Most all school shooters are young men (https://www.statista.com/statistics/476445/mass-shootings-in-the-us-by-shooter-s-gender/) Some social scientists think that it's because of young boys trying to live up to a stereotypic masculine ideal.
"Boys involved in school shootings often struggle to live up to what they perceive as their school’s ideals surrounding masculinity. When socially shunned at school, they develop deep-set grudges against their classmates and teachers. The shooters become increasingly angry, depressed, and more violent in their gendered practice"...." boys’ social status in middle and high school is determined in great part by peers’ acceptance of them as “appropriately masculine.” Their guidelines for gender appropriateness are found in a set of Adolescent Insider Masculinity norms that describe masculinity as the ideal that men are cool, heterosexual and tough, shy away from “sissy stuff” and embrace activities, behavior and mannerisms that are typical of “guys”. Falling short of this ideal sets some boys up for school-situated problems and reactions that are typical of adolescents."
"Most were repeatedly and publicly tagged with homosexual and feminized epithets such as being a “homo”, a “cry baby” or a “fag”. All 31 shooters were made aware of their failings through their classmates’ emasculating bullying, rejection by girlfriends, and marginalization in general. Some reported being physically and sexually victimized by their male peers. "
I find this an interesting insight, considering toxic masculinity is becoming an issue with persons like Harvey Weinstein, Bill Cosby, etc. "Traditional stereotypes of men as socially dominant, along with related traits such as misogyny and homophobia, can be considered "toxic" due to their promotion of violence, including sexual assault and domestic violence" (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toxic_masculinity#Health_effects)
I think it is time to raise young men to a different ideal of what masculine is. A devotion to work and family and excelling in sports are fine and don't promote violence. The ability to show emotion and vulnerability needs to be recognized as true courage. The ability to get help from another in a time of need should be recognized as wisdom. Complete self-reliance needs to be recognized as an unskillful strategy. The complete respect of women as equals needs to be taught as a basic truth. Violation of women's rights needs to be taught as not only illegal, immoral and unethical but also lacks a basic understanding of empathy and respect.
When I was in School, fights between schools happened. My HS would attack any "caravan or march" passing in front of the school and that included a University of Puerto Rico ROTC Veterans March. We had enough ignorance of youth to show no fear. Never was a shooting event even with Police Shock Force involvement. Only casualty was a student from another school stabbed to death in our stairs during an attack to our school. By the time I graduated I had tasted "Tear Gas" 3 times, it was late 60's, early 70's, civil unrest for civil rights and against vietnam war. Lack of weapons was never the excuse. Puerto Rico always had enough weapons to start a revolution. We had bullies, transgenders candidates and fags in our times. We had junkies, drug dealers, subversives and no shootings. We had victims of abuse at home. Sexual predators too. Realigious zealots and ammosexuals too. Guys that couldn't wait to get drafted they had to volunteer. Talking about testosterone inbalance? That was years before herpes and aids, those were the years of " free love", "black is beautiful" and women burning bras. Not a single shooting. And we had socialists, communists, independentists at the levels of today "fashionistas". We also had hippies and the phrases "Peace and Love" and "jesus loves you". There was plenty of drugs too. Guns available and no shootings. I hear a lot of excuses and explanations today.
So why do you think the high-school girls reject these kinds of not-so-masculine boys? It has been said that women have determined the evolution of the modern man by whom they have chosen to mate with over time. So can't we blame this kind of behavior on women?
It starts with the parents and yet, I have seen truly "good" parents turn out rotten kids and truly bad parents turn out good kids.
My oldest son is homeless in California and I have not heard from him in over two years. Nope, he is not going to shoot anyone, but what makes one child turn out to be homeless at 38 while the other is in a stable job, marriage, and is doing well? Depression and bipolarism are rampant on my maternal side, but why does one child dodge it and the other does not?
Why does one child decide to shoot up a school and others in the family do not? Genes? Environment?
Having read the whole of this, the one point no one has made yet is the inception of the drugs/meds all these kids have been on, most of them with the side effects of and including suicide. so there's that. you cannot be on these strong drugs, that their parents have agreed to place them on, (simply because they cannot and will not afford the time their kids need to be taught to be decent human beings and RESPECT others) without the horrible side effects of them. being on them long term as most of them have, it is undoubtedly one of the causes of this.
I totally see this as a top down problem. Adults and their attitudes are causing much of the problem.
I'm sure there are people older than me on here. I'm 54. When I was a kid no matter how pissed I was with someone shooting them was not an option. No one had anything but hunting rifles and shotguns. No one carried a gun but cops. Not one of my friends families, or family members back then had a gun for 'self defense'.
