Today, the U.S.is on the brink of some of the most intense and critical moral panicsin the 21st century. The contemporary society continues todeal with issues that cultivate controversies and arguments acrossdifferent age groups. As such, school shooting is a current moralpanic, which usually refers to an occurrence of mass violenceconcerning a gun at an educational establishment. Pundits claim thatvideo games, internet, heavy metal songs, and secularism among othershave resulted to school shooting and that such incidences haveincreased tremendously. Although people have not managed to establisha potential school shooter, they have developed different methods ofprofiling such shooters. In this regards, teenagers especially maleare the folk devils while politicians, the media, and newsorganization, are the moral entrepreneurs. Recent shootings havecaused widespread fear among parents and students. The media andpoliticians have sought ways of profiling shooters and have claimedthat shootings have become epidemic across schools.
The mediarepresentation of these shootings in papers and television news hasled to the understanding of the viciousness as a moral panic(Ferguson, 2008 Garland, 2008). In fact, the media has labelled theincidences as a tendency instead of providing a clear context, whichhas aggravated people’s fears. As such, politicians have generatedmisdirected policies to remedy the situation, which has onlycomplicated the situation (Muschert, 2007). In the context of thehappenings in the society today, the public fear as aggravated by themedia is not justified since most places across America do not seemsafe. On the other hand, the self-serving interests of people haveresulted to the assertion of school shooting as a form of moralpanic. The Columbine incident and recent shootings across schoolshave led people to correlate the shootings with morality, censorship,and gun control (Ferguson, 2008). However, Ferguson (2008) arguesthat the media and politicians have only created politics ofsubstitution in their description of school shooting as a form ofmoral panic. The media has not given people the desired analysis thatmay give disturbed policymakers or apprehensive parents the frameworkto judge school safety (Muschert, 2007). In fact, there is always ahigh likelihood of adults shooting at kids since research suggestthat adults contribute to more than 90% of all murders of victimsaged 12 years (Garland, 2008). Although school shooting is a form ofmoral panic as it supports Cohen (2002) stages of moral panic, theexclusion of some elements have rationalized people’s minds andaggravated their fears. Therefore, the current fear is not justifiedsince the violence is not prevalent, there is no accurate profile ofa shooter, shooters are not usually loners, and aberrant behaviorsare not a guarantee of a student intended to be fierce.
In her book, TheEnd of Sex, Donna Freitas describes different elements of hookupculture especially in romantic relationships. Freitas (2013) arguethat although young people may praise the hookup culture publiclyi.e. a hurried and an apparently worthless sexual relationship, theyshare their unsureness privately. As such, Freitas (2013) argue thatyoung adults have little or no experience with developing and datingintimate relationships thus, they feel that hookup is the onlyalternative. As such, the decision on being in a relationship isentirely out of the young people’s control. On the other hand,Freitas’ assertion that hookup thwarts the purpose, meaning, andrelationship and that it set back young people, may in reality havean important place in understanding the popular culture that definesyouth sexuality.
SupportingFreitas argument is in line with supporting sideways relationshipthat tends to repress the critical elements of youth sexuality. AsFreitas (2013) assert that people need to comprehend and address theculture because the principles embedded in such aspects may havepsychological effects on youth seem to correlate with my belief inthe unconstructiveness of hookups. Hookup cultures disallow the youngpeople, the meaningful and honest feelings of a relationship bycultivating suppression and repression. In this regards, males maysuffer the blunt of such pretensions since the hookup culture is notabout care but about culture misperceptions. The culture cultivatesprofound demonstrative effects on students thus, support of sexeducation in school is in line with the aspects of hookup culture. Isupport Freitas assertion that sex education should be taught inschools since hookup cultures happen to students and they need toknow the effects of such cultures. Freitas in her study reveals thatstudents in hookup relationships feel duped, miserable, and used andthat they do not feel any satisfaction, which demonstrates that theculture of hookup should be repressed.
Cohen, S. (2002). Folk devils and moral panics: The creation ofthe mods and rockers. Psychology Press.
Ferguson, C. J. (2008). The school shooting/violent video game link:Causal relationship or moral panic?. Journal of InvestigativePsychology and Offender Profiling, 5(1‐2),25-37.
Freitas, D. (2013). The end of sex: how hookup culture is leavinga generation unhappy, sexually unfulfilled, and confused aboutintimacy. New York: Basic Books.
Garland, D. (2008). On the concept of moral panic. Crime, Media,Culture, 4(1), 9-30.
Muschert, G. W. (2007). Research in school shootings. SociologyCompass, 1(1), 60-80.