Psychiatry professor James Fallon recently discovered that he has psychopathic tendencies, a discovery that he made entirely by accident.
There is an age-old argument when it comes to what opposing groups of people believe plays a bigger role in shaping a human being into the person they become. Nature versus nurture. Whether you are biologically predisposed to morph into a certain person, or if your surroundings as you grow up are responsible for who you become.
The reality is that it is probably a healthy dose of both. However, psychiatry professor James Fallon has been doing extensive research into patterns in the brains of convicted murderers and discovered something telling. His studies of hundreds of brain scans led to him noticing a pattern. That the same areas of the brain were not lighting up in certain areas that they would in a "normal" person.
That was naturally a pretty exciting revelation to Fallon. The one he made as he delved deeper was not. The professor used scans of his own family's brains as a control group for an Alzheimer's study. While flipping through the scans, he noticed one that looked identical to the scans of murderers' brains that he had studied. After confirming that it wasn't someone playing a joke on him, he discovered that the scan was of his own brain.
Before peeling the label back to reveal his own name, Fallon said to his colleagues that this was a dangerous person who should not be walking around in society. What's even worse for Fallon is the reaction he got from his family. Aside from his mom, all of them said they were not surprised, even his own wife. Fallon did admit on Out In The Open that he could be manipulative and reckless, but not psychopathic.
While Fallon might have the brain of a psychopath, his tendencies are relatively benign. He isn't going to head out in the middle of the night and go on a killing spree. He even describes himself as a "pro-social" psychopath now that he knows about the genetic make-up of his brain. Plus, he now asks himself "what would a good guy do?" before making most decisions, although his wife has said that he shouldn't take his findings too seriously.