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Inspiration Motivation Mental Illness and Attention Seekers...

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posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 09:45 AM
Sum of all fears?

What worries me and I truly hope my fear is unfounded and entirely wrong here... I am afraid that there could possibly be other Jared Loughners here and/or elsewhere online, watching, lurking, reading and taking all of this in and finding some kind of inspiration, weak and compromised youths with undiagnosed and untreated serious mental conditions who may act as a result, to kill or murder because they have a desire to be famous, in the media, on television, and the subject of many discussions like this online.

Someone among us, posting, reading, lurking and we will only know, again after another tragedy.

I hate thinking of this, but I can't help but wonder if there is anything that can be done to prevent the potential copycats?

As bad as the Jared Loughner case is, imagine how much worse it could be if there is another similar tragedy linked to yet another disturbed person who is an ATS member in the near future?

What speculations and questions, and more importantly the implications be for ATS IF that happens?

I suggest that there has been sufficient exposure and disclosure by ATS, and no further public exposure is necessary, in fact, it now seems more like a kind of morbid glorification and unintentional exploitation of this person, tragedy and alleged posts here.

Maybe it would be best to remove all of it, isolate it and keep what may be needed for the authorities and lawyers outside of the public venue and for the community of ATS as a whole to move on from this and back to "normal" discussions and topics here.

We could all be unintentionally helping to motivate the next Jared Loughner among us.

Do any of you really want that possible stigma attached to ATS and its members in the future?

It is a risk only, may never happen, but it is possible and is a possibility that must be taken into consideration here.

I'm not sure anything can be done if there is someone out there being inspired by all of this, but to say or do nothing in the face of that possibility seems so wrong.


posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 10:59 AM
An old but interesting read...

This phenomena of copycat killings is explored in Malcolm Gladwell's influential book The Tipping Point, in which he says that if people were exposed to a gruesome act, it could become contagious in particular contexts and spread further.

"The post-Columbine outbreak of school shootings is...happening because Columbine happened, and because ritualized, dramatic, self-destructive behavior among teenagers - whether it involves suicide, smoking, taking a gun to school, or fainting after drinking a harmless can of Coke - has extraordinary contagious power," he said.

So what, you say, sometimes kids copy each other. Big deal? Bear with me there is a point to all this.

Writing in the Guardian in August, the writer Lionel Shriver made the same point: "The biggest drivers of America's bizarre late-90s profusion of teenage kids suddenly razing their classrooms with semi- automatics were outsized media coverage and disproportionately hysterical preventive measures in schools."

She added, "Kids saw photos of their peers plastered large as life all over the news, the long profiles on hitherto nobody misfits in their local papers, and envied the attention..

What if all of the attention to the AZ tragedy at ATS and specifically the shooter is creating that kind of envy among readers and followers here?

posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 11:20 AM
ATS is part of the internet - anyone can be here, post anything, read anything. Not much we or any other site can do about that unless they break T@C rules and get banned. Actually I have not seen ATS mentioned in any of the media reports, I have seen My Space and Facebook mentioned with regard to his postings. And even then I didn't see anyone put a blame on My Space or Facebook for his actions. You might have a Jared living down the street from you, going to your kids school, working where you do. Its a fact of life that the mentally unstable are out there and they are going to do or try to do what ever comes to their sick minds. Talking about it on ATS isnt much different than the fact that its printed in the newspapers, or discussed at a Company breakfast. We can only encourage those that feel something isn't right with them and share it on ATS to seek help and hope they take our advice. Talking about this gives us some ideas on how to address others that might seem to need the same help Jared needed. Why didn't his family and the school see what could be done about his behavior - students were afraid of him, teacher were afraid of him, did that not ring a big bell to call a mental hotline or a hospital and ask what could be done. Didn't anyone try to seek help for him that knew him personally? His parents are in hiding, I wonder why they wouldn't come forward if they tried to help him and let us know. What about the school - did the teachersreport his actions and discuss it with school administrators - the students were clearly afraid of him.

posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 11:33 AM
reply to post by crazydaisy

This isn't about blame, of course ATS has no blame in the AZ tragedy, however there are always potential copycat killers out there, and often they are inspired, enabled and perhaps motivated by all of the attention given to tragedies like this, and in particular to the perpetrators of these crimes.

