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Why Most Mass Murderers Are Privileged White Men

Are white men particularly prone to carrying out the all-too-familiar mass killings of which last week's Aurora shooting is just the latest iteration? Is there something about the white, male, middle-class experience that makes it easier for troubled young men to turn schools and movie theaters into killing fields? In a word, yes.

Not every mass murder in recent years has been committed by a middle-class white guy. But as Jamie Utt pointed out in the hours after the Colorado theater massacre, in those rare instances where a man of color is responsible for a shooting spree (as in the 2007 Virginia Tech killings or the 2009 Fort Hood rampage), the popular reaction is to search for connections between the race or religion of the murderer and his act. After Seung-Hui Cho killed 32 people in Blacksburg, media attention focused on the likelihood that a Korean culture unwilling to acknowledge mental illness helped drive the young man to commit the worst mass murder in U.S. history. After Maj. Nidal Hasan carried out the Fort Hood shootings, his Muslim faith became all the public needed to know about his motive.

It seems likely that Islamic extremism did lead Hasan to kill; it's possible that Cho's cultural background did mean that his psychological problems were particularly likely to be ignored. Ethnicity, faith, and social class are key parts of the modern human identity; they are always part of the explanation for why we think the way we think and act the way we act. The difference, as Chauncey DeVega made clear on Saturday, is that when white men commit mass murder we don't hear how their skin color, their maleness, or their social class were contributing factors to their acts. As Peggy McIntosh famously wrote in her White Privilege Checklist, we see whites as individuals whose moral state reflects their individual will. In other words, white men kill simply because they are "sick" or "evil." When men of color murder, it is because they are both those things and because of factors uniquely attributable to their race.

Perhaps the greatest asset that unearned privilege conveys is the sense that public spaces "belong" to you. If you are — like James Holmes last week, or Charles Whitman, who killed 16 people on the University of Texas, Austin campus in 1966 — an American-born, college-educated white man from a prosperous family, you don't have a sense that any place worth being is off-limits to the likes of you. White men from upper middle-class backgrounds expect to be both welcomed and heard wherever they go. When that sense of entitlement gets frustrated, as it can for a host of complex psychological reasons, it is those same hyper-privileged men who are the most likely to react with violent, rage-filled indignation. For white male murderers from "nice" families, the fact that they chose public spaces like schools, university campuses, or movie theaters as their targets suggests that they saw these places as legitimately theirs.

The vast majority of white men from comfortable backgrounds don't commit mass murder, of course. Our entitlement doesn't manifest in the sense that public spaces are ours to terrorize, but it does show up in the confidence with which we move in those spaces. The certainty of belonging is at the core of our privilege.


by Anonymousreply 10108/01/2012


When I went off to college at Berkeley, I felt as if I were following in the footsteps of my ancestors. I literally was; my maternal great-grandfathers had both graduated from Cal in the 19th century. I rushed the same fraternity to which my grandfather had belonged in the 1920s. Though I struggled with adolescent anxieties, I never doubted that I belonged on that campus.

It was at Berkeley, however, that I learned about white male privilege for the first time. I saw how my sense of belonging served as an invaluable crutch in times of personal crisis. And by witnessing the experiences of roommates and friends from less advantaged backgrounds, I learned that the confidence I took for granted was given only to a few. My friends who were first-generation students did just as well in the classroom, but were often more tentative about navigating their way around institutional obstacles. My roommate Oscar — the son of farm workers from the Central Valley — once, with great effort and embarrassment, asked me to go with him to see an administrator. "I need your white boy mojo," he said with a pained grin, caught between jest and anger.

That "white boy mojo" can still open all sorts of doors: to boardrooms, to judge's chambers, to country club memberships. It's not that those institutions are still overtly racist (though a few come close). It's not that white men are guaranteed preferential treatment in every setting. It's that white men are raised to expect to be welcomed wherever they go. When they find that that automatic welcome isn't forthcoming, they tend to be indignant. When angry middle-class whites gather together in political groups to "take back our country," what they want to grab back are the privileges they sense they've lost.

We don't yet know what drove James Holmes to do the terrible things he did. We only partly understand what drove the likes of Eric Harris, Dylan Klebold, Charles Whitman, and the many other white men who have committed similar massacres. While each killer had a unique pathology that helped drive him to do the unthinkable, the fact that these white male mass murderers felt so confident choosing public spaces to commit their crimes reflects a powerful truth about the culture in which they were raised. Put simply, they did what they did because of an individual sickness — but they did it where they did it in part because of white privilege.

