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CyberLN's picture
John, you wrote, “... in

John, you wrote, “... in Louisiana they just need a masters degree in psychopharmacology. The point I'm making however, is that these people are going beyond their clinical psychology training in order to administer medication”

So what, then, would be appropriate education to prescribe these sorts of meds? And, yes, they have gone beyond their clinical psychology training by also gaining a graduate level degree in psychopharmacology. What do you suggest they study in addition to this?

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I mean, my original issue isn

I mean, my original issue isn't with the training, its with the idea of prescribing medication in general. I think psychiatrists are perfectly qualified to do what they do, and I think they shouldn't be doing it.

David Killens's picture
Do you know the difference in

Do you know the difference in training between a medical doctor and a clinical psychologist? Please elaborate.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
No, I actually have no idea

No, I actually have no idea what a medical doctor is.

Tin-Man's picture
Well, John, for what it's

Well, John, for what it's worth, I actually have to agree with your OP for the most part. Granted, I have nothing close to any formal degree in the subject of psychology, but I do have many years of dealing with almost every known type of mental illness up close and personal in various uncontrolled environments. Because of that, I learned rather quickly that almost any person is capable of "snapping" and acting in ways totally against their "normal" behavior, given the proper conditions/catalyst. Ironically, it is those who have a known history of mental illness that are more often easier to deal with and "predict", as opposed to those who suddenly exhibit abnormal behavior without any warning but have no known history of mental problems.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Its also interest that the

Its also interest that the closest friends and family of most of these shooters are often blindsided by the event. They can't believe they did something like that; and often describe the shooter as good person.

Sheldon's picture
To put it in perspective how

To put it in perspective how likely is it that a parent, grandparent or sibling would say, yeah he was always a wrong un, it was only a matter of time? Family and loved ones often see what they want to see.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Everyone sees what they want

Everyone sees what they want to see. The difference is that friends and family know you the best.

Sheldon's picture
Suggesting what? That this

Suggesting what? That this behaviour is an anomaly? It might just as easily suggest a desperate attempt for loved ones who are grieving to try and rationalise what has happened, possibly to assuage any feelings of guilt that they either didn't see it coming or misread the signs.

In the UK certain stories become fashionable, and one such fashion was dangerous dogs, at one point you couldn't turn on the news but there was another dog attacking some child, with all the usual gory details. It struck me that not once did an owner not express amazement that their dog had behaved as it did. I mean as unlikely as it is that an owner would say it was a nasty viscous monster that sooner or later was going to maul a child, but surely it's not beyond the wit of the average person's intelligence to see that owning a pit-bull that weighs as much as an adult man when you have small children around is inherently dangerous?

The analogy is obvious. Yes he was a moody teenager, prone to angry aggressive outbursts, a bit of a loner who struggled with personal relationships, and he had been expelled from school for his anti-social behaviour, and yes he had a collection of assault rifles, and made some vague threats that we never took seriously, because who could see it ending in a mass shooting?

There is one way we can shorten those odds, and it is axiomatically to remove the guns. Some teenage boys will always be unpredictable, but lets not tempt fate and let them own assault rifles. Again where is the down side?

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Just came across this article

Just came across this article, about the shooters caretakers. They said:

"We had this monster living under our roof, and we didn’t know. . . We didn’t see this side of him.”

LogicFTW's picture
That quote and others similar

That quote and others similar in context is something we hear all the time for the family and friends of people that do horrible deeds.

We are often the most blind to those closest to us. We have formed our, (usually,) positive opinion of those closest to us and then bias all new information and actions to fit the positive narrative we originally created of that person unless it is a large, jarring undeniable action on the person we have bias for.

How many times have we heard of partners subjected to physical/mental abuse by their signficant other rationalize it in their head, one way or another? "Oh he/she really loves me, it was a one time thing, and I believe the person that they will never do it again."

In the case of the Florida shooter, he has multiple postings of him with guns, of him killing small animals for fun, he had an assault rifle in his closet. He hid from others his participation in a white supremacist group. He hid his warning signs activity from those he was living with, or it was rationalized away by those that lived with him on the stuff they did observe. I am sure they *the people that took him in, under their roof* knew he has done counseling, they obviously were aware of his suspension from school history. But only the tiniest minority of kids with a history of suspension, counseling, fascinations with guns end up being mass shooters in a school. Logically the family had no reason to expect this dark troubled person would actually turn out to be a mass shooter based purely on numbers.

