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A Parent's Horror

There will be no article on the Hollywood Turf Cup today.

 

 

Words cannot possibly express the sadness I'm feeling for everyone involved in the horrific tragedy that has taken place earlier today at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, but as a parent, I need to try.

 

The information that at least 27 people are dead is a tragedy of historic proportion, but as the parent of a four-year-old daughter that I cannot live without, the fact that 20 of them are small children, is simply unimaginable.

 

I am devastated for the parents. I'm trying to process in my mind what they must be going through right now, but I know that is not possible, and probably not the most productive thing for me to do. I find extra comfort in holding my daughter just a little tighter this afternoon, but it is with a profound sadness that I tell her I love her today.

 

 

The number of mass-shootings in recent years has reached an epidemic. For reasons already addressed, this one has affected me in a different way than the rest. Selfish maybe ... but this one touches what is most important to me.

 

I can only hope that President Obama stands by his words when he talks of meaningful action against the ease of these such events from happening.

 

 

Tonight I will hold my family close to me, loving them as I always do, but with more purpose. Our time together is short, and they need to know how I feel about them.

 

God bless us all. 

 

 

 

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Older Comments about A Parent's Horror...

Buckpasser, goblin, Travel_Vic, I couldn't agree with all of your views you more. Before all mentally ill people are stigmatized, a small fact hasn't been mentioned. Of all people suffering from mental illness only 5% are violent enough to harm others. In most cases the other 95% are actually afraid of you, and for no particular reason. I would tend to think that security in regard to who has guns is the immediate priority. Until then, as our weakness has been painfully exposed, which is our children, they will now become primary targets for these people, make no mistake about that. It would seem reasonable then that people like myself, senior citizens who can still work 4hrs per day or so be trained and used to guard our schools and other places where our children gather, as were the most expendable and are short timers anyway. We are a source of free labor, doesn't make sense not to use it. It would be a change of pace, excuse the pun, from handicapping all the time out of boredom. As the president stated, inaction is unacceptable as these things will continue unless we act immediately.
Goblin. You are completely accurate in your statements. Sadly Adam Lanzo did not fall through the cracks and wasn't "the last person you would ever think of doing something like this". Sadly according to his teachers, neighbors, he was a walking time bomb. Unfortunately, he didn't act out enough to obtain help. Tragically for him and for 27 people who lost their lives.
Very true, buckpasser, about the need for a person with mental health or developmental/mental health problems to "act out" significantly enough to garner attention before help can be obtained in many cases. Sometimes a "paper trail" must be established by means of calls to the police, arrests, accelerating violence, etc., before state resources can be utilized.
Nuts in the NRA. My father was a life long member so we talked about it once not long before he died and he flatly said:" a crazed element has hijacked a historically effective organization by making guns next to a religous experience. I turned in my membership after they took over."
IMO dealing with semi automatic guns is dealing with the manifestation of the problem. As a small aside here, a person with even basic knowledge which with the Internet is only a click away and a lathe can make many a seemingly innocuous gun into a semi automatic, this only the manifestation of the problem. Until we tackle the underlying causes of the problem, gun bans will be ineffective. To me the two issues that must come up are the continued desensitization of people, particularly young people, from the bombardment of violence in movies, video games etc. the other issue is the need to change laws so that help can be given immediately to people with mental issues. I am not sure if people are aware but in most states, a person like Adam Lanzo could not get help, even a full commitment, without having acted detrimentally first. Meaning that if he had survived this horrible shooting, he could have been committed but not before even though he was seen an extremely troubled youngster by his school officials, neighbors etc. we have bent over backwards to protect the rights of the mentally ill at the detriment of the public. Not that I want to see a situation where previously the mentally ill could be committed at the drop of a hat. But we have swung so far in the opposite direction that people who truly need help are unable to get it. As I have posted before, I used to live in this area of CT and ironically one of the top mental institutions in the Northeast was Fairfield Hills which was located in Newtown. It was shut down many years ago when laws were changed in CT regarding mental health issues. Ironically, one of the ways to get to this institution was to pass by the school where this tragedy took place. I can assure you no one I know who lives in this area is not aware of this irony.
As Sorkin wrote, "Do they really need Uzi's to hunt deer?"
