Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

The Ottawa Capital Event - Canada

I don’t know if this made the news world wide or just in Canada. I rarely watch it but I did watch some of this. When I first heard about it my first thought was how long before mental illness became a part of the conversation. I would have to say that I have been very impressed with the news coverage and how it has been dealt with. With the limelight on the victims and our humble Canadian pride…

By Lori Spadorcia, Vice President, Communications and Partnerships at CAMH

When the news came across the twitterverse, I was in an Executive Leadership Team meeting. It seemed unreal for Canada but soon after the emails started to file in one by one – subject line: “I’m ok, in lockdown but safe”. Several of my former colleagues and friends were keeping in touch – no doubt also hoping to receive information from the outside to understand the situation around them. I worked on Parliament Hill for a decade – it was an absolute privilege and it still feels like a home to me. In fact, I remember being in those exact hallways during another horrific event – 9/11.

Ironically, I was to attend an event that afternoon with the Prime Minister and Malala Yousafzai on her first visit to Canada – Malala herself a symbol of the global fight against terrorism.

The video continued to replay the gunman running down the “Hall of Honour” – a hallway I’ve walked a million times over. And, just down the street, the War Memorial, home of the tomb of the Unknown Soldier – instantly turned into a place of a present-day fallen soldier.

That evening a group of us got together to watch the news unfold. It seemed safer in numbers. It didn’t take long for views to surface and conclusions to be drawn. Being in the mental health world, I was hoping aloud that this was not another story about someone with mental illness. Those of the Muslim faith were hoping it was not another act of terrorism in the name of Islam. It was a stark lesson in how easily we discriminate, marginalize and generalize populations.

A rather uncomfortable discussion ensued as people struggled for an explanation. “Surely someone of sound mind couldn’t do something so heinous”, “clearly he didn’t get the help he needed for his addictions and this was a desperate act”, “is it possible for humans to just be bad without being mentally ill?”

Since the deadly attacks on soldiers in Ottawa and Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., there has been much discussion about the mental health of the attackers and the broader societal challenge posed by disenfranchised young men.

What we know is that Martin Couture-Rouleau ran down and killed Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent and injured another military man with his car before being shot dead by police. Michael Zehaf-Bibeau killed Corporal Nathan Cirillo at the National War Memorial before storming Parliament; he too was shot dead by authorities.

What we don’t know is whether either man was mentally ill. Despite the speculation of family and friends and countless commentators, we will never know; you can’t diagnose mental illness postmortem.

Besides, does it really matter?

I’d like to know what you feel may really affect the population of (America) in Canadian affairs and media? What’s a troubled young man? Someone who perhaps never had a chance anyhow and was destined for the next (American War)?

You can legislate if you’re involved and give a shit. Yet no one in our offices really knows the dangers of (mental illness). Only court legalities of flub ups and criminals playing a game…I don’t know how the shooting happened, most people will never know the truth if someone ill mass murdered people. I’d truthfully chock up the existence of MK ULTRA faster than think someone who suffers an illness would harm others just because of their classification on a piece of paper a dr. issued.

As for controlling the mentally ill, I feel the govt in America has that on (lockdown) already.

Maybe I am thoroughly wrong. Before I was ill I was a soldier in Afghanistan. Knowing what it’s like to kill and how revenge is nonsensical in all its eventualities in culture shows me this.

You can’t afford to hurt people or mess things up. You don’t even want to, put down the arms and represent yourself and get the help you need.

I don’t think schizos are prone to violence when they have their life experiences in order, yet I was diagnosed in the late 20s…so maybe I’m just a (special case).

I surely hope that ANYONE who has a problem with schizophrenia gets to this site, and not to the closest gun. That’s just not who I feel things should be.

In general, raping women, killing a child, decapitating a person, etc., are in general currently seen as being acts committed by people who have sane minds. All they did was commit a horrible crime, says society.

Then you have the so called “Mentally Ill”. Many of these so called “Mentally Ill” are viewed by the world as crazy crazy crazy people.

Thus in general, if you wish to perform the most sick and crazy act ever possible, just make sure that the rest of your actions fit the bill of being normal social behavioral patterns. In turn, society will welcome you into their world with open arms, because they too live in a false world, constantly wearing their numerous daily masks which constantly place their true selves in disguise.

Concerning both recent events, Globe and Mail says, “What we don’t know is whether either man was mentally ill.”.

That makes me laugh. You can have a crazy person commit the act, or a sane person, but the minds of the people of this world can not recognize who is who. But the answer is simple, anyone who commits such crimes, is insane. The problem is that certain forms of insanity a currently being accepted as being perfectly sane

What would you suggest then?