two samples of Cho’s handwriting were taken from the cover of the
package he sent to NBC. At the time of the writing he was in the middle
of carrying out the massacre at Virginia Tech.
Unfortunately, the pictures aren’t clear but even
so, there are a number of things that we can see.
letter formations are jumbled and the pressure is erratic.
Then there are
a number of gaps within the strokes of the letters – take a look at the
N and the B in NBC of the first example. These gaps indicate extreme
anxiety and breaks in continuity of thought. They indicate a break in
concentration and mental activity.
Then there are
hesitation dots within the strokes – particularly in the upstroke of the
N in New York – signs that he was briefly unhinged and confused during
the Virginia Tech massacre. There are several other dots as well where
his pen rested momentarily before moving on erratically.
In the number
30, just below NBC, the numerals are crushed together. The strokes are
muddy and disjointed and the baselines are wavy – the combination of
these signs point to emotional and mental stress.
stroke of the Y in NY and the t-bar of the following t show his violent
In short, his
handwriting is intense and unbalanced. It shows emotional disturbance
and a chaotic state of mind.
how some of the lines droop and then rise towards the end of the line.
This shows how in a single moment he was both depressed and euphoric.
His fanatical and unbalanced zeal motivated his actions.
there’s the matter of isolation. We know from Cho’s own videos that he
felt isolated from his fellow students. But does it show in his
sample is too small to be able to assess this properly but here are two
hints that would point to a feeling of isolation.
are comparatively wide spaces between the words – and this would
indicate some isolation. And secondly, the letters are mostly upright
with a few leftward tendencies which would indicate a measure of
“stand-offishness” with resulting isolation.
these signs point to a person who was highly disturbed mentally and
there is little point in presenting a personality picture – we all know
that he massacred and injured so many people at Virginia Tech in a wild
orgy of self-pity and madness.
interesting however, is that we can see the mental intensity and chaos
reflected in his handwriting. Of course it’s hindsight. But the fact
remains, it’s an unhealthy, unstable and highly disturbed handwriting.