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Saturday, May 24, 2014

Preventable 7 deaths in California drive by shooting by deranged killer who video taped his mental illness delusions

More preventable gun violence deaths in California today perpetrated by a clearly mentally ill man who video taped his delusional paranoia.

CNN reports: Drive-by shootings in Southern California on Friday night left seven people dead, CNN affiliate KEYT-TV reported Saturday, citing Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown.

Brown said the suspected gunman was among seven people killed in the shootings and stabbings (three were killed brutally by stabbings), which occurred in Isla Vista -- near the University of California, Santa Barbara.

"This was a premeditated mass murder," Brown said, and he labeled the suspect as "severely mentally disturbed."


This tragedy continues the murderous litany of preventable deaths caused by gun violence in America.  

What's worse, this incident appears to have been motivated by a man who grew up in an affluent family - he drove an expensive car and came from an influential family. 

Nevertheless, he created a clearly "sick" video describing his intentions as being motivated by "rejection" (presumably by women). In other words, the murders were committed by a rich mentally ill man with a gun. If the murderer received adequate mental health care, as well as denied access to guns, the presumption is, he and his victims would still be alive.

The dead gunman's name is Elliot Rodger. Clearly, Rodger desperately needed mental health care, but he didn't rise to the level of being a danger to himself or others.

Rodger obviously could afford the best mental health care from his family but, tragically, he preferred to act out his worst evil fantasies rather than receive treatment. There's no way Rodger wasn't showing symptoms of his delusional behavior, but somehow his affluence protected him from receiving the care he desperately needed to prevent his deadly violent outburst. (It's a difficult analogy, but-possibly- the shooter in the equally tragic Sandy Hook Connecticut Elementary School shootings and killings also had the affluence required to receive private mental health care. Nevertheless, the acute needs of Sandy Hook shooter Adam Lanza, somehow, were protected from access to care by his mother's upper middle class economic position.)  These two gun violence tragedies underlie basic truths about mental illness - ie, that the incidence impacts people from all walks of life and occurs without regard for socio-economic status.

Apparently, Rodger's delusions were influenced by a group called the Men's Rights Movement. (Oh my God! Now Americans are aware of yet another extremist group!)

Regardless of what motivated Rodger, or the acuteness of his delusions, one absolute fact remains about this particular tragedy, where 7 people are now dead from preventable violence. The absolute fact is this - without guns, all of the people in all gun violence deaths would still be alive if guns were prevented from being accessible to the killers. As for those who were diabolically stabbed to death by Rodger, their deaths might have been prevented if someone had insisted on having him treated for mental illness, although we'll likely never know for sure.

It's clearly time for Americans to stop gun violence! We can demand reasonable regulations to amend the Second Amendment and to insist, instead, on controls on the sale of guns. Saving lives of innocent victims of gun violence is clearly more important than protecting the unbridled interpretation of the Second Amendment.

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