The problem with the media is that all of it is owned by something like 5 companies who are also owned by a handful of individuals. This is why you get force fed what Brittney Spears had for breakfast and whatever the latest Teen Mom's flub up was. I'm not sure I'd go so far to blame them for this tragedy, though Lev makes a great point...ethics in journalism is gone. Like many other industries, much of this would get fixed by simply breaking up the mega-conglomerates... but anti-trust laws died several decades ago, and the powers that be get way too much benefit from keeping things as is to resurrect them.
Anything in the DSM is technically a mental illness. Aspergers, as part of the ASD spectrum, is also in that mix. But many reports are trying to refute laying this crime at the feet of that diagnosis. Either way, I worry that this will be the banner that flies from this crime: Worry about Autism. Scary thought if it is.
All part of why I don't find any value in blasting this guy's name and story all over the media. We do more damage and we give this a-hole infamy. I don't understand how that is being defended in this thread.
The media basically understands very little about the autism spectrum, but that "very little" is much more than they know about personality disorders. Heck, the common person does not understand much, if anything, about personality disorders. Watch the television, and you'll see stories about multiple personality disorder - something that has no mental health backing and even its closest relative (disassociative personality disorder) removed from the DSM-V, but most people you ask would state that someone in a mental hospital very possibly may have multiple personality disorder. Obsessive compulsive disorder is in the grouping of personality disorders, but it is far different than borderline personality disorder, so there is a wide array of things to know in the area, and believe me when I say the media knows NONE of it. In fact, if they did, there would actually be something to latch onto and "blame" depending on if it was ever diagnosed within the personality disorder family - antisocial personality disorder, whose sufferers typically will commit numerous petty crimes as an essential "need" to fight against rules of society, and a person with this disorder can actually be driven in anger to the point of lashing out physically and violently.
Well said Ben. Just to add to your list, bi-polar is thrown around ignorantly a lot these days. Much of the discussions about mental illness are far more harmful than beneficial, IMO, in large part because of the rampant ignorance of specific mental illnesses. People only know vague generalities, including the media. That's a dangerous basis for a national dialogue about a sensitive subject.
“Out of respect for the families, and until the facts are known, the NRA has refrained from commenting. While some have tried to exploit the tragedy for political gain, we have remained respectably silent." That's ****ing rich.
Having the conversation can do no harm, and despite your admonishments, it seems to be happening pretty sensibly in public.
So far I like how the President is handling things and their approach to trying to find a solution. I also think the national dialogue about guns has been pretty fair from what I've seen in editorials and talk shows. I'm more worried about Autism now at this point.
Or you can just read this crappy article that pretty much uses a wrecking ball for tact and includes all kinds of quotes or opinions that just make you shake your head: New details emerge a week after school massacre - Yahoo! News
Champions of the status quo call for quiet (as the NRA does and righteously relishes in).
Bullying? Oh the irreparable harm we've caused by suggesting bullying in school might lead to violence! How can we let ourselves be so maniacal in our discussions! The mental health issue and bullying issue are problem more related than one might think at first blush, so your poo-pooing it seems odd to me.
No one doubts the seriousness to address policy, but public discourse actual needs to hit a fever pitch (even some hyperbole) before the pols will listen and even act reasonably.
I know you can totally be reasonable on these issues, but your role as discourse police seems like a misstep to me.
Look whether its bullying, mental health, magazine and assault weapon bans, the emotional disconnect between teachers and students, etc., let's tackle this problem and talk about it in as many ways as we can. There's plenty of reasonable people that are charged with sorting through the muck to get to some real solutions. I'm going to be curious as to what the Biden task force comes up with...
Example: Joe Scarborough (Totally worth checking out.)
It's not about policing it - public hyperbole is simply not going to impress on policy makers more than 20 dead first graders. If that isn't enough to shock action, public outcry (regardless of it's direction) isn't going to make a dent.
I'm all about the conversation....once we've cooled off, thought about it, and committed ourselves to not making an rash observations. To me the goal is to make sure this never happens again and the best way to do that is to talk about facts and what we can do and try (as hard as it is) to keep our emotions as the fuel for the process, but not the end-all, be-all.