Do the Root Causes of Violence Present a Reliable Predictor of Lethality?

The root causes of violence are often seen as (but not limited to):

• Mental illness
• Criminal intent
• Religious fervor
• Political extremism

• Stress in the workplace
• Domestic challenges
• Stress from traumatic experiences

The challenge of these root causes, and their probability of violence, is that there are too many of them! As an example: Mental Illness, is it practical for us to assert that someone with, say, Schizophrenia will be our next shooter?  Many believe that Jared Lee Loughner was Schizophrenic when he shoot and killed innocent people in Tucson, AR, so can we use this fact to extrapolate who the next shooter will be?  I read one study “conducted over a thirteen year period, which reveals that fewer than .2 percent of schizophrenics committed murder.”  If the probability of 0.2 percent of schizophrenics commit murder can we extrapolate that “probability” into who will be our next shooter?  Must we prejudice, and possibly quarantine, all those with Schizophrenia for fear that 1 in 2,000 might shoot someone?  The use of mental illness as a means of identifying the next shooter is not a reliable predictor.

When these root problems result in any form of “aggressive behavior,” i.e., its ultimate expression of violence, bullying, discrimination, and other abusive issues that threaten, at its lower levels, productivity and, at its higher levels, the safety of individuals and organizations. Aggressive behavior does not just happen; it emerges along an observable Aggression Continuum.

Aggression, or more specifically aggressive behavior, brings with it tremendous costs and human suffering.  We have found that “aggressive behavior” is reflected in an individual’s body language, behavior and communication indicators as illustrated in our CAPS Aggression Continuum and affirmed by our Judicious Interview.

The costs to an organization of even one serious injury or death due to aggression would be huge in comparison to the cost of the programs offered by the Center for Aggression Management.  For more information select:

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