Thursday, February 07, 2013

"Support Mental Health or I'll Kill You"

That message from an ancient bumper sticker comes to mind as a frustrated Congress tries to paper over American gun madness by throwing money at services for the mentally ill instead of keeping deadly weapons out of the hands of mass killers.

Who will quarrel with a proposed law to spend $1.4 billion over ten years to “strengthen the nation’s mental health services and perhaps stave off violent acts by the mentally ill?”

Such services could certainly help desperate families with nowhere to turn for help, but will they be more than a band-aid to cover the Second Amendment insanity afflicting the whole society?

Only if mental health professionals set up shop in Washington to treat lawmakers with anxiety disorders over opposing the National Rifle Association’s paranoia in keeping them from limiting automatic weapons and bullet clips that end scores of lives in seconds.

Would any clinic have disarmed the man who pleaded guilty yesterday to shooting up a Family Research Council Office with a pistol, two magazines and 50 rounds of ammunition to "kill as many as possible and smear the Chick-Fil-A sandwiches in victims' faces?"

After World War II, when mental illness was still a subject not openly discussed in polite society, it took decades to raise public awareness of the need to support medical help for treatment, however uncertain the results might be.

How long will it take to change attitudes toward the gun madness of a whole society? Dr.  Joe Biden and his colleagues have a long way to go. 

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