Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less



GUNS: Unsecured guns increase suicide risk

On the Monday after the recent Tacoma Dome gun show, a psychologist colleague said two of the patients seen that day – both diagnosed with PTSD and significant anger issues - had purchased guns at the gun show. When asked about the background check, both reported that none was required. Whether a background check would or would not have prevented the purchase can be been debated. What cannot be debated is that these individuals have increased their risk of suicide.

By far, the majority of those individuals suffering from mental health issues are not incapacitated or incompetent or irrational. These individuals do

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MILITARY: Our veterans are being overlooked

We live in a military town, and we’re surrounded by active-duty military and veterans. Yet, do we really acknowledge them, or care for them, as they should be cared for?

I get a strong impression that many are willing to overlook them; I even see civilians park their vehicles in spots designated for disabled veterans only. Even more concerning is that we have PTSD running rampant in our veterans coming home, and I know personally that they’re receiving less than adequate care, or none at all.

My soldier with severe PTSD and a brain injury has been home a year,

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MILITARY: Save some compassion for Bales, too

I have watched several local news reports on TV. It seems that our loyal press just can’t understand why a soldier may not remember his actions in a war zone. Four deployments to war zones in a short period of time could be a reason. A severe head injury while in a war zone could be another.

I have also noticed news agencies, including The News Tribune, have lamented about the poor care at Madigan Army Medical Center for post-traumatic stress disorder. Have any local news reporters been subjected to the same physical and mental traumas that this soldier incurred?

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9/11: Overcome our national PTSD

We are once again remembering that tragic day 11 years ago when our country experienced a traumatic act of terror. Every year we seem to need to relive that nightmare and go back to the violence and fear of that terrible day.

What has come to concern me is how it changed us as a nation. Most of those changes have not been positive. Just as our soldiers experience moments of rage, with their post-traumatic stress syndrome, we have yet to get control of our own anger because of that horrible event.

Partisan anger is extremely vicious and divisive. The

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FIREWORKS: Explosions can affect combat veterans

I think that all the people who blow off fireworks on the Fourth of July should really think about
the military veterans who have been in a combat zone.

I was in Vietnam, and the non-thinking non-vets do not realize how blowing off fireworks affects us. The media worry about pets; maybe they should worry about us veterans. The noise of exploding fireworks might give us the PTSD that people worry so much about.

People who have never served in the military or in a combat zone should think about this.


PTSD: Murray should stick to politics

Sen. Patty Murray should not conduct her own investigation of PTSD diagnoses at Madigan Army Medical Center (TNT, 3-29).

Even the doctors don’t fully understand the problem. Only men such as Staff Sgt. Robert Bales and my father who fought in World War I really know. It took my father more than 60 years before he began to talk about it.

The senator should stick to politicking (which she does very well) and leave medicine to the MDs.


PTSD: Diagnosis shouldn’t derail soldier’s career

I was alarmed by Rep. Norm Dicks’ statement (TNT, 3-24) that Congress may have to step in to prevent those diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from returning to combat zones.

I received a PTSD diagnosis as the result of a sexual assault in the military. I have been treated for the issue and have been found fit for duty. Dicks’ “helpfulness” would result in my being barred from combat duty, effectively causing me to lose my job for being raped. Is that really what they seek to do?

I can guarantee you that once word gets out that

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PTSD: Don’t repeat mistakes of Vietnam war

Since we were lied into these never-ending wards, I have been questioning whether all the knee-jerk patriots with their yellow “I Support the Troops” stickers on their cars would be so “supportive” when the wounded warriors returned.

We are about to find out. We have the recent debacle at Madigan Army Medical Center about the soldiers having to fight for benefits for their diagnosis of post-traumatic stress syndrome and wonder why so few of them seek help. Really?

As for the massacre in Afghanistan, we know little about the soldier who committed this act, but I have been waiting for

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