Another mass killing by disturbed individual

Another mass shooting grabbed the headlines over the weekend. Elliot Rodger joins the growing list of disturbed individuals who seem to suddenly snap and go out of this life while taking as many with them as they can.

Rodger went on his killing spree Friday night near the University of California, Santa Barbara. He killed his two roommates and another man with a knife in his apartment, then went out with guns and ammo to kill those he felt had wronged him. He killed three more before shooting himself.

Before he killed, he left a video manifesto and a 140-page document describing why he did it, citing the rejection he felt from women who rejected him and the men they were attracted to.

In this case, at least, there is ample information for psychologists to study, to help them understand the often murky mentality of mass killers.

But this case is another example of the need for better ways to identify and deal with potentially dangerous, disturbed people. In this case, Rodger’s mother had called police the week before the killings, asking them to check on him after he had posted some disturbing videos he had posted on YouTube. But Rodger convinced the officers who checked on him that he was just fine. No criticism intended for the officers, but how much training do they have to assess someone’s psychological state?

There must be a better system to allow concerned family members to seek help for their loved ones and get real help.

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