If you are a parent. Hug your son and/or daughter, no matter how old they may be. Mine are 21 & 17. Thankfully, they still enjoy getting a hug from Dad any day of the week. For that I am thankful to God. Count your blessings... then do an unselfish act before you ring in 2013.
Icy. Thanks you do the same. And yes you are right about the cost of care being prohibitive as is the legal method to obtain this help.
As I said in a previous post, I used to live in this area in CT. I would pass this school every day. I have heard from many friends in the area who know people who have lost grand children or sisters who worked at the school or children in the classes. I just heard from another lawyer who said one of the people he played golf with yesterday left the foursome because his daughter was a teacher at the school. My friend just said everyone is numb here. I can only imagine.
Many people might not remember this..... I believe in 2006...... A STUDENT had a fireamr...... He walked into his class and started shooting. He killed 11 7th grade kids. And wounded five. He then, shot himself. The reason I remember this is because my best friend's daughter was one of the victims. I remember he was suffering for months after his daughter had been shot. Made me very sad for him. I can't even imagine one of MY babies getting shot in a classroom, just sickening. Eventually, I dragged him to Gulfstream to watch Barbaro run, and that started to get his mind off it. But, however, he has been my friend ever since I was in college, and after his daughter died, he was NEVER the same person... So sad. The point was of my post is too imagine how hard it is too lose a child like that..... So incredibly sad. Especially for the parents.
My iPads auto correct is really annoying. That should fell through the cracks and ended up homeless or worse. Sorry
That should be NOT designed
Kay. The same thing happened in NY City when the state closed down many of the mental institutions and the people were left to fend for themselves with no procedures or medical help for these people. Many families were left with no alternatives but to go to the legal system on a case by case basis to try and get help for a loved one. The legal system failed miserably, but frankly it was designed to deal with the number of people with medical issues. Many if not most fell between the cracks and ended up hopeless or worse.
Glad you brought up the cost of even getting some one into care. Let alone the cost of the care itself. It can take a life savings in no time at all as insurance coverage has so many exclusions in that area as to make it non existent. Have a good day Buckpasser
Buckpasser, the sad thing is is that some people do need - absolutely need - to be institutionalized. I was a college student in Ann Arbor when a previous MI governor closed down the state mental institutions. I had never seen a street person in my life until then - and after that the streets of Ann Arbor were filled with them, most of them muttering to themselves and acting very strangely. They were very ill people who were basically thrown out on the streets with no safety net. Something needs to be done to help such people. I am not wise enough to know what, or how we as a society can pay for it, but something HAS to be done.
Was a pro bono case in CT. The parents whom I represented were trying to get help for their son who was a danger to himself but was potentially a danger to others depending on the voices he heard. The legal system was frustrating to say the least. He truly needed to be committed, but it was impossible to get the proper number of doctors to testify and to sign off on the need for the commitment. They were afraid of being sued if they signed commitment and if they didn't so the buck was passed to the legal system that ended up appointing a guardian ad litem which nothing more than a way to dispense patronage to a crony as the fees were paid by the state. It was a long process that if it hadn't been pro bono would have cost the parents a mint and as the father said to me if your services weren't free, we couldn't have gotten our son any help and would have probably given up. I have always reflected on how many other cases ended up not getting the necessary aid.
I agree with you Kay about the nasty cycle many people get in with taking Meds and feeling better then stop taking their Meds. I agree not to stigmatize the mentally ill. But as a lawyer, one of the most frustrating cases I ever handled was a pro bono cag
I agree with you Kay about the nasty cycle many people get in with taking Meds and feeling better then stop taking their Meds. I agree not to stigmatize the mentally ill. But as a lawyer, one of the most frustrating cases I ever handled was a pro bono cagse
As someone who has worked in the field of pharmacy for most of my adult life, I can only agree strongly with TV when he (she?) talks about the difference meds can make for the mentally ill. There is a nasty cycle many mentally ill people get into where they take their meds, they feel better, and because they feel better they stop taking their meds! Of course, the meds are not a permanent cure, so they then fall back into their underlying condition and the whole cycle starts again. Also - the vast majority of mentally ill people are NOT a danger to anyone other than themselves, even when not on their meds. We all need to be careful not to stigmatize all mentally ill people when only a tiny minority of them do harm to others. Most mentally ill people (such as those who suffer from chronic depression) are or can be fully functional members of society.
Buckpasser, I couldn't agree more about the exposure to violence and the rest of what you stated.

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