Smackwater Jack


“You can’t talk to a man with a shotgun in his hand.”

A Remington 870 shotgun, a 9 mm pistol, an AR-15 and Glock 40.  Random instruments to make doors stay open, protective gear and god help me, little prickly things to make the cops tires go ‘pop’ if he got chased.  And still I believe with all my heart, soul and experience that this young man was mentally ill.  I have to tell you straight up that I have a lot of experience in dealing with mentally ill, personality challenged men.  It’s been the bane and gift of my life, it’s created  a psychologist, and an overall better human being.  But it came with a price.  Still.

You might not be able to talk to a man with a shotgun in his hand, but you can certainly talk to one sitting in your office while your patient.  And by all accounts so far that is just what James did with his pdoc at U of C.  He is alleged to have told her that he wanted to kill people. My question is why she never put him in the hospital?  The law is one thing, but you have to take some responsibility for a patient gone off the rails as entirely as James had, and to all appearances, she did nothing.  She called a cop, instead of putting him in the hospital for his own and societies protection.  What?  Does she not understand men versus women in the therapy chair? Does she understand men at all?  When they say they want to kill people they are NOT doing some existential rant that a woman might.  And when a man has said this, it’s the docs responsibility morally if nothing else, to do something!  Use your medical degree, put him in hospital!   Really letting him leave the office that day without putting him in the hospital for homicidality was simply ridiculous.  And that is not his fault, but it’s more to do with the system of mental health care that we all live with or die by!  And twelve people did die as a result of that system gone awry.  <end of rant for the day>


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