Monday, April 02, 2018

A sociologia dos tiroteios em massa

Isto é um artigo que eu já estava a algum tempo para postar, mas vou pô-lo agora porque acho que trata de um tema muito próximo deste:

The Sociology of Mass Shootings, por "Phil":

A different approach is adopted by Joel Cappellan in his PhD dissertation, submitted and examined in September 2016. This is the first properly full-length sociological study of the topic. As Cappellan notes, existing social science literature tends to look at individual risk factors instead of identifying it as a social problem that brings social forces into play. That isn't an invitation to crude sociological determinism, that shooters are helpless puppets of the forces animating them. The relation between context and agency is always complex, but never so rarefied that individual responsibility disappears. Nevertheless, there is social patterning, the shooters mostly share similar biographical characteristics and, yes, they tend to be men.

Cappellan advances two hypotheses: that low rates of social integration and social cohesion make populations more vulnerable to these sorts of attacks, and that media reportage boosts incidence and distribution of them. A review of cases 1970-2014 showed the hypotheses turned out not to be the case, in fact the opposite was true. Mass shootings are more likely in rural states with stable marriage rates and, interestingly, steady socio-economic status - profiles, Cappellan remarks, that bear more similarity to suicide rates than "normal" homicide.

This requires further work, of course. But really it shouldn't be that surprising. Marjory Stoneman Douglas is a middle American school. Sandy Hook is a middle American school. Columbine is a middle American school. What they appear to have in common is their situation in communities where social cohesion wasn't particularly frayed. Rather, the shooters were effectively outcasts within their communities. Nicholas Cruz, the latest name added to the roll call of infamy, was the stereotypical loner excluded from school. Adam Lanza hadn't left the house for three months prior to his attack, for which he planned methodically for. Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold were well known in their school for being weird, and were shunned and occasionally bullied. It seems the relationship between cohesion and exclusion is worth exploring in more depth, that from their standpoint the appearance of comfortable normalcy within sight but not within reach is a social tension that may (or may not) be a significant contribution to the making of a mass shooter.
O post é muito maior que isto, mas o que me chamou a atenção foi esta parte - de que o típico tiroteio em massa não ocorre no anonimato dos grandes centros, em localidades em que as pessoas não se conhecem, onde predominam as famílias desestruturadas, etc. Não, é ao contrário - é nas pequenas comunidades aparentemente unidas e coesas que surgem os atiradores em massa (embora eles próprios sejam indivíduos - por vontade própria ou por exclusão involuntária - socialmente isolados). Não sei bem o que se poderá concluir disso, mas talvez signifique que ser um "estranho" é pior numa comunidade de resto unida e coesa do que numa comunidade mais desestruturada; talvez a tal "multidão solitária", tão criticada por sociólogos e pensadores diversos, tenha um lado bom afinal?

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