The Instigator
Cameron16
Pro (for)
The Contender
marctjester
Con (against)

Mass murders are a wish to die, not kill

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/25/2016 Category: Society
Updated: 1 month ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 137 times Debate No: 96415
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (0)

 

Cameron16

Pro

Mass murder, a horrible thing that happens in the world and is broadcasted all over the place. We are way too familiar with the images that flash across our screen. "Shooting At Connecticut Elementary School." "School Shooting In Littleton, Colorado." But what drives a human to commit the most inhuman on crimes? Are mass murders driven by an urge to kill or a wish to die? In this debate I will explain how mass murders are more of a wish to die rather than an urge to kill and why I believe this. Hopefully in this debate we will be able to come to a conclusion that can lower the number of mass murders in the world.

Let's start this debate off with one of the most famous mass shootings all throughout the world. Columbine. The Columbine high school massacre was a school shooting that occurred in Littleton, Colorado on April 20th, 1999 which killed 13 and injured 24 before the gunmen turned the guns on themselves. The perpetrators were Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold. What do these two have to do with my argument? Dylan Klebold was severely depressed and you can tell he is just by what he wrote in his journal entries. "OOOh god I HATE my life, I want to die really bad right now...I don't know what I do wrong with people (mainly women) - it's like they all set out to hate and ignore me." Throughout Dylan's journal you can see how much he hates his life and how much he feels as if he would be happier if he was dead. "If anyone had any idea how sad I am." "oooh god I want to die sooo bad....such a sad, desolate, lonely, unsalvageable I feel I am...not fair, NOT FAIR!!! I wanted happiness!! I never got it." All Dylan wanted in his life was happiness and to have love. When he found out the girl he loved was a "fake love" he got extremely angry and sad which made it easier for Eric (a clinical psychopath) to take advantage of Dylan and manipulate him into shooting up the school with him. I imagine that Eric promised Dylan that they would die after committing such a crime and this is how Dylan was so easily influenced.
According to Dr. Ann Blake Tracy, Eric was reported experiencing homicidal and suicidal ideation. Which is when you are constantly thinking about hurting yourself or other people. Eric was prescribed an antidepressant called Zoloft (Sertraline). Which is commonly used to treat for depression and OCD. He was still having thoughts of hurting himself and others so they prescribed him Luvox (Fluvoxamine). Needless to say, neither of these drugs helped his condition. Eric was not just homicidal he was also suicidal. He wanted to die as well as kill. He was receiving help but he was receiving the wrong kind of help. Which is why such a horrible event happened.

Mass murders are defined for the study as having four or more victims and don't include gang killings or slayings that involve the death of multiple family members. These shootings include the one in Orlando, now the worst mass shooting in U.S. history, and others in an Aurora, Colorado, movie theater and at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, both in 2012.

So you might be asking, "If more mass murders are caused by a wish to die and not kill then why do the people that commit mass murder commit mass murder and not just kill themselves?" I believe this could because of multiple factors. 1. A desire for fame. If you feel that your life is worth nothing and you want to do something that will guarantee that your name will be on the lips of everybody in America. What can you do? Kill a lot of innocent people. 2. A sense of revenge. Most of the mass murders that are around us are because the people commit them feel as if the people around them and the world have wronged them before. What's the best way to get revenge on someone you don't like? Kill them or something they care about.

I believe that the people who commit mass murder are driven by a wish to die and that they only commit mass murder to gain fame for their story and get some revenge for themselves before they pass away.

http://www.acolumbinesite.com...
http://www.acolumbinesite.com...
http://www.cnn.com...
marctjester

