Time to look into ourselves with calm objectivity.

Most modern countries have some people who exhibit chronic immoral and antisocial behavior, but the way these nations treat them are quite different. It is quite disturbing in this regard to see how the various sectors of our society are dealing with the latest case of a psychopathic serial killer.

Kang Ho-soon, the 38-year-old suspect who admitted to kidnapping and killing seven women in areas about 20 miles southwest of Seoul between 2006 and 2008, is now one of the most searched names (or words) on the Internet. High public interests in this handsome-but-hideous confessed murderer are somewhat understandable, but discussions about this heinous criminal are emotional at best and sadly shallow at worst.

The police deserve some praise for their extensive, tenacious chase of the suspect, but the time has long passed for them to cease blowing their own trumpets, and to begin to think of what could have stopped Kang after his first couple of victims, such as a far more astute response to early reports of missing women.

Psychopathic murderers are no longer new to Korea, but the nation's law enforcement authorities have yet to classify them as a separate criminal category, which requires a more systematic and scientific approach. It's time they positively considered setting up something like the National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime (NCAVC), which was introduced by the U.S. FBI in 1984.

Equally important is the research into psychopathology as a serious social symptom, as scientists say about 1 percent of the total population and up to 90 percent of serial killers could belong to this mental category.

Sociologists, for their part, need to study if there are any elements leading to a more frequent occurrence of psychopathic criminals, such as the individuals' excessive demands from state and society while neglecting their basic responsibilities common in immature democracy.

Instead, social discussion mainly focuses on whether to execute Kang if he is found guilty, as well as whether to make public his face in media outlets. In conclusion, these may not be entirely wrong in view of the hatefulness of the crime and international practices in a majority of countries, but they do turn back the nation's progress on human rights.

Disclosing suspects' faces infringes on the human rights not only of the criminals, but also their family members. Nor would it do any good except for satisfying the cheap curiosity of the public. Crime prevention is no excuse, as they will have to live behind bars for life anyway.

Executing them may reduce similar crimes for some time, but criminologists have long advised against the effectiveness of capital punishment in preventing violent crimes in the long run, based on scientific and historical research.

Some thoughtless people have even tried to open Kang "fan cafes" on the Internet. Anyway, it was politicians, including Rep. Chun Yu-ok of the governing Grand National Party, who first made light of this tragic incident by comparing her political opponents to psychopaths, rediscovering the bottom to which the political community โ€• and the whole society along with it โ€• can fall.