If someone is here, and obsessed with this case, the content and widespread attention, is unstable and that person does act on it as a result, or is somehow motivated, inspired and envious of the attention given to the shooter then there could be more serious problems.

IF that happens and there is a connection to ATS... well, use your imagination.

I really hope nothing ever happens, but with the overwhelming media attention online and on television a copycat killer is very possible.

It is also possible that IF that happens the killer could also have ties to ATS.

Does it really matter where blame lies if that happens?

posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 11:44 AM
I don't believe there's a truly effective way to stop copycats short of simply squashing all information. Not a viable alternative. That being said, how do we identify red flags? I'm sure there are ways and that the experts can tell us, but most of us won't be able to truly tell.

In a way, Jon Stewart sort of fumbled about almost this very issue on the Daily Show last night, but more from the aspect of how with that the free speech and crazy inciteful political rhetoric it's becoming harder to identify the truly mentally disturbed. It was kind of sad, actually.

I'd add to this that the sheer volume of what's "out there" is also making it harder to tell what's truly alarming and what can maybe safely be dismissed. Many probably believe have to err on the side of better safe than sorry, but that's got it's dangers too, particularly if we don't change the paradigms we currently employ to both judge and deal and judge with potential problems.

Not an easy set of challenges.

posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 11:54 AM

Originally posted by ~Lucidity
I don't believe there's a truly effective way to stop copycats short of simply squashing all information. Not a viable alternative. That being said, how do we identify red flags? I'm sure there are ways and that the experts can tell us, but most of us won't be able to truly tell.

I've already seen a few posts in various discussions on the AZ shooting, and the shooter that contain POTENTIAL red flags.. And that is the problem, I am no expert, is anyone even qualified to make such a determination?

By the way, that was, in part what inspired me to post what I have here.

I hate only having a "gut feeling" to go on, and no way to know for sure one way or the other, so I chose to open this thread rather than to dwell on it.

posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 11:56 AM
ATS is many things to many people, and the board staff and members are many things to many people.

What we're not (with the odd possible exception) are clinical psychologists.

Nor (with the odd possible exception) are we psychic.

My point being is that no one ever sees these things coming, because despite some peoples claims, you really can't see inside someones head, and you never really know what someone is capable of.

The ATS community could have done nothing to prevent Loughner's attack. Similarly, overt paranoia and continual suspiscion/witchhunts will do nothing to alleviate the effects of it either.

Sad fact of life is that it is what it is. The world, and our community here can only soldier on, and hope that there is no next time.

posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 12:03 PM

Originally posted by neformore

Sad fact of life is that it is what it is. The world, and our community here can only soldier on, and hope that there is no next time.

Or the site owners and staff could determine that it is in the best interest of this community to remove the material that could motivate potential copycats.

In reality I suppose there is nothing that can be done, but what is out on the boards now can potentially motivate another disturbed individual and there isn't a damned thing any of us can do about it but "hope" it doesn't happen?

Tough call, I'll go with hope for now, and also hope that I never feel the need to come back to this thread to post something in the aftermath of another similar tragedy.

I've made my case... Back to the shadows...

posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 05:40 PM
I'm new here to ATS (in fact, this is my first post) so please forgive me if I inadvertently commit a faux paus.

IMHO, to remove all threads/posts related to this issue would be nothing short of censorship. While I, too, worry about "the crazies in the woodwork", I don't think curtailing free speech is the answer.

No matter how carefully we speak and/or choose the topics we discuss, there will always be a role model readily available for those who want matter their reason.

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