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Not the worst, but..................

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The article isn't logical.  It says that the lack of homeschool oversight potentially prevented someone such as a teacher or doctor from spotting warning signs in the bomber.  One, I've lived in states with oversight.  That wouldn't help spot warning signs.  Two, the bomber finished homeschooling years ago.  Three, there is no indication his family didn't take him to a doctor.  Four, he attended college which means he had teachers.  Perhaps they'd have a point if he had been 17 and actively being homeschooled.  But to say oversight of homeschooling could have told is that years later he might make bombs and kill people makes no sense and is grasping at trying to find a reason.

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My understanding is that most boys (teens or young adults) who turn to mass violence have a history of loneliness, isolation, and alienation from peers and mainstream society - often with mental health issues thrown in. Kids who don't have a support system. Kids who don't fit in. Kids who don't have strong social skills. Think of Adam Lanza's or Nikolas Cruz's backstories. 

So, though it may not seem fair to us as homeschoolers, I think it's natural for many people to wonder whether homeschooling played a role in the crime. Since, by definition, homeschoolers are choosing an educational alternative that takes them out of the mainstream education system. And, by simple arithmetic, a homeschooled child likely has a smaller number of peers he sees on a regular basis and spends fewer hours per week around those peers. So your average Joe reporter is going to think, "Hey, we know isolation and lack of social support is a common characteristic among these killers. Was this homeschooled kid isolated? Did this homeschooled kid lack social support?" And I don't think those are unfair questions to ask about a specific homeschooled individual when that homeschooled individual commits a crime of this nature. 

I do think it's unfair to generalize that all homeschoolers are isolated or lacking in social support. And I also think it's unfair to imply that homeschoolers are at a greater risk of committing mass murder since there is no research or data (that I am aware of) showing that homeschoolers commit any crimes at a higher rate than traditionally schooled kids. And I agree that this particular article is illogical and a little all over the place. But I did not think the article was attacking homeschooling; I thought it was pretty balanced.

And I think we (as a society) should be able to ask questions about this man's background and educational experiences and social supports the same as we do with Lanza or Cruz or any other killer. Asking questions is good. It is not a personal attack on us as homeschoolers, and I don't think we should act like it is.

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