Perspectives: National Undertaking Needed To Fight Depression, Focus On Mental Health Issues
Editorial pages focus on mental health issues and the problems they pose for the nation.
Needed: A National Effort To Fight Depression
The recent suicides of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain are prominent examples of a rising trend. They add to the daily opiate overdoses in all our communities to make an urgent point: our country needs a nationally coordinated effort to address a major underlying cause — depression. (David Silbersweig, 6/21)
Can We Talk About Alcoholism And Anthony Bourdain?
I didn't know Anthony Bourdain, but felt like I did in one small important way. In him, I saw a drinking alcoholic with a front-stage vigorous attempt to do it successfully. His was a fantastic life-embracing show, with drinking taking a prominent role in the joie de vivre, and sometimes that made it hard for me to watch. ...Can Bourdain's death please generate a conversation about alcoholism and not just befuddlement about his fantastic life that countless people wish they had? Because you don't want his life. The travel, the breadth of his experiences, sure, maybe. But this man on the move had to stop sometimes. No cameras, no action. Just himself. I didn’t know him, but I do know addiction and it can be a fiercely critical companion that may take a back seat but lies in wait. It can tear us down and sometimes just won't shut up — goading shame, provoking self-loathing and inviting emotional isolation. (Jo Ann Towle, 6/21)
Candidates Must Talk About Mental Health. A New Coalition Will Make Them.
The recent tragic suicides of celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain and designer Kate Spade have once again put a spotlight on an issue that too many of us are afraid to confront – behavioral health. And it’s important to focus on our own friends, family, co-workers and neighbors who struggle day in and day out with mental illness. (Carmela Coyle and Jessica Cruz, 6/18)
With So Much Trauma, Let’s Make Mental Health America’s No. 1 Issue
Since it seems as though the only thing that counts in Washington is election outcomes, we’ll be clear: Mental health matters. The mental health of Americans underlies many of the major policy conversations and crises happening today in the United States; daily, it seems, we move mental health closer to the center of our national discourse. After every school shooting, Republicans tell us, “It’s a mental health problem, not a gun problem.” (They’re wrong; it’s both.) Our current immigration crisis, in which Central American children as young as 3 months old have been taken from their parents and placed in “tender age” shelters, has unified the medical and psychiatric community to warn us about the potentially disastrous mental health outcomes. (Jessie Tarlov and Danielle Thibodeau, 6/21)
Legislature Threatens To Pour Gas On Mental Health Fire
Mental health has been in the news lately, especially in Detroit, where Police Chief James Craig has decried the volume of his department’s mental illness cases and the city has formed a Mental Health Task Force. We have an epidemic of people with mental illness imprisoned. Our publicly funded mental health system, run through governmental Community Mental Health (CMH) programs the past several decades, has too much bureaucracy, lacks statewide uniformity, is weak on rights protection, has meager hospital resources, and is not well monitored by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). (Mark Reinstein, 6/21)