Inside A Criminal Mind

Discussion in 'Locker Room' started by catlady, Dec 11, 2013.

  1. Quoted from
    Thought this was interesting.

    "On Law and Order: SVU, the story stops when the bad guy is caught. The chase is over, justice is served, the credits roll and we can all sleep easier at night knowing that Detectives Benson and Stabler have successfully put another criminal behind bars.

    Of course in the real world, things are never that simple.

    Our criminal justice system operates on the tenets of punishment and reform. You do the crime, you do the time — and ideally you are appropriately rehabilitated after paying penance for your sins. But unfortunately it doesn't always work that way. Recidivism rates in the U.S. have been estimated at 40-70%, with most former inmates ending up back behind bars within three years of being released.

    Parole boards make their decisions carefully, trying to weed out those whom they think are most likely to re-offend, and basing their decisions on the severity of the initial crime and the individual's behavior while in jail. But clearly there is room for improvement.

    A recent study by Dr. Eyal Aharoni and colleagues attempted to tackle this problem by using neuroimaging techniques to look inside the brains of convicted felons and using these scans to predict who is most at risk for re-offense. Their widely discussed findings show that a relative decrease in activation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) during performance of a motor control task is related to a two-fold higher recidivism rate in the four years following release from jail.

    However, this result should be taken with more than one grain of salt, as activation in the ACC has been linked to, well, pretty much everything.

    In fact, a quick look at PubMed shows that there have been nearly 150 neuroimaging publications listing the ACC as a region of interest in the last six months alone! This includes papers on topics ranging from phobias to self-representation to physical pain. This implies that the ACC is involved in self-perception, fear, pain, cognition, decision-making, error monitoring, emotional processing and a host of other behaviors — not exactly a precise region, is it? (To be fair, damage to the ACC has previously been linked to increases in aggression, apathy and disinhibition.)
    Additionally, while in the current study decreased activity in the area during response inhibition was related to a greater predictive risk for future re-offending, there was crucially a large portion of the sample who did not meet these predictions. In fact, 40% of participants with low ACC activity did not re-offend during the course of the study, and 45% of those with high activity did. Thus, while the differences in activation did lead to a statistically significant contributor to the risk for re-offending, they certainly were not deterministic.

    Fortunately, the authors acknowledge much of the study's short-comings and report that the results should be interpreted carefully. Most notably, they state that the findings should only be taken into consideration with contributions from a variety of other personal and environmental factors, most of which are already used in sentencing and parole decisions. For example, other significant predictive factors for re-offense include the individual's age and their score on a test of psychopathy that is widely administered to inmates.

    There are also two different ways to look at and interpret these results. On the one hand, they could be used in an attempt to exonerate or reduce sentences for men who supposedly can't control their actions due to low brain activity. Alternatively, these scans could be used to potentially block the granting of parole to inmates who show particularly suspicious brain activation. If criminals with low ACC activity are more likely to commit future crimes, then the logic goes that they should be locked up longer — even indefinitely — to prevent them from offending again. But then where does this line of thinking end?

    Do we really want to let people off because their brains "made them do it"? And conversely, just because a couple of blobs on a very commonly activated part of the brain are lighting up differently, is this a good reason to keep someone locked up longer? What about redemption? What about a second chance? What about free will?

    As the fields of neuroscience and off-shoots like neuro-law progress, these questions will become more and more important; and the potential for a police state more reminiscent of Minority Report than Law and Order becomes frighteningly real. Therefore, it is all of our responsibility to think critically about results such as these and not be swayed by the bright lights and colored blobs"
  2. Too much to read but I agree lol
  3. You can land a jet on Stabler's forehead.
  4. Skynet for sure.
  5. Big brother always watching
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  6. I'm reading random stuff to make myself more tired. I enjoy reading weird thought out stuff like this. Really makes you think.
  7. Word son btw sent you a message.
  8. :hmm: I didn't see it...
  9. Listen to science podcasts,that helps me sleep, well unless you are into science.
  10. Yeah makes me think to much. lol Reading works best. :obama:
  11. Read William Cooper's stuff.
  12. :jericho:
    Yeah but then you need the light on.
  13. I read in the dark. :tough:

    lolol no but I read on the computer in minimum lighting. Makes me super tired. Or I watch tv in the dark. That makes me tired too.

  14. Yeah tv works because if you are like me, which because i am me and the world revolves around me, you can close your eyes and still imagine what the audio is feeding into your mind, basically if you can close eyes and use imagination:booker: dreaming is easier. Dig it?
  15. Yeah i understand dat. But for me... The focused lighting burns my eyes and forces me to blink more/keep my eyes closed longer and I get tired. I don't watch TV much, a lota times I put on netflix and walk out the room. lmao
  16. I see thinking about it ego got the better of me, to read i need to be in an upright position and in a well light room, (i need to wear bins to read, (slang for spectacles, glasses, reading glasses whatever my us comrades call them), and do not say you need them too or i will have to get philosophical on my world view.
  17. I wear glasses to see far objects. I have no trouble reading when it is up close.
  18. God damn it, next you will say the Earth revolves around the sun, i need sleep.
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