Wednesday, February 20, 2013

22 Suicides of Vets a Day

It's not patriotic to think or talk about the 22 veterans who commit suicide every day.  (This figure is from 2010, the most recent year for which there are approximate totals.)

It's negative thinking.  We need to support our troops, not badmouth them, say some people, but Aaron Glantz has taken the time to think and write about this problem in his book, The War Comes Home: Washington's Battle against America's Veterans (UC Press, 2010).

UC Press writes: The War Comes Home is the first book to systematically document the U.S. government's neglect of soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

A report in the New York Times contrasts rates of suicide among veterans with a total rate of 105 suicides per day for the whole population in 2010, the year with most recent totals.

Because the rate has been rising for everyone over a 12-year period, the per cent relating to veterans has been declining.  

PTSD and easy access to guns are two of the factors that lead to suicide for many soldiers.

Thank you to Aaron Glantz for telling us about these unpleasant truths.  He works for the Center for Investigative Reporting in Berkeley, CA.

In our fierce efforts to balance the budget, let's not do it by hurting those who have given up their mental health to serve this country.

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