Recent mass shootings bring forth irrational calls about the issue. One of the "whipping boys" is mental illness. What we have is bigotry and ignorance about mental illness.

Most of the shooters are not mentally ill, they are evil. People have forgotten that there is evil in this world. As long as the Prince of the Air stalks this world we will have problems.

The were more people in mental institutions 50 years ago than today and we have a far greater general population. Deinstitutionalization began with the Kennedy administration and has grown. Health professionals promised better results but it has not worked. Look at the homeless situation.

I have been the victim of bigotry by some judges and prosecutors because I was once mentally ill. That was several years ago that I was ill, but they harp about it due to ignorance.

No doubt politicians will come forth with worn out solutions. Gun control is not the answer. The majority of gun deaths are suicides. Japan has more than twice the suicide rate as the U.S. and gun ownership is forbidden.

Politicians promise better mental health services, but they lie. There are no quick solutions. Ignorance about mental illness is rampant. I know: I have seen and experienced it.

JOE PAINTER

BLACKSBURG

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