Ace's View

Dedicated to minority issues, topics and everything in between

Falling Down

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While it isn’t one of my top films of all time, one of the most memorable to me and the one that comes up in discussions often with me and my wife is the movie Falling Down, the 1993 movie starring Michael Douglas.

For those who haven’t seen it, an excellent description courtesy of Wikipedia is here-but in brief, a man under a lot of personal and professional stress reaches his breaking point and turns his rage outward at the world around him.

If it sounds familiar, it’s probably because we’re all too aware of the news reports of people losing it and exploding, with the most recent story of Aaron Alexis making headlines in the last few days.

The Washington, D.C. incident where Alexis shot and killed twelve people at a Naval yard before being killed by police is a stark reminder of how people break in the worst possible way and lash out at the world.

And I’m reminded every time that an event like this happens that we tend to look the other way when people are crying out for help around us, until it directly affects us or someone we love.  We are forced to pay attention because the final result is the death of innocent people and the afflicted.  And by then it is too late to help.

But we can talk about what we can do next, which is a conversation that always happens after a tragedy such as this. 

And then it’s forgotten about, until the next time.

I promised myself that I would begin to avoid writing about such heavy topics in this space–a change that will start tomorrow (more on that then)–and I would have stuck with that choice, had it not been for another conversation that was being had on a friend’s Facebook wall which forced me to look harder at what we were actually discussing.

On it, we were discussing this obituary, posted by the deceased woman’s own children.  And while most people applauded them for printing their truth about their own mother, there was one person who went so far as to doubt that the children were telling the truth, and to say that they should have dealt with their pain within their own family, if at all.

I’m sure some people like to play devil’s advocate, but this seemed to be more than that.  As my wife put it, she might have not wanted people to remember her in a similar manner when she’s dead.  Which made a lot more sense.

I often say that people hide their pain and try to be brave for the world, at any cost.  Sometimes that cost is being estranged from family and friends.  Sometimes it is paid with their lives or the lives of others.

You can’t hide shame and pain forever.  It always manifests itself in some fashion, be it internal or external.

To put it plainly, hurt people, hurt people.

Here, then, is a suggestion: mental health insurance.  

It should be just as much of a priority as medical and dental.  Because sometimes, finding someone to just listen and work with people on their problems is a lot harder than finding a good physician or dentist.  And when it’s not, the stigma of therapy and mental well-being still carries a certain amount of shame with it.

Especially among my people.  Of course, I’m sure most of you reading this know that.  But I digress.

So until we find a way to reach these people who are in pain before they take their pain out on the world, we will keep waking up and going to sleep to these headlines.

There will be more Chris Dorners, more Aaron Alexises, more pain, more hurt.

Until someone breaks the cycle.

So tomorrow, make it a point to show someone who looks in need some love.  You may be all that stops them from giving up and falling, down.

 

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Written by aceviewblogger

September 18, 2013 at 8:58 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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