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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Women and Children First (Demography of the Sandy Hook Massacre)

A Crime Magazine exclusive, by Eponymous Rox
 (click link above to read without a paid subscription)

NOTE: Today's update on the tragic events in Newtown Connecticut this week supplement the other earlier posts below this one, as well as the special Crime Magazine article referenced above. For any readers who are not fully familiar with this developing story, please be sure to read those pieces too.


 
Women and Children First

It's notable that there were no adult males killed in the Sandy Hook Massacre on December 14th 2012, and some are suggesting that this might not be just a coincidence--even the children who were mercilessly butchered by Adam Lanza were mostly girls.
 
Violence against women and children is on the rise this century, both here and abroad, and, while not all mass shooters display such discriminating 'tastes' in selecting their victims, it's not unlikely that Adam Lanza did.
 
In fact, some sources say there is no indication that the disturbed youth targeted any male staff members in the school rampage, and that it's possible many of the younger male victims were actually shot when they panicked and fled from a hiding place that one of their (female) teachers had hastily secured for them.
 
That brave young woman was gunned down placing her body between the children and the shooter, by the way. As were all six of the adult females slain on this gruesome day.
 
Where, then, were all the adult males when this slaughter was in progress? Well, nobody's really saying.
 
And Superman, Thor, the Hulk, and Captain America...?

All of them also missing in action.
 
But with or without the protection of men, the overall safety and security of society's "most vulnerable" members is a pretty fair measure of just how "civilized" a civilization actually is.
 
If women and children and not safe from criminals when alone in their homes, if they're not safe in their public schools, if they're not safe on their neighborhood sidewalks, or in parking lots and shopping malls and grocery stores and movie theatres...well, that says an awful lot about the state of their nation.
 
And what it's saying isn't very positive.

Patently False
 
Media sources continue to falsely report that the principal of Sandy Hook Elementary School unwittingly allowed demented Adam Lanza into the building by overriding the brand new security system for him. 
 
The system in question is designed to activate an automatic lockdown of all the building's exits and entrances at 9:30 AM when morning classes are usually scheduled to commence.
 
Not only does it defy logic that the principal would deactivate this built in safety feature for a masked intruder, but it does a grave injustice to this selfless and courageous woman who knowingly sacrificed her own life by lunging at the gunman when he broke in.
 
In short, it's very clear that the principal did everything humanly possible to prevent Adam Lanza from gaining access to the children under her watch and care, many of whom were at that moment assembling in the auditorium and in various nearby classrooms.
 
In her desperate effort, the school's principal was aided by the school's psychologist, and both of these women were gunned down together in "execution style" in the main hallway.
 
So, in reality, investigators think Lanza probably arrived a few minutes too late to simply walk into the school unnoticed, and, thus, shattered the glass near the main entrance by calculatingly spraying it in a hail of bullets from his semi-automatic rifle.
 
They also theorize the attack was preplanned and that the heavily armed shooter may have been targeting those two particular female staffers anyway, as he reportedly had an "altercation" with them and two others just the day before, when he first attempted to illegally enter the facility.
 
These four staffers had succeeded in barring Lanza on that occasion, and so the deranged young man returned on the next day instead, with a vengeance.
 
Although Adam Lanza probably had a concealed weapon with him the day before, when he did come back again police say he was armed to the teeth, having already shot to death his mother in her bedroom, apparently while the woman was sleeping.
 
Not incidentally, the fourth female of the group that had evicted Lanza the day before the massacre survived the subsequent mass shooting event only because she hadn't actually come to work that day.
 
Not much else is known about this major fracas at this time however, because authorities are still investigating the incident.
 
Social Equality & Sociopaths
 
Someday soon, as a result of all this much-too-frequent bloodshed, and as a result of more women and children now being without a male for whom they think they can rely on daily for protection, males and females will begin to be socialized from birth in the exact same way.
 
But, until then, they're not: By and large, most females are still raised to be submissive and their male counterparts are still being raised to be aggressive--ideally as breadwinners and protectors of women and children, rather than their predators.
 
Which is to say, that the next time an event of this grievous nature occurs, (and it will) hopefully the males nearby will do more than just flee and hide with the children.
 
Because the heroics the women of Sandy Hook exhibited under fire, such as rushing the shooter to tackle and disarm him, were precisely what must be done in such extreme situations. And these acts are best performed all at once, without hesitation, and as a group rather than individually or in pairs.
 
Men too, are still much taller and stronger than women are, and although the fight or flight mode in both sexes is very strong, and the flight instinct most commonly the one that is  triggered under stress, a little training is all that is required to correct the mistaken belief that running away from a gunman is "safer".
 
In fact, running away is what that weak-minded, and very often weak-bodied, young man wants people to do. That way he not only feels more powerful than he usually does in "real life", but he can kill at liberty and in far greater numbers.
 
As was the case with 20-year-old mad gamer and psychopath, Adam Lanza.
 
Talking About Talking
 
A choked up President Obama is visiting the desecrated town of Newton, Connecticut today to offer the thousands of victims of this most recent act of senseless brutality his condolences, support, and some solace.
 
In addition, Obama has publicly vowed to open a "meaningful" dialog now about guns and violence, particularly as it pertains to the rising crime wave among the young and these now-commonplace mass assaults.
 
Discussing discussions is a good start, of course, but advocates for gun control will be the first to say that it's also a long overdue move, with too many dead having piled up during an inordinate and unjustified delay.
 