It's not that white men are more violent. Rates of domestic violence, including homicide, are roughly the same across all ethnic groups. Statistically, murderers are more likely to kill family members and intimate partners than strangers. But while men from all backgrounds kill their spouses, affluent white men are disproportionately represented in the ranks of our most infamous mass murderers. In other words, the less privileged you are, the less likely you are to take your violence outside of your family and your community.

White men from prosperous families grow up with the expectation that our voices will be heard. We expect politicians and professors to listen to us and respond to our concerns. We expect public solutions to our problems. And when we're hurting, the discrepancy between what we've been led to believe is our birthright and what we feel we're receiving in terms of attention can be bewildering and infuriating. Every killer makes his pain another's problem. But only those who've marinated in privilege can conclude that their private pain is the entire world's problem with which to deal. This is why, while men of all races and classes murder their intimate partners, it is privileged young white dudes who are by far the likeliest to shoot up schools and movie theaters.

Lax gun laws provided the means for the Colorado theater massacre. A yet-unexplained psychotic break provided the likely motive. And at least in part, white male privilege determined both the location and the scale.


by Anonymousreply 107/25/2012

Interestingly, Libertarians also seem to be almost exclusively privileged white men. Huh.

by Anonymousreply 207/25/2012


by Anonymousreply 307/25/2012

Mystery explained:

by Anonymousreply 407/25/2012

Virgina Tech shooter was a white man?

OP is a racist.


by Anonymousreply 507/25/2012

R5 didn't read the article.

by Anonymousreply 607/25/2012

R7, you're an abject failure as a human being.

by Anonymousreply 807/25/2012

I definitely agree with his point about cultural confidence. It's something I've pondered for a while.

by Anonymousreply 907/25/2012

Ghengiz Khan, Ranavanola, for two.

by Anonymousreply 1007/25/2012

Maybe it's that "cultural confidence" and the accompanying *expectations* that, when gone awry, create the ticking time bomb.

by Anonymousreply 1107/25/2012

It's a conspiracy!

by Anonymousreply 1207/25/2012

Men are more violent than women, and whites are the majority in the United States, therefore, most mass murderers in the United States are white men, just like most mass murderers in China are Han Chinese. Durrr.

by Anonymousreply 1307/25/2012

R8 - explain yourself.

by Anonymousreply 1407/25/2012

it probably does have something to do with being white and privileged.

Growing up white and privileged they are probably conditioned to feel that they will get it all, have it all. Unfortunately life doesn't work that way and you can still be white, privileged and rich and be miserable and possibly worse, ignored.

Killing en masse is a great way to suddenly "mean something".

by Anonymousreply 1507/25/2012

Very good article.

by Anonymousreply 1607/25/2012

Most of the people cited are not all that privileged. But I have to concede OP's point when I consider the Bushes, pere et fils.

by Anonymousreply 1707/25/2012

When the latest shooting was discussed on here, it was couched in terms of "people" are crazy.

Had a woman shot 10 people, it would have been immediately connected to her gender, how women are "unstable", etc.

It would have also unleashed a barrage of racism had the shooter been black (black men are SO violent, it's a culture of violence, etc.)

White man going bananas AGAIN? Does not reflect in any way, shape or form or white people or men AT ALL.

by Anonymousreply 1807/25/2012

Because they overachieve at everything, even murder. Duh.

by Anonymousreply 1907/25/2012

Subtle, but untrue R19. Look at the shape this country is in.

by Anonymousreply 2007/25/2012

"Men are so much stronger than women, they could easily grab a rifle out of a woman's taking candy from a baby."

Did you take a good LOOK at the lunatic who shot the people in CO? He was hardly intimidating.

by Anonymousreply 2207/25/2012

It would be really nice if people actually read the article before jerking their knee in reaction to it.

by Anonymousreply 2307/25/2012


by Anonymousreply 2407/25/2012

Come on. I think it's time we white people can admit that we were given special serial killer classes while the other kids were made to get fake vaccinations.

I remember the time when Sister Dolores was teaching me how to use a Walter PPK and the clip got caught in her hand leaving a wicked scar.

