Contempt for the troubled unhelpful

I would like to respectfully respond to the letter which places all blame for the Newtown tragedy on the media. I suspect that the merits of that contention may be further debated so I will only suggest here that I view it as a slight over-simplification of a very complex problem. I would just like to address the assertion that were it not for the lure of media attention, “twisted souls would otherwise just drive off the cliff or off themselves in their basements …”. Hundreds of troubled young men and women in our country kill themselves each year. To imply, as the writer does, that suicide is acceptable as long as people put an end to their heartbreaking personal despair in privacy, is brutally repugnant. Quite likely, others are still among us who are being perceived (perhaps with good reason) as the mentioned “sick, lonely, unsatisfied nobodies.” Treating them with insensitivity and contempt will probably do very little to reduce the potential risk they might pose.

Claudia Postema


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