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View Diary: Abbreviated pundit roundup: The NRA is seriously overplaying its hand (137 comments)

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    According to Kathleen Sebelius, "The good news is that when people do seek help, we have much more effective treatments and supportive services than we did 50 years ago."

    Seriously, not so much.  It might be true if the mentally ill person him- or herself seeks help, but forget it if you have a very ill family member who is not only violent, but resistant to treatment.  There is literally nothing you can do until they show violent intent -- by which time it might well be too late.  

    There are many, many cases of horrific crimes committed by mentally ill people whose families have tried desperately to get them help, to know avail.  The warning signs were there, for example, in the case of Jared Loughner, who shot Gabrielle Giffords, whose classmates at Pima Community College reportedly took seats near the door so they would be able to escape when he "blew."  The Virginia Tech shooter scared his professor/adviser so much that she insisted someone stay close by when he was in her office.  Adam Lanza's mother seems to have struggled to get treatment for her son, too.

    Obviously most mentally ill people harm no one.  But we really need to take a look at mental health services, balancing safety with privacy rights of the mentally ill.  It is a huge challenge, but if there were someone to turn to when one fears a violent family member, maybe some of these horrifying events could be prevented.

    War begins where reason ends. Frederick Douglass, 1866

    by politichic on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 12:12:49 PM PST

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