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Old April 2nd, 2018, 07:05 AM   #1
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School Shootings: The 'Elephant in the Room'

School Shootings: The 'Elephant in the Room'

The "elephant in the room" for (many) of these mass school shootings is "How was the kid treated in school? Was he bullied, tormented, extremely socially rejected endlessly? Who was participating, to what level, and who was complicit? Everyone? Did anyone do anything about it on any significant, relevant scale? If the treatment is so bad, why didn't the parents pull him out for Homeschooling rather than torture? etc. etc.

Again, people do not like to consider such matters, and instead scapegoat the weapon of choice as the root cause of the issue--when, clearly, it is not. Logically, the same event could occur with bombs, suicide bombing, etc. etc. Furthermore, the reason why people do not like to consider it is that it destroys the "Disney Channel"/idealized-version of themselves, other people, and the world generally. As culpability is (often) partially reflected in the mirror.

What I would like to discuss is essentially what the Netflix series "13 Reasons Why" began to explore (which, apparently, many people were unable to handle). That is, the contributions your 'average' person makes to the daily suffering of others in their 'reach' through forms of extreme social rejection, bullying, dehumanization, etc., with the exceptions being very rare. Furthermore, how a person in such a perpetually painful/tormented state becomes necessarily 'unwell', often 'cries out for help' which goes ignored or the subject of further ridicule, deeper resentfulness builds as they become more withdrawn and is highly susceptible to lashing out in very dangerous, unhealthy, and counterproductive ways toward either themselves (i.e. self-harm, suicide) and/or to others in their personal mission of what is often imagined to be 'vigilante justice' on their behalf (i.e. hurting others who have often in some hurt them). (Side note: Consider the joke in Billy Madison, when Adam Sandler calls a guy from High School he used to bully, who then crosses his name off a 'hit list' once he hangs up the phone OR, in the movie "Full Metal Jacket").

I would add, the common euphuism/scapegoat is often 'mental health issues'--while, of course, anyone who is extremely socially rejected & ostracized (i.e. a 'social leper') will necessarily have substantial 'mental health issues'. Hence, why solitary confinement is internationally considered torture. If given the option, human beings would prefer to be around serial rapists, torturers, & murders at least part of the time rather than alone. It is a simple fact of our Biology, and much has been learnt about through Neuroscience & other disciplines, although, of course, much more research is necessary to gain further insights.

As just noted, quite a bit is now known about this phenomena as a matter Neuroscience/Biology, so the level of 'debate' occurring around it (or, rather, not happening) now is truly pathetic (dangerously so)--as, unfortunately, is often the case.

The reality is (which people are aware of, though want to 'brush under the rug'); Tragedies such as Columbine, Parkland, etc. would be logically impossible if even 20% (or less) of people were of high-level empathy--as the kids' lives would have been functionally completely different, which leads to superior mental health & stability, less resentment, etc. etc. [Note: Now, of course, there actually are some people with strictly innate mental health issues, though that is not what we are discussing here, in this context]

What would be interesting, though still highly tragic, would be if such a kid organized an effort very similar to what is portrayed in the movie "Seven Pounds" by Will Smith's character, rather than leaving the world as a mass murderer. That is, instead of focusing on all of the sh'tty people in the overwhelming majority who made their life 'hellish', seek out the rare 'good people' who may be in need, and offer what is possible through donations, including bone marrow, and organ donations prior to and upon self-inflicted death. In this way, they could get their story out, explain their reasoning, life experiences, etc. in a final letter to humanity which could potentially touch the 'hearts' of the 'average' person, who often/overwhelmingly contribute to the tragedy. This would give them that last bit of 'power'/'redemption' they are looking for--though, of course, the way it is happening now through mass murder is just absolutely nightmarish for everyone involved and is not going to help get through to people whatsoever; thus, perpetuating the cycle of torture & death, rather than throwing a 'wrench in the plans', as is often intended.

Link to "Seven Pounds" trailer here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwrtEI-fcmM
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 07:11 AM   #2
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I disagree. We will never be able to anticipate every unhappy schoolchild any more than we can anticipate every lone wolf Islamic terrorist. The answer is two fold. Increase school security measures and limit the potential damage by removing offensive military grade weaponry and 30 round magazines. Bullying has always happened in schools. Trying to identify every snowflake is mathematically impossible.
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 07:14 AM   #3
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Massacre at Columbine High

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4K8YE1ZatU

1 hour long--well worth the time. Do note, particularly, the time between 31:00-34:00 minutes
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 07:21 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Camelot View Post
I disagree. We will never be able to anticipate every unhappy schoolchild any more than we can anticipate every lone wolf Islamic terrorist. The answer is two fold. Increase school security measures and limit the potential damage by removing offensive military grade weaponry and 30 round magazines. Bullying has always happened in schools. Trying to identify every snowflake is mathematically impossible.
@Camelot

