When I woke up this morning, I fixed my cup of coffee and turned on MSNBC to watch “Morning Joe.” I usually watch this program because they interview key thought leaders in national and international news.
I was horrified when I saw terrifying, ugly pictures of dead and maimed people after a gunman had shot attendees at a concert in Las Vegas. It has already been termed the worst mass shooting in America with at least 50 dead and over 200 injured.
When are we going to wake up!?!
Instead of starting a debate about gun rights, which always follows an incident like this, we have to focus instead on the mental illness issues that are rampant in our country.
This happens nowhere else in the world. When are we going to get it?
As many of you know, I’m working in a movement called CHANGE DIRECTION. This organization doesn’t ask for money, but instead asks each of us to pledge to learn the five signs of emotional struggle. Notice I didn’t say mental illness. We haven’t in the past been able to talk openly about this topic and I believe it is because we have to use different language to engage people in the issue.
ALL of us have emotions. And emotional struggle sounds much less clinical or intimidating than mental illness. All of us recognize times in our lives when we have faced struggles that may make us sad, unhappy, or downhearted.
Now we need to move the needle just a bit to realize that there are those of us who are struggling to keep our overwhelming emotions from impairing our functioning in a way that doesn’t harm ourselves or others.
And make the pledge to use different language and to suggest to others that they do the same.