Saturday, April 28, 2007

The Bad Seed

Every human being has the ability to kill, what triggers the onset or pushes the combination of buttons to alter aggression to the extreme varies. We have outer stimuli, which might consist of circumstances, position in society and early nurture or lack of it. On the other side of the spectrum we have inner stimuli, chemical imbalances in the brain and genetic traits that would predispose a person to a pattern of aggression. “The nature versus nurture debate” is much deeper then psychological terminology, the depth of reasoning touches on the ethics, education, social and our own moral position. Every situation is unique to the individual and so like a rapid virus morphing a cure can not be found for the cause, as soon as you think you found one another situation just a little bit different has occurred.
Not being a doctor I can only give you my personal experiences with mental health issues and the trails of life for which I gained knowledge through the many years. Take the average person, most of them take some form of medication or vitamins. Like myself many will take them for a while and then reach a period of time whether it would be a day
or a month or a few where they forget to take them. They fall from the normal routine or health regimen. I am not proposing that we do like they did years ago and lock mental health victims in a closet and pretend they don’t exist. The question I ask is for those who are dependent upon drugs for their mental stability, who makes sure they take their medicine each day? and if they don’t will they be a danger to themselves or the community at large? So at this point I researched to find out who and what makes a killer.

I found myself reading the work of Jonathon Pincus, chief of neurology at the veterans Admins and professor of Georgetown University school of medicine. His research found him across the table of 150 well known murders, his studies would include, neurological examinations and IQ test and extensive research into their childhood experiences. His interviews includes well known murders such as white collar Ted Bundy and teenage Kip Kinkle among many others. He found that there were three highly recognized traits, mental illness, neurological damage and child abuse .Two thirds of those factors. Mental illness ,neurological damage and abuse alone did not create murders. After reading page upon page of the studies of Johathon Pincus and his reviews of the many cases. I had even more questions then not, violence is not new to the human race, since the beginning of time we have recorded cases of murder to many to mention. In the population at large murderers are a small percentage of the population. How many people has he studied who were abused, had mental health issues and neurological damage and still functioned as a decent part of society? I respect his profession and his opinion that he is trying to find out what makes a killer tick, but I beg to disagree with him, I do think there are bad seeds in a individual that triggers a person to react in a situation that is extremely aggressive in nature.

Raised in a very volatile situation, I reviewed the stories of my own brother and sisters, each view was a bit different, all seem to reflect on their stance in the sibling pyramid.

In the study of my own family, I knew each child the moment they were placed to my breast to feed. I could sense each personality, the stronger, the timid, etc. I believe at the moment of conception the genetic pool has performed a small miracle and that is instilling the character which forms in later years and grows. How outer stimuli encourages the growth I am sure plays a big part on what in life we will attain. To many people who came from meager beginnings, lived in abusive situations and surfaced from mental health issues to became a positive part of the community in very successful ways. On the pendulum of life, I see that people swing into many categories and do not come out a murder. Until someone can convince me otherwise, I believe a person is born with the seed of evil, for it is instinctive in their weak moment to grasp at tool of violence to deal with a means to a end.

I have felt the hands of evil and it comes in many a disguise.

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