America’s Mindless Behavior Pandemic

A question for our time in the United States is: How do so many individuals break free from the mooring lines that once prevented them from turning an uncontrollable behavior into senseless violence and behavior? lack of mind?

The two main events of unending mass violence in the US recently are the protests and riots following the killing of George Floyd in May 2020 and the attack on the US Capitol on January 6, 2020. 2021.

With that comes an increase in random homicide shootings and other violent crimes. Last Friday night, a Harlem man opened his bedroom door and grabbed his Glock pistol at three New York police officers in response to a home disturbance call, killing Jason Rivera, a scene close to 22 years old immediately. Another, 27-year-old Wilbert Mora, died a few days later.

A week ago in Harlem, a man walked into a Burger King and shot and killed the woman who worked there. As was customary, he was arrested because footage of him was captured by surveillance cameras, now almost everywhere, and broadcast on TV for the entire city. But ignoring the camera, they kept killing people. That same week, video cameras helped Los Angeles police capture the man who stabbed Brianna Kupfer to death while she was working in a furniture store.

Road rage has been with us for years, but now we have aviation rage. Latest: In January, three women allegedly beat and stomped a security guard at JFK airport. Guess what? The women from Long Island are currently under federal prosecution in Brooklyn. The indictment felt obligated to note that “extreme behavior” against airlines was “out of control.”

What is not out of control?

Political protest today always lurks on the edge of madness. Put aside the so-called politics of the January 6 Capitol attack. Footage was shown continuously, revealing what can only be called joie de destruction of intruders, who act as if rampaging through the Capitol is almost no different from roaring around a parking lot on game day. Hundreds of people have been arrested and many, likely not having had serious arrests before, will now have jail time on their records.

Black Lives Matter is believed to be behind the protests in the summer of 2020, but a similar ecstasy, what the hell is also evident in the looting and high-pitched battles with the police.

For much of last year, Portland, Ore., fell into a state of “Mad Max” anarchy, surrounded by gangs of plainclothes street fighting.

Time is like that, even professional criminals have some rough calculations in their heads about the connection between theft, armed robbery, murder and how long they can stay behind bars. Today, many violent or even nonviolent individual acts have become mindless, unfettered, and unresolved.

The man sentenced to life without parole for killing Ahmaud Arbery thinks it’s the right thing to do with a loaded pistol while chasing a suspected thief through the streets. . . exactly what? Safe?

The personal selection function also doesn’t work well among the supposedly sophisticated. Follow Andrew Cuomo. The allegations of gross sexual abuse by multiple women come after the #MeToo storm poured shame on many Cuomo-level celebrities in New York City. Governor, what are you thinking?

A: Like the Capitol Hill rioters, looters, shooters, Long Island beating ladies, the former governor of New York is now thinking nothing of it. They all just do it.

Comforting prosecution standards, Covid or human weakness back to Adam and Eve do not fully explain abuse and senseless behavior.

The rise in urban crime has revived the phrase “broken windows”. The posts of that name, published in the Atlantic 40 years ago, deserves a massive new readership for what it tells us about the collapse of the order. It’s more nuanced about effective policing and less of “law and order” than its critics purport.

But the ideas in “Broken Windows” aren’t just about controlling crime in poor neighborhoods. They talk about the basics of intact communities, and are therefore relevant to a broader American society that has become unwilling to police or repair the broken windows of everyday life. . The authors, George L. Kelling and James Q. Wilson, described the risks: “Not doing anything about a single point of drunkenness or a hundred vagrants could destroy an entire community. “

The main culprits are not those running around in a society that has underestimated accountability. The cause lies with the adults in the room, the establishment elite, who have regularly explained and validated this behavior.

The persistent erosion of behavioral norms, which are difficult to establish, was brought on by the left but eventually extended to the right. The 2020 Democratic National Convention said nothing about the looting that summer, nor did some on the right fall into post-factual rationalization for the Capitol riots.

The bases for justifying disruptive behavior are readily available these days, but the cumulative erosion of standards — what Kelling and Wilson call “informal community control” — is currently influencing American assumptions about the internal stability of the Nation.


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