Joe Biden addresses SXSW

Former Vice President Joe Biden addresses SXSW 2017. Photo from the LA Times.

Over the past weekend, former Vice President Joe Biden was warmly greeted when he and his wife, Jill, addressed the South by Southwest Conference.

However, I was disappointed with their message: Cancer is the last bipartisan issue left in America.

Of course cancer is a terrible, life-threatening disease destroying lives and families and I support any and all efforts to find cures for each and every type of cancer.

BUT, what about mental illness? It too is a bipartisan issue facing all of us, it is just as deadly and destructive as cancer, AND there is far more mental illness in our country and around the world than there is cancer.

I’m not in any way suggesting that we choose between the two!

I am suggesting that we already have more control over supporting and helping recovery of mental illness than we do cancer. And we don’t realize it!

Whereas cancer cures depend upon the genius of research no matter how much we talk about it, all we have to do is TALK ABOUT MENTAL ILLNESS to help those of us who suffer.

Making mental illness a part of the conversation the way we now talk about cancer, a once taboo topic, is how we will get help for more people even as geniuses in research find more answers in scientific breakthroughs.

All each of us has to do is TALK ABOUT IT! Tell our stories openly and often.