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Nashville shooter under doctor care for emotional disorder; could have been stopped from purchasing firearms



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Nashville police chief John Drake held a press conference Tuesday, during which he said the parents of the Nashville Christian school shooter told police their child had been in a “doctor’s care for an emotional disorder.”

National Review reports the parents reportedly told police that they believed their daughter should not own guns and did not believe that she had any; they believed their child had purchased one gun and then sold it. The shooter reportedly told her parents that she had sold the firearm.

The 28-year-old shooter was born a woman but identified as a male, using male pronouns. while the police chief did not divulge information on the emotional disorder, which doctor was providing the shooter care, or whether the shooter was on any medication. The media is reporting the shooter legally obtained the weapons, but “there is mounting evidence that she should not have been able to purchase those guns legally” adds National Review.

The shooter should have been legally ruled a potential threat to herself or others. Drake said his department would’ve tried to take the shooter’s guns away if officers had caught wind of her intentions, but, “As it stands, we had absolutely no idea who this person was.”

Under federal law, it is illegal for “any person to sell or otherwise dispose of any firearm or ammunition to any person knowing or having reasonable cause to believe that such person, including as a juvenile” who has “been adjudicated as a mental defective or has been committed to any mental institution at 16 years of age or older.”

“Mental defective” is a term you don’t hear often anymore, and some may find it offensive, but under federal law, it has a specific meaning: a finding by any court, board, commission, or other lawful authority that a person “is a danger to himself or to others; or lacks the mental capacity to contract or manage his own affairs,” as a result of “marked subnormal intelligence, or mental illness, incompetency, condition, or disease.”

National Review adds that under Tennessee law, anyone who has been deemed “mental defective” cannot purchase a firearm in the first place. Only applicants who have not been:

“judicially committed to or hospitalized in a mental institution . . . has not had a court appoint a conservator for the applicant by reason of a mental defect, has not been judicially determined to be disabled by reason of mental illness, developmental disability or other mental incapacity, and has not, within seven years from the date of application, been found by a court to pose an immediate substantial likelihood of serious harm” may be granted a handgun-carry permit.

Tennessee law also requires all relevant information in the adjudication of a mental defective to be turned over to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

National Review concludes:

The Nashville shooter was, indisputably, a danger to others, and that threat to others was almost certainly connected to her mental illness. The evidence was there for her to be declared legally mentally defective and barred from owning firearms. The shooter’s parents believed she should not be allowed to own a firearm, indicating the shooter had said or done things that made her parents believe she was a potential threat to herself or others. But no one acted upon those concerns, and no one reached out to police.

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Harvard Reinstates Standardized Testing Requirement for Admissions



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Harvard University announcement it will reverse its test-optional policy and reinstate standardized testing as a requirement for admission. The move has stirred a contentious debate within the academic community. Effective for applicants seeking entry in the fall of 2025, Harvard College will mandate the submission of either SAT or ACT scores, with limited exceptions for circumstances hindering access to these exams.

Hoekstra contends that standardized tests provide crucial predictive insights into a student’s potential for success in higher education and beyond. By reinstating the testing requirement, Harvard seeks to gather more comprehensive data, particularly beneficial for identifying talent across diverse socioeconomic backgrounds.

Proponents of the move, like Harvard Kennedy School’s political economy professor David J. Deming, emphasize the universality of standardized tests, arguing that they offer a level playing field for all applicants. Deming underscores the accessibility of these tests compared to other metrics like personal essays, which may favor privileged students with greater resources.

However, the decision has sparked criticism from those who argue that standardized tests perpetuate inequities in admissions. Critics point to studies, such as those conducted by Harvard economists Raj Chetty and others, which highlight disparities in access to advanced courses and extracurricular opportunities among students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The controversy surrounding Harvard’s policy shift reflects broader concerns within higher education about equity, diversity, and inclusion. While standardized testing may offer a standardized measure of academic aptitude, it also raises questions about its ability to accurately assess a student’s potential in light of systemic educational disparities.

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