There are different scales to bullying--and (many/most) of the people who have been involved with these events have been on the receiving end of the extreme edge of the bell-curve. This has been a matter of scientific investigation in the field of Psychology and elsewhere. The findings are not even remotely controversial--in fact, the more they learn, it turns out that people who experience such extreme abuses typically fall into three categories:

(A) Crippled

(B ) Self-Harm/Suicidal

(C) Lash-Out/Homicidal

Or, some combination of A, B, C



I do note, it is not surprising in the least that you and Clara hold this position, hence the point about scapegoating, lacking personal responsibility/self-reflection, inability to understand root causes, wanting to maintain the Disney version of people and the world, etc.
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 07:31 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Camelot View Post
I disagree. We will never be able to anticipate every unhappy schoolchild any more than we can anticipate every lone wolf Islamic terrorist. The answer is two fold. Increase school security measures and limit the potential damage by removing offensive military grade weaponry and 30 round magazines. Bullying has always happened in schools. Trying to identify every snowflake is mathematically impossible.


Every teacher/school district is TRYING to address the bullying dilemma, but it's been around forever, hard to catch (in the act) and harder to squash. Students are reluctant to share this information with their teachers, but USUALLY, IF THEY do, the informed staff member(s) will alert other staff to be watchful. Bullies need to be targeted and caught in the assault--whether verbal or physical. Then something can be done.
There are so many things school boards and districts can do to stop the violence--the intruders and lone wolves. Schools HAVE tightened up security. They have implemented a single entrance--all other doors are locked--locks on the classroom doors--security fences with locked gates--security guards--clear plastic backpacks--lockdown drills--security cameras--faculty and staff badges are required--and now I imagine many schools will add metal detectors, but this will not solve the problem.
Bomb threats and fire alarms can still be manipulated. Students can open doors from the inside. Playgrounds are still dangerous.

https://nces.ed.gov/programs/crimeindicators/ind_20.asp
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 07:33 AM   #6
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I found a few videos of people on YouTube discussing this topic. Links below:

(A) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=km1pF1WHvwc
(B ) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8fH0Qt1AbQ
(C) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6Xxn797OhY
(D) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8AHH9F8xA

Thoughts?
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 07:37 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Clara007 View Post
Every teacher/school district is TRYING to address the bullying dilemma, but it's been around forever, hard to catch (in the act) and harder to squash.
@Clara

Bullsh*t. You are acting as though I and others have not went to High School and do not know what the situation is. Everyone has known at minimum one (actually, it is more than one) person who fits the profile. Of course you, as a k-12 teacher, would be the first to copout, as the implications fall back on you, the parents, students, etc. There is no mystery whatsoever of the kind you are attempting to claim.

Again, the Netflix series does a good job at portraying this, accurately--and they even picked lower-level abuses compared to what kids on the edge of the Bell Curve go through--and even that Disney version was far too much for people like you to handle.

Disgraceful.
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 08:00 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by xMathFanx View Post
@Clara

Bullsh*t. You are acting as though I and others have not went to High School and do not know what the situation is. Everyone has known at minimum one (actually, it is more than one) person who fits the profile. Of course you, as a k-12 teacher, would be the first to copout, as the implications fall back on you, the parents, students, etc. There is no mystery whatsoever of the kind you are attempting to claim.

Again, the Netflix series does a good job at portraying this, accurately--and they even picked lower-level abuses compared to what kids on the edge of the Bell Curve go through--and even that Disney version was far too much for people like you to handle.

Disgraceful.
I am beginning to sense that you had a personal experience with bullying in high school which might very well explain your hyperbolic approach to this issue.
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 08:19 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Camelot View Post
I am beginning to sense that you had a personal experience with bullying in high school which might very well explain your hyperbolic approach to this issue.
@Camelot

No--actually, I am athletically superior & found physically 'attractive' by (most) women, which has placed me toward the top end of the social hierarchy. It is a simple matter of empathy and analysis--which, in my view, is extremely obvious (if we are willing to look at it).

Now, are you going to actually engage with the topic, or do you insist upon resorting to your typical tactics of deflection, obfuscation, etc.?
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Old April 2nd, 2018, 08:37 AM   #10
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@Camelot

No--actually, I am athletically superior & found physically 'attractive' by (most) women, which has placed me toward the top end of the social hierarchy. It is a simple matter of empathy and analysis--which, in my view, is extremely obvious (if we are willing to look at it).

Now, are you going to actually engage with the topic, or do you insist upon resorting to your typical tactics of deflection, obfuscation, etc.?
That sounds like compensation. That sounds like Roast Pork.
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