What we need to know about the type of man and the type of men who kill women
The booking photo of Robert Aaron Long on March 16, 2021. Crisp County Sheriff’s Office / Associated Press
When scientists turn their attention to people, they usually focus on all of humanity, humanity, or individual people. I am a social scientist who has worked as a psychotherapist with individuals for over fifty years. I have also studied what the anthropologist Lawrence A. Hirschfield calls “human species,” especially the large group of people we call men.
I have written 16 books including The Warrior’s Journey Home: Healing Men, Healing the Planet, The Irritable Male Syndrome: Understanding and Management of the 4 Main Causes of Depression and Aggression, and my most recent book, 12 Rules for Good Men. I also write weekly articles on my blog,
After the tragic murders of eight people in Georgia, I wanted to share some things we need to know about men, especially the kind of men who kill women so women can protect themselves and we call to protect those who we love. The Wall Street Journal article on March 19, 2021 states: “Eight people, including many women of Asian descent, were killed in three massage parlor shootings in the Atlanta area. Police have identified and arrested a suspect, Robert Aaron Long. ”
As of the writing of this article, the US witnessed another mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado: “Monday’s carnage was the nation’s second mass shooting in a week, six days after an attack on three Georgia massage baths that killed eight.” Both of them Consequences remind us that male violence and gun violence are closely related.
There is still a lot to learn about the person who committed the murders in Atlanta. But here are a few things we know in an article, according to writer Alyssa Choiniere: “Robert Aaron Long, Suspect of the Asian Spa Shootings in Atlanta: 5 Facts You Need to Know:”
- Long was deeply involved in his church and he claimed his motive was to remove temptation.
In the article, Choiniere said:
“While authorities insisted that they had no evidence that the massage parlors that Long was targeting were involved in illegal activities or that Long had even visited these particular locations, the suspect claimed that his aim was to eliminate the temptation .
“He sees these places as … a temptation for him to remove,” said Jay Baker, captain of the Cherokee County sheriff’s office. Baker said officials asked Long directly if he had racist motives and Long denied it. “
- Long was spotted 200 miles south on the way towards Crisp County and said he was on his way to Florida to commit more shootings.
Long was on his way south to Florida to speak to entities he believed may be in the porn industry, he told officials. When arrested on the way to Florida, he long advised authorities that he would plan more shootings.
- Long was being treated for sex addiction and said he initially considered suicide and then decided to help others with sex addiction by targeting spas.
Long was treated for sex addiction and spent time in rehab, according to CNN. His addiction included endless hours watching pornography and visiting spas for sex. He told law enforcement that he originally planned to kill himself but instead chose to help others with sex addictions by targeting spas.
- Lived with his parents for a long time until the night before the shooting when he was kicked out for his sex addiction.
Long faced a sex addiction where he watched pornography for hours and sometimes went to sex salons to have sex, CNN reported. He had lived with his parents until the night before the shooting, according to an anonymous emergency call from CNN.
- Lange bought the gun used in shooting just hours before allegedly opening fire in three spas.
Long was found with a 9mm gun during his arrest, authorities said at a news conference Wednesday morning. He bought the gun earlier in the day from a gun store in Cherokee County, according to the Atlanta Journal constitution.
What We Can Learn From The 5 Facts About Robert Aaron Long
In the weeks and months ahead we will learn a lot more about why Robert Aaron Long killed the people he killed, but there are things we now know about why so many men are violent. Here are some initial thoughts based on my own experience and my life’s work.
Violence is a universal challenge and not the result of “a few bad apples”. The “World Report on Violence and Health” published by the World Health Organization (WHO) states, “No country or community is untouched by violence.” The report also says that violence is primarily a male problem.
The motives and underlying causes of male violence are complex and the perpetrator is often unaware of the underlying causes of his or her violent behavior. Mr. Long denied that his acts of violence were racially motivated, even though six of the eight people killed were Asian women.