Peers at his school that did not already have favorable opinion of the person were not surprised. But even none of them really expected he would do it, or come back months later from suspension and shoot up the school. If they truly did, they would refused to go to that school.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
Obviously not.

Obviously not.

Sushisnake's picture
@Tin Man

@Tin Man
" Ironically, it is those who have a known history of mental illness that are more often easier to deal with..."

They're often the most invested in keeping their mental illness controlled. They know where the path leads and have no wish to walk it again, thanks.

Tin-Man's picture
@Sushi Re: "They're often

@Sushi Re: "They're often the most invested in keeping their mental illness controlled."

Well, from my personal experience, most cases that is yes (thankfully). Sadly, I have encountered quite a few cases where the individuals seem not to care one way or the other whether they remain "stable" or not. (Was never really able to figure out why, though.)

However, what I was mainly referring to when I said "easier to deal with" is that those who are displaying their typical signs of "instability" are generally easier to "control" and/or "manipulate" to get them calmed down and manageable, especially if you have had multiple encounters with them. That does not mean one should let down any guards or take anything for granted, obviously. It just means the "reasoning tactics" used are generally tested and reliable. On the other hand, when encountering an individual who has had a sudden acute mental episode, it tends to be a bit trickier when trying to figure out what will or will not work in gaining compliance from the subject. Plus, unless a family member or friend is around to tell you exactly what started the behavior, you never know for sure what the cause is. Drugs? Stress? Some sort of medical condition? Head injury? Sudden onset of depression? If you are lucky enough for the individual to be able to communicate with you, then that is when the "20 Questions" game starts. There were some real doozies out there, that's for sure. *chuckle*

Sushisnake's picture
@Tin Man

@Tin Man

"(Was never really able to figure out why, though.)"

I've worked with a few, too. The most common reasons were they felt fine, so they went off their meds, or they didn’t like the side effects. Sometimes the side effects could have been minimised by changing the dosage or the mix or eliminated altogether by changing the medication, but not always. The saddest case was an Aboriginal gentleman I knew who had schizophrenia. Mental illness is stigmatised in the Aboriginal community, so he hid it from his family and stop taking his medication sometimes. It never ended well.

" especially if you have had multiple encounters with them"

Yep. It helps if you know how someone has behaved in the past and what triggered the behaviour. That's why documenting behaviour on antecedent/behaviour/consequence charts used to be a huge part of my job. I worked in aged care/disability support for decades. You get a lot of dual diagnosis clients with very complex behaviours. Looking for those triggers so you could minimise or eliminate them was the name of the game.

David Killens's picture
I'm sorry John, but I had to

I'm sorry John, but I had to have your post reviewed by a qualified psychologist. You are good with words, but your knowledge about psychology is lacking. Your conclusions are driven by incorrect training and a severe lack of knowledge in this field.

What happened was predictable. Nikolas Cruz was adopted, and thus he had to deal with that rejection. Then when his adoptive mother died last November, he was alone. Then when he was kicked out of the only thing left in his life (school), he decided to do something. All the signs were there.

Psychiatrists arrive at their prescriptions by discussion and feedback from the patient. And for many cases, it is not usually the perfect chemical composition, but gradual discussions and observations of behavior by the psychologist narrow it down. It may take weeks, it may take many months before the brain chemistry is under control.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
No problem. I said before I

No problem. I said before I welcome your wife's input.

Here's the issue. The world has plenty of adopted children; the world is full of people that go through far more devastating things than losing an adoptive mother; its full of lonely people; full of people that post pictures with guns; full of people that get expelled; even full of people that make death threats. Most of these people, don't go on to become mass shooters.

Not a single one of these factors, in isolation or combination, could have told us that a mass shooting was going happen. That's not to say these weren't key factors, perhaps even contributing factors, to Nikolas' decision. But those dots are being connected in retrospect, and its ignoring the most important variable of them all: Nikolas himself. He is the catalyst that makes these events lead up to a shooting. And the shooting is what gives all of these events meaning, in retrospect. Replace him with another person that goes through these same events, and we might not have a shooting.

So it's not that the events didn't lead to the shooting, it's that we couldn't have deduced the shooting from these events. These same events could have left to him simply committing suicide for example; or becoming a boxer.

I mostly agree with what you said about psychiatrists; which is why I'm against their use of drugs.