What's more, if these proposed talks fail to address the role of violent videogames in this surge of violence, and if the billion-dollar gaming industry itself is not also forced to come to the table, this will all be for naught.
 
Remember, Klebold and Harris, Jared Loughner, James Holmes, Adam Lanza...all these young mass murderers and many, many more just like them were violent video-gamers. All of these dangerous psychopaths methodically trained as expert marksmen via simulated single-shooter programs and a "harmless" little joystick.

 
 
 

3 comments:

  1. Studies have shown no correlation between playing video games and becoming violent. While they have shown that violent people tend to play these violent video games, there is absolutely nothing that points to video games being the culprit of becoming a violent person. Additionally, if this was the case, I should apparently be a psychopath just like these other young men (and I'm a female) because I play and have enjoyed playing first person shooter video games. I honestly do not understand how people can ignore that mass killings have been occurring well before the creation of violent video games. Furthermore, being someone who has not only played a first person shooting video game several times, and also shot a real gun before, I know that the skill you obtain from a joystick does not, nor could ever, translate into skill shooting an actual weapon. There is recoil, sound, weight, and several other factors that go with shooting a real gun that have never been accurately portrayed in video games.

    Additionally, placing the blame on video games seems absolutely pointless. People will never be able to take down these huge corporations, and while some may blame first person shooter video games for this violence, I highly doubt that will stop them from buying a game that contains violence or prevent them from even playing duck hunt (which, according to your argument, is a single shooter program that, if played enough, will make someone a "methodically trained expert marksmen." Also, I know plenty of people who play violent video games that would never lay a finger on someone else or even entertain the idea of killing someone in cold blood. The fact of the matter is that if someone is going to kill someone in cold blood, they're going to do it if they've played a violent video game or not. Not to mention, if someone plays a video game and then ends up killing someone in an attempt to personify the video game or something of the sort, that person has mental and behavioural problems that were already present before playing the video game.

    People kill other people because there is something wrong with them, not because they've played a video game. If we want to prevent more murders from happening we need to pay attention to inappropriate behaviours and become more knowledgeable of the signs of mental distress and mental illness and how to address them, not by attempting a task that is already destined to fail. Taking down or controlling video game corporations is not the answer, it's just a scapegoat so people feel as though someone is to blame.

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  2. ^A similar argument can be made for outlawing the weapons that have been used in these killings, which would effectively make all of us more susceptible to these kinds of lunatics.

    A similar argument can also be made against the movie studios that glorify violence on the silver screen.

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  3. @ "Studies have shown no correlation between playing video games and becoming violent..."

    Thanks for posting. However you are very wrong. There has been exhaustive research done on the effect of habitually playing violent videogames, and all of it points to sharp increases of hostile and aggressive behavior in both male AND female players.

    What's more, scientists discovered that these single-shooter games in particular, don't just have a negative psychological effect on players, they negatively impact their physical health as well.

    For instance, in one study, researchers cited elevated heart rates and blood pressure in persons who played only one short gaming session of a 20 to 30 minute duration. They also noted that, for the male players, those effects lingered longer than for their female counterparts, lasting up to 24 hours AFTER the game had ended, and even beyond that in male test subjects who were found to "dwell" on the game they had last played.

    Below are just three scientific studies I can refer you to that might startle you a bit and, if not, at least make you reflect more realistically on your gaming habits and wellbeing:

    1. In 2008, a joint study by Stockholm University, Uppsala University and Karolinska Institutet found that, even from only short gaming sessions, there were long lasting physiological effects produced in males who played violent video games;

    2. In 2010, in a study carried out by Ohio State University and Central Michigan University, researchers discovered that, at least for male subjects, ruminating about having played a violent video game increased the game’s potency for causing aggression long after it was turned off;

    3. In 2011, scientists at the University of Missouri measured the brain responses of 70 young adult participants to learn precisely how the act of violent gaming provoked aggressive behavior. They discovered diminished brain responses to scenes of violence shown right after games were finished, and that the lower the brain response was in a particular subject, the higher their level of aggression was.

    You can find plenty more by Googling this topic should you have any genuine interest.

    If you do decide to soul search on this, I'd recommend you start by comparing how you communicated with people before you started playing violent sims. Whether in writing or recordings, study the tone of those communications. Are they friendly sounding? Are you hearing the voice of a person you'd feel comfortable talking with yourself? Does this person sound threatening in any way?

    Then, compare those results to recent writings and recordings now that you've become (in your own words) a single-shooting gamer.

    If you were once pleasant and non-confrontational sounding, do you still sound that way today? Or does the person you're observing in this objective manner come off a bit too edgy, maybe someone who easily feels attacked, or even looking for a fight with somebody?

    That's how I would try to judge it in myself if I was the one asserting that simulated violence doesn't generate real violence.

    From there, of course, you'll need to analyze (with an open mind) whether your physical contact with people has changed in any way as a result of indulging daily in this recreational form of homicide. Are you now shoving people? Are you hitting or slapping more often? Do you have violent ideations on a regular basis that you didn't have before you started gaming ... that sort of threshold inquiry.

    I'll point you to the research I did on this subject myself which was published in Crime Magazine not so long ago. That article has a lot more data for you to pore over. It's titled "VIRTUAL VIOLENCE = DANGEROUS REALITY: The Realtime Crimes of Video Assassins." (Just click on my name in this post and it should take you there.)

    And again, thank you for taking the time to read and comment--
    E.R.

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