The Reasons For Growing Number Of Serial Killers In The USA

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There were many reasons as to why there were many serial killers in the U.S during the 70’s and 80’s. Although their mental health and childhood development plays a big part as to why, for example, when their parents would be abusive for a long period of time or being isolated from scholar or home activities. Another major role that came into play was their daily environment that included the use and abuse of drugs. There were a lot of situations that contributed to the mental health of patients/or common everyday people. However the blame can be split in both parties since the individual might have abused medicine instead of trying to find a proper solution to their problems or they took situations out of proportion.

Since the beginning of time serial killers have always been around, but the word did not come about until the 1970’s when FBI investigator, Robert Ressler took it upon himself to figure out how and why those criminals worked the way they did. With time, he believed in criminal profiling and slowly but surely, the word took sail and is known for what it is today. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation in their Behavioral Analysis Unit 2 book, the definition of a serial killer is as follows, “The term ‘serial killings’ means a series of three or more killings, not less than one of which was committed within the United States, having common characteristics such as to suggest the reasonable possibility that the crimes were committed by the same actor or actors.” This means that anyone can be considered a serial killer after committing multiple consecutive murders over a period of a month and do not have to include a motive but do have the same memo or pattern.

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All serial killers fall into different categories though. One of them is visionary where the offender suffers from psychotic breakdowns and cannot differ their fake surreal thoughts from reality. For example, they could believe they are a greater entity like an almighty god or devil or someone that was put on this Earth to get rid of and even sacrifice people. A second category is mission-oriented where the offender believes the world will be a better place if a group of people were to be killed off like homosexuals, a religion or ethnicity, and even prostitutes and believe by doing this they can change society for the better. The third category is referred to as hedonistic and here the killer seeks thrill, power, lust, and even comfort. These acts can be sexual based and can be forced upon the victim before they are killed or even after they are dead; this is called necrophilism. The suffering of the victim may also make them feel like they are in control. The final category is criminal enterprise or financial gain where the killer benefits in social status and earn money unfairly, for example in a gang or robbery. All of these are the types of serial killers and only some of the characteristics that classify them.

Psychology and sociology play a big part in the development of a serial killer. For example, how the parent raises them throughout their toddler or even teenage years could potentially determine how they develop psychologically. They can develop a mental illness like antisocial and narcissistic personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety, and even depression. These illnesses can also be passed down genetically, but may also come about because of the environment constantly changing drastically and violently. The political era in the 1960’s and 1970’s consisted of many movements, wars, protests, scandals, and even assassinations that could have influenced the offender negatively.

Serial killers are made up of different backgrounds and characteristics who don't just turn from a regular everyday person to a psychotic being over night. Some of the common reasons are having to be around abusive situations or being abused in any type of way. As children grow up they adapt and accept what they see in their normal everyday life that can conclude to having confused thoughts or have struggle identifying from reality to fantasy. Some other reasons for someone to lose a sense of reality is by blocking out emotions from previous traumatizing events in their life or not being able to cope with certain life events. Although they decided to perform unethical actions due to events they weren't able to control, many times people try to void the problem by abusing controlled substances and/or consume behavior-altering items at free will instead of expressing their inner emotions.

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The Reasons For Growing Number Of Serial Killers In The USA. (2022, July 08). Edubirdie. Retrieved June 16, 2024, from
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