McCain: New Suicide prevention initiative for veterans can be model for nationwide effort By: Sen. John McCain August 17, 2016
Recently, the Department of Veterans Affairs released a sobering reminder of an epidemic that plagues our veterans: the suicide rate among military veterans has increased nearly 32 percent since 2001. Our youngest veterans (ages 18-29) have been hit the hardest and are nearly twice as likely to take their own lives than any other age group. The rate of suicide among veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is approximately 50 percent higher than the rate among the general public, and on average, we lose more than 20 military veterans to suicide each day.read more here
Let's think about that for a second.
Take a look at how long he has been in Washington.
John was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from the First District of Arizona on an agenda of limited government and strong foreign policy. After two terms in the House, John was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1986, succeeding legendary Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater.
John McCain actually blocked a bill calling it overreach adding it was not needed in Arizona.
This was going on at the same time McCain was blocking the bill.
In September of 2013 this report came out "Veterans committing suicide at twice the rate of civilians" and Arizona was in the news. "The rate of suicide among military veterans in Arizona is more than double the civilian rate Advocates say veterans need more than benefits when returning from war. The average veteran suicide rate in Arizona from 2005 through 2011 is almost 43 deaths per 100,000 people. That’s according to data compiled by News21, a national reporting project based out of Arizona State University. And the rate should increase as more veterans return home."But he would should have known better considering he was on the Armed Services Committee in charge of the "prevention" training troops received while still in the military. In 2006 when Congress was working on addressing suicides, there were 99 the entire year. The numbers went up even while the number of enlisted went down. Does McCain have to explain any of that? Does he have to explain why Congress spends billions on prevention while suicides increase and so does spending?
You can read more on his actual record here. It gets worse.
"These numbers are unacceptable. That’s why in 2014, I worked to help veterans at risk of suicide due to combat-related psychological trauma by championing legislation named in the honor of Clay Hunt. That bill was signed into law in 2015."
Does McCain have to explain that the Clay Hunt bill was a repeat of the Joshua Omvig Suicide Prevention Act?
"Arizona will be the first state in the country to organize this level of collaboration and training so that the VA and the community are working together to combat suicide among veterans."Again, does he have to explain how the numbers in Arizona went up instead of down? How many more years does he get to fail veterans while they are dying for him to get educated?
For far too long, our sons and daughters who selflessly served the nation in wartime have ended their lives prematurely after they returned home. Through the combined and coordinated suicide prevention efforts of VA hospitals, veterans, and mental health providers, Arizona – and hopefully other states across the country – can work together to bring an end to the tragedy of veteran suicides.Yes, for far too long and it is because politicians just like him want to get away with pretending they had nothing to do with the outcomes yet everything to do with trying? At least most in the Veterans Community are fully aware of McCains record and it has been disgraceful.
The Disabled Veterans of America gives him a 20 percent rating, compared with an 80 percent rating for Sen. Obama. The Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans for America gives Sen. McCain a D and Sen. Obama a B+. The Vietnam Veterans of America say Sen. McCain has voted against them on 15 issues.
One of the most vocal and fastest-growing veterans groups to oppose the McCain campaign is VoteVets.org. Formed in 2006, the organization claims a membership of roughly 100,000, with a political action committee devoted to electing congressional candidates who oppose the handling of the Iraq war.
Especially galling to VoteVets.org is Sen. McCain's opposition to the new, bipartisan GI Bill that increases education benefits for Iraq and Afghanistan vets. Sen. Obama voted for the bill when it passed 75-22 in May; Sen. McCain was on the campaign trail and did not vote.
The military trains them then releases them. They are no longer accountable for veteran suicides nor have they been held accountable for suicides committed while in the military. Veteran suicides went up, just as the number of living veterans went down, but it seems as if Congress does not see all the damage they did.
How gave them the right to not be held accountable when they are in charge of all of it?