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Expert: School Violence Is A Complex Issue

Posted April 10, 2001

— A Cornell professor says the solution to school violence is not simple.

Dr. James Garbarino, an expert on troubled youth, says there seems to be a common denominator in violent children.

"When I look at kids who kill, I find that almost all of them are kids who've been hurt," Garbarino said. "Very, very often, they are sensitive, vulnerable souls who start off life that way."

Garbarino has written "Lost Boys," a book that analyzes why young males focus rage at schools. He spoke Thursday night a symposium in Raleigh.

"They hear the message as boys over and over again that it's better to be mad than to be sad," he said. "They realize they have access to weapons."

The professor says there is hope for families, thanks to anti-violence clubs, community programs and mental health options.

"I think we can have hope, because the more we understand, the more we recognize we're not powerless," he said. "The key is to recognize there is a whole range of solutions."


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