MENTAL HEALTH AND GUNS
A week or so ago we gave Governor Walker credit for including additional funds for mental health care in his budget proposal. We are strong supporters of parity in health care and we support all efforts to provide mental health care with dignity and respect. But this week, Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature have suggested they will focus on the mental health system as an alternative approach to gun violence. And that worries us a great deal.
Equating gun violence with mental illness does a grave injustice to millions of people with mental illness who are no more prone to shooting somebody than anybody else. Instead of fair and just care for mental illness these lawmakers are perpetrating the stigma that is so destructive to good people trying to live full and rich lives. Mental health care is right in and of itself. It is no substitute for reasonable gun laws.