Here’s the lead in the article: “Frustration is mounting in the medical community as the Trump administration again points to mental illness in response to yet another mass shooting.”
Dr. Louis Kraus (article) is apparently incapable of thinking through the issues using systems analysis. Perhaps he’s forgotten the the class in which we consider mass shooters: Violently Criminally Insane.
Certainly, most mentally ill people are not prone to violence.
Certainly many violent people and criminals are not mentally ill.
But anyone who would indiscriminately murder large numbers of human beings outside the bounds of lawful warfare is, by definition, violent, criminal, and insane.
Then along come the armchair quarterbacks like Dr. Kraus: “Mental health professionals welcome more resources and attention, but they say the administration is ignoring the real problem — easy access to guns.”
Dr. Kraus, that is absolutely NOT the problem: 150,000,000 (150 MILLION) Americans have INSTANT access to guns, yet I don’t see them running around blowing holes in school children or predominantly conservative concert-goers in Las Vegas. DO YOU, DR. KRAUS? Of course you don’t. Furthermore, the UK’s violent crime rate shot up from near-US levels to nearly triple US levels when their government banned and confiscated most guns. Clearly, the fact that they had an armed general populace was a significant DETERRENT to violent crime, WASN’T IT, DR. KRAUS???
So what’s the difference? Out of those 150 MILLION gun owners, many can be violent, but they’re not criminals. A few are criminals, but they’re not insane.
The difference is simple: 99.999998% of those who have access to firearms are NOT violently criminally insane. Put another way, simply compare 150 million to the roughly 3 people per year who commit indiscriminate mass murder of the kind we see in school shootings, mall shootings, and theater shootings. Nearly all of them DO Have mental health issues, DON’T THEY, DR. KRAUS?
Please pardon my allcaps, but I’m trying to point out what is clearly obvious to the vast majority of Americans who have had properly military and/or law enforcement firearms training: It’s NOT the guns. Guns are NOT the problem. In fact, mass shooters rarely exhibit either violent or criminal tendencies before the snap. But SNAP they do, and when they do snap, it’s psychological in nature i.e. broken mental health, and many people die.
Thus, when people like Dr. Kraus come along and claim, “The concept that mental illness is a precursor to violent behavior is nonsense,” I find such statements themselves to be nonsense. Don’t get me wrong: It may very well hold true for the 99.999998% of gun owners who do NOT commit a mass shooting during any given year.
But that’s not the group we’re discussing, is it? We’re discussing the 3 people each year who go on indiscriminate shooting sprees against dozens of people. We’re talking about the mass shooters in Orlando, San Bernardinao, the Navy shipyard, Sandy Hook, Aurora, at Gabby Gifford’s talk, Virginia Tech, the church in Texas, the church in Charleston, SC, Luby’s, etc. Each and every one of them is, by definition, MENTALLY ILL.
So OF COURSE President Trump is talking about mental illness.
What YOU can do, Dr. Kraus, is help identify the 0.000002% of gun owners who meet the full definition of “violent criminally insane” AND are likely to go on a shooting spree.
THAT’S how you can help, Dr. Kraus. Please do THAT, instead of sitting back on your high horse and obfuscating the issue.