Proactive Gun Responsibility Will Save Lives

By  //  December 15, 2012

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YOUR VIEW

With yesterdays tragic event in Newtown in our hearts, has anyone discussed accountability and responsibility by mental health providers concerning gun prevention (not necessarily gun control)?

We should be able to have a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, a psychologist, or a psychiatrist to legally be able to say that their patient is a threat or a possible threat to the community. And the responsible act would be for the individual to not have the right to a gun. Now this would be a difficult challenge, but can be achieved.

First, what diagnosis would be considered for a patient (citizen) to not have the right to bear arms?

Answer: any diagnosis that would create an Individual of losing rational thought. For example, alcoholism, psychosis and bipolar disorder would fit these criteria.

Second, what happens when a individual has to be Baker Acted (individual that is a harm to self, harm to others, or self neglectful) should that individual have a right to bear arms? No! Do you want someone who is just released from a facility because of a psychotic episode to have access to a gun?

Now if a doctor believes that an individual should not have a gun, then how do we implement this legal process? Well first, the doctor should be able to ask a prosecutor for a type of writ of injunction (an individual is restrained from performing a particular act). In this case, an individual is restrained from owning the gun.

The prosecutor would ask the courts for an injunction with a possible time period of seventy two hours or longer for that individual not to pertain a gun. The individual would be court ordered to turn in their gun(s) within a twenty four to a forty eight hour period. If that individual did not turn in their gun(s), then the courts would issue an arrest warrant.

Now does that citizen have a right to obtain (due process) back their gun? Yes, the citizen should be able to have their gun returned to them with agreement from the court, doctor and prosecutor that the individual is capable of consistent rational thought. There should be a review three times a year for at least five years to maintain the rights of the individual to have the right to bear arms.

Now you as the reader of this article, wouldn’t you like to hear of a special hearing “Inside the Beltway” to discuss this matter and implement this act of responsibility.

I believe that the American Psychiatric Association, American Medical Association, the National Rifle Association and the United States Federal Government (congress and the president) have a responsibility to sit down at the table and find a solution to this human problem.

Today’s tragic event has to be the final straw; we have a duty to protect our children from all acts of aggression. Remember with freedom comes responsibility.

– Marcus Hochman


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