David Killens's picture
If I described an old adult

If I described an old adult male, age 70, weight 350 pounds, who never exercised or performed any strenuous activity, ate greasy foods, and drank just coke, then had a heart attack, would you be surprised? No, because all the signs were there, they all combined to be a major factor in a heart attack. The same goes with psychology, you just seem incapable of recognizing it or connecting the dots.

I suggest you stop practicing psychology.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Lol, why would you suggest I

Lol, why would you suggest I stop my psychology education when two comments ago you said rejection (particularly academic rejection) contributes to mass shootings? Either you're honestly trying to turn me into a mass shooter, in which case, perhaps the resignation should come from your end. Or better yet, you don't really think rejection can turn someone into a murderer after all.

In general, I'm tempted to believe you didn't understand my argument.

David Killens's picture
If you suspect that you are

If you suspect that you are mentally unstable or psychotic enough to become a mass murder, no BS, go to the nearest hospital and see a qualified medical professional.


Anyone sick enough to even suggest they may be a killer should be reported to the FBI.

I am not going to resign anything, and I will not allow you to become a public safety problem.

Geez, religion again. Do things my way or I will kill someone.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
That's a messy response right

That's a messy response right there. Why did you tell me to quit my education two posts after saying rejection and expulsion from school contributed to a mass shooting?

Sushisnake's picture
Yep. Totally agree, John.

Yep. Totally agree your OP reflects public perception of events like mass shootings , John, but I'm not sure how your title fits.

1. People like to pigeonhole. They feel more in control if they can label. They feel they've made the inexplicable, explicable, even if they're barking up the wrong tree. It's comforting. The way the DSM keeps changing reflects how subjective this is.

2. Two terms: Act of God and evil. Outrage makes us superstitious, so we fall back on belief in evil bad seeds - a lot. That's the reason the world bays for blood far louder if a mother kills her children than when a father does. We'll more or less accept a twisted man will kill his kid for the life insurance, but a mother? No! Mothers who kill are Unnatural! They're Evil! Again, it's comforting. The thought that any of us might break given the right circumstances is too terrifying to contemplate. Much safer to dismiss those who do as anomalies.

3. Good old pareidolia and apophenia, rationality's ugly step-sisters. They still won't let rationality go to the ball.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Yeah, I realized later that

Yeah, I realized later that my title was misleading people. I'm not presenting any ideas on the psychology of a shooter, which is what I think most people thought I was doing. Instead, I'm more or less trying to debunk the "psychology of a shooter."

Sushisnake's picture
Got you. It has applications

Got you. It has applications outside of just shooters, too. Think of any individual or group you can label " other" and you can attach a "psychology" to it. It's dead useful, because...

I'm not a fan of division. Have you noticed?


Attach Image/Video?: 

Tin-Man's picture
@Sushi Re: "3. Good old

@Sushi Re: "3. Good old pareidolia and apophenia, rationality's ugly step-sisters. They still won't let rationality go to the ball."

Hey, just had to let you know that gave me a good chuckle. That was a good one. Gotta try to keep that one in mind for future use. *still chuckling...*

Sushisnake's picture
I'm chuffed you liked it, TM.

I'm chuffed you liked it, TM.

Sky Pilot's picture
It pays to remember that at

It pays to remember that at least 50% of the general population is nuts and the rest are borderline. Anyone can kill anyone at any time for any reason or for no reason. Someone you know could flip out and kill or injure a person within the next minute.

If a person is religious then he shouldn't worry about such things because whatever happens is Yahweh's (or Allah's) will. So religious people shouldn't even give such things a second thought. Luckily I have never been affected by such incidents so I don't wig out when they occur. And I believe that I would really only get upset if something like that happened to three people I know.

Cognostic's picture

Bla bla bla - wild assertions and unverified attempts at facts while blurring everything in an extremely verbose waft of confusion. Once again nothing worth commenting on. READ A BOOK.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I want to try something new.

I want to try something new. Normally I don't bother citing my sources, for the simple reason that I doubt anyone would do more than just read the title. Moreover, it seems pointless. If someone agrees with what I said, they don't need the validation. And if someone disagrees with what I said, I'd be more interesting to see what contrary evidence they provide.

I went back to the OP and added all the sources I had before writing it. Not sure what good it will do; but I guess we'll find out. Enjoy.

mykcob4's picture

The WHOLE FUCKING PROBLEM WITH THIS FUCKING THREAD is WHAT KIND OF SHOOTER BREEZY THINKS HE'S TALKING ABOUT! There are MANY different kinds of shooters! AND he thinks he can psychoanalyze someone he has never met and do so with having the necessary training to do so!


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