Sunday, January 6, 2013

Gun Rights Increase Suicides

The Arizona Republic
Pain radiated through the phone when Kristi Stadler called the crisis hotline in the wee hours one May morning.

"I would like to kill myself," she told Luis, the voice at the other end of the line. "I know that life is an option for me, but I know it's been an option for the past 12 years, and it hasn't gotten any better, and when it does, it always gets bad again."

Terry Stadler tears up as he talks about his daughter's 12-year battle with mental illness. She fought it with everything she had, he says. With repeated hospitalizations, with medication and an electrical implant designed to help with her deep depression. With crisis counseling and years of work with psychiatrists. She fought hard, her father says, right up until that day in May 2009 when the Phoenix Police Department handed her a loaded gun. Fifteen hours later, Kristi Lee Stadler was dead.

Knowing that she had a history of mental illness.

Knowing that she had threatened suicide two months earlier.

Instead, police did the requisite "Brady check," verifying that Kristi had never been ordered by a judge into treatment, and proceeded to track her down to let her know she could come get her gun.
Kristi picked up her gun and bullets on May 7, 2009.

She died just after 4 a.m. on May 8.
This sad story is a good illustration of how guns assist suicides. The biased pro-gun folks will say anything to defend and protect their beloved guns, but the obvious fact is gun availability makes suicide attempts more likely to succeed.

One of the things they're worried about is that people with minor psychological problems will also be restricted if we try to do something about this.  In successfully striving to prevent that, they are responsible for cases like this.

What's your opinion?  Please leave a comment.


  1. "..of how guns assist suicides." -- Those inclined to end their own lives will find a way, despite any access to particular methods.

    1. The very voice of compassion. You are a crappy "rev".

    2. No, he's consistent with the theology of his religion. In Christianity, as in many different systems of belief, we are each responsible for our own actions.

    3. Only gun-rights fanatics say that. Everybody else recognizes the lethality of guns when attempting suicide as enough to make them particularly unforgiving. Reasonable people also know that not everybody who kills themselves was committed to the idea. Often it's a passing depression.

    4. Hanging is the second most common method. A rope isn't all that forgiving either, once the person has taken the step, so to speak.

      But we come back to the point that Japan has a much higher rate than the United States, and Ireland and Canada have similar rates. In those three countries, guns are either banned or much more restricted. Why aren't their rates significantly lower?

  2. Japan's suicide rate is much higher than America's, despite that island's strict gun laws. Canada and Ireland, nations with strict gun laws and cultures similar to our own, have about the same rates of suicide.

    When you feel without thinking, you frequently go astray.

  3. Coulda, woulda, shoulda. Ferchrissakes, people can be frickin' locked up in jail and kill themselves. How many damn suicide hangings are there in jails. Do you wanna suggest Mikeb, that jails assist suicides?

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