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Again, we have had a horrific shooting at a school in America. There are a lot of people screaming their thoughts about it today and every day since it happened.

 

I know that people want to help. And, it is easy to say that because of a gun, because it was an assault rifle, because people can buy these weapons – that is what must change.

 

It might help and it might not, but long before that, people need to know that there will then be other weapons, other ways to do it.

 

And, there are people screaming right now about mental health or mental disorders being the problem or “issue”. But, what if it isn’t that, considering how many people with those issues either get some help for them or find other constructive and non-harmful ways to resolve those mental “issues” without shooting or hurting anyone. There are millions of people doing that, in fact.

 

But, what if the real reason these young men are stepping off the edge of reason and sanity to find a gun and equip it with thousands of rounds of ammunition has nothing to do with being able to get the gun nor the mental health industry who has many times been serving these same young men who’ve committed these mass shootings?

 

What if it is something else that indicates an underlying massive real cause of pushing many people including these men into a desperate anger and frustration that makes it seem to them that they have nothing to lose and can’t stand feeling that way another moment? Or, that they must get even and take it out on others to fix it and make those feelings and thinking change or go away, be satisfied that they’ve done something about it no matter how wrong they know it to be in doing it that way?

 

Our society in America has completely disenfranchised entire groups of our nation’s people. Most of us don’t do this as our reaction to that fact, but not everyone’s reaction is going to be the same.

 

Have we been throwing money at mental health programs hoping some psych drugs and a therapist can get people including these young men okay with never being anything but poor, or ever to be able to accomplish anything, or for their entire lives to experience being excluded and rejected from fully participating in having things and doing things with their lives?

 

Is it really right to believe that some mental health approach is going to fix it all and there will no longer be any responsibility on ourselves, in our communities and in our nation towards people who are never going to live out the expectations of the American Dream for themselves the way things are now?

 

When there are no jobs available to them but those which won’t pay the support of living independently and doing well for themselves? When there are no real ways to build friendships that are stable and rational nor to have healthy relationships with a girlfriend or boyfriend blossom into the kind of real relationship everyone has seen and read about where couples build their lives together?

 

When there are no opportunities to have a home, to have a network of supportive and encouraging people they know or to have opportunities to make money, build to have their dreams realized as once was possible in this country?

 

When there is obviously no way for the principles of fairness and equal opportunities to all Americans to be practiced in this environment of all the resources and opportunities being isolated and available to only a few at the top rungs of our society?

 

Across this country for years now, our young men especially, have been reaching out to extremist groups from criminal ones to religious ones to white supremacist and racially charged groups to massive underground subcultures to find there – a sense of belonging, acceptance, purpose and value for who they are.

 

It is obvious they didn’t get that from us as a community or as a nation, otherwise these young men and others would not have sought to find it there in extremist groups. And, the groups know that their members are becoming weapons in their own arsenal for whatever purposes and agendas these groups serve. None of it is a building, constructive, strengthening lives and communities agenda either.

 

Every time there is a mass shooting or horrific crime of this magnitude, we ask ourselves again about access to guns and suggest mental illness has made this happen. Maybe this time it is finally a moment to take a look at, why is it happening in our country and what we can do to form options that leave guns and going crazy over all this stuff wrong in people’s lives from being the only choices left for them.

 

  • Cricketdiane, 02-19-18

Guns, Gun Violence, Mental Health and Disenfranchisement

 

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