Good times.

by Anonymousreply 2507/25/2012

Jezebel = professional flamebaiters

by Anonymousreply 2607/25/2012

I think it was in Vanity Fair where an essay pointed out a large number of terrorists are rich kids -- I think it has to do more with affluence than race.

Poor folk might go off and blast away with a hunting rifle, but rich folk sit down and plan to take out as many as they can for whatever reason...

by Anonymousreply 2707/25/2012

Perpetrators of two of the worst recent mass shootings (Virginia Tech and Oikos University) were Koreans.

by Anonymousreply 2807/25/2012

The Virginia Tech killer had been bullied and so was outraged. The Oikos University was also outraged because he felt cheated.

Asian sprees tend to be direct retaliations.

by Anonymousreply 2907/25/2012

Correction: Privileged [italic]Straight[/italic] White Men

by Anonymousreply 3007/26/2012

That article was written by a man... on Jezebel. Isn't that against their code?

by Anonymousreply 3107/26/2012

[quote]we see whites as individuals

That's pretty much it.

by Anonymousreply 3207/26/2012

Don't forget about me!


by Anonymousreply 3307/26/2012

Psycho females are too busy abusing their kids to go shooting up people.

by Anonymousreply 3407/26/2012

LAPD officer convicted of harassing woman with threatening calls July 26, 2012 | 5:45 pm increase text size decrease text size

A Los Angeles police officer was convicted and sentenced Thursday for harassing a woman with threatening phone calls and text messages.

Joshua Jinwook Chong, a Fullerton resident and Los Angeles Police Department sergeant, had a past romantic relationship with the woman when he threatened to kill her and a male friend in October 2011, according to the Orange County district attorney's office.

Chong called the woman more than 25 times, the district attorney's office said in a statement. He has been relieved of duty and is on leave without pay, the LAPD said Thursday afternoon.

Chong pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of annoying and harassing phone calls. He was sentenced to three years of informal probation and was ordered to complete eight hours of community service and a 52-week batterer's treatment program.

(Is it also people new to power not knowing how to handle it?)

by Anonymousreply 3507/27/2012

We live in a world of massive change and the traditional privileged majority is not taking to second or third class treatment well.

There are few places MORE political than a university administration and I wonder if the CO killer had some unfortunate news that made him snap. The killing seemed to be a fusion of comic book delusion and revenge fantasy.

Batman was an ideal movie.

by Anonymousreply 3607/27/2012

I wonder how many people posting on comments sections in HuffPo and other sites have any actual knowledge of how a university or a PhD programme operates?

First, they all seem to think the bursaries are extremely large amounts of money that about 4 people in the country get. Then they seem to think that it's a tight-knit community where the whole faculty should notice if he's a little weird. PhD's are notorious for involving a lot of solitary study, keeping different hours than other people etc.

Also, typically the oral first year exams can be retaken within a few months of failing the first time around. These are all processes EVERY PhD student faces. Pair that with how young some PhD students are and you'll find a lot of computer game enthusiasts among them.

by Anonymousreply 3707/27/2012

[quote]typically the oral first year exams can be retaken within a few months of failing the first time around.

So, this isn't the big thing the media is making of it?

by Anonymousreply 3807/27/2012

This is such bullshit. One might as well say black and hispanic men do their killing in gangs.

[quote]The vast majority of white men from comfortable backgrounds don't commit mass murder, of course. Our entitlement doesn't manifest in the sense that public spaces are ours to terrorize, but it does show up in the confidence with which we move in those spaces. The certainty of belonging is at the core of our privilege.


by Anonymousreply 3907/27/2012

Pretty much, R38. Not that it isn't still a stressful thing if you do fail. A student typically takes the test about 9 or 10 months into their studies. You usually give a short presentation and then you're questioned for about 30 minutes on a sample of your written work or research findings so far. If you fail, you get a resit. Which, honestly, most people pass. The failure rate both times around is about 1 in 10.

It's a formality that only really exists to weed out people who might not take their PhD to completion. Within the first year, if a student drops out the department has no loss from it except a misplaced studentship. A student that drops out after these exams can result in a department having awards withdrawn, essentially being put on a temporary blacklist.

by Anonymousreply 4007/27/2012

Oh please, R39.

by Anonymousreply 4107/27/2012

[quote]Rates of domestic violence, including homicide, are roughly the same across all ethnic groups.

