Addressing a Seriousl Problem in the Article, Rampage: The Social Roots of School Shootings

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Rampage shootings are a very serious problem in the United States, and an issue in other countries, and, beginning in the 1990’s, there was a significant rise in the number of school shootings. In order to try and decrease the occurrence of these rampage shootings, it is important to thoroughly understand what they are compared to other shootings. According to Katherine Newman and her colleagues in their article Rampage: The Social Roots of School Shootings (2004), rampage shootings must take place in a school-related area with witnesses, have multiple victims many of whom are shot for their significance or at random, and finally must involve one ore more shooters who are or were students of the school (Newman, Fox, Harding, Mehta, Roth, 2004: 51). Newman and her colleagues then based a theory off of this definition of rampage shootings. They said there are “five necessary but not sufficient conditions for rampage school shootings” (Newman et al, 2004: 229). Basically, they are saying that there are five criteria that must exist in order for a school shooting to occur, but just because all of these criteria are present does not mean that there will actually be a shooting. The five criteria that make up Newman’s theory are: social marginality, individual vulnerabilities, cultural scripts, under the radar, and access to guns. Social marginality is the product that develops within a school based on a social hierarchy. This leads to bullying and alienation, which then turn

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