Netizens React to US Shootings by Korean-American

Scene from the shootings at Oikos University

As the US comes to terms with the horrific shootings of 7 people at Oikos University by Korean-born Soo-nam Goh, Korean netizens were quick to disassociate themselves from the killer. While pointing out that he is American, they condemned the Korean press for manipulating national sentiment. Others accused fellow Koreans of hypocrisy, as it was only last week that Koreans jumped on the bandwagon in support of Jim Yong Kim, nominated by President Obama to become the next president of the World Bank.

From Seoul Economy:

The second Seung-Hee Cho shooting incident in the USA… 7 shot dead

There was a shooting incident reminiscent of ‘Seung-hui Cho’ at a theological college in California, USA.

The San Francesco Chronicles reported that 7 people were shot dead at the incident on the 2nd of April at the Oikos University, a theological college located in Oakland, California, which is known to have many Korean students.

Most of those shot were allegedly Korean and the suspect was Soo-nam Goh (also referred to as One L. Goh, 43 years old), a Korean-American.

He shoot the nursing school students during their lecture around 10.30 in the morning of the incident, killing 5 of them in the lecture theatre, while 2 out of 5 sent to the nearby Highland Hospital died upon arrival at the hospital.

There had been another shooting incident in 2007 at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, where the student named Cho, of Korean origin, shot 33 dead and injured another 25 people.

Goh was witnessed to have quietly entered the lecture theatre, said to the students ‘line up, I will kill you all’ and approached straightaway to a girl sitting in the front row. He then aimed and fired his 45-caliber revolver at her chest.

Afterwards he randomly fired at other students and ran away from the scene.

The SWAT force was dispatched to the college upon a report, then blocked the roads near the college and evacuated the students. The suspect was caught without any resistance around 11.30am at a shopping mall in Alameda, 5 miles (8 km) away from the college.

Goh was arrested and examined, but police sources reported that no criminal motive was found yet.

Soo-nam Goh, suspected of having shot dead 7 people at Oikos University

His neighbours were in shock at this incident, saying that he was usually calm and good-natured, took a great care of his family and got along well with his neighbours.

Some students who testified during the police investigation said that he had been attending the nursing school until he was expelled 3 months ago, and that he didn’t get along well with the other students.

His mother and brother passed away last year, while his father allegedly moved away recently from Oakland.

The Oikos University is a private college established 10 years ago by a Korean-American priest named Kim, with many Korean students enrolled especially in the Schools of Theology and Music.

Comments from Nate:


If it was legal to carry and use guns in our country, tens and hundreds of people would die in a day, be it a marketplace, school, downtown or countryside.


Looking at the last Virginia incident and this one too, I feel bitter that people who don’t know well about Korea might only view it ugly…


Why on earth, and with what right, did he steal the young lives… May the dead rest in peace…


The US is a multi-ethnic country, so anybody with an American citizenship is American (not Korean), regardless of their ethnicity. But the Korean mass media got ahead and called him Korean, like they did after the Virginia incident, making the Americans who did not regard him Korean to speak ill of Korean people. Be their origins Korean, Chinese or Japanses, they are all Americans once they are living in the US, and they don’t even pay taxes to the Korean government. So please don’t make weird statements about their Korean ethnicity in your articles, no matter what they do – kill, shoot or swindle people. …Or just post it on Korean papers published in America. These articles really annoy me.


He spent his whole life, 40 years, in America with an American mind-set, so it’s an American person shooting other American people. Why do we have to be sorry about it as if we were to be blamed? Americans in Korea say “Oh~ this is unimaginable in Las Vegas~”. As for this incident, [we say] “it is unimaginable in South Korea.” Let’s not feel blue on a Tuesday morning with an unnecessary feeling of guilt.


I wouldn’t know about others, but I think it’s really fortunate that Korean government doesn’t legalise use of guns. It’s terrible just to imagine what would have happened if they had legalised it.


Among the comments there are some people who draw the line saying that he is American, having lived in America, despite his Korean origin. But then I don’t understand why they delight at news on Korean American cadet graduating first class from military cadet college, or on employment of Korean American in the head technician of the White House, saying ‘proud Korean.’  My deepest condolences to the innocent victims.


I saw the American Yahoo site that said ‘fucking yellow monkeys, go back to your country’. Tut. What an embarrassment. This feels similar to our comments about the ethnic Koreans living in China and foreign workers in Korea.


What is the problem with our country? Shooting people and writing Korean graffiti on cultural heritage…It makes me sigh to see such incidents as someone living in the US.We’re probably not in a place to criticise China or South East Asia…


It’s regrettable that someone of Korean origin was responsible for this incident, but he’s American anyway and there is also a problem with the legal use of guns in the US. So please don’t ever kneel down and cry your heart out in front of the US embassy with a cross, hymn books and the Stars and Stripes again… I was thrown over with embarrassment at such a sight when the Virginia incident happened. The Americans saw it as their domestic problem and allegedly said what was all the fuss on our side…


Oh of course, that gunman bastard is not Korean while the World Bank governor is a proud Korean.


He is an American citizen, but see how he asks for an interpreter, with his poor English -_-

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