one topic that i've been posting about lately has been the increasingly apparent connection between male inadequacy and violence against women, girls and 'girly' Others. (see joe francis, the soldiers in iraq who killed an iraqi girl and members of her family, and the Amish schoolhouse killer; now we can also add the V-Tech shooter.) herbert makes a fine argument:
More than four decades later we still profess to be baffled at the periodic eruption of murderous violence in places we perceive as safe havens. We look on aghast, as if the devil himself had appeared from out of nowhere. This time it was 32 innocents slaughtered on the campus of Virginia Tech. How could it have happened? We behave as if it was all so inexplicable.
But a close look at the patterns of murderous violence in the U.S. reveals some remarkable consistencies, wherever the individual atrocities may have occurred. In case after case, decade after decade, the killers have been shown to be young men riddled with shame and humiliation, often bitterly misogynistic and homophobic, who have decided that the way to assert their faltering sense of manhood and get the respect they have been denied is to go out and shoot somebody.
Dr. James Gilligan, who has spent many years studying violence as a prison psychiatrist in Massachusetts, and as a professor at Harvard and now at N.Y.U., believes that some debilitating combination of misogyny and homophobia is a "central component" in much, if not most, of the worst forms of violence in this country.
"What I've concluded from decades of working with murderers and rapists and every kind of violent criminal," he said, "is that an underlying factor that is virtually always present to one degree or another is a feeling that one has to prove one's manhood, and that the way to do that, to gain the respect that has been lost, is to commit a violent act."
it makes me think about the imus firing, the conversations about racist and misogynist language in popular culture, the movies of quentin tarantino/robert rodriquez (and the Rapist No. 1 action figure that makes me go 'gick') and how all of these things are connected.
and once i'm home, i'll write more about it.