Psychologists warn against mob reaction 

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The weekend incidents at Cronulla and other Sydney locations should not be met with simple explanations or reflex responses, Australian psychologists warn.

“The essential ingredients of a mob are over simple thinking in slogans, developing mass hysteria, leading to hasty, often aggressive action,” says Amanda Gordon, President of the Australian Psychological Society.

“It can only aggravate the situation if we respond, as a community, in the same way.”

“These incidents most likely reflect a mix of causes, including long-term alienation of groups of young people, racist attitudes that are still strong in Australia, fuelled by alcohol and old-fashioned notions of masculinity.”

”Successful prevention of similar incidents in the future requires a thoughtful, multifaceted and ongoing program to address all of these causes. Simply responding with increased force and blanket condemnation is likely only to increase the unrest.”

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For more information:

Elaine Grant
Communications Manager
Australian Psychological Society
03 8662 3300 or 0412 683 068