Letter: Mental health labels
We are all searching for the way to prevent gun violence. It is a multi-faceted problem with no single answer, and an important component of this prevention is attention to mental health. But we must also be careful.
In our efforts to address people who need help, it becomes too easy to start applying labels. And once someone has been labeled as having mental health problems, the way they are looked at and treated by society is permanently changed.
The human mind is complex. Let’s try not to apply a one-size-fits-all label on someone who needs help. Let the mental health professionals determine who needs what kinds of help and not slap a generalized law on people that will only hurt them.
We’re on the top of a slippery slope here. We don’t want to stigmatize people so much that they resist getting the help they need and want. We must look at the big picture and address all the problems together, not pick out only one part of a solution. That’s no solution at all.
And please, please let’s not further damage people who are already hurting.