Criminal Justice Essay

| January 8, 2020


Write a 2-3 page analysis of the Charles Cohen guest lecture describing the most surprising or interesting things that you learned from the material he presented.
This reaction paper must include three specific examples of the presented material. I am interested in what you thought about the content. You should both describe the material you want to discuss and then analyze that material.
The cover sheet does not count toward the length of the paper. Also, do not use a font larger than 12 points. The submission must be double spaced with 1″ margins on the right and left.


Analysis of Charles Cohen Guest Lecture

The speech under analysis was delivered by Charles Cohen. In the address, Cohen addressed a number of issues, all of which relate to human behavior that may go unnoticed only to culminate in undesirable behavior. At the outset, the speaker gave the example of Jeff Weise from Red Lake, Minnesota, who shot and killed his grandfather and his companion, 5 students, a teacher and a guard before committing suicide. Cohen stated that in such incidents, police officers should begin by eliminating the threat before tending to the wounds of those who have been hurt.

As Cohen observed, 13 months before committing the crime, Weise had used open source media to express his interests, state of mind, and intentions. For instance, he idolized Adolf Hitler, used suicide gestures, had sliced his wrist, and was on anti-depressants. Another clue is to be found in his nickname – deadhead. He also exhibited signs of suppressed rage.

During his last online presence on March 21, 2005, Weise visited and logged in to post dark thoughts about crimes, death, and suicide. The speaker also narrated how he made videos that showed his intentions. Notably, he had nothing illegal so far. All these actions were within his free speech rights. However, they provided crucial leads into his troubled state of mind and the kind of crimes he aspired to commit.

Besides, I was drawn to the manner in which Cohen described one of the deadliest massacres to take place in America. The year was 1927, the state was Michigan and the scene was set for the country’s worst school violence ever. The perpetrator was Andrew Kehoe, a school board member who foreshadowed his intentions by adhering to all the rules stipulated in the school and avoiding any behavior that would arouse suspicion.

In terms of efforts to seek solutions, the speaker offered valuable counsel, which specifically relates to four core strategies: suicide taunting analogy, the use of relationships to give more power to words, virtual presence, and probable cause finding. My best take-home message in this regard is that it is imperative for all members of a society to build formidable relationships in order to be able to detect individuals with deviant behavior that can easily culminate in the perpetration of violent acts such mass shootings and school massacres.

In the last part of the speech, Charles Cohen addressed the issue of cyberbullying. I consider this a critical topic because individuals who set out to do harm to other members of society can use the virtual nature of the cyberspace to express their views, target and waylay their victims, and form partnerships with likeminded people.

One fundamental point that Cohen kept reiterating is that there are serious concerns in society regarding cyberbullying and cyber safety of people particularly minors. The evolution of bullying has culminated in a new phenomenon characterized by a shift from the physical front to an Internet-based environment. Contrary to what many people initially expected, the effects of cyberbullying are even far more extensive than traditional bullying. The best demonstration is provided by the high number of depression and suicide cases that have been associated with cyberbullying. At the same time, minors have been exposed to other forms of attacks such as pedophilic advances.

Without a doubt, this is a worrying situation because the Internet is only set to become a more pervasive social phenomenon in terms of the expansiveness of its reach especially for teenagers and children. This situation requires that parents take responsibility of their children’s online activities. Internet interactions have created a form of virtual presence that has overstepped on personal space and individual privacy. First, parents must make an effort to know most of their children’s friends and classmates. Parents should allow their children to interact with their friends in their home environments. According to the speaker, this is the only way in which parents can get a sense of their children’s activities and progress in the online world.

In addition to developing a consciousness of their children’s’ activities, parents must understand the dynamics of child and teenage upbringing in a new environment and generation. Firstly, parents must understand that children are not likely to express their trouble or any form of cyber bullying. They must be keen to observe signs of stress and change of behavior. According to the speech, some of the physical signs may include aggression, headaches and depression. Other signs may include truancy, violence in school sudden changes in behavior or attitudes.

In addition, parents must work in collaboration with the school and parents. Teachers and school staff have a common and diverse understanding of student behavior and trends. They are therefore able to closely monitor student behavior and identify both the victims and the oppressors. Parents have to adopt technology and make an effort to learn about different types of internet navigations. This will provide an even clearer idea of cyber safety both in school and out of school.

Finally, there is a need to streamline the legislation process to better serve victims of cyberbullying, mass shootings. Even more important is the emphasis on the fact that this not only affects children but adults as well. Many adults have fallen victim of the Internet-related pressure and bullying to the extent of experience extreme anxiety and ultimately committing suicide. The legislative arm of government has to enact laws, policies, and regulations that can foster the identification of the presence perverted individuals on the Internet and mitigate the risks they may pose to members of the community.

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