In another thread Shiny brought up a good point which I felt deserved it's own thread. Forgive me if it seems redundant. "The ability to kill is part of us, part of self defense mechanisms, part of each being's survival code. Is is always applied correctly? Obviously not. And it will never be gone. Obviously the first country that wipes out that urge, or virus if you will, will be struck down by the countries surrounding it as they laugh. And should this microbe or virus or natural trait be wiped out. Again I say Hell no. We will move to the stars and/or be visited by people from the stars one day. I don't think pacifism is a survival trait or even one that would urge a people to be space faring. So, no, I would not want to be sitting here among a bunch of people chanting knit one, purl two while the death rays poured down from the heavens." Even though this post was posted yesterday, it caused me to toss and turn last night as I struggled with this question. If it is, in fact, true we are truly a bunch of criminals who have not yet found the appropriate trigger. If it is false, is this a deviate behavior, which needs to be eliminated from society? Is this a defense mechanism? If so, how is it useful? In an earlier time, it could be considered a territorial protection behavior needed to ensure an adequate food supply would continue to be available. But if that were the case, people within their own tribe would be violent with each other. This does establish a pecking order but also gives the advantage to the organism, which is most ruthless which I believe, would eventually wipe out the entire tribe. This would also be counterproductive to the concept of society ever being able to work together for a common good. If the most violent and ruthless are the only ones to survive we would have become a predator preying on any other human we could find and we never would have grouped together in a social group for mutual protection and advancement. If any of the above is true, the violent nature in mankind is a deviate behavior (now considered criminal) and needs to be addressed from the standpoint of a society defect. Regarding the possibility of death rays coming from the heavens as we knit, please, for you to believe we could ever fight anyone who has mastered intergalactic space travel is pure science fiction. We have no weaponry, which would cause these beings any form of concern anymore than the catapult isn't a problem for supersonic fighter jets. If we are to ever make it into space it will be because we learned to overcome the motivations which cause violence and learned to work together otherwise we will certainly fight amongst ourselves until we finally get it right, which of course will cure the problem permanently. So, are we the violent animals we are sometimes portrayed as or is this a behavior, which needs to be eliminated before it becomes successful? What does everyone think?