And now we live in a society where adults feel a need for a ccl so they can pack heat in case of a confrontation over parking at their suburban WalMart. (Yeah, I got a friend...)
When politicians make it legal, and a large portion of the population feels justified in their need to carry a gun in public... their little problem solver if you will. Well, confused angry kids don't have a chance. The message is coming from the top down.
24/7 cablenews has this country scared of their own shadow. We're a bunch of well armed scaredy cats, who feel bad ass with our piece. Statistically the country is much safer than it was in the 60s and 70s, but I work around people shit-scared of crime. The 24/7 news barrage has them convinced they're the next house on the MS13 mexican drug gang home invasion list.
Adults who think guns are the answer, raise a generation of kids who think guns are the answer.
It boils down to the quintessential idea, programmed in to boys from birth
Assert authority and enforce it by greater might
However in recent times we seem to have cut out every stage between 1 and 6a
He insults, you get bombs
And in the case of the school shooter
He insults you send him and all his friends, to the morgue.
Since when did we stop being able to see an insult as a sign of idiocy, and laugh it off.
On the subject of why are school shooters always male, I think this results from males taking much longer to mature than females. Maturing in this context means developing an inner life of one's own. This means being able to dialogue with oneself and consider decisions and previous deeds and have some sense of what is right and what is wholly inappropriate. I have met few boys who have this capability. So they tend to follow the most dramatic example or strongest identity of people in their world. Often these (fantasy figures) impose themselves on others by wearing enigmatic black clothing and by carrying weapons. If we could help boys mature more successfully I think the world would be a much less violent and threatening place.
People need to stop trying to humanise these creatures. There is just something fundamentally defective about them if they can decide to pick up a gun and blow people to bits with no remorse other than regretting that they got caught. They can watch the life drain out of a human or an animal with no apparent effect on their psyche. They are not mentally ill, they are defective. At the risk of sounding like a hypocrite, I think they should just be put down like a rabid dog. They forfeited their humanity the moment they chose to kill for vengeance or whatever it is they're after. Soldiers come back from combat with PTSD, and one of the reasons they do is because they had to kill other humans. I have never seen any evidence that these school shooters experience anything even remotely similar. The survivors will have nightmares and flashbacks and the perpetrators will stare with dead shark eyes and admit they'd do it again which, to me, is a sign of an irretrievably broken mind.
The problem started when, en masse, we started validating everyone's "feelings" as true and justified...and starting handing out participation ribbons to everyone.
It's time to go back to "sticks and stone may break my bones but names will never hurt me" and start allowing kids to be disappointed, get their feelings hurt, and FAIL.
What ever happened to teaching "Stoicism"? I remember very much being taught the principles and virtues of Stoicism back in Elementary School. We even had "debate" classes and were taught how to debate and work through problems.
I have no idea what they teach now....but it sure isn't Stoicism. It's more like "how to take selfies and play the victim in everything..."
Probably to do with the feminisation of boys in our society. Boys are confused: on one hand having genuine natural normal instincts, and on the other: being told that being masculine is not normal.
We should celebrate masculinity of boys and men and femininity of women and maybe gay men.
We should let boys be boys and men be men. Stop this femininisation of men nonsense.
I agree completely. When I was in Junior High and High School, I was tagged a "homo" because I was one of the first in my small town to grow my hair long. I avoided the bathrooms between classes and worried about getting beaten up, though I never was. My parents were thoughtful and accepting, and I soon found a group of like-minded friends where I was accepted. By the time I graduated I was "cool" and everyone had long hair. I don't know how I would have turned out if I had remained an outcast, but I don't think violence is something I would have resorted to, because I'm a conflict avoider.
Because boys are trained to be prideful and keep their emotions in. And being berated and belittled for years on end with the addition of confusing hormones causes these boys minds to break.
The brain is a complicated organ. Why do some people that are raised in the exact same environment turn out differently? No one REALLY knows. But some people can take being bullied and some can’t.
Probably toxic masculinity, which is driven by homophobia and misogyny. Lots of other things too. Our culture celebrates violence and guns are cool.
"Emasculation" can only hurt within the context of homophobia and misogyny. Is homophobia and misogyny passively taught in schools?
I've seen some women use homophobia to ridicule men, which means women are indirectly creating these shooters. So men and women need to be educated.
It's very complex. I feel sorry for the shooters who are victims too. Of course, the NRA gets off scott free.