Letters to the Editor

February 18, 2013

Focus on helping the mentally ill

Guns can certainly be the explosive force that stops lives, but why are we looking at the wrong issue in regards to gun control? It is the person behind the gun who is suffering from a serious mental illness and firing that gun.

A former Los Angeles police officer went on a rampage to kill those he thought were responsible for his being fired from his job. Guns can certainly be the explosive force that stops lives, but why are we looking at the wrong issue in regards to gun control? It is the person behind the gun who is suffering from a serious mental illness and firing that gun.

A mentally well, responsible person would not use a gun for mass killings. The above former officer suffered from a serious mental illness. We should be spending a lot more time on educating the public about mental illness so that a mental illness does not get serious before that person gets help.

Another concern is a great need for adequate mental illness care and available hospital beds. Let's focus more on taking care of the mentally ill person behind that gun than on gun control.

BARBARA BERG-PHILLIPS

Riverbank

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