NPR and My Job

NPR Audio Player:

The following link is an audio interview regarding my worst nightmare–A kid that grows up to be a patterned sex offender. The problem is, I’m not sure the ‘science’ is right. First of all, “the Big Three” of Fire Setting, Bed Wetting after 12 and Cruelty to Animals may not be “The Big Three” after all. I remember a training where in the researchers presented a few studies showing that those links were not as predictive as, say, a history of sexual violence in the home. According to this individual, Brent Brents, he was beaten and sexually assaulted by both of his parents. Those tend to be more causal factors than the “big three.” Without any references posted, please take that statement with a grain of salt.

Secondly, the interviewer says, “It is difficult to diagnose a person without extensive interviews and psychological testing.” Let me rephrase that for the interviewer: It is fucking impossible. Granted, he gets the possible diagnosis of psychopath, and after hearing what he has done and his history, I said, “no shit.” It is not a difficult leap of logic–but it is one that should not be made. A diagnosis needs to be made by a qualified professional, not some guy who heard an interview over the Radio.

If he is a psychopath, then his intention for drawing attention to other patterned offenders is solely for his own benefit. This added publicity may be another attempt to get even with his victims–and while it may be “fun” to speculate, it is also irresponsible.

Now I’ve been doing this work for damn near 10 years. So when I see the Tag Line that he wants to fight crime from behind bars, I figure he is full of shit. If he wants to help, he would willingly be interview by psychologists to help figure out HOW he got so fucked up. His response? A tirade on how psychologists are full of shit.

The neat thing about the cause of the tirade was the interviewer’s use of the word, “confront.” What the interview neglects to mention about psycho-pathology is their reaction to confrontation and humiliation. Certain studies, again from that same big three training that I went to, indicate that the only time emotional centers of the brain are active in a psychopath are when they are being humiliated or confronted. The emotions they display are typically anger. Again, I’m not saying he’s a psychopath, but it was incredibly interesting to hear the Brent go off after he was confronted.

Over all, I think it’s a decent piece. I would just be more careful about the language.

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