Following the horrific murder in Florida President Trump spoke to the lost children. No one else did. Kudos to him for stating a fact that seems not to be well known. Our children need better mental health care and our communities must step up.
“I want to speak now directly to America’s children, especially those who feel lost, alone, confused or even scared: I want you to know that you are never alone and you never will be. You have people who care about you, who love you, and who will do anything at all to protect you. If you need help, turn to a teacher, a family member, a local police officer, or a faith leader. Answer hate with love; answer cruelty with kindness. We must also work together to create a culture in our country that embraces the dignity of life, that creates deep and meaningful human connections and that turns classmates and colleagues into friends and neighbors.
He also said “We are committed to working with state and local leaders to secure our schools and tackle the difficult issue of mental health.”
Bless the President for expressing these views. Sadly the people who should have cared for Cruz, failed him, his family and his community.
A young man/boy murdered 17 innocent people. With a gun. Was he alone in this act ? No. All those in authority who should have done their jobs contributed to this mass murder. These horrific murders should have been prevented and could have been prevented. He was fixated on guns and killing animals. Killing animals? This is a scream for help. Killing animals is a sign of horror to come.
“Since the 1970’s, research has consistently reported childhood cruelty to animals as the first warning sign of later delinquency, violence, and criminal behavior. In fact, nearly all violent crime perpetrators have a history of animal cruelty in their profiles.”
The mother called the police 39 times. Thirty-nine times. And the response? Apparently nothing. The school knew he was trouble and expelled him. Threw him away-sent him to be someone else’s’ problem. Where were the children’s aid organizations? He was under therapy-what happened? According to Alan J. Lipman, Ph.D., J.D., professor at the George Washington Medical Center and founder and director of the Center for the Study of Violence in Washington, D.C.:
“A young male between the ages of 16 and 25 who is depressed and has a fascination with violence. Their depression is either undiagnosed or untreated. Cruz received mental health therapy, “but it was brief and there was no follow-up,” said Lipman. Had Cruz continued treatment, “it’s more than likely this would never have happened.” But depression itself, or any of the other two conditions, does not motivate someone to carry out an overwhelming, vengeful act of violence that destroys innocent lives. There is usually a triggering event.
Do you think the final trigger might have been the sudden death of his mother in November? Leaving him and his brother orphans?
He videoed himself cutting himself- a serious sign of mental illness. He posted on FB that he was going to shoot people. Someone who knew him reported him to the FBI in January. Someone else reported him months earlier. Do you think he gave enough notice? And what happened?
And so many are taking their righteous anger out on him. Not the bureaucracies put in place to prevent these things.
Most mentally ill people are not violent, and curing all mental illnesses would only prevent a small fraction—about 4 percent—of all violence. However, mentally ill people are more likely to carry out acts of violence if they aren’t being treated—hospitalized or medicated—for their mental illness. In other words, if we do want to prevent the small percentage of mentally ill people who might be violent from being violent, we should try to get them into treatment.
John Snook is executive director of the Treatment Advocacy Center, widely recognized as one of the most influential mental health advocacy organizations in existence today responded to the murder. “Florida has done an inexcusably poor job at funding mental health. They are [44th in the nation], so it’s hard to get someone engaged in care unless they’re at a point where it’s obvious to everyone that they are sick and really dangerous.
“In Florida, the system is so starved that you really are only getting care through law enforcement. Law enforcement needs to sign off on those situations. When it comes to mental health, every single part of the system is broken. In Florida, [as in much of the United States], you don’t have enough hospital beds. That is obviously a simple place to start. There also aren’t enough community services, there aren’t enough psychiatrists. Basically, every angle that you can think of for looking at the system for getting someone care for mental illness is essentially broken in Florida.”
Caring people wrote on FB:
Give him a taste of Ole Sparky
He needs to be executed
He knows the difference between right and wrong. He just doesn’t care. This animal is beyond help
Keep conflating terrorism, hate and evil with mental illness.
Keep it up and there will be more horrific attacks because we have failed our young people-in so many ways. Keep demonizing mental illness and worse will happen. No amount of programmes like Bell Let’s Talk End the Stigma or Partners for Mental Health will succeed if so many self-righteous people continue to stigmatize those of us who live with mental illness.
We will retreat.
From the Ethics of the Fathers: “Rabbi Tarfon used to say, it is not incumbent upon you to complete the task, but you are not exempt from undertaking it.”