Dozens of gun-wielding, mostly white 30-60-age males recently have gone berserk in homes, offices, churches, grocery stores, community centers, industrial workplaces, even the national and California capitols. Office massacres claimed 12 in Atlanta, three in Alabama, seven in Honolulu, four in Seattle, eight in Tampa, three in Santa Cruz. Enraged middle-agers gunned down four teens and three adults in a Fort Worth church, six more in a Mormon library, and three teens and a Bible teacher in Ohio. Failed romances prompted midlife men to massacre six in Michigan, four in Baltimore, four in Memphis, six in Sacramento, and five toddlers at a California preschool. At least 25 are believed slain by a Texas serial killer; a Seattle national guard pilot admitted murdering a dozen prostitutes, and senior-citizen rampages in Michigan and Arizona elderly housing left eight dead or wounded. Mass, middle-class male killings pass weekly without a hint of accusation that midlife killings reveal white pathology.
Nor, in the wake of school shootings, did anyone bother to check the high levels of violence, crime, and addiction by suburban adults in “pastoral” communities they stereotyped as immune to grief. The latest California Criminal Justice Profiles show that in 1999, police in white, suburban Santee logged 231 weapons-related domestic violence reports, along with arrests of 300 adults for felony property, drug, and violent crimes (including homicides) and 600 more adults for other offenses. Wise’s castigation of the “white denial” and media myth of suburban enclavism is apt.