Swedish students speak about Virginia Tech attacks

A number of Swedish students were on campus at the time of the bloody attacks at Virginia Tech that left 33 dead.

Arvid Puranen, a 22-year-old Swede, has been studying at the college for the last three and a half years.

“Everyone here is shocked. You never think that something like this can happen,” Puranen told Svenska Dagbladet.

Puranen said he stepped off a bus at around the time of the second incident, which was taking place just 150 metres away.

“There were very few people around since there had already been warnings after the first shootings. But there were no police or closed off areas,” he said.

Two students from Blekinge Technical College, Martin Arvebro and Carl Nordin, arrived at Virginia Tech on Sunday for a one-week exchange. It was only when they had left campus on Monday that they found out the extent of what had happened.

“First I saw a police car and an ambulance when we came out of the building next door. I didn’t hear any shots.

“First it felt like a drill when people were running out. Someone said that people had injured themselves jumping out but we didn’t really know.

“Then a professor came out who had been shot in the arm and there was someone on a stretcher who was covered in blood,” Martin Arvebro, 27, told Dagens Nyheter.

“We were walking around and looking at the campus. We were just about to pass Norris Hall on the way to our hotel but police led us to a building in the opposite direction and then we were able to leave campus,” he added.

Kenneth Granlund, a doctoral student from Bålsta, was on campus at the time of the shootings.

“I was sitting in a weekly meeting with my research group when we heard that one person had been killed and another injured in a shooting at the school,” he told Dagens Nyheter.

“We were told to stay indoors and police quickly surrounded the entire campus. We followed the events on local TV news. It was not until around 12.30 that we found out that there many more people who had died,” Granlund added.


Swedish opposition proposes ‘rapid tests for ADHD’ to cut gang crime

The Moderate Party in Stockholm has called for children in so called "vulnerable areas" to be given rapid tests for ADHD to increase treatment and cut gang crime.

Swedish opposition proposes 'rapid tests for ADHD' to cut gang crime

In a press release, the party proposed that treating more children in troubled city areas would help prevent gang crime, given that “people with ADHD diagnoses are “significantly over-represented in the country’s jails”. 

The idea is that children in so-called “vulnerable areas”, which in Sweden normally have a high majority of first and second-generation generation immigrants, will be given “simpler, voluntary tests”, which would screen for ADHD, with those suspected of having the neuropsychiatric disorder then put forward for proper evaluations to be given by a child psychiatrist. 

“The quicker you can put in place measures, the better the outcomes,” says Irene Svenonius, the party’s leader in the municipality, of ADHD treatment, claiming that children in Sweden with an immigrant background were less likely to be medicated for ADHD than other children in Sweden. 

In the press release, the party said that there were “significant differences in the diagnosis and treatment of ADHD within Stockholm country”, with Swedish-born children receiving diagnosis and treatment to a higher extent, and with ADHD “with the greatest probability” underdiagnosed in vulnerable areas. 

At a press conference, the party’s justice spokesman Johan Forsell, said that identifying children with ADHD in this areas would help fight gang crime. 

“We need to find these children, and that is going to help prevent crime,” he said. 

Sweden’s climate minister Annika Strandhäll accused the Moderates of wanting to “medicate away criminality”. 

Lotta Häyrynen, editor of the trade union-backed comment site Nya Mitten, pointed out that the Moderates’s claim to want to help children with neuropsychiatric diagnoses in vulnerable areas would be more credible if they had not closed down seven child and youth psychiatry units. 

The Moderate Party MP and debater Hanif Bali complained about the opposition from left-wing commentators and politicians.

“My spontaneous guess would have been that the Left would have thought it was enormously unjust that three times so many immigrant children are not getting a diagnosis or treatment compared to pure-Swedish children,” he said. “Their hate for the Right is stronger than their care for the children. 

Swedish vocab: brottsförebyggande – preventative of crime