Why Kids Kill: Issue Review

To begin with, the reality of the nowadays progressive world, unfortunately, does not exclude the examples of cruelty and violence display. This concerns the asocial characteristic features of human beings. Another thing is when such intentions are incorporated with kids. The nature and motivations of kids’ cases of violence suppose many factors and shock with a sometimes unpredictability of shy and quiet children and the effects reflected on their peers and people surrounding them. This paper is strictly aimed towards the background and motives observed in children for further use of a weapon or other things for acts of violence and murders, in particular. The attitudinal aspects and the role of outer reasons are included in the survey of the issue under analysis. The verification of factors considers the authoritative sources and guides.

First of all, there is a fair question: What are the points of background development of kids who are inclined to kill a man? The way of children grouping is quite logical when they seek acknowledgment and attempt to deserve it through some deeds or actions or even words that can inspire others. One of the significant things within children is that a state of fear stays strong in their inner worlds. Children need direct examples of courageous heroes and people who are able to lead them. That is why according to the psychological approach adolescents in their characters and upbringing are divided into those who dominate and those being subordinates. It is not surprising that children are inclined to reckon with the more audacious and crueler children to behave and seem as “cool” and real men expressing as more negative and exciting sides of their nature as possible. Here peer adoption or rejection is taken into account.

The parenting factor is rather significant in order to provide a better upbringing with prospects in contemporary society where, as one Latin proverb says “Homo homini lupus est” (dog eat dog). This considers particularly the ways of primordial protection which should be made out by adolescents from early childhood for the purpose of intended motivation to omit the probable danger coming from any human being. Especially, it is close to the place where children spend most of their time, meaning school. It is a place where children gain one of their first experiences for communication with peers and people on the whole. They are rejected when seem to be quiet, shy, or “stupid”, as their classmates are intended to think from first sight. This flow of negativism provokes a further state of rage and anger. If this hatred towards peers is also supported by a lack of love at home, then the reaction may have unpredictable character. The discourse touches upon the cases when the uncontrollable rage of teenagers considers gun use and deaths or injuries of his/her peers, as a result. A statistical data of the 1990s, when the cases of kids’ murders and projection of violence drew to a head, reflects a terrible picture of suchlike manifestation of violence from the side of children. Thus, one research states the following objective data:

Every two days, guns kill the equivalent of a class of 25 youngsters and injure 60 more, according to the Children’s Defense Fund, which has a memorable way of presenting statistics. Adolescents between the ages of 10 and 19 are killed with a gun at a rate of one every three hours. In fact, an American child today is 15 times more likely to be killed by gunfire than was a child in war-ravaged Northern Ireland before the recent peace talks (Sautter, 1995, p.1).

Here comes another question: if there are so many cases of violence provided by children, what are the reasons for this? There are several reasons for such troubles, as the researchers think. One of them is the fact that the US is the most armed of the nations, and children can have an access to parents’ weapons due to adults’ lack of control. Another reason concerns media and cruel scenes in the majority of movies and games. However, there is a controversy about this point. Maggie Cutler in The Nation published an article where she pointed out the report of the Judiciary Committee where there was a statement that “television alone is responsible for 10 percent of youth violence.” (Cutler, 2001, p. 18). One more thing affecting the children’s consciousness is a lack of love coming from parents and closely related persons, as was mentioned above. One more reason is the constant practice of strong teenagers bullying their weaker peers. Withdrawn youngsters feel such a case of rejection very close to their sensitive psyche and, undoubtedly, it can provide depression and aggression with unexpected effects (PT Staff, 1993). This concerns the example of Kip Kinkel, a teenager who is 1998 at the age of 15 killed his parents and then murdered his 2 classmates and injured 25 persons (WGBH, 1995-2008).

Still, there are few preventive methods for kids’ aggression and violence provided, but, no doubt, the reasons are quite striking in the US reality. Here a point on the decrease of weapon licensing and the limitations of broadcasting films with violent scenes can be helpful as well, as more educational programs aimed to behave children in order to elaborate the highest values for life.


  1. Cutler, Maggie. “Whodunit-The Media? IT’S EASY TO BLAME CARTOONS FOR GUN-TOTING KIDS. BUT THE TRUTH ISN’T SO TIDY.” The Nation, 2001: 18.
  2. PT Staff. Of Bullies and the Bullied. 1993. Web.
  3. Sautter, R. Craig. “Standing Up to Violence.” Phi Delta Kappan 76.5 (1995): 1+.
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