me over the years, freindships which I cherish greatly. At one point I used to have quite a few male freinds(but most of them have moved out of my area, or worse yet, are now deceased) but several women freinds are there for me whom I can bare my soul to. And once again my deepest sympathies to the families of those victims. Bruce, Newark, Delaware

10:08PM PDT on Aug 26, 2009

Andrea:
"There is where my biggest problem and issue lie. I look normal, I come across to a degree as normal but I am NOT normal. I was diagnosed at an early age with mental health issues..."

Much like me... although lately I've begun to wonder just how many of these psychiatric diagnoses are legit and how many are just the pros trying to push their drugs on us.

Do you know what Autism really is? Based on what someone else with the disease told me, it's another word for being too smart for your own good... so smart that you just can't relate to anyone around you, because you're living too much in your own head.

In fact, alot of "mentally sick" people are of above average intelligence. Anyone who'd call an autistic person a "retard" clearly doesn't know what he's talking about.

Myself, I have an IQ of about 135, but when it comes to dealing with other people I feel like a complete idiot... and my own illness (called alcoholism) is MUCH WORSE than autism. In particular, it cannot be "medicated" or "cured" by anything the doctors have to offer; it has to be treated SPIRITUALLY. Otherwise we either die or spend the rest of our lives being miserable and self-centered to such an extreme that nobody wants to be near us...

10:08PM PDT on Aug 22, 2009

People in my self-help group have often told me that "What goes around comes around". In other words, if all you focus on is what you can take out of a relationship, rather than what you put into it, chances are it is going to fail... but you don't want to give TOO much; then your self-respect goes out the window, as I've seen happen to too many relationship seekers (myself included).

The key, people tell me, is to keep a healthy balance between your needs and the other person's... easier said than done.

That's my thought of the day. I haven't always been able to put it into practice...

9:15AM PDT on Aug 20, 2009

I understood giving up all wants, needs and desires to mean giving up my own behavior of controlling and manipulating, Bridget. A title from a book best explained this, "To Have or To Be." In other words it's not having a relationship that is important; it's being in a relationship that's important.

9:06PM PDT on Aug 19, 2009

Ken,
Re Giving up desires...

One of the spirituality books I read pointed out that the desire to give up desires is still a desire. :

11:16PM PDT on Aug 15, 2009

Being a women myself,he was wrong to do what he did. Really, he should have gotten help. The mind is really powerful. I feel that there must have been something really wrong with him to go as far as to kill or hurt another human being (women) I'm not defending him. What he did was selfish and honestly he had no compation. But I don't know if this was just about sex, or lust I feel he was lonely and just wanted a companion and went about it in all the wrong ways. It could have been a number of things his attitude, or his way of treating others that kept women away from him. Looks isn't everything and if your a good man and have yourself together women will be interested in you. But there are also good looking men that become ugly with their attitude. I'm not one to judge, I don't have that right only God has a right to judge.

11:14PM PDT on Aug 15, 2009

So do you think I'm any different than you David? I seen two shows about successful marriages. Both brought up two things. They were married to best friends and they gave up control. I looked at friends of my own gender and asked myself if I was friends with females in the same manner. I wasn't so I intentionally worked on myself to put the effort into acting and behaving the same way with both genders. I'd actually go to females that I wasn't interested in to talk with first and little by little that changed those I probably would've liked to be involved with. I'm more of the mindset now that friendship is based on earning each other's trust and respect and that sure left me with a lot of patience. I had enough bad affairs already so I can handle being alone the rest of my life if there is no trust and respect. Plus I believe we share life together so it's up to me to make something out of myself to have something to share. It's also up to me to cautiously evaluate others of both genders to see if they are somebody that have something to share and can share in life.
It boils down to understanding relating and relationships to me. Good luck.

10:43PM PDT on Aug 15, 2009

I don't think Sodini was capable of feeling sorry for anyone except himself. I know because I've experienced self-pity and it really sucks. I start to think I'm a worthless piece of garbage, that nobody likes me, everybody's against me, add infinitum. I can't even consider how anyone else is feeling when I'm like that, and if anybody ever did like me I wouldn't be able to see it because I'm too submerged in my own negative outlook.

When you look at it from a saner standpoint, it's not hard to understand why so many people didn't want to be near me... which is why I'm open for whatever suggestions will help me get well and stay well. Thanks, Ken... although I've been focusing on self-help for a number of years now. It just didn't click until recently because self-pity is such a powerful emotion that no amount of will-power can beat it...

As for the dating world, I don't think I'm ready yet. When it starts to disappoint some of my female friends, maybe then I'll consider getting back into it, but right now I'm taking it easy for awhile...

7:52AM PDT on Aug 15, 2009

I'll bet doesn't feel sorry for you either.

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