The Rockin Johnny B

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Melisa Sue Writes

America suffers from terminal illness

America is suffering from an illness which could end up terminal if we don’t fix the problems. The writer of the old adage “money is the root of all evil” surely knew what he or she was talking about.

In America we have created a culture of violence which gets marketed in video games, movies, TV shows, music and toys all in the name of profit for international corporations whose only concern is the amount of revenue that profit margins bring from the sale of that violence.

One doesn’t have to venture far to reach a consensus on why violence sells in America. All that needs researching is what’s being advertised and packaged for profit — toy military weapons, video games that give points to the amount of kills a gamer can get, movies that are bloodier than in previous generations, sensationalized TV news and shows that are much more violent than in days gone by, and a society that makes heroes out of the many wars and conflicts being played out.

Being part of the computer and Internet age, there is less face-to-face interaction, which helps create a lack of moral and spiritual guidance.

When we add economics of raising a family, creating a culture where both parents need jobs in order to survive, we need to ask who is actually raising our children, why did these shootings occur, and why did young men feel they needed to take lives including their own?

I’m sure you won’t get those answers from their parents, as they weren’t around enough to know how their children felt.

In the last incident, the shooter’s anger was also directed toward the only parent we know about, and we’ll never be able to get the true story, which has to be told to get the true diagnosis and to obtain the medicine we need to cure America’s illness before it becomes terminal.

 Melissa Sue Robinson, Nampa

Melissa makes several salient points: 1. violent games and toys, 2.  Lack of moral and spiritual guidance, 3. poor parenting and/or no parenting, 4. poor economic conditions, 5. making heroes out of shooters, 6. less personal interaction and more computer interaction.

While I agree with much of what she says, I don't think she's captured the essence of the problem.  This nation gave up on the mentally ill back in the 80's during the Reagan Administration -- you remember that one, the Trickle Down Administration?  This administration believed in cutting back regulations and so-called 'entitlement programs' and the mental health area was one of them.  Reagan believed, and I hate to admit it, but a whole bunch of my Democrat friends believed this too, that the warehousing [that was their word for it] mentally ill people was inhumane and that those people who could be medicated should be sent back out to fend for themselves.  Nobody wanted to take it back when it turned out the mentally ill failed to take the meds and ended up on the streets as displaced and disavowed people.  In big cities you see them in the streets daily.  They are unwashed uncouth people who sound and are literally insane.  They are not on meds, they could be on meds, but who is going to make sure they take them...after all, they are insane and can't take care of themselves, yet nobody wants that responsibility.

These so-called shooters are obviously deranged and mentally disturbed and have been for a long time.  Their parents knew and probably sought help for them.  The city they lived in knew.  Their neighbors knew, the school knew and the disturbed person himself knew he was right in the head.  These folks should have gotten the help they needed it and should have been locked up where they couldn't do harm while they got the help.

Today, instead of treating the mentally ill, we put them in jails and prisons...after they have committed a crime...not before.  It's a ridiculous system.  It doesn't work and hasn't since the 80's.  But, mark my word, nothing will happen in this area even after these horrendous events.  Why?  Because it costs too much to hospitalize a mentally ill person and we are not set up for it in the second place, Reagan made sure of that.

I know my Conservative friends are dead set against regulations of any kind set down by the government, but some things need regulation.  The mentally ill and institutionalization of them is one area that needs regulation.  We need to ferret out these individuals and put them in asylums where they will be taken care of they way they need to be taken care of rather than having them terrorizing their parents, the community, the schools, and the prison and court systems.

Yes Melissa makes some salient points, but she doesn't get the big picture.  No matter.  Few do.  Sometimes I feel like John the Baptist yelling in the wilderness.

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