Military History | How To Make War | Wars Around the World Rules of Use How to Behave on an Internet Forum
Terrorism Discussion Board
   Return to Topic Page
Subject: Genetic aggression
mudshark    4/20/2004 6:28:22 AM
Genetic aggression nonsense or a possibility?
Quote    Reply

Show Only Poster Name and Title     Newest to Oldest
American Kafir    RE:Genetic aggression   4/20/2004 8:38:08 AM
Interesting question. I just had an interesting conversation with my fiance yesterday concerning this very topic. Luckily, she came to understand my point before I beat her senseless and asked her to believe I was born aggressive and can't help myself from slapping her around. Just kidding. We did have a heated discussion over it, but no boxing match. Basically it was her saying "what do you think about aggression being tied to genetics?" and me saying "it's neo-Nazi eugenics bullsh*t" followed by a rant about the slippery-slope of believing *ACTUALIZED BEHAVIOR* is pre-determined by genetics and the dangerous things such thinking leads to - from substituting Ritalin for parenting to overt racism itself. I'll throw in more logs on this bonfire as the thread develops.
Quote    Reply

celebrim    RE:Genetic aggression   4/20/2004 1:21:38 PM
Well, I personally don't think there is any strong evidence either way. Therefore, my opinion is the only really useful information that can be had by discussing the topic is it reveals where a person's prejudices lie. My belief is that lacking any evidence, one should not assume that any genetic predisposition exists, and should assume that even where a genetic predisposition exists that it doesn't correlate 100% to actually behavior. I think there is a real danger in assumming that all behavior is genetic, that all deviant behavior is a disease and should be treated like one, and that all predispositions to a behavior imply predestination. I think there is a real danger in prejudging anyone based on his potential. That isn't to say that for example, if we learned that child carried genetic markers for skitzophrenia or sociopathy that we shouldn't do something to help, but that we shouldn't assume that someone is a criminal just because they are predispositioned to be 50% more aggressive than 'normal'. There are probably lots of healthy ways to channel agression other than criminal activity. One problem is that prophesies tend to be self fulfilling things. Tell a child, or even an adult, often enough that they are geneticly more aggressive than 'normal' people, and you will often see some change in behavior whether or not they really are. You can go the opposite extreme too. Some liberals have a pathological tendency to see everyone as 'normal', that 'normality' should be chemically enforced, and that any recognition of abnormality is a sign of de-scri-mi-na-tion. Well meaning as that may be, it ends up fitting everyone in a round hole whether they fit or not. The classic example is in our school systems we are no longer allowed to recognize (at least officially) that different students have differing levels of ability and differing talents and act accordingly. The result is that everyone who isn't 'normal' is deprived of an education. People with non-academic talents aren't allowed to develop them, and end up deprived of self-respect because they can't succeed in the system but are passed through despite merit. People with above average academic talent end up resenting the system (and resented by it) because they are forced to lag behind, and overall our nation and economy suffers for lack of well trained high end academics. Not only are some people different, but most people are different and its unhealthy not to recognize that. And, I do think that some people substitute Ritalin for parenting, and I think that Ritalin fails to recognize that young boys are _normally_ rowdy, energetic, and somewhat feral. Drugging them through that stage does most of them little real good. So, there are my prejudices. Make of them what you would.
Quote    Reply

jastayme3    RE:Genetic aggression   4/26/2004 2:43:52 AM
That depends on what you mean by "aggresion". Even the most mild looking people can have "aggresive" instincts. Thats why blowing up electronic aliens is so much fun. It's what you do with your "instincts" that is the question.
Quote    Reply

Green Dragon    RE:Genetic aggression   4/29/2004 7:05:45 AM
All humans are innately aggressive whether they acknowledge it or not, we would not be an 'apex predator' otherwise. It is vitally important that this aggression is channeled correctly, so therefore the environmental factors become important. A poor environment )especially for an impressionable child) will direct the natural aggression to criminality and anti-social behaviour. A positive environment will create a boundless sense of curiosity and healthy competitiveness. This is an oversimplification I know, however, this threads in it's infancy..
Quote    Reply

jastayme3    RE:Genetic aggression   10/20/2004 11:34:51 PM
A better question is do we have the power to overcome our "genetic aggression"? well history would seem to indicate that that is obviously not the case. So we will go on. Do we have the power to overcome our genetic aggression at any given time? Now that is an appropriate question. As James Kirk said(roughly) in one episode, "We are savages with the blood of millenia on our hands. But we don't have to fight today." The idea that genes can predispose us to evil is hardly a change. We always knew that our body brought temptation. We get hungry and desire to steal a candy bar from a store-that is coveteousness caused by our instinctive desire for food. We feel fear and desire to abandon our comrades-that is temptation to cowardice caused by desire for self-preservation. Is it so odd that we should have an instinctive desire to kill? We do not have to submit. We will of course submit, but we don't have to. Genetic research should not be a revival of "the devil made me do it"
Quote    Reply

jastayme3    RE:Genetic aggression   10/20/2004 11:44:48 PM
Our aggresive instinct can be used for good as well. The most obvious being to counter wrong uses of it. Or it can be used to build as well as destroy. The same instinct that causes people to kill randomly may be the one that causes them to build bridges and railroads. Great movers and shakers often seem to have a very aggresive personality.Socrates for instance loved a good argument quite likly because he had an aggresive side.
Quote    Reply