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View Diary: Guns and Suicide: Gun Violence and Mental Illness (117 comments)

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  •  It amazes me yet that the NRA has so effectively (8+ / 0-)

    sold the belief that gun violence is due largely to mental illness. The public has bought it, and the media has bought it, whereas the facts belie this erroneous belief. The data are quite clear on this issue that a only a small portion of gun violence can be attributed to mental illness per se.

    We need an equally effective campaign to counter this erroneous belief but it is a very hard sell. Without the mainstream media, it will be more than difficult.

    "There is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats ..." - Kenneth Grahame -

    by RonK on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 10:01:39 AM PST

    •  Neither the media nor the NRA are fit (7+ / 0-)

      To make such statements, they are causing great harm

      •  True but at least the media could report the facts (4+ / 0-)

        as known by the professionals rather than the lies as spewed by the NRA.

        "There is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats ..." - Kenneth Grahame -

        by RonK on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 10:49:23 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The MSM thinks journalism is the same (2+ / 0-)

          as being an editor on a modern day "reality show."

          This better be good. Because it is not going away.

          by DerAmi on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 10:57:29 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I'm just pissed at the media for their (0+ / 0-)

          Weekly headlines on health issues, one week they're  'r̶e̶c̶o̶m̶m̶e̶n̶d̶i̶n̶g̶' selling some latest greatest headline news based on a misquoted narrow piece of information, because it grabbed 2 minutes of  attention ... and then ... it turns out to be harmful

          I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for MSM to have even a halfway reasonable discussion on mental health, I mean sure maybe it could happen but it takes depth, like you said, but maybe cool their heels a bit and attempt serious discussion

          But what the NRA is doing is so much worse, they try to grab the headlines and conflate important issues they have no qualifications to discuss, and an issue that carries great weight for many, those having admitted mental health issues into their lives, and those having suffered loss from guns

          People who pursue or have pursued mental health treatment are the healthy ones ... a little counselling never hurt anyone, and for those getting psychiatric care I imagine it's most often a good thing

          Self-serving sociopaths and megalomaniacs are far more deadly and dangerous

          So, for those reasons, I think cw's pee test is a good idea

          -- much more practical and probably an order of magnitude more effective --

    •  Not quite so clear and obvious (5+ / 0-)

      The gun industry and the NRA have very loud and far-reaching microphones.  Their messages do get spread broadly.

      Many people - more responsible people in government, in law enforcement, in healthcare, and on Main St. USA - understand the gun industry's message for the horse pucky it is.  Sadly, these people either do not have access to a far-reaching microphone, or choose not to access one.

      Politicians could be using their "bully pulpit" to bring a more reasonable and responsible message to Americans.  But that would mean saying things publicly that the gun industry dislikes, and politicians in general do not like to publicly gainsay the gun industry.

      And you will notice it is difficult to shoe-horn the message in the above diary into a 2-3 minute CNN story.  The fiction is much easier to conveniently packaged than the facts.

      "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

      by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 10:55:24 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  We "bought" the connection of guns to mental... (3+ / 0-)

      ... illness because "we all know", for instance ... You gotta be crazy to walk into a movie theatre [or elementary school or mall or a political gathering or your family's living room] and start shooting. No sane person does such a thing. We readily equate "crazy" with mental illness - no leap required.

      The first legally accepted test of sanity is whether a person knows right from wrong:

      ... at the time of the committing of the act, the party accused was labouring under such a defect of reason, from a disease of the mind, as not to know the nature and quality of the act he was doing; or, if he did know it, that he did not know he was doing what was wrong.
      Pretty unsophisticated, wasn't it! But variations of this classic are still the law in many, perhaps most, jurisdictions. So why should we wonder why the press and the public confuse sanity with massacres by gun? With gun violence against loved ones or oneself?

      No matter what the underlying reality is in a given case, no matter how much violence by gun is done because of snap decisions, anger and frustration, pent-up emotions, vigilantism, deliberate planning to deal out death ... we just "know" a person who kills another must be crazy.

      Ronk, LaPierre will tout it for all he's worth. (!) About all we can do is set the discussion straight - as HJB has done so well in his series of suicide diaries - when we encounter the LaPierre meme.

      2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

      by TRPChicago on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:50:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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