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Thread: To Reduce Gun Violence, Congress Must Address Mental Health

  1. #61
    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    Well my understanding of the "red flag" law would be that if a person sets off one of the flags, the police has the right to bring that person before a judge for a hearing, with his lawyer, and only after a judge has ruled can the person's guns be taken away. That is to allow due process. I think they will also need to have regular hearings to re-evaluate the person as time goes on.

    I am not sure, and I hope it isn't just up to a judge, but the guy has to have professional evaluation by a medical professional.
    Would a red flag require, first, actually breaking a law? Or could it be based on an officer's assessment after, say, filing a spousal conflict form? And if after breaking a law, which types of laws? Could looking a bit nutty after failing to signal get your guns taken from you?

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    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    Remember, until 1973, psychiatry used to tell us homosexuality was a mental illness!
    Yeah, I think psychiatry has done some great goods for society, but it does become a case of "who watches the watchers?" Men and women wearing white lab coats have become the priests of this secular age.

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  4. #63
    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    Well my understanding of the "red flag" law would be that if a person sets off one of the flags, the police has the right to bring that person before a judge for a hearing, with his lawyer, and only after a judge has ruled can the person's guns be taken away. That is to allow due process. I think they will also need to have regular hearings to re-evaluate the person as time goes on.
    I don't think they can actually "bring the guy", eh? I think they can bring the matter, then subsequently, of so ordered, "bring the guy".

    I am not sure, and I hope it isn't just up to a judge, but the guy has to have professional evaluation by a medical professional.
    There are just so many variables.
    Every problem is the result of a previous solution.

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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Would a red flag require, first, actually breaking a law? Or could it be based on an officer's assessment after, say, filing a spousal conflict form? And if after breaking a law, which types of laws? Could looking a bit nutty after failing to signal get your guns taken from you?
    That I don't know. There are a lot of holes in this whole red flag idea.

    My biggest worry is that they will enact something, then someone will still end up shooting up a school and the liberals will cry that we need stronger red flag laws. rinse and repeat until they get their way and nobody can have a gun or they can just accuse someone of being "insane" and take away their guns without due process and you have to go to court to prove yourself sane to get them back.

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    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Yeah, I think psychiatry has done some great goods for society, but it does become a case of "who watches the watchers?" Men and women wearing white lab coats have become the priests of this secular age.
    I've told the story about me having to go to Atlanta to rescue my epileptic brother from the "nut house" there --- the "psychiatrist" I talked to... um... I kept thinking "this is really an inmate who killed the psychiatrist and stole his lab coat!" They guy seemed totally depressed and "off".
    Every problem is the result of a previous solution.

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    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Would a red flag require, first, actually breaking a law?
    The versions I've heard, no.

    Or could it be based on an officer's assessment after, say, filing a spousal conflict form? And if after breaking a law, which types of laws? Could looking a bit nutty after failing to signal get your guns taken from you?
    We already do this with Child Protective Services, but I could tell you some horror stories there, too. It really is a conundrum.
    Every problem is the result of a previous solution.

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  10. #67
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    That I don't know. There are a lot of holes in this whole red flag idea.

    My biggest worry is that they will enact something, then someone will still end up shooting up a school and the liberals will cry that we need stronger red flag laws. rinse and repeat until they get their way and nobody can have a gun or they can just accuse someone of being "insane" and take away their guns without due process and you have to go to court to prove yourself sane to get them back.
    Something like saying "you would be crazy to have gun these days"?

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  12. #68
    tWebber Teallaura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Probably for another thread, but I think this is a legit concern, especially considering the many abuses that were prevalent in asylums in the 19th and 20th century. As a prominent psychiatrist/psychologist himself, I think Thomas Szasz's work on this subject is relevant. Here's a brief summary of his views from Wikipedia,
    Abolition of the insanity defense and involuntary hospitalization
    Szasz believed that testimony about the mental competence of a defendant should not be admissible in trials. Psychiatrists testifying about the mental state of an accused person's mind have about as much business as a priest testifying about the religious state of a person's soul in our courts. Insanity was a legal tactic invented to circumvent the punishments of the Church, which at the time included confiscation of the property of those who committed suicide, often leaving widows and orphans destitute. Only an insane person would do such a thing to his widow and children, it was successfully argued. This is legal mercy masquerading as medicine, according to Szasz.

    No one should be deprived of liberty unless he is found guilty of a criminal offense. Depriving a person of liberty for what is said to be his own good is immoral. Just as a person suffering from terminal cancer may refuse treatment, so should a person be able to refuse psychiatric treatment.

    I actually think his view goes too far, and I definitely think it's in society's best interest to offer help to the mentally ill, even if they're competent enough to refuse it, but thinking back to past psychiatric measures, and keeping in consideration questions on autonomy, I find myself divided on the issue.
    Yep - it will be thorny as heck - but letting incompetent people end up dying on the street is not a rational alternative. We have to devise systems with sufficient safeguards that don't become useless. Nothing easy in that.

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  14. #69
    tWebber Teallaura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    Well its logical. Do you want people who are too crazy to own a gun voting?
    Which would bother more people if they could lose it? That's the one you want this tied to to help ensure gun owners aren't railroaded.

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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teallaura View Post
    Which would bother more people if they could lose it? That's the one you want this tied to to help ensure gun owners aren't railroaded.
    I am just thinking like a liberal. If we take guns away from people and their vote, then they can't vote to change back the law.

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