Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Boredom and murder? Teenagers kill just for "the fun of it"

By Dr. Wendy J. James


Parents have a responsibility to raise their children to be productive, responsible, law abiding citizens.


Some things we know and some we do not know about this incident.


We do know they have a psychological problem.


What we do not know is why their parents, or the counselors at the school did not notice their problems and get them the psychological counseling they needed.


We do know is when more than one individual gets together there is a chance of a pack behavior leading to encourage each other to deviate behavior. A group exacerbates what one individual may not do. In psychology, we call this a convergence theory.


We do know that a firearm was used in the commission of this murder.


What we do not know is where did they get the gun? 


We do not know, if they obtained a gun from one of their homes. If they did, we know the parents were negligent and irresponsible for not securing the firearm in their house.


We know that one of the murders bragged about the killing on Facebook.  As a psychologist, there are many theories on the problems of extensive use of social media. 


There is a general agreement among mental health professions that extensive use of social media leads to societal isolation.


What we do know, is that they are being tried as adults.


What we do not know is, if they had a history of deviant behavior, violence, drugs or alcohol problems.


As a psychologist, in situations that involve shooting, there is a noted underlining psychological problem that had not been addressed.  What is disturbing for me is when we allow mental health issues to be the norm and do not respond to abnormal behavior as parents, school counselors or as a community.


As a result, we are becoming more fearful and aware of individuals with psychological problems, who wander unidentified in our society.
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