Everyone Can Be 'Fit'
Think about all of the different people you see at your local gym. There are the “bros” with every piece of gear that Jim Stoppani convinced them they need. They have a shaker bottle with some vibrantly colored fluid that they sip on between sets as they scan the gym hoping for one girl admiring their “gains.” Over on the treadmills, you might see some college-aged young lady who is doing some weird exercise that looks like something made up by Tonya Harding. Next to her is your typical middle-aged woman, likely a busy mom, grinding out her hour of cardio. On the bench is a middle-aged man half-repping 185 pounds thinking of his glory days as a 20-year-old football star, somehow ignoring his shoulder and back pain. What do all of these people have in common? They all want to be “fit,” but each has a very different definition of what that means.
Mental Health and Firearms
On December 14th, 2012, Adam Lanza committed the second most lethal mass shooting in American History. After killing his own mother and then twenty-six adults and children at the local elementary school, America was left with the burning question of not only why this happened, but how it could have been prevented(1). Lanza was clearly mentally ill, and it played a major role in him committing this atrocity. It did not take New York State’s Governor, Andrew Cuomo, and the State Senate and Assembly long to respond to this tragedy. On January 15th, 2013, the New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act, or SAFE Act, was signed into law(2). The SAFE Act has many different components, but one section that has bothered both Second Amendment supporters and mental health professionals is that regarding mental hygiene. Specifically, section 9.46. This section requires that a mental health professional file a report to the local director of community services if he or she feels that the patient is, “’likely to engage in conduct that would result in serious harm to self or others(3).’” While this sounds reasonable and productive in preventing future tragedies like Newtown, this law is deeply flawed when it comes to mental health.