Murder and Terrorism
Not to discount Washburm’s analysis, I think it would be difficult to develop a treatment plan based on any of the developmental systems which he considered. On the other hand, Kohlberg’s stages of moral reasoning do provide such a possibility. For nineteen years, I worked at the Ontario Correctional Institute, a medium security correctional institution built by the provincial government as my personal playpen. The OCI was created as an assessment and treatment centre for alcoholics, addicts and sex offenders, and I was in the fortunate position of hiring psychology staff for those and other functions. One of the main qualities that I was looking for was intelligence.
One of my acquisitions was Harry McLaughlin, and a most valuable acquisition he was, this Englishman “out visiting the colonies.” At the time, Dick Meen, a brilliant and flamboyant social psychiatrist – in the winter, he often came to work wearing his lengthy wolf hackle overcoat – was our Clinical Director; so Harry, who was a bit of a character himself, didn’t seem much too outré, in spite of his monacle and the purple jumpsuit which he occasionally wore. Over the course of his sojourn at OCI, Harry become interested in Lowen’s Bioenergetic Analysis, and he would do “Primal Scream” therapy with inmates on the unit to which he had been assigned, having them pound on pillows to get their anger out. Lots of fun!
But Harry also shared my interest in moral development and, at one point before the OCI evolved into a primarily custodial institution, he proposed an organizational treatment structure based on moral reasoning. I have presented this proposal previously (see May 26, 2014 ff), but present it again here because of its relevance to the issues of both murder and terrorism.