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Julian Tanner

SOCC30 Lecture Catherine Newman – rampage school shootings Causes of school shootings: 1. Mental Illness – anxiety, depression 2. ‘he just snapped’ – majority are pre-planned 3. Family problems – do not increase the likelihood of school shootings occurs; many students’ have problems at home and do not become involved in crime + delinquency 4. Peer influence : - People who commit shootings are loners, isolates, young people who are disconnected from other - Some research – often perpetrators have support from other kids in school - After a shooting has occurred, it is very much in the interest of family and friends of school shooters to offer the idea that the lethal activities had been encouraged by peers in high school (they embrace the suggestion that their child wouldn’t have done it if he wasn’t pressured by others 5. Availability of guns - Most adolescents need guns to carry out such grand crimes – most of these occur in rural communities where guns are readily available ( 1980s but it did NOT result in rampage shootings) 6. Violent media - “Video games, tv shows, music … the consuming of violent media triggers dangerous behaviour” … many things wrong with this. It is hard to escape violent media. It is everywhere - Ex. If there is a rampage school shooting, police launch an investigation and rummage around in the kids home. They might stumble upon violent movies and infer that this explained the actions of the student. They took away the violent movies, rap cds and ignored the gospel cds and tapes which was his favourite Connect media to violence - When you find a correlation btwn violent behaviour and spend time listening/watching violence … which comes first? Does media make you violent or is a person violent before watching/listening to violent media? 7. Copycat effect – similar incidents/attempts like Columbine events soon after - Newman – tracked/mapped location of subsequent shootings in US post- Columbine: they found that there was copycats in rural areas and not urban areas - Therefore, copycat trend fits in rural areas; rampage school shootings, in terms of youth crime and deviance, are quite specific Graph - # of School Shootings by School Year - Increases post-1980s; Big increase post-1997 - Quantitative data from Newman research – provided by FBI schools rampage shooting stats - Newman – observing communities and interviewing (classmates, teachers, leaders, principles, counselors) where shootings occurred * Didn’t interview shooters because most commit suicide/killed by police or * New movie “Something about Kevin”, shooter used crossbow because he wanted to ‘top Columbine’ School Shootings: Heath , Kentucky and Westside HS in Jonesboro, Arkansas: Heath – Dec. 1, 1997 - Michael came to school and opened fire with a pistol on 20 students in the school lobby Westside – March 24, 1997 - Andrew, inside schools, set off fire alarm - Students evacuated as normal, greeted by gun fire - On a nearby hill, another shooter was shooting (11 year olds) Newman suggests that there are bad sides of good institutions - Her analysis revolves around things that go on inside schools and go on in communities; things that have the effect of creating rampage shootings - There is little doubt that school shooters are marginal individuals in school communities – they are on the outskirts - Schools are competitive institutions; compete for prestige, status Ex. Columbine targets were the jocks/athletes Ex. There was a prestigious male student (wrestler) who had a reserved parking spot – special treatment as such can trigger shooters Ex. Athletics is
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