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Predicting Violence

One of the books that tonight's guest Gavin de Becker has written is The Gift of Fear(1), a kind of guidebook for using one's intuitions and instincts to recognize and react to potentially dangerous situations. de Becker points out that many Americans live in denial about violence, yet our country has a murder rate that is ten times higher than that of other Western nations and there are more firearms than adults in the U.S. Instead of focusing on predicting and preventing violence he believes our country expands the "technologies of conflict," with more guns, prisons, SWAT teams, stun guns, and Tasers.

"Like every creature, you can know when you are in the presence of danger. You have the gift of a brilliant internal guardian that stands ready to warn you of hazards and guide you through risky situations," de Becker writes. By trusting their "gut feeling," rather than logic, de Becker believes a person can be more grounded in nature and make smarter choices.

He also writes that violence is neither random nor senseless but "always has purpose and meaning to the perpetrator," and thereby one can detect warning signs. He calls these signs "pre-incidence indicators," and by being able to recognize these factors one can take the necessary action.

--L.L.(2)

1. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0440226198/ctoc
2. http://archive.coasttocoastam.com/info/about_lex.html

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