Military suicides are on the rise for 2012, and government leaders seem to be at a loss about how to prevent them. It’s sad when a person feels their situation will never change and thus they decide to end their life by suicide.
According to some experts those who survive a suicide attempt report the following, they wanted, “not so much to die as to stop living, a strange dichotomy but a valid one nevertheless.”
In June, the Marine Corps examiner reported that suicide could kill more troops than the war in Afghanistan this year. The Marine Corps Times said,
The 154 suicides for active-duty troops in the first 155 days of the year far outdistance the U.S. forces killed in action in Afghanistan — about 50 percent more — according to Pentagon statistics obtained by the Associated Press.
Many senior military officers do not grasp the nature of the suicide problem. Maj. Gen. Dana Pittard wrote the following on his blog.
I have now come to the conclusion that suicide is an absolutely selfish act. I am personally fed up with soldiers who are choosing to take their own lives so that others can clean up their mess. Be an adult, act like an adult, and deal with your real-life problems like the rest of us.
The general retracted his statement but never has apologized. An article on the Chicago Tribune website shows how much the president and our military leaders really care about our troops. The columnist states that on October 22, President Obama made the following statement,
(We are) “making sure that…our veterans are getting the care that they need when it comes to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury.”
This statement shows how out of tune our leaders are with what is really happening at the VA. A couple of weeks before the president made that statement the VA was busy making changes to their PTSD program. The VA announced they were suspending support, equipment, veterinary care, and counseling for service dogs to be partnered with veterans returning from war with PTSD.
Steve Dale goes on to say in his article that, “the VA summarily discontinued an ongoing study (which was a directive of Congress) to better understand the impact service dogs have on veterans with PTSD and their families.”
Our military needs all the help they can get when returning home from war. However, it would seem that our leaders and those in power don’t care about our troops. The latest person to show their disdain for our military men and women is Ted Turner. During a recent appearance on CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight, Mr. Turner showed his despicable thoughts about military suicide.
The following is how the dialogue unfolded between Turner and Morgan.
Morgan: More American service-men are dying…
Turner: …are dying now…
Turner: …from suicide over there then are dying in combat.
Morgan: …that’s shocking isn’t it?
Turner: he stutters some then replies…no, I think it’s ter…I think it’s good because it’s so clear, we’re programmed…and and we’re born to love and help each other not to kill each other, destroy each other; that’s an aberration left over from hundreds of years ago, it’s time for us to start acting enlightened.
You can watch the short segment of Turner’s conversation with Morgan on Youtube.com here. No doubt many will argue that Turner’s comments expresse his satisfaction with the fact that Americans are getting a distaste for war. However, Turner has expressed his thoughts about de-population many times. In 1996 Turner said,
A total population of 250-300 million people, a 95% decline from present levels, would be ideal (LiveLeak.com).
The reader of this article can decide for themselves about Mr. Turner by doing some research about him. There is good news in all of this though, many veterans and everyday Americans are doing more to help our troops than ever before. One veteran, Brian Kinsella, is doing what he can to help veterans with PTSD.
Kinsella is a former Army officer who went on a cross-country motorcycle trip, his mission was to get service members free mental health care. His goal is to help raise awareness about military suicides. You can watch a short video about his mission here. Kinsella’s website, Stop Soldier Suicide: Ride for Life, is dedicated to helping prevent military suicides.
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