• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
  6. 6
  7. 7
  8. 8
  9. 9
  10. 10
  11. 11
  12. 12
  13. 13
  14. 14
  15. 15
  16. 16
  17. 17
  18. 18
  19. 19
  20. 20
  21. 21
  22. 22
  23. 23
  24. 24
  25. 25
  26. 26
  27. 27
  28. 28
  29. 29
  30. 30

Throughout the history of the United States of America, four American presidents have been killed by the assassins' bullets, so, who were these assassins? What were their motives? and what molded them into what they became?

Extracts from this document...


Introduction Throughout the history of the United States of America, four American presidents have been killed by the assassins' bullets: Abraham Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth, James Garfield by Charles Guiteau, William McKinley by Leon Czolgosz, and John F. Kennedy by Lee Harvey Oswald. In every one of these cases the killers claimed their motive was for the good of the American people, and the betterment of their lives. The facts prove otherwise. Their acts had nothing to do with patriotism or politics; to the contrary, in each and every instance their acts were condemned by the American people and referred to as murderous, tragic, criminal, and insane. So, who were these assassins? What were their motives? What molded them into what they became? Studies have shown that people who commit violent crimes suffer from certain personality disorders, which can greatly affect a person's life.1 Most people can live pretty normal lives with mild personality disorders, however during times of increased stress or external pressures the symptoms of the personality disorder gains strength and begins to seriously interfere with their emotional and psychological functioning. The potential causes of personality disorders are numerous, but they may be caused by a combination of parental upbringing, one's personality and social development, as well as genetic and biological factors. There are ten different types of personality disorders, all having various characteristics; but the ones that are more prevalent in crime are: Antisocial Personality Disorder2, characterized by a disregard for other people's rights and feelings, often crossing the line and violating those rights. This pattern of behavior begins around the age of 15, and consists of the majority of these symptoms: failure to conform to social norms, deceitfulness, impulsivity, engaging in repeated physical fights or other acts of violence, reckless disregard for their safety and that of the others, repeated failure to sustain consistent work behavior or honor financial obligations, and lack of remorse. ...read more.


Contemporary assassins...almost always prove to be exceptionally deranged individuals. Some of them, in fact, appear to have few or no political motives."37 In the case of Charles J. Guiteau, he was a psychopath, mean and vicious who committed his antisocial acts with deliberation and intensity. Confused, yet mentally competent if given support and guidance, had the potential of becoming psychotic if his needs were ignored too long. Guiteau did not have a political motive for shooting President Garfield; if anything his motive was for being denied a cherished diplomatic assignment. Growing up, Guiteau suffered frequent beatings at the hands of his father. From an early age he was delusional and barely capable of distinguishing fantasy from reality. He wanted to be important, imagined himself to be a succession of great persons, and the more he would think about it the more he would believe it to be true. When he joined the Oneida Community, Guiteau openly stated that he was ordained to be in charge and lead, clearly manifesting a delusional state of mind, to say the least. During most of his life, Guiteau tried to devise schemes to achieve greatness, only to fail miserably and be considered a lunatic. Even though resourceful and canny, he never managed to carry out a project for too long. He went from seeing himself as a lawyer, to being a preacher, a political speech-writer, an ambassador to Vienna or Paris, to ultimately the savior of the Republican Party, the Stalwart of Stalwarts. Clark, reports that when Guiteau bought the murder weapon, a pearl-handled pistol, he paid with ten dollars of borrowed money, and rejected a less expensive hard-rubber-handled model, saying that his choice would look better in a museum."38 He always wanted to be someone else, but this time he thought he found the way to achieve greatness and be remembered for it. Leon Czolgosz 1873-1901 Leon Czolgosz was born in 1873, in Detroit, Michigan, to a Polish-Russian couple of who had immigrated to America during the 1860s. ...read more.


