By Silja J.A. Talvi
In These Times
“The Christian in me says it’s wrong,” Army Specialist Charles A. Graner Jr. said of torturing prisoners in Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. “But the corrections officer in me says I love to make a grown man piss himself.”
Photos taken of him demeaning captives at Abu Ghraib exposed Graner as the sadist that his surroundings allowed him to be. But are the differences between brutal correctional officers like Graner and other Americans as stark as we would like to think?
An acquaintance of mine recently admitted how much he enjoyed watching the torture scenes in the new blockbuster, Sin City. “I know it’s strange,” he said, “but there’s something I get out of seeing torture and violence like that on the screen. It’s like it’s some kind of release.”
Also check out from Psychology Matters:
Demonstrating the Power of Social Situations via a Simulated Prison Experiment