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Not AGAIN????

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Yes, another shooting.  And yes, they say, the shooter was mentally ill. And yes, guns don’t kill, only people who are mentally ill kill people.  The ease of ownership and use of guns doesn’t play a role.  The lack of good assistance for the mentally ill isn’t a factor and certainly post traumatic stress and its lack of recognition and treatment don’t factor in.   

Simone Weil, a French philosopher and Christian mystic,  wrote, “I suffer more from the humiliations inflicted by my country than from those inflicted on her.”  I too am embarrassed that our country solves its problems often with guns and violence.  I am saddened beyond belief that we often blame the mentally ill, and, even in those instances where the illness does play a part, we fail to help or change the system.  And it tears me apart that week after week, month after month, these episodes happen and we express shock, rage, anger and then we do nothing.  We do nothing to change the system, we do nothing to address the enormouse presence of guns in our society, we do nothing to discover other ways of solving our problems.  

Yes, there was another shooting.  Yes, the shooter was mentally ill.  Now, let’s do something so it doesn’t happen again. 

-Bernadette

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2 Responses

  1. What would you do? Outlaw guns?
    I am as much in support of the ACLU challenging the law that curtails freedom as I am the NRA fighting to make it so that it is not the only people who have guns is the government and the criminals.
    We believe in this society that the individual has a right to bear arms. There are many of us, who suffer from “mental illness,” who dont believe that taking away guns solves the problems.
    Until we do as Hillman says and take therapy out of the consulting room and put it out in the culture, we are just crying wolf as the costs of the externalities of our system come home.
    I dont disagree with you that there is a problem. I am not interested in trying to create a behavior based system that penalizes the individual who is not creating the problem.

  2. I think it would start with discussing mental illness more openly. Too many are afraid to admit to it, or feel weak if they seek help. In my experience, untreated depression only grows. As far as the gun issue–I don’t have an answer to that. Yes, in my Pollyanna mind, I would like to see guns disappear, wars disappear, and mental illness disappear. But it won’t happen. Until both sides start listening to each other to create solutions, this will continue to be an issue.

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