Mass Killing, Genocide Are Brain-Behavioral Epidemics and Public Health Problems

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Certainly mass killings and warfare is one of the top causes of death in human populations.  While the civilian deaths cut across demographic groups, the killers are universally young men in a narrow age range.

Taking a public health approach to mass killing, rape, etc looks at the behaviors as symptoms of dysfunctional brain processes. If we look then at the Holocaust, and mass killings of population in Russia, China, South East Asia and other locations and historical times, we have a pattern of individual human behaviors hat have medical, biological and physiological causes.

Of course, the dominant model of mass killing has been ideological and “Great Leader” theories which have been presumed since the beginning, literally, of recorded history.  These kinds of models are both weak on evidence, archaic and contradicted by biology, physiology and brain science and animal ethology.

If we look at progress in public health in the past we see a similar pattern where pop culture notions of hidden, ideological and supernatural forces were blamed, along with simple denial, avoidance and dissociation.  Only, when breakthroughs were made in theory and testing were the, previously invisible, causes discovered – most of them microbes and public sanitation.

There are, literally, no ideological solutions to public health problems since the body must be treated with physical agents.   Now, ideology is really just statements and claims made using everyday language so all ideologies are variations on the psychodynamic mode of “talking cures.”  Perhaps, there are talking cures to public health problems.  We can test the effectiveness but there are lots of problems with talking = biological effects on the medical facts of the body!

Talking cures for Public Health Problems Probably Won’t work!

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