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Why kids kill: Inside the mind of school shooters by Peter Langmans ©
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Sociology

University, School

Schotengymnasium Wien
2009

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Summary of Peter Langmans "WHY KIDS KILL: INSIDE THE MIND OF SCHOOL SHOOTERS"

In this text I want to sum up the contents of the book. I added additional information about disorders etc. from Wikipedia if necessary. As this is not an official text for school to be graded, quotes from Wikipedia and the book are not marked as such.

Contents

page

1 Preface. 2

2 1. chapter School Shooters Beyond The Sound Bite. 3

2.1 Grasping for Answers. 3

2.2 The Shooters. 4

3 Psychopathic Shooters. 5

3.1 2. chapter "I Am The Law" Two Psychopaths. 5

3.1.1 One Plus One Equals a Million. 5

3.1.2 Aspiring to Godhood. 6

3.1.2.1 Paranoid Personality Traits. 7

3.1.2.2 Antisocial Personality Traits. 7

3.1.2.3 Narcissistic Personality Traits. 8

3.1.2.4 Sadistic Personality Traits. 8

3.2 Psychopathic Shooters. 8

4 Psychotic Shooters. 8

4.1 3. chapter "A God of Sadness": A Schizotypical Youth. 8

4.1.1 An Enigmatic Killer. 9

4.1.1.1 Avoidant Personality Traits. 9

4.1.1.2 Schizotypical Personality Traits. 9

4.1.1.3 dependent Personality Traits. 10

4.1.1.4 Dylan's Reasons for Suicide and Homicide. 10

4.1.1.5 Dylan and Charles Manson. 10

4.1.1.6 A Schizotypical Shooter. 10

4.2 4. chapter "None of This Is Real": Four Schizophrenics. 10

4.2.1 "I think I' an Alien". 10

4.2.2 "I died Four Years Ago". 11

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6.3.12 Good Communication and Positive Culture. 20

1 Preface

In the preface we, Langman discloses his reason for writing a book about school shootings. After the Columbine Massacre a teenager was admitted to the psychiatric hospital, at which Langman was working at. He was asked to assess the risk that the teenager might "go Columbine, since he posted a hit list on his Website.

That was a difficult task for Langman, since at that time, not much was published about school shootings. Since then he regularly evaluates potential school shooters.

The lack of literature regarding the topic and his engagement with potential school shooters brought him to write the book.

2 1. chapter School Shooters Beyond The Sound Bite

In the first chapter Langman writes about what he wants to tell us with the book. It's not about hard facts like what type of gun was used or how many people died. Rather it's about the mind of the school shooters. The questions are: Why did they do it? What were they thinking?

We learn that it's important to differentiate between rampages (often committed by adults) that randomly involve schools, personal quarrels at school that were "solved" with a gun and real rampages by students against other students and teachers. The book is only about the last .....[read full text]

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The Columbine shooters used "NBK" (The initials for the movie "Natural Born Killers") as their codename for their "operation".

Very often there are no immediate triggers for school shootings. Most of the shooters planned their homicides for several months!

An interesting fact is, that most school shootings happen in rural areas and small towns. There were no shootings in major cities like NYC, Chicago or Detroit.

2.2 The Shooters

1. Evan Ramsey, 16, Bethel, Alaska

In 1997 the suicidal Evan wounded 2 students and shot a student and the principal. With his friends encouragement he developed a hit list. He wanted to shoot himself but couldn't pull the trigger. He remains in prison.

2. Michael Carneal, 14, West Paducah, Kentucky

On Thanksgiving 1997, Michael went to school with 5 firearms. He killed 3 girls and wounded 5 other students. He yelled for someone to kill him but didn't do so himself. He remain.....[read full text]

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