Study Suicide First, Then Murders

The perpetrator of the Newton, Conn., school shooting was also one of his own victims. “Suicide is not as newsworthy as homicide,” writes Andrew Solomon in The New York Times. But, he insists, understanding why someone like Adam Lanza wanted to take his own life is the first step toward understanding why he would want to take the lives of so many others. Self-hatred is not uncommon among adolescents, he points out; still, most angry youths lash out at their parents and peers, they don’t kill them. Solomon concludes that mental-health screenings for children are imperative, as is constant care—as in dentistry—“to prevent decay.”