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Research Shows Humans Crave Violence

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Phil DeGraves, Jan 18, 2008.

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  1. Phil DeGraves

    Phil DeGraves Well-Known Member

    Humans Crave Violence Just Like Sex
    Jeanna Bryner
    LiveScience Staff Writer
    Jan 17, 2008

    New research on mice shows the brain processes aggressive behavior as it does other rewards. Mice sought violence, in fact, picking fights for no apparent reason other than the rewarding feeling.

    The mouse brain is thought to be analogous to the human brain in this study, which could shed light on our fascination with brutal sports as well as our own penchant for the classic bar brawl.

    In fact, the researcher say, humans seem to crave violence just like they do sex, food or drugs.

    Love to fight

    Scientists have known that mice and other animals are drawn to fights. Until now, they didn't know how the brain was involved.

    The new study, detailed online this week in the journal Psychopharmacology, reveals the same clusters of brain cells involved in other rewards are also behind the craving for violence.

    "Aggression occurs among virtually all vertebrates and is necessary to get and keep important resources such as mates, territory and food," said study team member Craig Kennedy, professor of special education and pediatrics at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee. "We have found that the reward pathway in the brain becomes engaged in response to an aggressive event and that dopamine is involved."

    Mouse brawl

    For the experiments, the researchers placed a pair of mice, one male and one female, in a cage. Then, the female was removed and a so-called male intruder mouse entered the cage. That triggered aggressive behavior in the resident male. The tell-tale signs of aggression included tail rattle, an aggressive sideways stance, boxing and biting.

    After the initial scuffle ended, the resident male mouse was trained to nose-poke a target to get the intruder to return. Results showed the home mouse consistently poked the target and fought with the introduced mouse, indicating, the researchers say, that the aggressive encounter was seen as a reward.

    "We learned from these experiments that an individual will intentionally seek out an aggressive encounter solely because they experience a rewarding sensation from it," Kennedy said.

    To figure out whether the brain's reward pathway was involved, the scientists treated the home mice with a drug to block dopamine in certain parts of the brain known to be involved in rewards like food and drugs.

    The treated mice were less likely to instigate the intruder's entry. “This shows for the first time that aggression, on its own, is motivating, and that the well-known positive reinforcer dopamine plays a critical role," Kennedy said.

    Human violence

    Kennedy explained that the experiments have implications for humans. The reward pathway in the brains of humans and mice are very similar, he said.

    "Aggression is highly conserved in vertebrates in general and particularly in mammals," Kennedy told LiveScience. "Almost all mammals are aggressive in some way or another."
    He added, "It serves a really useful evolutionary role probably, which is you defend territory; you defend your mate; if you're a female, you defend your offspring."

    Even though it served a purpose for other animals, in modern human societies, Kennedy said, a propensity toward aggression is not beneficial and can be a problem.
  2. General Geoff

    General Geoff Well-Known Member

    If humans didn't crave violence, there'd be no such thing as a First Person Shooter.
  3. BridgeWalker

    BridgeWalker Well-Known Member

    See, I think what we should do is infuse the air with a substance that will make people much more complacent. That way everyone would be peaceful all the time, and we'd have a plot for a great sci-fi movie. :p
  4. hankdatank1362

    hankdatank1362 Well-Known Member

    I heard thaty they tried that back in the 60s and 70s. The top secret substance consisted of incense and marijuana.
  5. tkkr

    tkkr Well-Known Member

    Whats wrong with violence? It helps keep the world from being overpopulated.
  6. 2Ais4U

    2Ais4U Well-Known Member

    i think that the resident mouse was fighting with the intruder mouse because resident mouses mate was taken at the same time that the intruder mouse entered, resident mouse was fighting intruder mouse because he saw intruder mouse as the reason his mate was gone, so he was trying to get her back.
  7. rino451

    rino451 Well-Known Member

    Some fem types like to equate sex with violence. Who knew?