Many violent men appear to be “nice, godly, people,” and those who know them are surprised that they could have committed such violent acts. But violence is not a coincidence. When we know the underlying causes, we can learn to prevent violence. Based on my own work with irritable, angry, and violent men over the past fifty years, here are some of the underlying causes:
- Violent men have often experienced violence at an early age.
Most of the violent men I have worked with grew up in households where violence prevailed. Often the perpetrator was the father, the stepfather or another man in the apartment. Sometimes the violence was directed against the boy. At other times, the boy may have experienced violence against other family members.
- Violence is often passed on through generations.
Where violence is present it can usually be traced back to previous generations. Not all who have experienced violence become violent themselves, but many do. Some women who experienced violence as children may become violent themselves or marry a violent man.
- Irritated, angry, and violent men often grew up in homes where they had negative childhood experiences (ACEs).
ACEs are adverse childhood experiences that damage children’s developing brains and alter their response to stress. ACEs are so damaging to the immune system that the effects show up decades later. ACEs are a major contributor to our chronic disease burden, most mental illness, and are at the root of most violence.
ACEs include physical, sexual, and verbal abuse, physical and emotional neglect, and growing up in a home with a family member suffering from mental illness, alcohol, or substance abuse.
- Boys with multiple ACEs often grow into adults who feel inadequate and have shaky self-esteem.
Violent men often express their pain and fear through anger and aggression. According to Jane Ellen Stevens, founder of AcesTooHigh,
“People with an overabundance of ACEs live their lives in a number of predictable ways: They suffer from depression, overworking, extreme anger, and / or anxiety. People who use anger to deal with their ACEs will cling to anything that satisfies the need for hate, including racism, hate groups, misogyny, etc. Stirring their hatred is the belief that the world is a dangerous place is based on the traumatic experiences burned into their tiny bodies and brains when they were babies. “
- Violent men often feel sexually inadequate, experience a lot of self-loathing, and absorb their hatred of women.
Laura Bates focuses on the most virulent groups of men expressing violence against women in her book Men Who Hate Women: From Drives to Pickup Artists: The Truth About Extreme Misogyny and How It Affects All of Us. Bates says:
“Misogyny and violence against women are so widespread and normalized that it is difficult for us to see these things as ‘extreme’ or ‘radical’ because they are simply not uncommon. We’re not jumping to tackle a terrorist threat to women because the reality of women being terrorized, injured and murdered by men is already part of the wallpaper. ”
Although most men are not violent and most men treat women with care and respect, many men are ambivalent about women, idolizing them, and resenting the power they have over them. In his book Misogyny: The Male Malady, anthropologist David D. Gilmore says:
“The man has to cling helplessly to the woman as a shipwrecked man on a lifeboat in troubled seas. He urgently needs it as his salvation from all want and from oblivion; his addiction is total and desperate. But, and here’s the problem, the man has to part with the woman in order to achieve anything at all. He must overcome his desire to return to childlike symbiosis with her if he is to be held accountable as a man. “
- Male violence against women is part of a larger male violence problem in the world.
Although both men and women can commit acts of violence, men are both perpetrators and victims. Men’s violence against women, men and the planet are interrelated.
The World Report on Violence and Health divides violence into three broad categories:
- Self-directed violence, including suicidal behavior and self-abuse.
- Interpersonal violence, including violence in the family and in partners and violence in the community.
- Collective violence, including armed conflict within or between states; Genocide, Terrorism, and Organized Violent Crime. Increasingly we recognize our destruction of the environment as a kind of collective violence.
To prevent future violence against women, we need to recognize that violence is primarily a male problem and affects us all. At MenAlive, we focus on healing men so that women, children and the planet we all share can be healed. This month we have a special on my book The Irritable Male Syndrome: Understanding and Treating the 4 Main Causes of Depression and Aggression. One way to prevent violence is to deal with the early warning signs. I am looking forward to read your comments.
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