The Antidote

Counterspin for Health Care and Health News

Thursday, April 19, 2007

More on mental health and gun laws

In today's New York Times, thoughts from two sides of the issue:
“A guy like that probably shouldn’t have been able to buy a gun,” said Mike McHugh, president of the Virginia Gun Owners Coalition. “But my point is, that’s not going to stop a guy like this.”

Gun control advocates conceded that an array of issues would complicate efforts to tighten such laws, including privacy concerns and difficulties in determining whether someone is mentally unstable.

“If you cataloged every American who has been depressed, you’d probably have a majority of the population,” said Ladd Everitt, a spokesman for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence.

But Mr. Everitt added: “I think it’s something that should be looked at. That’s as far as I would go. I think it’s a debate we should have.”


I would add that the doc who evaluated Cho at the institution did not judge him to be a danger to himself or others, so they had to let him go. What's up with these evaluations anyway? What can you do if the person doesn't answer truthfully?

And I imagine that the evaluation took place out of the context of the rest of Cho's life. Did the evaluator even know about all the violent stuff he'd been writing, the video games, etc.? That gets back to the privacy issues alluded to above.

Obviously these are issues I don't know a lot about. As I find out more, I'll share, and as always, discussion is welcome.

3 Comments:

At 2:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clearly in this instance, following NJ gun law requires that two people physically vouch for the competence of theperson buying the gun. This indivdidual would not have found two people and he never would have gotten the gun.

 
At 3:19 PM, Blogger Emily DeVoto, Ph.D., said...

Very interesting. Yes, I can see how that would have made it a lot harder for Cho.

 
At 11:05 PM, Blogger David Stefanini said...

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If you want to do this just go to my blog and in one of the comments just write your blog name and the URL and I will add it to my site.

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