More gun control? NJ 101.5 listeners react to Murphy-vs.-Durr Twitter war
Do you think more gun control will stop the mass shootings that have taken place in Buffalo, New York, Uvalde Texas, and Tulsa, Oklahoma? New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy thinks so and has taken to Twitter.
Senator Edward Durr disagrees and replies:
The two have been sparring through Twitter and Thursday night I tweeted a poll asking my listeners and social media following the simple question that I opened up with. Do you think more gun control laws will stop mass shootings?
Personally, like so many others have said, if you make it harder for people to buy guns, they're only going to resort to getting them illegally. It's not like they can't. Heroin is illegal yet we have an addiction problem. I believe addiction like the shootings is much more of a mental health problem.
City of Angels founder and CEO Kevin Meara, a guest of my New Jersey 101.5 show, weighed in.
"I had said that probably 70% of our kids would make it through alcohol and even heroin by doing an AA program or treatment and 30% of our kids are dealing with a mental health issue that's causing them to self medicate and they're not getting the help for that in these treatment centers."
Meara was underestimating, according to Debbie Wentz, of the New Jersey Association of Mental Health Agencies, who told him the number was more like 70% of the kids with a substance use disorder also have a mental illness.
So how can we solve the mental health problem both in New Jersey as well as the United States? First off, we need to make it more readily available to all people regardless of income or insurance coverage.
We also need more mental health counselors. They are so backed up right now and there's a reason for that when you see all that the country's going through.
We also need to remove the stigma attached to mental health.
I once ran a poll asking "Do you think the school shootings are more of a mental health problem or a gun control problem?" What do you think?
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise only. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.
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