The Male Shooter Epidemic

  James Lorello asks us to consider creating authentic relationships with young men to curb violence.   In recent weeks the U.S. has seen a number of shootings around the country committed by men.  This includes shootings at military bases, schools and other public arenas. In the past, these types of incidents have raised questions around two topics; gun control and mental illness. While these topics contribute to the issue, a third should be added to the list. Why are most of these campus shooters men? What within their identity says that this violent tactic is the only way to heal from their past?   Recent work has debunked the claim that these shooters are simply “loners” and that social separation influences them to commit acts of violence. Katherine Newman, co-author of Rampage: The Social Roots of School Shootings says that these shooters “experience rejection all the time, but that doesn’t stop them from trying to join groups. They just fail, all the time.” Instead of being people who are lone wolves, they are individuals trying to fit in to a larger peer group. Today’s construction of masculine identity does not leave much room for those who do not fit in.  Whether too slow in gym class, or too smart, not good enough with the ladies, or too much acne. Young male groups are built upon tearing down those that are less than. This continual posturing forces men to establish themselves as the alpha male and therefore a “real man”. Click through to read more.   Source: