Is Mental Heath really an Issue?

This is a discussion on Is Mental Heath really an Issue? within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; As Second Amendment supporters celebrate a victory yesterday, I began thinking more about each side's goals and narrative, and right now, I can't align to ...

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    Is Mental Heath really an Issue?

    As Second Amendment supporters celebrate a victory yesterday, I began thinking more about each side's goals and narrative, and right now, I can't align to either. Those that support the current gun control narrative are willing to condemn anyone to further their cause; however, it's equally clear to me that SA supporters are doing the same, at least to one - perhaps undeserving - group.

    There has been a lot of dialog on mental health and SA supporters are willing to vilify a group of law abiding Americans to further this cause. Admittedly, I don't know a lot about mental heath issues, treatments, etc., so I began to read a bit. As I said, I don't claim to know a lot about this, but this is what I discovered...

    According to the National Institute of Mental Health, “An estimated 26.2 percent of Americans ages 18 and older — about one in four adults — suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in a given year.” That's nearly 58 million people in this country that are old enough to purchase a firearm. And this begs the question - what percentage of this 58 million commit these mass murders?

    The largest number I could find was 157 mass shootings from 1900 through 2012. To favor the mental health narrative, let's say everyone of these individuals had a mental health disorder. It would be a more accurate approach to look at the population sample as a function of shootings on each of those years, but let's really throw this in favor of the mental health narrative and use all 157.

    We get 2 ten thousandths of 1 percent (0.0002%). Is this really a mental health issue, or is it an evil issue? Should we really condemn and disfranchise 68 million Americans from exercising their Constitutional rights for the actions of 157 people over the last 112 years? If these 68 million individuals are that dangerous, I have even greater concerns than just firearms.

    While history and empirical data demonstrates clearly to me the importance and need for our Second Amendment, does this justify us using these people as a scapegoat in defense of that right? That to me it is a clear no. Do we really need more than question f. on the 4473? Looking at the numbers above, it appears what we currently have is working.
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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array Ghost1958's Avatar
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    The mental health issue spouted was and is a red herring brought up only to try to put some form of gun control through.
    Its a non issue no reg or law has ever or will ever stop a person mentally sound enough to walk the street and formulate a crime in their mind then carry it out. A lot will dance all over the issue and bring in every case imaginable of some individual they know that shouldnt have a gun and once asked if they will answer does not have a gun anyway nor ever tried to get one.

    Again its a non issue. What we have in place as far as mental health folks go is as far as we can go until crystal balls that work are issued to the BATF.
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    Senior Member Array Alex_C's Avatar
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    1/4 of people have genuine mental health conditions, or doctors have "diagnosed" 1/4 of people in order to sell them drugs and repeat doctor visits?

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    The mental health issue is a complex one before you even introduce firearms into the mix, that goes without saying. It should also go without saying that those who commit mass murderers we see, probably have some form of mental illness, but the correlation is merely coincidental. The perpetrators have, in their own minds, rationalized their actions, that's why they act out. Their reasons would seem irrational and illogical to most people, but to the perps, it makes sense. They usually know the difference between right and wrong, because many, especially recently, have not had histories of harming others in their youth or being problems other than socially awkward. Unfortunately, when signs do appear, they are dismissed until it's too late or they are just do not appear.

    Also unfortunate, we as individuals and society, too easily allow ourselves to be blinded by our emotions and we take the easy way out. If your anti, all gun owners are evil because one person did something evil with a gun, or because the perp had mental health issues, it's all the mental health systems fault. We never seem to want to do the difficult work of determining the WHY the perp did what they did. For example, take the Aurora shooter, he clearly knew the difference between right and wrong, he did not booby trap is apartment for giggles. He also did not kill himself. I'd be willing to trade the possibility of parole and death penalty to find out why he went from graduate student trying to take the next step to buying guns and ammo with the intent of going to the theater and opening fire. Something was building up (like a gas leak), and then a catalyst (like a spark), set off his explosion. What were they? If we do not seek this information when it is available, how do we expect to defend against it in the future?

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    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    NO! (Wait, what was the question again?)
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    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    If it wasn't, they would be crazy to ignore it at this point...

    On the serious side of it. The mental health issue is going to become a very hot topic in the years to come. The libs are gonna use this to their unfair advantage whenever possible. They are going to try to disarm Americans one at a time if they have to. I'd suggest everyone be very cautious about the prescribed drugs you allow your doctors to give to you and think all the way through any other doctor interactions that could in any way be used against you.
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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    IMO ...

    If the gun-grabbers' version of expanded, slackened standards for judging someone "mental" were to be implemented, that would be a problem.

    Is it sensible to simply refer to anyone who would "do such a thing" as murder/rape/robbery/massacres a "mental" case? No, though a percentage of them undoubtedly have clear, psychiatrically-obvious and -defined conditions that severely inhibit the ability to play well with others in society.

    But does it make the least sense to deem the "mentals" as the great threat of the age? Not hardly, IMO. By orders of magnitude, the greater threats are those actively engaging in long-term "lifestyle" choices to be criminals and be violent toward others, not the miniscule percentage of outliers who accomplish the occasional heinous act.

    ANY society's going to have its share of outlier citizens, but by far our major threat is from long-term, hardened criminals who engage in this sort of thing on an ongoing basis. We could have a dozen Adam Lanzas perpetrate their murderous acts a year, and that wouldn't amount to but a small percentage of the violent crimes perpetrated by hard criminals in any given year, year after year.

    So. Much ado about nothing? From a statistically-important standpoint, in a sense yes. Not that any single murder is worth accepting. It's not. But going after the criminal, going after such known criminals to seek them out where they live and breathe, shutting down their avenues of access to the rest of us ... those are the things that are going to have the greatest short-term impact on such criminals. But in the long run, no amount of jumping on upstanding citizens is going to change anything, and it won't change until the long-term benefits of being upstanding outweigh the benefits of being criminal. For some, even if that were true, they'd still opt to be criminal, for the simple cred, juice or jollies it gives them.
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    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    My problem with the mental health vs. gun ownership debate is...who gets to decide & how do we (legally) prohibit anyone from anything based on what they MIGHT do? It's a very slippery slope we're treading.
    There are only TWO kinds of people in this world; those who describe the world as filled with two kinds of people...and those who don't.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost tracker View Post
    My problem with the mental health vs. gun ownership debate is...who gets to decide & how do we (legally) prohibit anyone from anything based on what they MIGHT do? It's a very slippery slope we're treading.
    Yup.

    I, too, have a very hard time accepting the whole concept. IF it's to be done, it needs to be highly restricted, done to a simple, well-defined, HIGH standard, and require strict judicial adjudication / due-process. Without that, it's every bit the slippery slope we all fear. Let alone some of the "lead balloon" fliers some have proposed of, say, having the Attorney General determining such definitions and standards.
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    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
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  11. #10
    VIP Member Array oakchas's Avatar
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    Yes, I believe it IS an issue...

    Google the article "I am Adam Lanza's mother" and tell me that the boy portrayed should have access to firearms.

    On the other hand, you cannot tell me that a soldier returning from active duty should not be allowed firearms because he can't handle all his finances...

    The Prez probably has an accountant... (to say nothing about his inability to present a budget) . Is he a candidate for the prohibited purchaser list?


    So, yeah mental health is an issue... With no simple solution, eh?



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  12. #11
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    Being "crazy" means you aren't "normal". Normal is defined as being average. If THAT many people are crazy, then that makes being crazy normal, which means you're not really crazy per se.
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    What about "mainstreaming" special education students? I'm not talking about those with Downs....I'm talking about kids like Adam Lanza, the emotionally void...the ones without empathy..those kinds of kids. The ones who are so emotionally jacked up that they can not function without meds (and yes, I'm aware some doc over medicate kids, but where the heck are the parents?)....or the kids (who become adults) who require constant supervision to take or stay on their medication. These are the people who pose a threat to society. What happened to asylums? What happened to sanatoriums? These are places where these people need to go. Need constant psychotropic meds to stay "normal", but need supervision? That's the place you go to.

    Don't look at me and my gun collection as a threat...look at those who have evil in their heart and the capability and demonstrated intent to harm others.

    Junior decides to torture animals? Guess what, medical school is not in his future.

    Using emotional blackmail to encourage legislatures to pass "feel good" laws to violate inalienable rights is despicable...passing these same laws to legislate morality will fail, as criminals are immoral (amoral?) and will not be affected by new legislation.

    Thus, your mentally & emotionally defective will also not be affected by these laws....and I think the other side knows this...but refuses to accept.
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    VIP Member Array Crowman's Avatar
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    Its all about evil and not really mental health per se...... All criminals are evil and some also have mental problems.
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    Is it a issue of mental health? I think its an issue about evil. And you can't regulate it. You can't pass a law that says evil is illegal. So we try to find something we can regulate, be it guns, mental health, more security. While laws about guns or mental health may deter some evil, it will always exist, it will always find a way. I caution any goverment involvement, its a slippery slope. We all know it with regards to guns. But with mental health as well. Soon people could be sent to asylem because someone working for uncle sam decides they are unstable. Takeing away people rights is wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost tracker View Post
    NO! (Wait, what was the question again?)
    Is Mental Health Really An Issue??

    Only if you ain't got no mental health!!!
    Firing a suppressed is on my Bucket List.

    I'm just a spoke in the wheel but not a big deal.

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