From the heated comment thread on this week's feature:

So, as someone who works in the Mental Health Industry, when I read this article online my thinking was "-you know, not so bad". But then one of my clients brought in The Stranger to my office and showed me the cover where it calls unmedicated people with mental illness "loons".

Fuck you, The Stranger.

These "loons" you are talking about are people. They are people with a real illness who cannot control their actions. Calling them loons, even the ones who are decompensating, is like calling a practicing homosexual a faggot. Unfortunately the mentally ill are seen as the lowest of the low. They are seen as deviants, crazies, psychos, rapists, and murderers. The clients I work with who have real mental health disorders are some of the best people I have met in my life. If you were to see them in public, which all of you have, you would have no idea that they were living in a half-way home for Schizophrenics. You would have no idea they were "loons".

Let me emphasize this: these mentally ill people are people. Real people with real emotions. People who get offended by comments in "Seattle's Only Newspaper" which categorizes them as medicated loons. People who get hurt when they read comments like "could save millions here really easy , a box of .45 cal shells is about 20 bucks". People who cry when someone they love dies. People who want to get better.

Unlike a broken arm, mental illness is something that you will never be "cured" of. The medications do help but eventually the body becomes used to them and changes are in order. Now I'm not saying that every person with mental illness takes their medications, which is a whole other topic for another time and another day, but if the funding was there facilities like the one I work at could have more rooms, take more clients, and monitor more outpatients.

As for the person complaining that scientists need a better way to medicate these people; where is the funding to do so? Because every mental illness is different there is no possible way to simply diagnose and treat. This is why having a mental illness is so difficult.

Lastly, the building where I work is literally one block away from where this incident happened. This could have been one of my clients murdered. I am very thankful that my clients were safe that day.
Posted by are7era on December 17, 2010 at 10:16 AM

Thanks for your comment, are7era. Have a feeling on this topic? Dive on in.