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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Return of the Great Gun Debate: Sally take your Prozac and hide your Glock


In between the many news reports of how "Obamacare signups caused Malaysian Flight 370 into a Wormhole" there was yet another senseless shooting at Fort Hood that could've been avoided but instead has caused another political kneejerk reaction.

Less then 12 hours after the 2nd tragic shooting at Fort Hood, Speaker John Boehner stated "there’s “no question” that mentally ill people should be prevented from buying guns." However the problem this time around, is the mentally ill Speaker Boehner speaks of happens to be a member of the US Military. Which actually sparks larger debate after the first Foot Hood shooting by Nidal Hasan about all members of the military should be carrying a pistol or rifle.

There are many positions one can hold while serving our nation and not all of those position require a person to carry a weapon. From administrative to medical staff to cooks, unless they are Steven Seagal in the movie "Under Siege," the need for a weapon for every service member is minimal.

Then again, shooting the vending machine for letting the Kit Kat hang is an actionable offense for anyone.

We really need to look at the words of Speaker Boehner's concerning mentally ill as they are extremely vague in detail and not limited to the discussion of the US Military only.

Now, to Speaker Boehner's thought, I do agree that yes guns should not be allowed to be owned by the mentally ill but honestly, who is going to re-define the term "mentally ill."

A simple definition of mentally ill is "that of unsound mind" and even that is too vague to give description as in today's world it doesn't take much to label someone "unsound."

WebMD.com has 2 pages of best known labels for the term mentally ill: Anxiety disorders, Mood disorders, Psychotic disorders (come to think of it that's describes 1/2 my past girlfriends), Eating disorders, Impulse disorders, Adjustment disorders, Sexual disorders, Tic disorders, Dementia, Alzheimer's, and sleep disorder just too name a few.

So where would he begin in his new definition?

In the case of the current Fort Hood incident, Spc. Ivan Lopez was being treated for post traumatic stress disorder, yet also had a history of depression and anxiety. And again, everyone has become an overnight expert on PTSD saying that because he saw no combat while in Afghanistan there is no way he could have PTSD.

Um, yes he can by just seeing those returning from battle or hearing the constant explosions miles away, it doesn't take much and even the medical experts are discovering more reason as to how one can have PTSD symptoms.

Yes, after the shooting of 28 children and adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School by Adam Lanza, everyone became an expert overnight of Autism and Asperger's that it disgusted me. Why? Simple, I am a father of an Asperger's child and everyday the spectrum and knowledge changes.

Again, I ask, where or how do we redefine the definition of mentally ill?

What if someone is prescribed an anti-inflammatory drug like Naproxen for joint, muscle and/or arthritis pain?

Sounds simple enough even though a side effect is mental/mood swings, could that person be defined as mentally ill?

OK, so we really can't redefine mentally ill unless we list specific illness, because if we went by prescriptions, well I'd say 70% of the country would be on a "watch list."

Got Anxiety Disorder? Well step right up as there are over 20+ prescription drugs too choose from to help.

The point being, for every disorder there at least 3 prescriptions to help ease the situation. If we do not redefine the term mentally ill then maybe suspend the 2nd Amendment right for those prescribed certain drugs.

Now if, for some cosmic planetary alignment, Congress would pass the notion of redefining an incredible demographic of American populace, what do to with all these newly acquired weapons?

Think about it for a moment, would Congress "grandfather" weapons for the newly diagnosed? "If you own a gun today and become medically diagnosed with erectile dysfunction and need to be prescribed Viagra which has mood disorder side effects, under this new law you can still keep your gun."

It's an honest question with a follow up notion that under a newly created mentally ill definition, how many would end up collecting SSI and other entitlements?

Fraudulent lawyers and doctors could see massive future riches with claim suits.

One could even further the gun debate and possible place a suspension on gun ownership to members of the Military returning from active combat until cleared for PTSD.

That idea could destroy any political career in a snap.

Well if we rewind back to January 2014, Attorney General Eric Holder was a few steps ahead of Speaker Boehner when he introduced a plan that would further and tighten the limits of gun sales to the mentally ill.

As reported in the USA Today, AG Holder stated "We are taking an important, common sense step to clarify the federal firearms regulations, which will strengthen our ability to keep dangerous weapons out of the wrong hands, this step will provide clear guidance on who is prohibited from possessing firearms under federal law for reasons related to mental health, enabling America's brave law enforcement and public safety officials to better protect the American people and ensure the safety of our homes and communities.''

The plan actually expanded the definition to include "committed to a mental institution." The addition to the definition includes those that are involuntarily placed in outpatient and inpatient commitments to be prohibited from purchasing firearms.

To further clarify the federal redefinition by AG Holder, the addition also shall include "persons who are found incompetent to stand trial or not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect; persons lacking mental responsibility or deemed insane; and persons found guilty but mentally ill, regardless of whether these determinations are made by a state, local, federal or military court."

So a new question now becomes "Who do you trust more on limiting mentally ill gun ownership; One who has produced a plan or One who spoke about a possible future plan?"

Unfortunately, that question will be lengthened by adding "Who do you trust more on limiting mentally ill gun ownership; A Democrat who has produced a plan or a Republican who spoke about a possible future plan?"

That's it, Slap the Tap, take a big gulp, pass the peanuts and wait for the next gun debate knee jerk reaction that will fall on deaf ears thanks to the political divide.

CHEERS!