Ummm. No.

This whole article and thesis is bogus. It is not what happens in the neighborhood. It's what happens in the brain, and (in some cases) the family dynamic. Trying to explain mass murder by whites as being caused by "privilege" is ironic. As far as the "white boy mojo" goes, this is a real howler. I mean I can understand it, but any person of any color or background who is intelligent, well-spoken, and self-confident does not need to rely on age-old myths of mojos. Look at the President of the United States. He proves the rule. A black man with an Arab name. Not only an Arab name, but the middle name of the Iraqi dictator we went to war against!

I enjoyed reading the article but it's a little too precious and ignorant at the same time.

by Anonymousreply 4207/27/2012

Don't forget the Washington D.C. snipers, a couple of gay black men.

by Anonymousreply 4307/27/2012

Please do not bother with this crap. Of course it can be interesting to talk about and consider, but an argument that attempts to connect privileged, majority culture with the actions of serial or mass killers is naive and ultimately, as posters here can sense, polemical at best and racist at worst.

The reason? Individual psychological disorders of the types that can manifest in the planned (as opposed to reflexive or group-related) homicide of strangers often have a social dimension, but it is not an expression of the culture, dominant or oppressed or whatever.

Protective factors against committing such an act ALSO include precisely the cultural characteristics the writer is arguing for as causes for the act. Again, he is making it up as he goes along because he started with a conclusion and worked backward - it is a polemic not worthy of serious consideration.

However, if you want to gnaw on the actual, evidence-based effects of privilege when if comes to the taking of life, consider that suicide rates among white middle-class and higher white males always is higher than those seen among less privileged groups of African Americans and others in this country. The same also is true of women, although rates are lower for women across all groups (completed suicide versus attempts). That is, if you want to talk about something that is real and not just made up.

by Anonymousreply 4407/27/2012

It is lack of empathy involved here.

Taking out your personal failures on strangers requires a particular kind of coldness. You could apply that to repeat drunk drivers as well.

While more women have guns you will not see women mowing down strangers in public because our brains are not wired to block out other people. There are of course, female sociopaths but they are more likely to just destroy people they know. And yes, I remeber the "I don't like Mondays" freak--is she still alive by the way?

by Anonymousreply 4507/27/2012

[quote]While more women have guns you will not see women mowing down strangers in public because our brains are not wired to block out other people. There are of course, female sociopaths but they are more likely to just destroy people they know.

I was living in SF when Basic Instinct came out and was being protested by ACT UP. Women in ACT UP went around with whistles trying to disrupt the filming. They also called out the surprise ending to the people waiting in lines to see the film. (Interestingly, ACT UP was basically done in by misogyny or an inability to merge their two factions -- gay and lesbian -- into "groupthink.) ACT UP's premise was that Basic Instinct was showing lesbians/bi women as killers and that this was patently untrue. Plus, it showed us gays and lesbians in a bad light.

At the same time, of course, lesbian Aileen Wuornos was murdering guys right and left.

by Anonymousreply 4607/27/2012

[quote]ACT UP's premise was that Basic Instinct was showing lesbians/bi women as killers and that this was patently untrue

In retrospect, those who thought that issue was a ridiculous waste of time and energy and a distraction look pretty wise.

by Anonymousreply 4707/27/2012

You could argue that Aileen Wuornos knew her victims because she had intimate relations with them. Also, Wuornos was the least privileged person on earth--she endured a truly terrible existance, which contributed to her mental incapacitation. The men (mostly married, by the way) who picked her up for sex were exploiting a distraught and broken human being.

Again, women will not be spraying rooms full of strangers. It won't happen.

by Anonymousreply 4807/27/2012

[quote]You could argue that Aileen Wuornos knew her victims because she had intimate relations with them

A better argument to suit your thesis would be that AW was a transexual man trapped in a woman's body.

You're welcome.

by Anonymousreply 4907/27/2012

Possibly it's because affluent white men are the only ones with the means to amass all the equipment, guns, ammo, gear, to pull off mass murders.

by Anonymousreply 5007/27/2012

R48, please do not presume to speak for half of humanity, nor pretend knowledge for what half of humanity of capable of. If you want to say that the likelihood of women acting in such a way is much less than that of men, fine. But your claim is silly and rather shameful in both its positive bias towards women and negative bias towards men, and ignores the actions of the many women, both in militia and civilian settings, who have killed and kill strangers with detachment and a psychopathic disregard.

