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Reply #30: I don't know that I can entirely agree with you wrt underlying cause [View All]

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Euromutt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-22-10 07:04 PM
Response to Reply #20
30. I don't know that I can entirely agree with you wrt underlying cause
The underlying cause is prohibition, the creation of a black market for drugs and failures in the education system.

I think those factors do play a part, but I think there's underlying socio-cultural factors as well. Homicide rates in Europe went from being much higher in the late middle ages than any recorded American homicide rate, to being far lower than present-day American rates, even before the imposition of gun control measures.

My pet hypothesis is that a major factor is the cultural importance of self-image relative to the value of human life. When a female family member can "bring shame" on her family, and the culture requires that shame be erased with her blood, you get "honor killings." A corrosive influence on black culture in both the US and UK has been the influx of Jamaican "Yardies" for whom being shown "disrespect" was adequate cause to kill the offending party. A factor in why Japan's homicide rate is comparatively very low, and its suicide rate comparatively very high, may be to some extent the fact that in Japanese culture, shame is erased with one's own blood more readily than with the blood of another.

The idea that human life is worth more than one's perception of "honor" has really only been around since the Enlightenment, and its penetration is, to be blunt, very limited.
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