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What should a society do about the mentally unstable?

A place to debate issues or to rant about what's on your mind. In addition to discussions about historical fiction, books, the publishing industry, and history, discussions about current political, social, and religious issues and other topics are allowed, so those who are easily offended by certain topics may want to avoid such threads. Members are expected to keep the discussions friendly and polite and to avoid personal attacks on other members. The moderators reserve the right to shut down a thread without warning if they believe it necessary.
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EC2
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Post by EC2 » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 2:24 pm

[quote=""Helen_Davis""]If they're sick enough though they don't need a gun to do it - they'll use another weapon or even their bare hands. I knew a man who never believed in guns but killed his wife by slashing her throat. They need to be taught morals and the value of human life.[/quote]

Oh yes, but a gun means they can kill far more people at once - should they choose to go out in a blaze of destruction. Someone wielding a knife is never going to reach the body count of a gunman.
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Divia
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Post by Divia » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 2:38 pm

[quote=""Helen_Davis""]Please. My grandpa had schizophrenia and he was a wonderful man. He was abused in psych wards. He was cut off from his family, wrapped in cold sheets and treated as an animal. The mentally ill are still human beings and just as worthy of a meaningful life. I'm gonna stop posting in this thread now, I am getting too angry.[/quote]

What are you talking about? I'm the one who said that there SHOULDN"T be old school asylums.

[quote=""Ash""]And who is going to make the decision who these SOME people are? And who is going to stop people from committing people who don't belong there? History is filled with husbands commiting wives, children committing parents (and vice versa) to get them out of the way. Once we start saying that SOME people should be put away, we have a serious problem ahead of us. Are you talking about going back to the days when these folks were locked up and treated as animals? Being compassionate and caring about human life is not not the same as being "PC". And saying 'put away' implies that you will lock the door and throw away the key, when these people need help, need to be able to live some resemblance of a life, even if it is in an institution.

There are many many people who need help and need to be separated from society. BWe can point to any of the recent mass murderers and say yes of course they should never have been out in public. But its more complex then that. When do you say that someone should be committed? At the first instance of possible misbehavior? At the first sign of any violence? When should we decide that someone needs to be watched? [/quote]

Did you read my post? I did NOT say that we should go back to the old school ways of doing it.

Put away means away from society. And for people who have a history of violent behavior then they should be placed in a facility.

My best friends mother has Schizophrenia. Guess, what, she doesnt get too CHOOSE if she takes her meds or not. Every day she goes down and gets them OR she is locked up. And in the 1/2 way house she was in another loose canon stabbed her and yes this guy had a list of violence and mental illnesses as well. He probably should have been locked up.

There are people who are perfectly capable of functioning in society if they have mental illnesses. Then there are those who cannot.

As for who would put them away. If a crime has been committed or there is a list of violent acts then I see nothing wrong with going through a process much like the court system to determine if these people are capable of being in society or not.

As for guns in America we wont ever get rid of them. We are a bunch of cowboys and like them. I have a rifle. I know that I can either A. shoot someone who tries to enter my house(I live in the country and we dont have police) or B. I can shoot a raccoon/coyote if they are trying to kill my chickens.
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Post by Ash » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 3:38 pm

Put away means away from society
Which means behind lock and key?

BTW interesting article - apparently the only warning signs was a very introverted child (possibly Aspergers) who was uncomfortable around others. Never involved in a violent act, never got in trouble. His barber said he always felt comfortable cutting his hair, that Adam just sat there and never said a word. Being an introvert, being afraid of people, not wanting to talk are not signs of a deranged mind. There were none of the usual red flags. But obviously something happened somewhere - its telling that he destroyed his hard drive on his computer before the killings. But before hand? What had he done that at the time period would have been a cause for concern?