Again, we are talking about the actions of people who are DIFFERENT than the norm. The rate of disorder and of acting out - whatever the trigger - may be less among women than among men, and the expression may often take different routes, but stop acting as if you know how minds inaccessible to you work.

by Anonymousreply 5107/27/2012

Please see Amy Bishop R48

by Anonymousreply 5207/27/2012

OK, I think we have to clarify terms here. I started to write that there have been several female mass murderers only to realize that I, strictly speaking, was talking about serial killers, not mass murderers. Aileen Wuornos was a serial killer. She did not kill numerous people in one incident.

Now, I have no idea if you include every incident of "going postal" whether the argument that most mass murderers are "privileged white men" holds true. I suspect that to make that argument hold true, one would have to narrow it to most mass murderers that did not occur at a place or work or involve family members were committed by privileged white men.

by Anonymousreply 5307/27/2012

Boom! Boom! Boom!

by Anonymousreply 5407/27/2012

[quote]Now, I have no idea if you include every incident of "going postal" whether the argument that most mass murderers are "privileged white men" holds true.

Of course it does: ALL white men are privileged.

by Anonymousreply 5507/27/2012

Please see Amy Bishop [R48]

Amy Bishop did not shoot up a room full of strangers. She knew and had specific gripes against the people she shot.

by Anonymousreply 5607/27/2012

[quote]Individual psychological disorders of the types that can manifest in the planned (as opposed to reflexive or group-related) homicide of strangers often have a social dimension, but it is not an expression of the culture, dominant or oppressed or whatever.

Would you say, then, that it was also bullshit to examine the role of Korean culture in the Virginia Tech shooter's murder spree? Or of Islamic extremism in the Fort Hood shootings?

by Anonymousreply 5707/27/2012

R55, but many incidents of "going postal" have been by people of other races than caucasian; so, the argument does not hold true. The majority are men, but they are not white.

by Anonymousreply 5807/27/2012

If Amy Bishop is not an Aspie I'm turning in my Twilight Fan Club card.

by Anonymousreply 5907/27/2012

r54 is an impostor. The REAL Dr. Amy Bishop types - and shoots - in all caps.

by Anonymousreply 6007/27/2012

R52 -- Amy knew all those people. It wasn't like she went into the Student Center or Library and just started blasting way...

by Anonymousreply 6107/27/2012

[quote]but many incidents of "going postal" have been by people of other races than caucasian; so, the argument does not hold true. The majority are men, but they are not white.

The ones who are not white have internally appropriated the white male privilege, but when confronted with evidence that they do not hold the privilege, they act out in rage.

by Anonymousreply 6207/27/2012

"Privileged White Men" = victim studies 101

by Anonymousreply 6307/27/2012

It's obviously just a coincidence that the vast majority of these types of murderers are white males. To suggest anything else makes white men angry, and we all know what happens when white men get angry...

by Anonymousreply 6507/27/2012

I have no real idea, but I have trouble understand why any one kills. It's as if they are entitled to bring death into an unknown person's life.

I realize that freedom also means free to kill, but it also presupposes that "others" have the right to bring you to justice. "for every action..."

Or am I quoting Camus.

by Anonymousreply 6607/27/2012

Wournos wasn't killing people "left and right". Compared to the death count of male serial killers, she's a lightweight.

As for women being too "busy" abusing children; that's a thing so stupid only a man would say: men abuse and murder children just as much as women do; they also form the vast majority of sexual abusers of children.

by Anonymousreply 6707/27/2012

She confessed to killing six men in 9 months, R67. And those are just the ones she confessed to.

[quote]that's a thing so stupid only a man would say.

Check yourself bitch!

by Anonymousreply 6807/27/2012

[quote]Amy Bishop did not shoot up a room full of strangers. She knew and had specific gripes against the people she shot.

I love people who defend mass murder on principle.

by Anonymousreply 6907/27/2012

Women are predators for security, men are predators for blood.

by Anonymousreply 7007/27/2012

[quote]I love people who defend mass murder on principle.

