Thursday, August 09, 2012

When guys like me do it...'s because they are mentally ill and need help. When guys different from me do it, it's because their culture/religion is evil and violent. Also, there is no such thing as Fundamental Attribution Error.

Why the Reaction Is Different When the Terrorist Is White - The Atlantic


Aaron said...

It could be a combination of both.

Supposedly many mass killers latch onto politics to justify their actions. I'd say this applies to say Loughner - I see no political rationale whatsoever from his action.

It might apply to that Norwegian dude - he could have been a killer shopping around for a rationale, OR it could be because his culture/religion/political ideas were evil, and lead him to kill. But killing children doesn't usually make your cause look good.

I think the Nazi guy is pretty clear-cut political and not mentally ill. If you don't like brown people, killing them seems like something you should do. (Have not followed that case though.)

I think for most Islamic terrorists, its also ideological, though again, it would be an attractive rationale for someone who just really was sick and wanted to kill to latch onto it to justify their desires.

Anonymous said...

p.s. US government considers the Hassan shootings to be an incident of workplace violence, not terrorism, and the soldiers injured don't get purple hearts etc.

Robin said...

The basic thesis is nonsense. Tim McVeigh was a person who let ideology lead him to evil acts, he wasn't insane. Holmes is probably insane and suffering from an explicit form of mental illness. Page I don't know enough about but seems filled with hate rather than mental illness.

Anonymous said...

I was thinking also about the OWS bridge bombers. Insane? No. Ideological? Yes.

Same with the abortion clinic bomber Rudolph.

And the unabomber.

In fact, some of those killers had a few salient political points that are not far from the mainstream thrown in with the nutty but not crazy.

Anonymous said...

Bath that would be the perfect excuse. No racism, ideology, hatred or even inexplicable insanity.

Karl said...

Robin, what "basic thesis" are you referring to?

Anonymous said...

hen guys like me do it...'s because they are mentally ill and need help. When guys different from me do it, it's because their culture/religion is evil and violent.

Robin said...

Karl, Friedendorf's whole fatuous article that we use mental illness to excuse those culturally similar to us who commit mass murder.

Karl said...

Robin, in the 48 hours after the page shooting, I went through FreeRepublic and a large swathe of PajamasMedia blogs. What Friedendorf describes is *exactly* what I saw, along with the talking point echoed by Aaron above.

Robin said...

Karl, I have no idea why you are going through Free Republic at all for a discussion of mental illness, other than for examples.

I have no clue what PajamasMedia blogs would reflect that.

However, here's a Pajamas Media blogger reacting to a different Friedersdorf blog in an appropriate manner.

Anonymous said...

Excuse me, but I came up with that talking point all by my little self by thinking about other white people who killed a bunch of folks.

I decided that I did not consider any of them "crazy" at all, except Loughner and maybe that Norwegian weirdo.

I don't get this. Your blog post suggests that white people would claim that our killers are just crazy, and then when people disagree, its a talking point. WTF?

Also, my information about killers latching onto politics came from an NPR discussion of Loughner with psychiatrists. I concede that must be a talking point , too, and thus be belittled?

Karl thinks NPR = Freepers.