Con

When you say that the main reason behind why people would commit mass murder is because of suicidal ideation, then it's presumtive. Although the murderers from the columbine shootings did have suicidal behaviors beforehand, the event itself implies a strong hatred and a desire to kill that surpasses any wish to die, otherwise, like you said, they would've simply killed themselves; and I believe that this desire for revenge, to kill, is the sole reason and determinate factor involved without any conclusive basis proposed to be from suicidal ideation. This desire to commit murder stemmed from the blame placed on the victims of the shooting unintelligibly that originated from false ideas of the perpetrators. People are different and I don't believe that we should strictly form conclusions that apply to cause of every individual mass shooting based on singular, or even a historical collection of events. These are individual minds and, though you can come to some statistical analysis based on the controversial link between suicidal and criminal behavior, you should not form false conclusions as if these minds resemble the minds of any other; or generalize that the main cause of all mass shootings are caused by the desire to die. In my opinion, I believe that the shooters had special environmental circumstances that ultimately encouraged or led them to criminal behavior and that accountability should be directed towards not those who had influence or control of their environmental circumstances but the harmful ideas that caused them.
Debate Round No. 1
Cameron16

Pro

The act of shooting a large number of people and generally terrorizing everyone is the last great act of revenge and defiance. It's the ultimate power trip, where you hold the decision of life and death over people, and you're choosing death with a big smile on your face. Most of these people are angry at the world over the way they have been treated, or at least the way they perceive they have been treated. This is payback.

The nightmare scenario for this person is to be on TV being led out of a building in handcuffs, powerless and subjugated to the will of The Man. They've felt powerless their entire lives, and they know at some level that capture means many years of being under someone's thumb, never, ever being free. They go into this situation with the full intent of killing themselves to deny the world its opportunity for retribution.

Suicides rarely make the news headlines unless they involve someone famous. The suicide of the beloved but troubled comedian Robin Williams, for example, received massive media attention and it shocked the public consciousness.

Mass murder is a form of suicide in that the perpetrator of such atrocities is often an enraged and fatalistic individual who intends to die at the scene of the massacre. From this perspective, the increase in mass shootings over the last ten years is very consistent with the increase in suicide. The legendary nineteenth century social scientist Emile Durkheim argued that suicide is a social fact rather than an individual pathology. Using a vast amount of data from official records on suicides in different parts of Europe, Durkheim documented significant variations between countries in their rates of suicide which he found were correlated or linked to environmental conditions. This evidence, Durkheim argued back in 1897, shows that "each society has a definite aptitude for suicide" which is a social fact that is external to the individual members of a given society. Such revolutionary and original thinking in the nineteenth century has given Emile Durkheim widespread recognition as the founding father of sociology. I have spent considerable time analyzing recent suicide patterns in the U.S. I have concluded that, consistent with the work of Emile Durkheim, suicide is a social fact that is, a predictable pattern based on social forces. I contend that there are powerful factors in contemporary society that help to explain the sharply rising suicide rate.
marctjester

Con

"The act of shooting a large number of people and generally terrorizing everyone is the last great act of revenge and defiance. It's the ultimate power trip, where you hold the decision of life and death over people, and you're choosing death with a big smile on your face. Most of these people are angry at the world over the way they have been treated, or at least the way they perceive they have been treated. This is payback."

This supports my claim that the main reason, rather than being suicidal, is the desire to kill. The act itself, being murder, would not have been enacted by a person with a suicidal state alone. This perception of social responsibility for the perpetrators suicidal state Does Not Apply to Every Individual.

"The nightmare scenario for this person is to be on TV being led out of a building in handcuffs, powerless and subjugated to the will of The Man. They've felt powerless their entire lives, and they know at some level that capture means many years of being under someone's thumb, never, ever being free. They go into this situation with the full intent of killing themselves to deny the world its opportunity for retribution."

This fear of subjugation is only in relation to the murderous plot, in which the desire to kill formulates this plot, where suicide may be resorted from this fear that may not apply to every individual; and there are several incidents where suicide doesn't take place that follows a mass murder. Explain that. Suicide is the endpoint part of the particular murderous plot, rather than serving as the main purpose as to its execution.

"Suicides rarely make the news headlines unless they involve someone famous. The suicide of the beloved but troubled comedian Robin Williams, for example, received massive media attention and it shocked the public consciousness."