Nobody's defending mass murder, dumb-dumb; you're simply a challenged reader. Someone mentioned Bishop as an example of a woman who shot a bunch of strangers. She didn't. That doesn't mean her murder spree was justified, and no one suggested it was.

by Anonymousreply 7107/27/2012

Exactly R71. The point was that women are not capable of being spree killers. Only men are. I gave an example. You disputed it on principle. How am I wrong?

by Anonymousreply 7207/27/2012

I like the main point of the article. It was nicely summed up with "But only those who've marinated in privilege can conclude that their private pain is the entire world's problem with which to deal. "

... However, domestic violence rates are not "roughly the same" for all ethnic groups.

by Anonymousreply 7307/27/2012

[r68]: it's a little creepy to do a contest of "who did it worse" but dingdingding, we got a winner (from wiki):

"Sometime during the evening of January 14 or the early hours of January 15, 1978—one week after his arrival in Tallahassee—Bundy entered FSU's Chi Omega sorority house through a rear door with a faulty lock. Beginning at about 2:45am he bludgeoned Margaret Bowman, 21, with a piece of oak firewood as she slept, then garroted her with a nylon stocking. He then entered the bedroom of 20-year-old Lisa Levy and beat her unconscious, strangled her, tore one of her nipples, bit deeply into her left buttock, and sexually assaulted her with a hair mist bottle. In an adjoining bedroom he attacked Kathy Kleiner, who suffered a broken jaw and deep shoulder lacerations; and Karen Chandler, who suffered a concussion, broken jaw, loss of teeth, and a crushed finger. Tallahassee detectives later determined that all four attacks took place in less than 15 minutes, within earshot of more than 30 witnesses who heard nothing. After leaving the sorority house Bundy broke into an apartment building eight blocks away and attacked FSU student Cheryl Thomas, dislocating her shoulder and fracturing her jaw and skull in five places. She was left with permanent deafness and equilibrium damage that ended her dance career."

by Anonymousreply 7407/27/2012

Never mind the few exceptions, it is a fact that in this country the majority of these mass murderers are white males. I don't know that these killers they are all privileged, except for the advantages that come with being white and male. But less than having to do with race itself, this may be more related to one's station in life and, more importantly, what you perceive it should be. It's not easy to deal with the fact that, despite the advantages you have over others, your life still sucks or is nothing like you think it should be. People who've grown with that sense of entitlement, as it is with white males in this country, would find it more difficult to deal with failure and might look around for someone to punish. These mass shootings are also a way to show others the power and control some men - American men in particular - think they should have. Women don't have much of a need for thatso this may have a lot more to do with the whole of male culture in this country than with just with being white. I wouldn't expect French or Italian men going on these rampages even if they had the guns available to them.

by Anonymousreply 7507/27/2012

US Census, 2011:

White = 78.1% Black = 13.1% American Indian and Alaska Natives = 1.2% Asian persons = 5.0% Native Hawaiian/ Other Pacific Islander = 0.2% Persons reporting two or more races = 2.3% Hispanic or Latino Origin = 16.7% White persons not Hispanic = 63.4%

by Anonymousreply 7607/27/2012

R74, Bundy was a serial killer. The psychology of mass muderer is considered different. Google for the different profiles.

by Anonymousreply 7707/27/2012

These people are deeply disturbed if not insane. To try to make some sweeping generalization about their motives is over-reaching. To then try to attribute their motivation to their sociological positon in society is pure speculation.

And if you include drive-by shootings and gunfights in public places as "mass killings" your entire analysis lies in tatters.

by Anonymousreply 7807/27/2012

Part of this issue may be white men in this culture are taught to not express emotion. Also, white men are taught to bond with other men through sports and war (competition with a clear loser).. Men in other cultures are allowed a free range of emotion. To me, this also explains the Asian mass muderers, Asian men are also taught to have super control over their emotions.

by Anonymousreply 7907/27/2012

Very interesting R79.

by Anonymousreply 8007/27/2012

[r74]: this was in reference to Aileen Wournos who was also a serial killer.

by Anonymousreply 8107/27/2012

[quote]You disputed it on principle.

I did not, and do not, dispute that she was a spree killer, numbnuts. Again, you need to learn to read better

r48 wrote. "women will not be spraying rooms full of strangers."

To which r52 replied, "Please see Amy Bishop [R48]."

