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The Urgent Need to Address the Root Causes of Mass Shootings in America

Mar 8, 2023 | 0 comments

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Mar 8, 2023 | Essays | 0 comments

America’s mass shooting has established one of the deadliest events in modern American history; the recent mass shootings, particularly in schools, has clawed itself to becoming amongst the top urgent issues in the United States today.
The Orlando mass shooting that occurred in the Pulse nightclub killed forty-nine people and injured fifty-three people. This absurd violence shook the nation into a shock that that led to the ignition of the over the prolonged debate on gun control, as well as the shooters mental states and the socially related root causes of mass murder (Fox, James & Monica 127). Schildkraut states that despite the fact that the underlying reasons behind the latest attack are unknown, the social scientists have made a suggestion of three key factors (18).

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First of all is the element of hate, and cases when hate has led to homicide; a number of studies have shown that the mass murderers have a tendency of turning off and completely shutting out their moral sensibilities; and as such dehumanize their victims, thus treating their fellow human as objects or animals (Schildkraut 20). However, recent studies and research have distinctly described in Behavioral Science one type of killing as moral violence which refers to perpetrators who perceive their victims as entirely human. Schildkraut expresses that the outrage that emerged over perceived morality, and not in indifference; is the trigger and driver to these attacks (22). Nevertheless, the Orlando shooter’s motivations remain unknown, although most of the terrorist acts point towards situations of moral violence.

The second key factor is the implications of guns. Despite the mass shootings claiming thousands of lives throughout the recent history of the United States; the gun advocates claim that the more access to weapons will significantly assist in curbing the carnage. Moreover, recent research shows that the circulation of more firearms only increases the level of experience of crime communities (Fox, James & Monica 142).

The third key factor is the impetus of inequality, social sciences research have over decades observed that with the existence of more unequal societies there is enabling of violence. Schildkraut further states that the existence of income inequality is the root cause of men killing, thus leveraging violence towards securing social ranks (26). Furthermore, with the United States standing at the top of the list of the most unequal amongst Western nations, there is significant chance that most of the recent shootings including the Orlando shooting are a result of the substantial resource disparities.

1. Obesity in the United States

The United States has an estimated one hundred and sixty million citizens who are either overweight or obese (Wolin, Kathleen & Jennifer 2). Almost three-quarters of the male population and over 60% of the female population in America are either overweight or obese. Wolin, Kathleen & Jennifer point out that obesity is, however, an alarming issue particularly amongst America’s children with over 30% of both girls and boys below the age of twenty years being overweight or obese, shooting up from 19% in the year 1980 (5). These alarming statistics thus shows how the United States has landed amongst the highest rated countries with its obesity cases in the entire world.

According to Ruhm when viewing the issue with the perception of obesity’s root cause, a conclusion can be derived that obesity stands as a social problem (11). The major causes of obesity particularly in the United States society today are substantially socially related this is due to the fact that they are significantly based on interactions; interactions not limited to family and friends but also inclusive of the larger population (Ruhm 12).

The United States roots its alarmingly shooting rate in obesity cases in the rising pressure that is exerted to buy the vast range of unhealthy foods through advertisements. Secondly, Americans make poor decisions in regards to lifestyle choices, for instance, a great number of American’s inability to cook their own food in their homes serves as another major cause of the growing obesity rates in the United States (Wolin, Kathleen & Jennifer 17). Thirdly, the vast and significantly available food from fast food outlets as well as cafeterias is yet another key cause. Fourthly, Wolin, Kathleen and Jennifer state that the tediousness and difficulty of walking from one location to another is another major cause of the rise of obesity in the United States (17). Nevertheless, all the key factors that are driving people towards a habitual path of more consumption, as well as less energy expenditure all, result in fueling the menacing growth rate of obesity.

Ruhm expresses that apart from these root causes which have resulted from the societal pressure, there are numerous obesity causes which are similarly associated with the social factors including social eating, extreme lack of exercise, substantial level of availability of types of group transportation which enables the prevention of many people from walking even to cover short distances; and lastly the closeness of individuals to obese relatives as well as friends (23).

Nevertheless, there are quite a number of individual obesity causes which exist in our society today, these include over-consumption of foods which carry more calories that are stored in the sugar sweetening. Another key individual cause of obesity in society today is devoted to watching media advertisements that are oriented and focused on food products (Wolin, Kathleen & Jennifer 26). Just as the obesity root causes in the United States are experienced from both a social and individual aspect, the implications of the rising rate of obesity are just as well both exhibited at the social as well as the individual level. Ruhn further explains that obesity more often than not in numerous cases low self-esteem in an individual, which particularly in the world today is more likely to lead to cases of depression as well as eventually death (29).

2. Karl Max

Karl Marx stands as a prominent pillar in the field of sociology (Beer 3). Karl Marx is known as a significantly established classical thinker in regards to sociology. According to Beer Marx made his contributions is quite a number of core disciplines including economics, political science, and methodology and mostly in sociology’s sociological thoughts and theories (4). Moreover, Marxist otherwise known as Marxism itself brings forth a perspective of a different angle and dimension when looking at the society and its social issues in regards to sociology.

Marx introduced theoretical aspects from the class formation to the class conflict in regards to conflict perspective, society development stages in view of a historical analysis, the modes of production, capitalism, the surplus in production, as well as a philosophical approach to dialectal materialism amongst others. According to Beer, Marx gave a path to the emergence of the Neo Marxists school of thought in critical sociology (53). Beer points out that Marx, as well as his great ideas, have faced great criticism in the 21st century, nevertheless Marx remains and will remain alive for decades to come (62).

Works cited

Beer, Max. The Life and Teaching of Karl Marx. London: Routledge, 2012. Print.
Fox, James A, and Monica J. DeLateur. “Mass Shootings in America: Moving Beyond Newtown.” Homicide Studies. 18.1 (2014): 125-145. Print.
Ruhm, Christopher J. Current and Future Prevalence of Obesity and Severe Obesity in the United States. Cambridge, Mass: National Bureau of Economic Research, 2007.
Schildkraut, Jaclyn. Mass Shootings in America: Understanding the Debates, Causes, and Responses. , 2018.
Wolin, Kathleen Y, and Jennifer M. Petrelli. Obesity. Santa Barbara, Calif: Greenwood Press, 2009.

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