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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Just say no to a Department of Mental Health

One man's bad news is another man's good. Witness the headline in the Roll Call: "Why Mental Health Bill Isn’t Moving."

Republican Congressman Tim Murphy of Pennsylvania, a clinical psychologist, is pushing to federalize his industry. Why not? Look what federalizing education has done. Oh the students aren't doing better, but six figure salaries are now the nor for school superintendents. So of course Murphy wants the federal government to expand its monetary footprint in the mental health industry.

From Roll Call:
“We have to do it now,” Rep. Tim Murphy said on the House floor, urging Congress to act on his mental health system overhaul legislation in the wake of another mass shooting.
Yes, congressman, just like we have to pass gun control measures. And his proposal is just as useless as gun control in preventing mass killings. From the article:
After the attack in San Bernardino, Ryan told CBS “This Morning” that, “We think that’s one of the most consistent and common themes, which are people with mental illness are getting guns and committing these mass shootings.”
Murphy said there has been “a sea change” since then. One caveat, though: Ryan implied the problem is that the mentally ill are “getting guns,” but Murphy’s bill does not address obtaining firearms.
Got that? His bill does nothing to prevent the mentally ill from obtaining guns. OK? If he were a liberal, I would call him a ghoul for anting to use the bodies of the dead to pass his pet legislation.

Such exploitation makes supporters uncomfortable. From the article:
“I’m uncomfortable having mental health framed as a response to gun violence because it risks drawing an inherent connection between mental illness and violence, which doesn’t exist,” Sen. Christopher S. Murphy, D-Conn., said. Murphy and Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., have sponsored a bill similar to the House legislation. A 2015 American Journal on Public Health report cited data from the National Center for Health Statistics showing that between 2001 and 2010, less than 5 percent of gun-related deaths were at the hands of people with a mental illness.
Paul Gionfriddo, president and CEO of Mental Health America, said gun violence and mental health issues do sometimes intersect, but not often.“[People] will just be disappointed if they think that reforming the mental health system is the single best answer to gun violence or keeping guns out of the hands of people with mental illness. … It’s just not,” Gionfriddo said.
Mental health is important but aa limited government is more important. Congress has enough on its plate and it does a lousy job. Terrible. Highways are broken, food stamps are abused, education is a mess, the Islamic State is running rampant, the CDC is a politicized, student loans are making colleges big expensive kindergartens, the VA is a travesty, and so on and so on. Even teh Secret Service is a mess.

Congress should ignore mental health. It is too serious a subject for the federal government to take on.

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