Desensitization Of Violence

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Violence is a terrible behavior that can plague the citizens caught in the middle of it. Violence has the power to alter how a person views society and even themselves. Violence also has the power to make citizens desensitized to the chaos going around their city. However, just as violence can be detrimental to people it can also cause citizens to realize that change needs to occur. In “Great to Watch,” the author, Maggie Nelson, discusses how society, especially Americans, have become desensitized to violence. Nelson also goes into depth to explain how society has become accustomed to violence due to the fact that people are surrounded by it. In addition, Beth Loffreda discusses and explains the effects that a violent hate crime had on the …show more content…
In addition, the media’s talk of the violence occurring around them can also cause a similar response causing these citizens to simply shrug the acts of violence off. However, major acts of violence have the power to cause people to realize that change needs to happen. This was the case in New York City which Gladwell states “averaged well over 2,000 murders and 600,000 serious felonies a year” (Gladwell 150). New York City was plagued with violence for several years. However, it took Bernhard Goetz, who shot four black young men in the subway who attempted to rob him, to cause the citizens and the city of New York to begin to change and combat its crime epidemic. It seemed that the citizens of New York City became desensitized and accustomed to the violence that they did not initially attempt to combat it until Goetz came into the picture. It took one major act of violence to bring to life the other acts of violence that were occurring around them. Similar to in New York City, in Laramie, Wyoming Loffreda mentions how Laramie was “a town without a gay bar or bookstore” (Loffreda 237). The immediate environment of Laramie was not welcoming to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, LGBT, citizens of Laramie. It was in Laramie that a hateful crime occurred where two men killed Matt Shepard. Before the murder the citizens of Laramie did not see their city as being unwelcoming to the LGBT citizens. Neither did they think twice about the hate laws in their state of Wyoming. It was not until the murder of Matt Shepard that made them go from being desensitized citizens to seeing that there was a problem and something needed to change. The citizens of Laramie also began to become ashamed due to how they and their city was being perceived by the media as a hate crime capital. Maggie Nelson would agree with this notion of violence or an event needing to occur in order to unmask and

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