Mass Killings And Planned Killing Sprees

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Mass murders and planned killing sprees; the average person cannot grasp how any normal-thinking human can commit such heinous acts. This illustrates the contrasting mindsets of an average person and a psychopath, who are often guilty of these acts. Psychopathy is traditionally viewed as a personality disorder defined by antisocial behavior, diminished empathy and remorse, and disinhibited and impulsive behavior. Psychopathy is therefore associated with an increased risk of crime and violence, creating a formidable challenge for the justice systems. Although psychopaths’ crimes are inexcusable and they should be punished, if society intervenes before a psychopath reaches criminal status, we could prevent many tragedies. Psychopathy is a mental disorder that can be diagnosed early in a person’s life and, if reared in a healthy environment and taught how to channel anger and behavior, a psychopath is capable of living a normal and peaceful life. In the early 19th century, Philippe Pinel, a French psychiatrist, pioneered the study of today’s psychopathy. He described psychopathy as manie sans délire, insanity without symptoms of delirium or delusions. In Fini Schulsinger’s article Psychopathy: Heredity and Environment, Schulsinger discusses that Pinel was “much astonished to observe several insane persons who never presented any lesion of their intellect and who were dominated by a sort of instinctual rage, as if the affective abilities alone were damaged” (Schulsinger, 190).

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