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Where Do These Killers Come From?

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Today’s massacre in the village of Paradise, in Lancaster County Pennsylvania is just the most recent in a string of killings by individuals on rampages –killers who did not intend  on getting away, but who were just out for blood.  Last week a high school official was killed at a school in Wisconsin by a 15 year old, and another child was murdered and others assaulted by a homeless maniac in Bailey Colorado.  On September 15, a gunman in Montreal killed one and wounded 19 before killing himself. Before that a driver ran down 14 victims and killed one on August 30 in the streets of San Francisco and another shooter killed one and shot six others on July 28 at the Jewish Community Center in Seattle.

Here is a timeline of school shootings worldwide, which begins on February 2, 1996.  After a decade of these assaults and similar rampages, is there any consensus on what marks the profile of the non-political killers?  “We are reaching that stage of desensitization at which the infliction of pain and suffering has become a source of entertainment: vicarious pleasure rather than revulsion,” West Point Professor David Grossman wrote in his 1996 book On Killing. “We are learning to kill, and we are learning to like it.”

The execution of Amish little girls is another basement of horror.  What has poisoned the minds of these people so deeply as to set off such awful scenes?


Dr. Helen Smith is a clinical pschologist who has written extensively in the area of school killers, though with an emphasis on teenage gunmen.

And Killology is a web site run by Professor David Grossman mentioned above.


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