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Essay on Violence at Columbine High School

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Violence at Columbine High School
The events that happened in Littleton, Colorado at Columbine High School in
April were tragic. No one will nor should attempt to defend the actions of the two
gunmen, but it is beneficial to look into the reasons that this did occur as a preventive
measure of sorts.
Simply looking back over the past few years of teenage violence a picture become
clear of who the aggressors are : white males. There is definitely a strong relationship
between the violence of late and gender. Better stated, the socialization of white males in
contemporary American society has absolutely lead to the rash of tragic, violent outbursts
in our school systems.
The mechanisms of socialization utilize childrens toys as a “teaching” tool. There
is a noted breakdown amoung the genders on the toy front. Toys geared towards females
are softer and lead to a calmer climate of civility by their mere nature : dolls to play house
with, Barbie’s to dress up, Easy-Bake ovens to cook with, the list is endless. Toys geared
towards males are rougher and create a climate of more agressive playing by their mere
nature: guns to shoot each other with, plastic action figures to wage battles with, again the
list is endless. “Comparison shop” down any store’s toy aisle and the gender gap becomes
all too clear. What is to be learned from the great toy divide? If males are encouraged to
play in a manner that is aggressive and ulimately violent, is it, then, not expected for them
to grow up to be agressive and violent.
According to Esterchild (Jan 28,1999), the expectations for masculinity include,
but are not limited to, the belief in the unflappable strength of the male and his absolute
aversion t...


... middle of paper ...


.... I deduce this
through my experiences in high school and the exchanges I witnessed between the athletes
at my school and those they considered different.) The only solution, it would seem,
would be violence, and males are predispose to acts of violence.
At this time, I would like to discuss why some choose violence and some do not.
It is a cumlination of outside affects such as parental influence, econimic situation, peer
group, religiousity and personal diposition. Each situation is different. Each person is
different. The influences that they have and their individual morality may lead them down
different paths.
These specific perpetrators had the background and framework that made violence
seem like the most obvious option. Their gender sealed their fate. For them, their
takeover of the high school, was a “natural” choice of retaliation.


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