Hate and Mental Instability

My reaction to the Orlando, Florida massacre is typical, of which I count myself among a set of reasonable, well-adjusted human beings that find this unsociable behavior outrageous, shocking, insufferable and repulsive. The two most intense of human emotions – love and hate – are intimately linked within the human brain, according to biological scientific study, are the same nervous circuits in the brain responsible for romantic love. These findings could explain why both hate and romantic love can result in similar acts of extreme behavior – although love and hate appears to be polar opposites.

If one examined the massacres of the last 20 years in US, the perpetrators had serious mental health problems such as: schizophrenia, Asperger syndrome, and other mental illnesses characterized by significant difficulties in social interaction and non-verbal communication. A logical conclusion is that people are more likely to commit mass executions if they are mentally disturbed, an inevitably link between mental illness, mass shooting and gun violence.

Most of us harbor a resentment or dislike for a person who may have committed a wrong against us, but we certainly would not entertain a compulsion to kill them. Hate can be an all-consuming passion, like fanaticism or an addiction to some irrational enthusiasms or beliefs, especially in religion and politics.

The Orlando killer apparently had a serious conflict, or jihad (personal struggle) as a Muslim and a closeted homosexual; a bad combination which naturally can fester deep-seated hatred for oneself and the community one despised.

I do not expect any decrease in mass killings along as a proliferation of guns and mentally deficient individuals exist; politicians loyal to the NRA and the scientific community inability to fully understand the complexity of the brain. Or we can live similar to our closest extant relative, the Bonobo who form deep social bonds and is an authority on conflict resolution.

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