I then pointed out that Amy Bishop is poor example because she did not, in fact, spray a room full of strangers."

Does it really matter? Is there a moral difference between mass murdering a bunch of strangers and mass murdering people you know? Is a mass murderer any less twisted and evil because, in his or her mind, the people s/he killed had wronged him in some way? Probably not.

However, while I'm not arguing that one kind of killer is "better" than another, I'm sure there are psychological *differences* between a killer who "sprays a room full of strangers" and a killer who mows down a bunch of colleagues, classmates, or family members--and thus far in history, it does seem to be true, as 48 argued, that women very rarely fall into the former camp.

by Anonymousreply 8207/27/2012

[quote]weep more frequently together in joy and sorrow than people here seem conscious of.

Yeah--over the outcome of sporting events

by Anonymousreply 8407/27/2012

I think r75 makes good points.

by Anonymousreply 8507/27/2012

[quote]A black man with an Arab name. Not only an Arab name, but the middle name of the Iraqi dictator we went to war against!

Actually, the President's first name is Jewish/African, his middle name Arab and his last name African. Of course the middle name is what gets Americans excited.

by Anonymousreply 8607/27/2012

Just the kind of pseudo intellectual garbage I would expect from a site like Jezebel.

by Anonymousreply 8707/27/2012

While reading these posts, NBC Nightly News. West Coast edition, just did a brief mention of a white guy who was just fired his job at Pitney Bowes, who of course threatened to go Joker on his co-workers or something like that. I didn't get all of the quote. So the police got the search warrant and found about two dozen guns of varying kinds in his house. Sigh. The timing was almost funny. Sure it's anecdotal, I suppose. Fortunately, everyone is a little more hyper alert these last few weeks and no one took the threat idly. Some people might have gotten a bloody welcome to work on Monday. Found a link with pictures of the guns the police found.

by Anonymousreply 8807/27/2012

You angry white men aren't even bothering to read the article, are you?

[quote]And if you include drive-by shootings and gunfights in public places as "mass killings" your entire analysis lies in tatters.

The point, R78, is that gangbangers typically shoot up their own neighborhoods and their own kind. They don't go into movie theaters full of complete strangers to vent their rage. White men typically commit those types of crimes.

That also goes for the shootings in Chicago. Those gangbangers are shooting up the neighborhoods they grew up and live in. They're shooting people who look like them. People they know and have known most of their lives.

by Anonymousreply 8907/27/2012

Who in the hell are you responding to, r83? While I can't speak to the validity of the theories in the article OP posted, nowhere in the article—and nowhere in this thread—has anyone suggested that white men become mass murderers because they weren't taught to express themselves, or because Daddy didn't hug them often enough. In fact, the article posits the pretty-much opposite theory that white men not only feel free to express themselves whenever and wherever they please, but also fully expect that the whole world will listen when they do.

by Anonymousreply 9007/28/2012

Okay, actually, I now see that r79 did suggest the "white men don't learn to express themselves" theory. He's about the only person to mention that idea, though, and it definitely wasn't the point of the Jezebel article.

Also, I asked you earlier and I'm still curious--do you object when people try to link the VA Tech shooter's crime to his Korean background, or is it only whiteness, in your opinion, that's off-limits as a possible factor in mass murder?

by Anonymousreply 9107/28/2012

Mass murder was invented by Christians, as a way to "kill" the competition, be it non-believers, scientists, witches or anyone or anything else that didn't toe the line of Christan dogma through the ages. Christians have killed more in the name of their religious fairy tales than all the rest of the serial killers & murderers combined ever have.

Notice that most American mass murderers have been good "church-going" folks ...fuck the hypocrisy, the phoniness that pretends Christians somehow have a lock on morality - when in fact, Christianity stinks to High Heaven.

A pox on all religion! May the Dark Ages of religious dogma, superstitions, fairy tales & hocus-locus-dominocus come to a well-dserved glorious end!!

by Anonymousreply 9207/28/2012

This thread is stupid. Let's change the subject.

Did Marilyn Monroe have an affair with a teenage girl?

Radar is reporting that Tony Jerris, author of Marilyn Monroe: My Little Secret, claims the blond bombshell shared an intimate night with a teenager named Jane Lawrence, with “whom she had bonded with over their shared troubled family histories.”

