I have a mental illness. I have depression. I have anxiety.
I do NOT kill people.
Mental illness is not the reason innocent lives are being taken senselessly — guns are.
As someone with a mental illness, I take great offense when people try to blame lack of gun control on people who have a disability. I understand that stable people do not think shooting innocent people is okay. However, it is not fair to demonize a community that is more likely to suffer violence than inflict it.
The phrase, “guns don’t kill people; people kill people” is not entirely true. People who have access to an arsenal of weapons kill people. We don’t know the exact state of mind of these people, but we do know this — they had guns.
This was not meant to be a political essay or a commentary on gun control, but whatever gets the job done.
I am not going to list all the countries that have stricter gun control policies than the United States. The research and statistics are out there for people to read. And if you read it, you’ll see the answer is pretty clear.
Do we have a mental illness problem in the U.S.? Yes.
Do we have a gun control problem in the U.S.? Yes.
Our community is misunderstood and marginalized enough as it is. We do not need to be scapegoated for a bigger problem that has nothing to do with the majority of us.
A very large percentage of the mentally ill are not violent. Please don’t push your misinformation and prejudices on us to distract from the bigger issue at hand.
The bottom line is that innocent lives were lost yet again. Again. I cannot bear to sit here and watch pictures flash across the screen of innocent victims, some only 14 years of age, and not cringe and shake my head in disbelief. It’s sad and heartbreaking and it’s outrageous…and it’s preventable. Not by demonizing the mentally ill, but by stricter gun control laws.
And while we are at it, let’s get more funding for out patient mental health. Let’s get more funding for mental health services in schools and workplaces.
The fact of the matter is that NOTHING is being done to help innocent victims — both the victims of gun violence and the mentally ill.
Our government has in the past and will try again in the future, to cut funding for mental health and addiction services. Right now, our government is doing nothing to stop gun violence and enact stricter gun control laws.
The problem is not with the mentally ill.