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142 ... 92734.html

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Post by Misfit » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 4:16 pm

[quote=""EC2""]Oh yes, but a gun means they can kill far more people at once - should they choose to go out in a blaze of destruction. Someone wielding a knife is never going to reach the body count of a gunman.[/quote]

That's it right there. A gun like Divia mentioned, a gun used for protection or hunting is to my limited experience with guns a very different weapon than a mass assault weapon like has been used over and over again in these attacks. From what I have read of this case, the gunman would likely not even have got past the front doors of the school with a standard handgun or rifle, giving the police all the time they needed to respond.
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Post by EC2 » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 5:20 pm

[quote=""Misfit""]That's it right there. A gun like Divia mentioned, a gun used for protection or hunting is to my limited experience with guns a very different weapon than a mass assault weapon like has been used over and over again in these attacks. From what I have read of this case, the gunman would likely not even have got past the front doors of the school with a standard handgun or rifle, giving the police all the time they needed to respond.[/quote]

So how easy is it for a USA citizen to get hold of a mass assault weapon and ammunition? I have no idea, I'm just asking in order to be informed.
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

www.elizabethchadwick.com

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Post by Helen_Davis » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 6:22 pm

[quote=""Misfit""]That's it right there. A gun like Divia mentioned, a gun used for protection or hunting is to my limited experience with guns a very different weapon than a mass assault weapon like has been used over and over again in these attacks. From what I have read of this case, the gunman would likely not even have got past the front doors of the school with a standard handgun or rifle, giving the police all the time they needed to respond.[/quote]

I live in Wyoming. I carry a gun with me because as soon as you get out of town, there is real wildlife that can kill you if you can't shoot it. I've had to shoot a bear twice. Sad, but it was either him or me. They will never ban guns in this state.

Divia, I'm sorry, I misread your post. But I agree with Ash on this.
Last edited by Helen_Davis on Sun December 23rd, 2012, 6:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Helen_Davis » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 6:24 pm

[quote=""EC2""]So how easy is it for a USA citizen to get hold of a mass assault weapon and ammunition? I have no idea, I'm just asking in order to be informed.[/quote]

I think that's a state to state thing. in wyoming they basically have them when they're born but in some cities and states it's impossible virtually.

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Post by Susan » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 8:03 pm

[quote=""EC2""]So how easy is it for a USA citizen to get hold of a mass assault weapon and ammunition? I have no idea, I'm just asking in order to be informed.[/quote]

First of all,there is a vast difference in the percent of people in the 50 states who own guns. My state (New Jersey) has the second lowest gun ownership (12.3%). The highest is Wyoming with 59.7%.
http://usliberals.about.com/od/Election ... lation.htm

While there are some federal gun control laws, gun laws vary by state. In particular, note the differences in assault weapon bans state by state: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_laws_i ... y_state%29 New Jersey has bans on assault weapons and the information about NJ on the site above says, "15 round magazine limit. Assault weapons are allowed with license but are rarely issued unless you are a law enforcement officer or show specific need."

The three Walmarts that are within close driving distance of me do not sell guns, but in other states Walmart does sell guns. I've lived in the New York City area my whole life and the only times I have seen a gun is on a police officer.
Last edited by Susan on Sun December 23rd, 2012, 8:09 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Post by Helen_Davis » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 8:45 pm

[quote=""Susan""] The highest is Wyoming with 59.7%.
http://usliberals.about.com/od/Election ... lation.htm
[/quote]

I knew I was exaggerating but not by much...

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Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Sun December 23rd, 2012, 9:07 pm

In any state in the nation, anybody who wants to go on the black market can get an assault rifle very easily. In Mexico, where they have strict bans on assault weapons, it's even cheaper and easier.

Why would any reasonable person think that if there were only gun control then an unstable person couldn't think up a way to go out in a 'blaze of glory' (as they might think of it)? Quite beside the ease of getting an assault rifle illegally, here are instructions online for making a thermonuclear device, for making chemical weapons out of household cleaners, for making bombs out of fertilizer.

In all my experience with the mentally unstable, none of them has had a lower than average intelligence. Most of them are freaking brilliant. And when they get fixated, they stay on it.

Far better than trying to take protective weapons away from everyone would be if more people did the slow, time-consuming work of keeping the difficult people who live near them or are otherwise in their relationship circle steered in a more positive direction.

Risky? You bet. But consider the alternative.
Last edited by MLE (Emily Cotton) on Sun December 23rd, 2012, 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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