ABSTRACT

Youth Violence: What We Need to Know: Report of the Subcommittee on Youth Violence of the Advisory Committee to the Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences Directorate, National Science Foundation   [open pdf - 952KB]

"Rampage shootings in schools differ in dramatic ways from 'street violence' commonly associated with urban areas. School rampages typically occur in stable, close knit, low crime and very small rural towns and less often in exurbs. The shooter generally is a white adolescent male, with no recorded history of disciplinary problems, and no documented history of medical treatment for mental disorders. The shooter is often at the high end of the intelligence and academic achievement spectrum, but lacking in the badges of athletic ability and other social attributes that are highly valued by peers. Urban 'street shooters,' by contrast, are found in densely populated areas with high crime levels, low levels of social trust, and are rarely high academic performers. High poverty neighborhoods, often plagued by illicit drug and gun markets, are particularly at risk for youth violence. Although rampage shootings are rare, they are devastating because of the randomness of the victims. Urban bloodshed, which often unfolds between known antagonists, is far more ubiquitous and hence exacts a terrible toll on families and communities destabilized by persistent violence. When gun violence of either kind occurs, it is only natural for citizens and policymakers to seek to identify 'the cause.' Although tragic events like the Newtown shooting are caused by multiple risk factors, three main factors have been discussed--access to guns, exposure to violent media, and mental health. We have a body of reliable evidence and a stable of theories to explain youth violence that have emerged from decades of research, including research supported by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the National Research Council, and other federal agencies."

Publisher:
Date:
2013-02
Copyright:
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Congressman Frank Wolf: http://wolf.house.gov/
Format:
pdf
Media Type:
application/pdf
Source:
Youth Violence: What We Need to Know. National Science Foundation, Washington D.C. February 1-2, 2013
URL:
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