PsychoPaths in America
What does it mean to be
classified as a psychopath?
Should psychopaths really be treated as less than? Now a days people think Psychopaths are people who lack empathy and are mentally insane but this is not the case at all. Research has shown that this feeling and or condition has a neurological foundation that it is built upon. Psychopaths aren't just emotionless because they choose to be but because their brain doesn't allow them to. For example when people with psychopathy are to imagine people experiencing pain, the regions in their brain associated with empathy and concern for others fails to activate. They also fail to connect with the brain area involved in emotional processing and decision making. When test, those who psychopathy had an amygdala (part in the brain responsible for empathy, and remorse) failed to light up when the "teste" was exposed to someone else experiencing pain. In other words the amygdala was not as functional as those in the majority of the human race. Instead the reverse happened, in areas of the brain that are responsible for emitting please lit up when exposed to someone experiencing pain. About 23% of psychopathy cases are people in prison while 1% is in the general population.
How the World views Psychopaths
Most of our population and society think of psychopaths as mad, crazy, evil, manipulative drunks who commit murders and or are serial killers who display a calm/civilized demeanor. Society thinks that psychopaths relate to the world through power and controlling others. To us, a psychopath usually go through a traumatic experience or experiences and begin with these behaviors to get back at the world. Most think psychopaths will pain themselves as lesser or the under dog to get what they want out of people or cause them to do things (the manipulation). Deep down inside society thinks psychopaths have no feelings what so ever and may claim that they're sensitive, but society believes they're just empty inside. Society sees psychopaths as human beings filled with greed and only possess the emotions of confidence, arrogance, and cockiness. Society is scared of psychopaths and usually lock them away very early and usually see men as the main source of psychopathy due to the fact that 30% of men are psychopathic. Society as a whole want to stay as far away as possible from something they believe will cause harm and to protect themselves, psychopaths are put away.
How Psychopaths View the World
Psychopaths rarely think of themselves as evil. From an early age many know they're different and do not have the same emotional attachments to certain ideas or concepts. " Doesn't mean were insane, its just that are values are detached from the average system of morals". At a very young age psychopaths tend to realize they act emotionally different than other kids or adults. They're less afraid, they love to do things that are usually classified as "scary" and tend to remain calm in scary situations because they find these situations as intriguing and fascinating. "I believe that remorse, love/empathy are emotions adults try to make us feel" stating that many psychopaths don't think these emotions actually exist. Many feel as thought they have to pretend and fake emotions in order to fit in or not have people shame them. Researchers believe that this could be the start of the path of manipulation. Psychopath begin to fake emotions to be accepted rather than tell the truth and be honest about them feeling nothing. This could lead to someone doing something bad, pretending to be remorseful but in the end feel no emotion what so ever. This is why many are locked up today or put into insane asylum as soon as possible. Research has shown that if a psychopath grows up with others and are around people they tend to study other people and read folks really well which results in a more civilized/normal behaved psychopath. If locked away early on, psychopaths are more likely to rely on violence. Sadly many psychopaths don't know they are one until society takes effect, and they hear about what they're suppose to feel in certain situations. They think they're just as normal as everyone else until society ruins there self image.
Which view is correct?
Are psychopaths bad or are they just regular human beings with a malfunction in their brains? No matter what view you choose, psychopaths are regular people as well, its just that a part of their brain don't function as well as the majority of the population. Take this for example, Jim Fallon (a neuroscientist) decided to perform brain scans that correlated to psychopathic behaviors and found that his brain fit the profile!
One afternoon in October 2005, neuroscientist James Fallon was looking at brain scans of serial killers. As part of a research project at UC Irvine, he was sifting through thousands of PET scans to find anatomical patterns in the brain that correlated with psychopathic tendencies in the real world.
“I was looking at many scans, scans of murderers mixed in with schizophrenics, depressives and other, normal brains,” he says. “Out of serendipity, I was also doing a study on Alzheimer’s and as part of that, had brain scans from me and everyone in my family right on my desk.”
“I’ve never killed anybody, or raped anyone,” he says. “So the first thing I thought was that maybe my hypothesis was wrong, and that these brain areas are not reflective of psychopathy or murderous behavior.”
But when he underwent a series of genetic tests, he got more bad news. “I had all these high-risk alleles for aggression, violence and low empathy,” he says, such as a variant of the MAO-A gene that has been linked with aggressive behavior. Eventually, based on further neurological and behavioral research into psychopathy, he decided he was indeed a psychopath—just a relatively good kind, what he and others call a “pro-social psychopath” someone who has difficulty feeling true empathy for others but still keeps his behavior roughly within socially-acceptable bounds.
As a result not all psychopaths are classified as insane or crazy and the fact that a person with the genes and brain of a psychopath could end up a non-violent, stable and successful scientist made Fallon reconsider the ambiguity of the term. Psychopathy, after all, doesn’t appear as a formal diagnosis in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in part because it encompasses such a wide range of symptoms. Not all psychopaths kill; some, like Fallon, exhibit other sorts of psychopathic behavior. Not all psychopaths deserve to be treated like they're a criminal or lesser because of they're condition, some can actually grow up to make become a fine individual.