Soldier Killing Spree Lesson System Needs To Treat Such Troubled Soldiers w/Respect

Discussion in 'Military' started by JimofPennsylvan, May 15, 2009.

  1. JimofPennsylvan

    JimofPennsylvan VIP Member

    Jun 6, 2007
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    What this American soldier did in killing five fellow soldiers at Camp Liberty in Iraq is inexcusable and this soldier should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law for these actions. Nevertheless, the officers directly in charge of this soldier, that caused this soldier to face the issues he had to face, bear some culpability over these deaths. This is because they violated this soldier’s rights in forcing him to get mental health treatment against his will; mental health treatment is not the same as physical health treatment and if a person doesn’t have the judgment to see this difference they shouldn’t be in authority. When someone has on their record that they needed mental health treatment it raises a red flag to other people that later become aware of it, it raises the issue can this person handle stress, are they stable, will they be acting in a psychologically ill manner, etc.? Of course people that become aware of such information shouldn’t just draw these negative conclusions, but that would require acting in a highly virtuous manner and not all people act in such a manner. The bottom line truth of the matter is that by causing a person to get mental health or psychological health treatment one is potentially harming that person’s reputation. This is not to undermine the awesome value of the mental health profession, they help a lot of people avoid a lot of suffering from mental health problems and allow a lot of people to function normally and lead a good quality of like that wouldn’t otherwise because of their mental health problems. Further, this is not to undermine the U.S. government’s efforts to make an abundance of mental health treatment resources available to soldiers on and off the field of battle. Again though, no soldier should be forced to get mental health treatment, doing so is a violation of that soldiers natural rights (and should be civil rights), unless that soldier is irreplaceable and that soldiers absence puts others soldiers lives in serious jeopardy and this sergeant and ninety five plus percent of the soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan are not what good judgment would deem as irreplaceable.

    Think of this whole matter from the soldier’s perspective. Here he is trying to be a patriotic citizen serving and defending his country and the principles (human rights) for which it stands and for which it is a beacon for the world and what does the authority in his army do to him? They pursue forcing him to get mental health treatment which means they pursue trying to paint him as a psycho case, a wacko, a nut job. Here he is trying to be a good citizen fighting for human rights and his commanders at the same time are violating his rights. It is especially nonsensical that the U.S. military authority would try to force a soldier against that soldier’s will to get mental health treatment considering the culture that exist in the U.S. military; it is a macho culture where toughness, strength are held out as the standard and respected, problems in those areas are shunned. By labeling a soldier as a mental case, the military authority is really hurting that soldier. It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone with good sense that an incident like this occurred; the military authority with their conduct drove this soldier to this point.

    It is very simple what the military should do in this type of situation, that is, a situation where a soldier is experiencing psychological problems that make that soldier unfit to fulfill that soldier’s duty. If such a soldier is replaceable and ninety-five percent of U.S. soldiers are even in the Iraq and Afghanistan theaters the following should be done. Offer that soldier psychological treatment, if the soldiers accepts and participates in treatment end of story. If that soldier is offered treatment, and refuses treatment the following courses should be taken. If that soldier has not provided significant service (and assuming the soldier has legitimate mental health issues, that is, not faking) send the soldier back to the states and honorably discharge for unspecified health reasons (and of course continually leave open for that person the offer of receiving mental health treatment). If the soldier is faking, prosecute the soldier or dishonorably discharge the soldier. Lastly, if the soldier has given the country significant service in quality or time, send the soldier back to the states and find a no or low stress job for the soldier for the balance of his or her enlistment period and of course during this whole period make it clear to this soldier that mental health treatment is available for him or her and at the end of his enlistment period honorably discharge the soldier. This soldier at issue in these “Liberty” base shootings who had served two previous tours in Iraq and had 15 plus years service in the military should have been treated in the latter fashion.

    This whole matter touches on a major shortcoming in the overall medical profession and prevailing authority throughout our society which is that they want to promulgate this idea that mental health issues are the same as physical health issues and they seek to leave no room for a different perspective. They want people with mental health problems to act like their problem is just like a physical health problem. This is seriously morally wrong and in the case of the medical profession also seriously ethically wrong because doctors have a duty to look out for the best interests of their patients in all aspects related to that doctor/patient relationship. Mental health treatment has a real potential negative impact on a person’s life as stated earlier because many people in society at large deduce negative conclusions about a person because they received mental health treatment and this reality should not be ignored or glossed over. Moreover, the medical profession can market and speak out in every way possible that mental health issues should not have this negative behavioral stigma and it won’t change a thing. The medical profession could carry out this initiative of theirs to try to negate this negative stigma for ten thousand years and ten thousand years from now they will still have failed because their position goes against basic logic, common sense and observations of the human experience. Human behavior is dictated by decisions made in a human beings brain, if there is a defect in the brain then there is a possibility that there could be a defect in the behavior that comes from that brain plus as long as human beings exists there will always be human beings with mental illness and people in society at large observing the behavior of these human beings acting mental ill will always make the logical connection, that is, if a person has a mental problem will they be acting mentally ill?

    If the medical profession really wants to act virtuous and in a manner where they do the right thing why don’t they call for a profound change in educating people about mental health especially young people. Why doesn’t the medical profession call for a mandatory and in-depth education of high school age children about mental health? Call for teaching children about the danger of stress, to identify stress and how stress can deteriorate a human beings mental health. Call for teaching children good mental health habits so they preserve their mental health. If the medical profession really wants to do the right thing why don’t they call for the prohibition of some “dangerous to mental health” sports at ages younger than the age of children in their last two years of high school; tackle football with its extreme physicality and its potential where a participant could get seriously hurt one would think is very dangerous to the young men participants’ mental health. If the medical profession really wants to be a good medical profession on this broad subject there is a lot more they can be doing besides promulgating this viewpoint that society should consider mental health issues just like physical health issues and no other perspective on the matter has any merit.

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