You presume and generalize by adding fame to be contributive to the main purpose of mass murders, when there is no proof of what fueled the perpetrators to cause an act of violence; besides the tacit intent of the desire to harm others. Instead, there is only the objective fact that an act of murder would not be committed without the desire to kill. Your conclusion has no factual basis, and though suicide may be a factor involved in the plot, or though the media broadcasts these events excessively, it in no way concludes that the desire to die, or for fame, surpasses the fact that murder is mainly caused by the intent and desire to kill.

"Mass murder is a form of suicide in that the perpetrator of such atrocities is often an enraged and fatalistic individual who intends to die at the scene of the massacre. From this perspective, the increase in mass shootings over the last ten years is very consistent with the increase in suicide. The legendary nineteenth century social scientist Emile Durkheim argued that suicide is a social fact rather than an individual pathology. Using a vast amount of data from official records on suicides in different parts of Europe, Durkheim documented significant variations between countries in their rates of suicide which he found were correlated or linked to environmental conditions. This evidence, Durkheim argued back in 1897, shows that "each society has a definite aptitude for suicide" which is a social fact that is external to the individual members of a given society. Such revolutionary and original thinking in the nineteenth century has given Emile Durkheim widespread recognition as the founding father of sociology. I have spent considerable time analyzing recent suicide patterns in the U.S. I have concluded that, consistent with the work of Emile Durkheim, suicide is a social fact that is, a predictable pattern based on social forces. I contend that there are powerful factors in contemporary society that help to explain the sharply rising suicide rate."
You're digressing from the main point and you also used often, rather than stating definitively in your first sentence, to further refute your claim that mass murders are caused by a desire to die. Besides, although there is a definite aptitude for suicide for each society, caused by the environmental conditions, the willingness is dependent on each individual in which a society consists of as the environment for each individual changes. I agree that suicide is caused by environmental factors, and the ideological derivatives, and have already stated this, before you, in argument #1. The main point that you're arguing being "Mass murders are caused by a wish to die rather than kill" is ridiculous. There's no need to define suicide for me. While suicide, the act of suicide, may be involved in an incident or plot of mass murder, it's presumptive to conclude that all mass murders are caused by the desire to die. The act of murder unquestionably is derived from the desire to kill unless accidental. Any theories of yours are irrelevant as this is not only a social fact, but also obvious. By the way, you're refuted by the mere fact that, provided by historical evidence, not all mass murderers commit suicide. Honestly, I'm tired of the close relationship between suicide and murder that our culture has established with no flexibility to individual experiences or circumstances. Please know what the word 'murder' means before you allege false reasoning behind a homicidal incident. I'll leave you with this but consider that your argument is presumptive and wrong:

"Often, we assume that a familiar situation will be but a repeat performance of a similar situation we've experienced before. But, in the strictest sense, there are no repeat performances. Every situation is unique, and we must be alert to its uniqueness."

Your statement, and generalization, of mass murders being caused by a desire to die actually resembles a major problem of misinformation pervading throughout the world today. These citations and verbose elaborations, potentially convincing with the misusage of your knowledge of vocabulary and terminology, contributes to the falsely established information within our culture. To refute your generalization even further, consider any war that has existed throughout our history, and then incorporate your falsely definitive statement of these cases of mass murder being caused by a wish to die instead of the desire to kill for any multitude of reasons behind that desire.
Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by marctjester 1 month ago
marctjester
The only statement I would like to debunk of mine is, "The act of murder unquestionably is derived from the desire to kill unless accidental.", because murder is not accidental. By its definition, It is irrevocably attached to the desire to kill which is caused by a multitude of reasons or motives that definitely are not limited to the desire to die. Basically, The desire to kill leads to murder, and mass murder, by its definition; any theories that you have stated as conclusive is invalid, especially that mass murders are not caused by a wish to kill; which is the thesis of your argument.
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