Clayton Cramer has an interesting article in the Federalist Society publication that looks at the rise in mass shootings, and how they coincided with mass deinstitutionalization. I actually think it should be pretty difficult to commit someone to an institution against their will, but it’s pretty clear that complete deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill hasn’t served either the public, or the mentally ill, as well as many proponents of it had hoped.
Patrick Purdy, a mentally ill drifter, used his Social Security Disability payments to buy guns, while having a series of run-ins with the law. After one suicide attempt in jail in 1987, a mental health evaluation concluded that he was â€œa danger to his health and others.â€27Â In January 1989, Purdy went onto a schoolyard in Stockton, California with an AK-47 rifle, murdered five children and wounded twenty-nine others, before taking his own life.
And you can see how this issue affects ours. Californians now live under their assault weapons regime because the State of California, rather than ensure that the clinically insane were institutionalized, decided to, every so slightly, institutionalize everyone else in the state by limiting everyone else’s freedom.