Sunday, October 15, 2017
When guns are sold like doughnuts and are as easily obtainable as buying your favorite brand of pop, when Hollywood churns out movie after movie depicting gun violence, when video games coming out of the USA, Japan and South Korea finds the most lucrative market for them in the USA among kids and young adults, why is anyone surprised that America has a gun problem?
Robert J Burrowes at GlobalResearch
The Psychology of Mass Killers: What Causes It? How Can You Prevent It?
In Las Vegas on 1 October 2017, it appears that one man (although it might have been more) killed 59 people and shot and injured another 241 (with almost 300 more injured while fleeing). The incident got a lot of publicity, partly because the man managed to kill more people than most mass killers. However, because the killer was a white American and had a Christian name, he was not immediately labeled a terrorist, even though his death toll considerably exceeded that achieved in many ‘terrorist attacks’, including those that occur in war zones (such as US drone murders of innocent people attending weddings).
According to the Gun Violence Archive, there is now an average of one mass shooting (arbitrarily defined by the FBI as a shooting in which at least four victims are shot) each day in the USA. By any measure, this is a national crisis.
However, while there has been a flood of commentary on the incident, including suggestions about what might be done in response based on a variety of analyses of the cause, none that I have read explain the underlying cause of all these mass killings. And if we do not understand this, then any other suggestions, whatever their apparent merits, can have little impact.
The suggestions made so far in response to this massacre include the following:
Making it much more difficult, perhaps even illegal, to own a gun. See ‘Guns’.
Drastically reducing the prescription of pharmaceutical drugs (which are almost invariably being consumed by the killer). See ‘Drugs and Guns Don’t Mix: Medication Madness, Military Madness and the Las Vegas Mass Shooting’.
Recognising and addressing the sociological factors implicated in causing the violence. See ‘violence is driven by socioeconomic factors, not access to firearms’ argued in ‘Another Mass Shooting, Another Grab for Guns: 6 Gun Facts’ and ‘a deep sickness in American society’ argued in ‘The social pathology of the Las Vegas Massacre’.
Identifying whether or not the killer had ideological/religious links to a terrorist group (in this case ISIS, as claimed by some). See, for example, ‘ISIS Releases Infographic Claiming Las Vegas Gunman Converted 6 Months Ago’.
Identifying and remedying the ways in which constitutional provisions and laws facilitate such massacres. See ‘Las Vegas Massacre Proves 2nd Amendment Must be Abolished’.
Recognizing the way in which these incidents are encouraged by national elites and are sometimes, in fact, false flag attacks used as a means to justify the consolidation of elite social control (through such measures as increased state surveillance and new restrictions on human rights).
Limiting the ways in which violence, especially military violence, is used as entertainment and education, and thus culturally glorified in ways that encourage imitation. See ‘People Don’t Kill People, Americans Kill People’.
However, as indicated above, while these and other suggestions, including certain educational initiatives, sound attractive as options for possibly preventing/mitigating some incidents in future, they do not address the cause of violence in this or any other context and so widespread violence both in the United States and around the world will continue.
So why does someone become a mass killer?........