In an exclusive interview, Jerris reveals, “Jane met Marilyn when she was 12 because her adopted father ran the legal department at RKO studio. They soon became close friends after realizing that they had been in the same orphanage at different times of their lives, even though Marilyn was 14 years older, and neither of them knew their birth fathers. They became close friends because there were so many similarities in their past.”

He continues, “Jane always struggled with her sexuality, she talked to Marilyn about this many times and she was very understanding. She told her, ‘Whatever your sexual preference is, it means nothing – love is love,’” explained Jerris, who first met Jane in 2001 and went on to become a close confident and business partner.

Jerris reveals that one night in 1955, Jane visited Marilyn’s L.A. apartment to help her line shelves, and as sexy as that is (not), things soon became physical with the two women.

Apparently, Jane told Jerris that Marilyn, who at the time was 29-years-old, had been drinking champagne and had also taken a prescription drug called Nembutal (a barbiturate) before she arrived. Jane says Marilyn told her, “The champagne makes me happy. The pill makes me happier faster.”

Jane says at one point Marilyn kissed her on the thigh with a “mischievous twinkle in her eye”, which shocked her. “The next few minutes became hazy, surreal and dream-like. My pulse leaped as Marilyn kissed my thigh again… she then leaned in and kissed me full on the lips, very softly and very slowly. I was nearly hyperventilating,” Jane said.

Jane then reveals they moved to the bedroom as one thing led to another while “Marilyn used her tongue, lavishly flicking and licking, an entirely new sensation for me.”

She continues, “With the girls I had enjoyed sex with, there was often a shyness and hesitancy, not the hunger and confidence Marilyn displayed.”

Apparently Jane got into some trouble with her mother for not letting her know where she was but said that the experience was a milestone for her. She says it confirmed she was gay and “as she got older she has relationships with other girls,” said Jerris, not to mention five more sexual encounters with Marilyn.

Jerris says the two remained good friends for ten years, up until Marilyn’s death in August of 1962. She was just 36-years-old.

Whoa, this is some heavy stuff. I don’t have issues with who people choose to be with, but age really is something to consider. 16-years-old? That’s way too young of a girl (or boy!) to be messing with.

by Anonymousreply 9307/28/2012

You have to remember that Marilyn herself was married at 16, as it was commonplace in those days.

Many women were married off or pregnant by 16 or 17 in the fifties.

Is this an excerpt for the latest book that proposes that Marilyn was gay? I'm figuring Bi, which is fine with me.

Marilyn like to talk about being a Gemini, and how she was "too different people." Maybe this is what she was hinting at!

I think the truth about Marilyn is finally coming out--she was highly intelligent, loved other women, was strong-willed and not weak, and was tragically murdered. She did not have affairs with the Kennedy brothers, but she was somehow involved in their circle.

Anyway, thanks for the great post.

by Anonymousreply 9407/28/2012

She told Joan Crawford she was straight after Joan ate her out.

by Anonymousreply 9507/28/2012

She told Joan she was straight so Joan would s.c.r.a.m.!

Not her type. I imagine Marilyn liked softer personalities. Marilyn was lipstick to the hilt!

by Anonymousreply 9607/28/2012

R96, Arthur Miller and Joe DiMaggio are your ideas of "soft personalities"?

by Anonymousreply 9707/28/2012

Wow. Very interesting. I never thought of it that way. I never cared about the race and gender of mass killers and always denounced the pattern as coincidence when brought to my attention. It is interesting to me as a black male that my life experience has been the exact opposite in key areas described by the author. In fact, my current theme is that I'm always wrong. I didn't think it was racial because it's mostly other blacks telling me I'm always wrong because I'm an oreo (most music I like is by white artists). I do agree with one point. I don't think I could ever kill random strangers in public, but there are individuals I would kill if forced to be around them more than I can take. The article does make sense to me.

by Anonymousreply 9807/30/2012

R30, Jeff Dahmer was not straight, though...nor was he particularly privileged but his privilege did allow him to kill a few more when the Milwaukee police didn't believe the black woman who reported him...and his victim was Asian at that time.

by Anonymousreply 9907/30/2012

Except for me. I also felt at home everywhere.

by Anonymousreply 10008/01/2012

This is racist.

by Anonymousreply 10108/01/2012
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