The school shooter in Florida has now met the standard for commitment to receive psychiatric treatment in the USA: Do harm to oneself or to another.

Why are we surprised this shooting has happened? Why are we surprised these horrible events continue to happen? He cried out for help and was a "problem" student since middle school. He wasn't allowed to carry a backpack to school before he was suspended.

After Sandy Hook, congress commissioned a report to find out what happened. They found that commitment laws need to be changed, that treating people with mental health issues actually prevents tragedies like this. Treated mentally ill people are harmless. In fact, they're more often victims then perpetrators. Those who don't get treatment are society's biggest dangers. 

Many parents with kids who have mental health issues cannot get help for their children. They have to wait until their children try to hurt themselves or someone else to get help. Many sit in ERs waiting for beds to open. Many will be turned away, sent home, no meds, no treatment. Those who are admitted usually don't spend more than four days as inpatients because insurance companies won't pay for more days. Once a child reaches 18, HIPPA laws lock parents out as caregivers and the system makes it even harder to get help.

I know I've been an annoyance with mental health requests — please sign this petition, please call your congressman. Maybe now you understand you f*#king need to get involved and do something. 

I think and pray about this everyday but I advocate, too. How about joining me? Now.

Photo credit: Duq/flickr

Photo credit: Duq/flickr