Curing Violence Curricula – The health approach to reduce violence

Misdiagnosis leads to an error in treatment, and the missing constant in the violence reduction equation may be our perspective on violence.

In cases of the health approach, violence is viewed as a learned behavior that has contagious characteristics. To understand the contagious characteristics, we will address the following examples:

The prevalence rate is the rate of the number of people infected with a disease. For example, the spread of fashion (the latest fashions and trends) in reality is a highly contagious behavior among people, based on the principle of spread, as well as the spread of news or rumors among people is an infectious trait. The opinions and behaviors that we carry out are very consistent with our surroundings in which we live, as if this behavior is copied from one person to another, especially in crises and wars, the greater the pressure and fear in a particular society, the greater with it the emergence of violence in the form of opinions and behaviors (in harmony with each other), i.e., acceptable to society and receiving a wide response from it, and with the passage of time they become norms and habits.

  • Why is it important to understand the infectious characteristics of violent behavior?

It is similar to a disease when humans are infected with it, it is in different degrees and has different symptoms, and it can be expressed that each person shows a new symptom of the disease that does not exist in another person, it is an addition or development to the strain of this disease, as well as violent behavior when it spreads between individuals, each individual deals with it or responds to it or applies it in a different way, that is, the matter is similar to a large degree, forming something like a syndrome between individuals, and therefore the same behavior when it spreads between individuals does not lead to the emergence of only one symptom. The symptoms in behavior are different between individuals and the reason is due to the culture and knowledge of individuals and the environment in which they live.

  • Dealing with violent behavior:

Dealing with the same violent pattern between a different group of people cannot be with one strategy, that is, the patterns of activities or events that we carry out with culturally different individuals, or individuals in different layers of society should not be the same, and this prompts us to respond to patterns of violence between individuals “Distinctive response for each individual in his own right.” This eliminates the idea of a ready-made method, a ready-made vision, and ready-made solutions to deal with violence against society, which is the essence and content of the idea to reduce violence within societies.

  • The equation of violence versus the equation of the disease itself:

If we look at violence as an infectious disease, we see that the two equations intersect greatly, and we can reach a greater understanding.

Understanding the following equation makes it easier to understand violent behavior:

Disease equation = disease factor + latency period + symptoms

The equation of violence = violent behavior that a person has been exposed to or did + latency period + symptoms

We see in the disease equation:

  • In the medical field, it is expressed that the pathogen that has a virulence (a certain pathogenicity), in addition to that pathological condition depends on the dose taken from the pathogen.
  • Also, how the disease is transmitted, whether through blood, air, food … etc. All this information is useful to know to enter into the analysis of the latency period and then the treatment journey.
  • One of the important factors is the age of the patient who was exposed to the pathogen, for example, the Corona virus, in which symptoms differ in relation to the latency period during the disease or to the age and the reaction that the body takes during the latency period.

As for the equation of violence:

  • Violent behavior: The type of violence that individuals have been subjected to takes into account dealing with violent behavior, as well as the dose, i.e., the frequency experienced by individuals, is one of the most important things that must be dealt with in the treatment plan.

Knowing the factors of this violence, whether they are due to social, cultural, political and economic factors.

The immunity presents in societies that is usually called in this field (protective factor). All of these factors that exist can protect society from a particular violent pattern, therefore this determines how to deal with the violent pattern, which must be studied in detail because the topic is more complex and requires careful study to reach a clear response.

All of this is symptoms of exposure to violence or living in a violent environment in which different types of violence exist.

  • The latency period: it may be short or long for several reasons, and it is difficult to be certain definitively because it is related to the environment in which the matter occurs, and therefore this matter affects the thinking, analysis and productivity of the individual within the community.
  • Symptoms of living in a violent environment: Symptoms vary between individuals in appearance and can develop:

Either for direct violent behavior: Direct physical violent behavior such as hitting, cursing, and screaming.

Or indirectly violent behavior: There are other individuals for whom violence may develop, but not as a direct behavior, but for attitudes, opinions, incitement or justification.

All of this results from exposure to violence or living in a violent environment in which different types of violence exist.

  • Treating and reducing violence:

When we talk about violence, we are not talking about direct violence, although the health approach emphasizes on direct behavior as the main cause of transmission of violence, but violent behavior is temporary and not continuous, the behavior of violence is temporary and not continuous, for example, the Covid patient must be treated on his own, because he is responsible for transmitting the disease to other individuals. In the health approach in general, there are three basic steps:

  •  Stopping the transmission of violence between individuals: This is similar to treating people with a specific disease.
  • Behavior change: These are particularly violent behaviors, that is, changing the behavior of violent individuals or those who are likely to become violent.
  • Changing all norms within society: that incite or justify certain violent patterns of customs, traditions and heritage.

In these three steps, which are very consistent with the treatment of epidemics in general, violence is specifically addressed, and it is certain that these steps are not consecutive, but rather they are overlapping and integrated steps, and there is no one specific strategy to deal with violence, this is one of the biggest fallacies or problems that we face. Often the prevailing idea is that there are unified steps, fixed activities, or a permanent mechanism to deal with violence in all societies, which is completely wrong. These are things that can be modified and controlled based on the society in which we live.