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Home > Relieve > Criminal violence
Testimony

Councilwoman Blackwell hosted a meeting in Council chambers on solving the problem of criminal violence.

Citizens, Servants and Representatives:

I have the answer to violent crime.  I know exactly where the problem lies: in the right prefrontal cortex.  19 of 20 death row inmates have disturbances at this site on their brain maps. 

Whether the cause of criminality is genetic, brain injury, family or community, the answer is the same.  Fix the brain and nervous system, heal the life and solve the problem of criminal violence.

What is the recidivism rate for violent felons?  About 65% within 3 years.  I brought a summary of a study done with 2776 felons from 1970 to 1995.  Here 40 sessions of biofeedback produced a recidivism rate of 15%.  That is a 70% reduction.  Most of the trainers were volunteers.

Biofeedback begins with monitoring some aspect of physiology such as hand temperature or heart rhythms.  Biofeedback consists of interacting with a display of your physiology.  Neurofeedback is biofeedback with the brain – either brain waves or blood flow within the brain.

Biofeedback does not belong to any one field.

  • In the hands of a physician with patients, biofeedback is medicine.
  • In the hands of a psychologist with clients, biofeedback is therapy.
  • In the hands of a teacher with students, biofeedback is education.
  • In the hands of a prison guard with offenders, biofeedback is rehabilitation.
  • In the hands of a father with his child, biofeedback is parenting.
  • In the hands of a municipal official with citizens biofeedback is good government. 

The technology is now so advanced it is easy to use and can be applied in many settings.  It is easiest to fold a biofeedback module into a current program such as a half way house, prison, curfew center, police station, or school program. 

With just a few hundred dollars for biofeedback or a few thousand for neurofeedback, much good can be done.  At $32,120 a year to incarcerate offenders, any size program will pay for itself within a year.  How much money do want to save?  How much violence do you want to prevent? 

I need from you open minds as you read the evidence.  And then show courage as you take action.  I submit that biofeedback is the best available technology to solve the problem of criminal violence in Philadelphia. 

 


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