The Biology of our best and Worst Selves


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The Biology of our best and Worst Selves

The Biology behind Murder and Violence

Human behaviors of violence, which sometimes lead to murder, are related to biological activities. Before an individual begins precise violence, the brain, in general, is always aware of everything. The amygdala is the only part of the human brain that is associated with human violence. The amygdala tends to interpret the environment within which an individual is in and then creates a perception that leads to fear and distinct reactions (“The Biological and Emotional Causes of Aggression – Principles of Social Psychology – 1st International Edition”). The reactions that are due to the amygdala’s perception are the ones that lead to human violence. The frontal cortex plays a significant role in regulating the activities of the amygdala (Sapolsky). Individuals who participate in various kinds of violence usually have a frontal cortex that failed to regulate the amygdala activities, which is in charge of violent behavior.

How Biology Factor in to Violent Behavior

Brain development in humans occurs during fetal life. Individuals whose parents were exposed to stress hormones while pregnant tend to have an amygdala, which is very aggressive during adulthood. Adults with aggressive amygdala tend to be violent in society. The frontal cortex barely controls the activities of the amygdala of such individuals. Stress and trauma also lead to violent behavior to individuals (Sapolsky). Stress usually leads to the deactivation of the frontal cortex’s activities, thus making individuals react days or weeks violently after their stressful or traumatic event (Resource Treatment Center). Low impulse control is a condition in which individuals do not have control over themselves. Individuals with low impulse tend to have aggressive behaviors such as violence towards their society.

News about Act of Violence

Ethnic groups prefer to be treated equally in every society. Whenever people with particular origin are maltreated, they tend to cause violence within society to fight for their rights. According to (Slugoski), the operations that took place in Red Deer led to violence because the anti-protestors were shoving the protesters to move away and stop their activities. This shoving act made the protesters furious, which made them try to push their way past the anti-protesters.

The main reason why people gathered at Red Deer was the outcry of freedom of expression. All humans are entitled to freedom of expression (Slugoski). Whenever they are denied the free will of the expression, they tend to react, and most humans react violently. Every society has leaders that are supposed to defend the rights of the citizens within a specific region. Whenever leaders fail to protect their people’s rights, individuals usually tend to find a way of protesting so that they can be given their rights.

Importance of Sociological Factors in Violence

The amygdala activities are sometimes triggered by people’s social lives, such as fear or danger. People generate distinct perceptions whenever they are in danger. The frontal cortex’s failure usually leads to some individuals having false perception, thus involving themselves in violent activities. There are times when people involve themselves in violent operations to defend themselves from the existing danger. The frontal cortex plays a significant role in violent activities because the amygdala tends to lose control whenever it fails. The ideology behind childhood trauma and violence tends to generate a long-term effect on people (Sapolsky). The effects of childhood trauma are expressed to individuals after the age of twenty-five because this is the point where the frontal cortex develops to maturity.

Work Cited

Resource Treatment Center. “Impulse Control Disorder Symptoms & Effects.” Resource Treatment Center, Resource Treatment Center, 27 Sept. 2018,

Sapolsky, Robert. “The Biology of Our Best and Worst Selves | Robert Sapolsky.” YouTube, 2017, Accessed 13 Oct. 2020.

Slugoski, Kenddra. “Anti-Racism Group Angered by Premier Kenney’s Response to Red Deer Violence.” Global News, 23 Sept. 2020, Accessed 13 Oct. 2020.

“The Biological and Emotional Causes of Aggression – Principles of Social Psychology – 1st International Edition.” Opentextbc.Ca, 26 Sept. 2017, Accessed 13 Oct. 2020.