The delusional side of Oswald was manifested in the form of delusion of control and delusion of grandiose70 He continuously reported to the Russians that the US government, the FBI were following him and had him under surveillance; he even made himself believe that he even lost his job due to FBI harassment. Oswald felt that he would be very well received by the Russians, and that he definitely was valuable, partly due to the knowledge he gained in the Marines. These delusion of grandiose was also demonstrated when he went to the Cuban Embassy in Mexico City. He had no doubt that, after shooting Walker, appearing on radio shows, supporting the Communist-Cuba cause, and distributing "Hands Off Cuba" handbills, Cuba and the Soviet Union were going to give him a card-blanche. James Clarke in his book American Assassins speculates that it was a string of disillusionments and his failure to get acceptance, like the one in the Soviet Union, where he even attempted suicide, the incident at the Cuban Embassy, or his wife's remainder of her past lovers, and the FBI visits that brought about the President's assassination.71 These definitely were stressors that coupled with Oswald's personality, the delusional-paranoid type, armed with a scoped rifle and sharing the same place (weapon-range) and time with President Kennedy translated in tragedy. Conclusion As depicted in the profiles of these four presidential assassins, despite their individual differences in personality traits, they share a common set of behavioral and background characteristics. Their families did not support them, their peers did not accept them, and their efforts to achieve success were not rewarded. All four presidential assassins, showed a distinct pattern of inadequacy in dealing with social, intellectual, and occupational challenges and a lack of means for achieving satisfaction or substantial goals. This combination of inadequacy, failure, and chronic inability to be able to do the right thing, or achieve a sense of accomplishment, ultimately made these individuals seriously and fatally dangerous. Overall, their targets symbolized the frustrations they experienced and personified the system that, in their minds, was always keeping them down. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree 1600-1699 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree 1600-1699 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    'Repressive and emotionally cold'. Is this a true reflection of relations between parents and ...

    4 star(s)

    proposes, swaddling was not an act of cruelty or ignorance but a custom passed down generations8. Although writers such as John Locke and Jean Jacques Rousseau began to brand swaddling as cruel later on in time, it seems clear that parents were acting on what they were accustomed to, genuinely believing they were acting for the best of their children.

  2. Role of Women in New France

    Also, several noblewomen swayed their powerful husbands in order to have some control of the politics and the economy of New France. Madame de Vaudreuil was married to New France's Governor General and was often called "La Governette" by her peers because she had so much influence in the affairs

  1. Why had the policies of Charles I and his ministers aroused so much opposition ...

    The fact the king was based in England was not the cause for concern - James VI/I was never ousted from the throne due to this- but the fact Charles desperately tried to force feed his kingdoms the doctrine of English churches led to bitterness.

  2. How, and how effectively, did Charles I raise new sources of revenue in the ...

    impose it', he also accounts for those that thought that 'the king has no prerogative but that which the law of the land doth give' and the argument of 'how the king could have any necessity that has no enemy'6.

  1. Assess the view that Charles I rather than Archbishop Laud directed ecclesiastical affairs during ...

    was directly responsible for the placing of his own chaplains into these positions, yet certain documents shade this view, for example, parts of Laud's private correspondence to Wentworth comprise the two poking fun at Ussher's attempts to install his own candidates in bishoprics18, which clearly hints at Laud's power in

  2. Why, and with what consequences did Charles I fail to defeat the Covenanters in ...

    Scott states that 'Charles seems to have believed that merely by marching an army to the border he would intimidate the Covenanters into submission'.[3] This view was not just shared by the King but also by the Earl of Clarendon who wrote 'the glory of such a visible appearance of

  1. In arguing for the Copernican system Galileo demonstrated he was well equipped in balancing ...

    By now there?s no doubt that someone as well informed as you are has heard about this fellow, yet I still must warn you of his pervasive need to be right, despite all contradictory proofs. He seeks to negate common knowledge.

  2. How far was the English civil war a result of rule over multiple kingdoms?

    forms of practise such as a higher emphasis on communion the communion table often appeared to resemble a Catholic altar and this was interpreted as oppressive, popish and led to accusations that Laud and Charles were moving in the direction of Roman Catholicism[18].

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work