The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

September 20, 2013

Help needed prior to desperate acts

Daily Item

---- — Once again we have the editor trying to put a slant on the news of the killing on the naval base. The claim was that 90 percent of Americans supported universal background checks, which might have flagged Aaron Alexis, Monday's shooter. In this case, I feel the reverse is true for this claim because all members of the military or members of the police forces all must go through very rigid checks to have the security clearance to gain access to bases or anywhere where guarding secure sites are necessary.

Our political leaders try to come up with a band-aid to make it look like they are doing something.

But the truth of the matter is our mental health system fails badly to recognize when an individual needs help. In the case of the naval base, the shooter actually got another gun from one of the officers he killed.

If someone's mind is messed up all the universal background checks in the world will not stop them from carrying out bad actions from whatever means they have available which includes many way to numerous to mention.

I think it time to revisit health care and time to try again to help individuals before they reach desperate actions.

Charles Miller,