    Personally, I think that the description "violence" is a little too narrow to categorize what's going on.
  8. XDKingslayer

    XDKingslayer member

    Who wrote this crap. I'd like to kick his @$%.
  9. nccavediver

    nccavediver Active Member

    And what's this have to do with guns?
  10. The Tourist

    The Tourist member

    I'd like to see lots more research.

    I get up in the morning and crave a latte' and the newspaper.

    Now granted, I get pretty owly if we're out of coffee or the newspaper is in a snow drift. My first reaction is to go look for the truck keys, not a set of brass knuckles.

    The flaw in the argument is that there are many associations of rough tough guys who have prospered over decades. Why have they not destroyed themselves?
  11. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

    Only mental mice could think such a thing.
  12. Werewolf

    Werewolf Well-Known Member

    Some scientist got what is likely to be millions of tax dollars to prove something most people instinctively already know...

    And that the bleeding heart libs, sheep and pasivists will vehemently deny while violence in the form of wars, criminal activity, sports, video games etc rages all around them.

    For an activity so many profess to abhor there sure doesn't seem to be a lack of it in human society.
  13. BobbyQuickdraw

    BobbyQuickdraw Well-Known Member

    They're drawing an unfair conclusion.

    Violence releases chemicals afterwards that make you feel good. Just like coming off of an adrenaline high. So you can associate good feelings with violence.

    The mice however, are not attacking for reward. They're attacking to defend their territory. It's like having guys repeatedly break into your house and then criticizing someone because they fought the guy every time.

    And yes, with an animal, if you repeatedly have it do something, and every time it does it you reward it, when it wants the reward it will do the action.

    Thats why bank robbers keep robbing banks, violent offenders are repeat offenders, etc. They're not doing it because their body is saying to do it, they're doing it because after they do it, they've received a "reward" for doing it.

    And there is nothing wrong with aggression. Man is both the smartest and stupidest animal there is. Denying feelings of violence, anger, etc, is fighting how you're supposed to feel. That's how we end up a generation of men who can't shoot, hunt, fight, or express themselves. Men need to be men. Don't fight your bodies desires (unless they're telling you to rape and rob, then you should sit down and perhaps consider help).

    But there is nothing wrong with liking to shoot and hit things and swing baseball bats. I shoot regularly, practice Mixed Martial Arts, and enjoy violent video games. And I've never hurt someone who didn't deserve it and I dont walk around craving fights.
  14. BigG

    BigG Well-Known Member

    What mouse brain wrote that study? :neener:
  15. MakAttak

    MakAttak Well-Known Member

    I wish I could get a grant to prove something everyone already knows....
  16. Ed Ames

    Ed Ames Well-Known Member

    Yes/probably/maybe/who knows?

    The fighting wasn't the interesting part.

    The interesting part is that they put the female back and gave the mouse a "gimmi someone to fight" button... and the mouse went for the button.

    Interesting study. The only outright mistake I could see was in the unsupported opinion presented at the end (that an aggression/reward response is not beneficial in humans).
  17. RKBABob

    RKBABob Well-Known Member


    I can see the headlines now...

    Research Shows Crime Makes People Feel Unsafe
    Children may be Harmed by Abuse, Study Shows
    Research Says: Workers Respond Poorly to Pay Cuts
    Being Armed Reduces Crime, Say Researchers
  18. cracked butt

    cracked butt Well-Known Member

    If humans weren't wired up to fight, just like every other creature, the last human would have been a meal for something more aggressive thousands of years ago.
  19. bakert

    bakert Well-Known Member

    What pi$$es me off is, studies like this inane piece of crap and referred to as "research", is often funded by our tax dollars. But on a lighter note, anyone who would as soon fight as to enjoy sex and food is some kind of idiot!!:p
  20. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Well-Known Member

    do de do do do do do do de do do


    So defending your home and offspring is "not beneficial and can be a problem." That's a very scary thought. Why I never trust the psychs.
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