Saturday, September 24, 2016

Tom Arnold Thinks Mental Illness is a Choice?

Tom Arnold Opens Up About Nephew's Tragic Suicide: 'People Who Are Suicidal Shouldn't Be Able to Buy a Gun'
PEOPLE
Cathy Free
September 23, 2016

"My nephew was a sweet, good-hearted kid, but he was sad and angry after the Army sent him home early with an honorary discharge because of issues revolving around a suicide attempt," Arnold, 57, tells PEOPLE exclusively.
Tom Arnold
MICHAEL SCHWARTZ
WIREIMAGE
Spencer Arnold, a 24-year-old Army veteran who came home from Iraq with chronic depression, decided on impulse last May that he'd had enough. After a phone argument with his girlfriend, he picked up one of the five loaded guns he'd recently purchased and kept on his nightstand, and shot himself in the head in his Iowa City, Iowa, apartment.

Now Spencer's uncle, actor and comedian Tom Arnold, is speaking out about the tragedy during National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, hoping to rally people to get behind tighter gun control laws and prevent those with mental illness from purchasing firearms.

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This is the part that really gets me upset. "Where I come from, mental illness is shameful and a choice" WTF? Did he really say that? Mental illness is not a choice but as long as people like him are this uninformed it will remain something to be ashamed of instead of treated. Want to know why the stigma is so strong? Read the rest of the article.

Arnold's brother did not respond to PEOPLE's request for comment. 

"He and the rest of my family are outraged at me for speaking out about this," Arnold tells PEOPLE, "because in their minds, suicide is something that you don't discuss publicly. Where I come from, mental illness is shameful and a choice."