Which is more important – the outcome or the instrument?

The New York Times recently had an article about suicides and the fact that many thousands of people die every year from suicides using a gun than through person-on-person gun violence.

One commentor on the article brings home a major point that is missed in the article – it’s not about “the guns”, it should be about what is the impetus that compels people to commit suicide in the first place.

Jeffrey Allen Miller of New York comments about the article:

“‘…The national suicide rate has climbed by 12 percent since 2003, and suicide is the third-leading cause of death for teenagers….’

“And not because of guns. So why focus on the object, yet again?

“It is because this society, this country, this so-called culture provides little if any reason to desire living. Harsh, but true. Only those with the greatest of narcissistic skills can survive in the U.S. anymore. Have you tried to find a new job lately? Have you tried to find a date? Even for the fun of it? (Do it, you’ll be shocked.) Some poor soul who just might be slightly weaker for the experiences we must endure will see suicide as the better choice.

“I’m surprised there are not more suicides, although using a gun really sounds horrific, in my view. So, keep focusing on solving immaterial problems, or misuse of inanimate objects.

“We have the most narcissistic, uncaring, disengaged population of 300 million anywhere on earth, in my view. Some will blame guns, booze, education — whatever, because it takes away their own guilt for not getting involved. I hold you, all of us, responsible though. Have already tried fixing things alone, but outnumbered, out of time, and out of strength. Total focus now — and likely until the end — is just to keep rice on the table. Feb. 14, 2013 at 6:10 a.m.”

I have to agree in large part with Jeffrey’s comments. Why not an outcry about this situation, a significant rise in suicides?  Instead of emphasis being placed on what is causing this increase, the method people are killing themselves is prominently featured.

The topic of gun accessibility is interesting enough, but the impetus behind their use, whether for suicide or violence is more important.

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