ON MENTAL ILLNESS: Government Unfairly Targets Mentally Ill in Response to Gun Violence

Jack Bragen
Friday August 09, 2019 - 01:39:00 PM

The Trump Administration is benefiting in two or more ways from the recent outbreaks in gun violence. Trump is using this issue to divert public attention away from Russian interference in U.S. elections. Secondly, since the Trump modus operandi is largely to target minority groups as scapegoats, Trump is able to pick on yet another segment of American population, mentally ill people. Mentally ill people, historically and to this day, find it more difficult to speak up for ourselves and assert our rights in comparison to other minority groups. Leave it to Trump to attack those who are the most defenseless.

Other segments of U.S. Government are also picking on mentally ill people and on people with a history of being traumatized. I saw on television news, a government official described people who are suspect. The profile he gave puts Yours Truly in the crosshairs of people whom this official said should be reported. This is uncomfortable. 

The government official said, those with a history of being traumatized or who had a past where they were "pushed over the edge" are suspect. He also described suspect people as those who "want to make their mark on the world." 

Trump said that guns don't pull the trigger and that the problem is "mental illness and hate." And while I don't hate anyone, I do suffer from mental illness. And this is upsetting, since I fear that the government could come after me due to me having a psychiatric illness. 

If the government is going to blame people with mental illness for the gun violence, don't punish people for having a disease. People should not be criminalized for having a mental illness that we didn't create. If you're saying mentally ill people are to blame, and if you want to solve the stated problem, make it impossible for mentally ill people to obtain weapons. I believe mentally ill people have no business having weapons of any kind. 

Secondly, we need to provide more funds for treatment of mental illness, not punishment. Let's see society make conditions livable for people with mental illness, rather than forcing us to live in poverty and institutionalization. Provide job training for mentally ill people. Mandate hiring of mentally ill people at meaningful jobs that incorporate accommodation. 

Instead, the government will inevitably use oppressive tactics to make life even more miserable for people who have already suffered enough. 

The profile connected to the recent outbreaks in gun violence consists of Caucasian male young adults, who've possibly been socially disaffected, or who lack connections to other human beings. The internet has a role in enrolling new perpetrators. I've also heard that weapons had been purchased over the internet. However, with the absence of any regulations that have teeth, almost any adult or anyone who looks like an adult, could purchase a firearm, almost anywhere. 

If assault weapons were harder to get, it would make it less convenient to do these types of atrocities. It would not eliminate all violence, since some would resort to homemade weapons to do violence to others. 

Our government, rather than addressing the problem of mass shootings in any effective manner, is instead using this as an underhanded way to forward their oppressive and power grabbing agendas.