I’m expecting that title to inflame some of you. Maybe then you will get the idea what the NRA did to me when they suggested the answer to school shootings is more guns in the schools.
I came up with and wrote an article with this title almost immediately after hearing the NRA plans in December. Only instead of publishing it I held it back and wrote a different article saying the NRA is socialist. Which is true.
I held my article back because I thought it might be too ridiculous, shocking, and unnerving. I mistakenly thought the NRA plan to place an armed guard in every school would automatically be thought to be too ridiculous, shocking, and unnerving. But instead New Jersey and Philadelphia have caved in to the NRA plans. In fact the NRA is so emboldened they have put out ads that are a personal attack on President Obama’s family.
So here I am finally bringing my idea to the public.. That idea is to place someone who is mentally ill (but treated) in every school of the nation to talk down a would be school shooter.
Why the mentally ill? Well quite frankly psychiatrists and adequately trained psychologists are very pricey. Many, many, of the mentally ill have become quite expert at learning about their own diagnosis and other similar ones they may encounter through group programs. This helps in restarting their lives and in many an interest in the psychological and psychiatric has developed.
Indeed some of the mentally ill train to become beacons of light for others with mental illness. It is not uncommon to find the mentally ill handling public crisis lines that are excellent resources to the community.
If we recruit among the mentally ill we should only take those that have this interest in the psychological and psychiatric. As well we should only recruit among those that have good outcomes with their illness. Where they have few or none of those symptoms that might unnerve a parent at the school the consumer/survivor might work for. Just as in the business of hiring an armed guard, careful consideration would be taken in selecting a mentally ill negotiator.
As well, applicants must graduate a negotiating class to increase their skills.
Do you still doubt me about why this should be done among the mentally ill? How many of you have heard about anosognosia? The psychiatric definition is that the anosognosic does not have the insight to realize that they suffer from a mental illness. There are step by step ways to deal with this problem that the insightful, treated, mentally ill person might have even used before. That kind of on the ground experience would be highly useful to our negotiator.
And if you still doubt the usefulness of a negotiator compared to an armed guard, let’s agree that the successful negotiator will have zero dead bodies. Can the successful armed guard say the same?
There was an armed guard at Columbine in that school’s tragic shooting. 15 died and 23 were wounded there. The very recent shooting at a California school ended with only one injured and no dead after a teacher and school employee talked the student down from more damage. The student reportedly had another 20 rounds for his shotgun.
And to further dampen the NRA’s position, just today while part of the NRA was busy threatening at state capitals -er protesting at state capitals, 3 gun shows across the United States saw a total of 5 people injured by firearms. It looks like the best gun control time is now.