Just some thoughts about mental health care in the U.S. Thinking about the life of the shooter in the Arizona killing spree, and how his mental health issues were neglected.
The media goes about the community asking people about their encounters with Jared Lee Loughner. People said he was scary in high school. The community college he attended, he had multiple encounters, that led to suspension with a requirement to have a mental health evaluation in order to be able to return to school. Instead, he dropped out, bought a gun, killed 5 people, and injured 19 total.
Let's just entertain the idea-- what if when multiple red flags for mental health issues surfaced, hewan not just "thrown out" of school, but sent for medical care. I don't know if Loughner has full blown paranoid schizophrenia, (some mental health pros checked out his you tube channel & came up w that diagnosis).
One neighbor said the first day he met his neighbor, he told his Mom, that guy will likely be a serial killer.
So how sad, that his mental health issues were not be addressed until he bottomed out, in a killing spree.
Now that the damage is done, he will have mental health evaluations, and get medical care.
The alleged shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, 22, briefly appeared in a Phoenix courtroom to formally hear the charges against him. If convicted, he could face the death penalty. A preliminary hearing was set for January 24.
I have a dear friend with an adult son who has severe multiple mental health issues. I have witnessed her struggle for years, with a medical community that is set up like a maze- letting the family stumble in the darkness, hitting walls with dead end, no results bureaucratic medical systems. Our mental health "system" offering little to no support at all, until it is a crisis.
Jared Lee Loughner's life is over. He will either be diagnosed mentally incompetent, and institutionalized in a lockdown situation. Spend the rest of his life in solitary confinement with no chance of parole, or he will get the death sentence. When you kill a Federal Judge, and shoot a Congressperson, and an innocent child, it is very likely Loughner will be the case that sends a message-- if anyone else thinks a shooting spree is a way to express dissent, then this case will demonstrate the severe consequences.
Six people were killed, including U.S. District Judge John Roll and 9-year-old Christina Taylor Green. Giffords and 13 other people were wounded during the rampage.
Tragedy on top of tragedy.