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Is Mental Health the Real Issue That Needs to Be Addressed After Mass Shootings?

After a mass shooting, the first issue that comes up for debate is gun control, but shouldn't we really be addressing the mental health issues behind the person pulling the trigger?

The country is still in shock over Friday's massacre in Connecticut and already the debate on gun control has kicked into high gear. But shouldn't we look at the perpetrator and what prompted his actions in the first place? Shouldn't the first debate be about mental health issues and how to address them?

Authorities say Adam Lanza, 20, shot and killed his mother that morning and then drove to Sandy Hook Elementary School to commit the horrific killing spree before killing himself. According to initial reports, Lanza appeared to have had some mental problems prior to the shooting, but it is difficult to say that it would have predicted this.

Authorities also say that the guns Lanza used had been purchased legally, and he was actually stopped from purchasing another rifle by existing gun laws. He appeared to have circumvented school security measures by forcing his way into the building. He appeared intend on doing what he did and gun laws and security measures were unable to stop him.

Gawker.com had a poignant story titled "I am Adam Lanza's Mother." It is authored by someone going by the name of Lisa Long and chronicles her attempts to deal with a child struggling with mental illness. Someone born to her. Someone whom she loves - but is scared of just the same. Her own child - a potential Adam Lanza.

Instead of rushing to address gun laws, shouldn't the mental health system be the first issue that needs to be addressed?

Racer X December 19, 2012 at 02:26 PM
Tank- I like the idea of capital punishment after three felonies, no appeals.
Racer X December 19, 2012 at 03:23 PM
The Bushmaster was found in the mother's car and was not used in this horrible crime: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/14/sandy-hook-elementary-school-shooting_n_2300831.html It is deplorable that the MSM is using this to advance their own agenda. Here is a NY Daily News story that shows a picture of the Bushmaster AR-15 in the "weapons used photo, then, in the text, says the AR-15 was left in the back-seat of the car. It is pretty easy to see what is going on here: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/ct-school-shooter-made-combat-weapon-article-1.1220431
Racer X December 19, 2012 at 03:24 PM
The MSM is trying to control what people think, and doing a damn good job of it.
Tammy Osier December 21, 2012 at 03:47 AM
They can't control this. I have a feeling this story is getting ready to bust wide open. Of course, if it doesn't, we'll know why. Here it is: Before Friday’s heinous act, there was talk in Connecticut’s state legislature to beef up the state’s “assisted outpatient treatment” law. Connecticut Senate Bill 452 was proposed in February “to enhance the care and treatment of persons with psychiatric disabilities in both inpatient and outpatient settings.” But the bill was defeated in March, with opposition calling it “outrageously discriminatory.” The ACLU said the bill would “infringe on patients’ privacy rights by expanding [the circle of] who can medicate individuals without their consent.” Had the AOT bill been passed, it would have given the state the right to institutionalize a person who is mentally ill for treatment if the state has enough evidence to believe that the person could be a danger to himself or the community. The mother had already stated that he was burning himself and that she he was getting hard to handle. Studies show homeless people who commit crimes and taken to hospitals turn out to suffer from schizophrenia but were left on their own (due to the way the law is written) to take their own meds. Of course, in a manic state, they don't and end up on the streets. A bill like this would prevent that. Sad all the way around and the aclu continue to be responsible for this type of thing getting knocked down.
Tammy Osier April 13, 2013 at 11:39 PM
Found this. I'd rather discuss this than economics. I'm going to do some research on this and get back. The article about the Newton Dad who agrees with this stance rather than gun control belongs on this one. I'll get back later.

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