Friday, November 1, 2013

A New World - A salute to mental health professionals


Today’s event’s at LAX, show the state of our society with guns, mental health, and social media.

In 1961 Ernest Hemingway killed himself with a shotgun, the next year, Marilyn Monroe, did the same thing with seconal. 

Today, seconal is hard to obtain, but powerful weapons, to kill cellular life, have advanced greatly. The latest generation of handheld weapons of war, include automatic weapons that can shred cellular beings very quickly and effectively. 

These may be appropriate for our defense, to fight enemies of the United States. Authorized by our executive branch, our commander in chief.

In 1961, as a Boy Scout, I joined the NRA. It represented gun education, and safety.  Today, it seems more interested in the gun manufacturers interests, and the right wing influences , who have, so far, linked the constitutional right of a citizen to bear arms, into a right of a citizen to own a weapon of war. There is no legitimate reason to have these weapons, designed to end life, become a consumer right, cloaked by a constitutional amendment. high capacity magazines, for sport hunters as well as anyone else, have no legitimate use, outside of the military.

After World War 2, American psychological thought changed from controlling citizens with severe mental issues, by confining them. The 1950's brought significant advances and the start of a Brave New World through chemistry, in treating many mental conditions. Mental health gained a legitimate seat at the table of patient health.

Today, the law, which supports the unbelievable idiotic notion, that weapon transfers of these types of war weapons, should happen freely on the consumer level, without a cursory background mental check, to me, seems insane.

Our new media 24 hour news cycle and social media have fixated attention on these types of tragedies. In the 'old days' those wishing to end their life, usually did so privately.

Today, of course , with social media it becomes  a big deal. The individual feels suicidal. As he contemplates his own demise, he reflects on who he perceives wronged him, real or imagined. Then as he prepares to take himself out of the phone book, he begins to focus on the 'enemies' imagining he is doing society some sort of favor. Not unsophisticated in new media he is fully aware of past tragedies and their impact on the media, he ultimately decides he may as well make a statement. Get his '15 mins' of infamy. Trade in my life for the attention I will receive, and then people will understand my struggle, angst, and pain. He knows, however, that doing something shocking, maybe then, people will pay attention.

The shooter accomplished that today. Luckily, he survived, and we can perhaps learn  from him.

Let's hope that this sequence of behaviors ends. The "I'm unhappy, frustrated, ignored, wronged, and not listened too
Then deciding that you should kill yourself, you make plans, decide a target, get a weapon of war, and control the media, the more imaginative, or horrible,  the longer the media will focus on you.

Finally, at a breaking point, he snaps, grabs a gun, and becomes infamous in American school yards, theaters,  airports, marathons.  

 At least in this case we may be able to understand, in time, the demons that drove this 23 year old American to commit this nonsensical crime. 

Gary O

No comments:

Post a Comment