Depakote. Zyprexa. Risperadol, Abilify, Haldol, risperidone, olanzapine and an alphabet soup of other names of various drugs are used in the treatment of schizophrenia. There are others for ADD (Ritalin, Adderall), ADHD, etc, etc. Many times, there are multiple diagnoses and psychiatrists work with combinations of drugs in order to stabilize their patients. the bottom line is that psychiatric treatment in this country is primarily prescribed today.
David Kupelian hints at the lack of coverage of the Newtown shooter’s mental health profile. The media reports that the shooter had clinically defined mental health issues but stopped their investigations to chase after gun control. And yet it is the shooter’s mental state that is the crux of the matter. Guns are inanimate objects, and yet banning firearms is the easy solution.
Our prison system is filled with inmates with psychiatric issues. Studies report that 20% of inmates nationally have been clinically diagnosed. Many of the denizens of skid rows around the country have similar issues. Medication; mismedication, refusal of medication, and misdiagnosis are all a part of the puzzle that makes up our mental health wasteland today.
Here in California, a homeless man named Kelly Thomas; delusional and paranoid/schizophrenic was beaten to death by Fullerton police poorly trained in dealing with 5150 cases. 5150 is the section of the California Welfare & Institutions Code that allows a 72 hour psychiatric hold for patients who may be a harm to themselves or others. Mr. Thomas was held several times on this basis before his brutal death.
The Newtown shooter; Adam Lanza, had a history of mental illness. So far though, this has been undisclosed. Instead, the Left is going for the guns. It’s what they think is an easy play with sentiments in an uproar. They would rather abrogate the Constitution than deal with the real issues.
Rather than addressing root causes not just of this shooting but of crimes by and against the mentally ill nationally, the issue has become another tool for politicization. As Rahm Emmanuel famously said “never let a good crisis go to waste.”
Mental health care in this country is in crisis. We have a subculture of addiction; to pot; to prescription drugs; to heroin; to alcohol. Many bipolar individuals become addicted to routines including exercise and sex. We don’t deal with it. We prescribe medications to shut them up.
The consequences are upon us. From Jared Loughner in Tucson to Aurora, Colorado, to Newtown we have created a perfect storm of fantasy violence and enablement and psychiatric malpractice and institutional indifference. It is cheaper to gun down mad dogs than deal with the real issues. We don’t want to deal with the causes; only the symptoms. That is the politician’s way of dealing with crises.