Friday, October 13, 2006

Criminal DNA vs The Veil of Civilization

In the pop psych world DNA is blamed for just about everything. The Environment vs Heredity debate is all but dead. DNA explains behavior as well as it explains skin color, eye color, or sex.

A few years back this was a provocative point of view, but in that small world, its now old hat. Its as accepted as basic addition.

Allow me to take exception.

Human behavior isn't really all that difficult to predict or explain. You examine an individuals options, figure out what would be the best thing for him to choose and rule it out. Then figure the remaining path of least resistance.

This is where the Veil comes in. While DNA may very well create biological factors that influence decision making, its the Veil that increases the options available.

Those in the immediate family of a suicide are many times more likely to commit suicide themselves. Why? Because suicide is now an option. They've seen through to Veil of Civilized behavior and realize that there are other choices.

The same applies to the son of a bank robber or rapist. If he needs money bad enough... he's bound to consider his father's solution.

We walk around in a cloud... a fog that eliminates behaviors. They aren't even visible to us. They've been civilized out of us. Once the Veil is gone though... it's gone... there's no going back. This is one aspect of rehabilitation that will always be hopeless.

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