Pentagon suicide panel recommends no gun sales to young military members, warnings on energy drinks sold on base

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A military panel studying how to slow down the rate of service members who kill themselves is recommending, among dozens of other offerings, that firearms not be sold by military exchanges to any service member under the age of 25. The committee also recommends waiting periods on both firearms and ammunitions sales at military stores, and some warnings about energy drinks.

The Suicide Prevention and Response Independent Review Committee released its report on Friday. It focuses on four main area, including restructuring suicide prevention training, providing more resources to help service members access existing support services, promoting lethal means safety, and emphasizing leader stewardship in addressing service member needs, according to the Pentagon’s summary.

The report acknowledges that a large percentage of suicides among service members are by those members who are under investigation for something.

“In 2021, 23% of service members who died by suicide were experiencing or had experienced legal or administrative challenges during the preceding year. Over half of these service members were under investigation (DSPO, 2021). Being the focus of an ongoing investigation creates a combination of individual and occupational stressors that can increase risk for suicide compounded by poor handling by investigators or command,” the report noted.

The recommendation to stop selling private firearms at base exchanges to young warriors is given the highest urgency rating by the committee. The committee also is recommending severely curtailing the Second Amendment rights of troops, such as universal gun registration and a database of firearms purchased on Department of Defense property. Recommendations include:

“Repeal Public Law 112-239 Section 1057 and replace with procedural due process regarding the collection and recording of information relating to the lawful acquisition, possession, ownership, carrying, or other use of a privately owned firearm or weapon by military personnel and civilian employees of the DoD.”

That public law was created to prevent the unconstitutional infringement of service members’ rights to acquire, possess, and use firearms when not on Defense property.

“Implement a 7-day waiting period for any firearm purchased on DoD property.”

“Require DoD-approved firearm safety training, including refresher and sustainment training every five years.”

“Develop a national database for recording serial numbers of firearms purchased on DoD property.”

“Implement a 4-day waiting period for ammunition purchases on DoD property to follow purchases and receipt of firearms purchased on DoD property.”

“On DoD property, raise the minimum age for purchasing firearms and ammunition to 25 years.”

“Incentivize the acquisition and use of firearm locking devices by providing discounts for firearm locking devices purchased at a Military Exchange.”

“Establish command notification procedures when a service member or family member who lives on DoD property purchases a firearm on DoD property.”

“Require anyone living on DoD property in military housing to register all privately owned firearms with the installation’s arming authority and to securely store all privately owned firearms in a locked safe or with another locking device.”

“Establish DoD policy restricting the possession and storage of privately owned firearms in military barracks and dormitories.”

“Prohibit the possession of privately owned firearms that are not related to the performance of official duties on DoD property by anyone who does not live on DoD property.”

Explaining why firearms need to be curtailed, the committee said Defense data indicate approximately 66% of active-duty suicides, 72% of Reserve suicides, and 78% of National Guard suicides involve firearms.

“Several lines of evidence suggest that limiting or reducing firearm availability could dramatically reduce the military’s suicide rate. For example, a simple policy change requiring Israeli military personnel to store their military-issued weapons in armories over the weekend led to a 40% reduction in the Israeli military’s suicide rate,” the report said on Page 57.

The recommendations also take on other aspects of military quality of life, such as sleep cycles, pay scales, promotions, the management of millennials, ensuring that air conditioning is working inside of barracks, and even a limit on energy drinks and alcohol:

“Raise the minimum purchase price and ban price discounting of energy drinks sold on DoD property.”

“Ban the promotion of energy drinks on DoD property.”

“Display signs on vending machines and retail outlets where energy drinks are sold about responsible energy drink consumptions.”

“Ban the promotion of alcohol on DoD property.”

“Increase the purchase price of alcohol sold on DoD property”

“Limit when alcohol is sold on DoD property.”

The report tackles many other aspects of military life, and recommends that pay scales be reviewed to be more competitive with non-military jobs.

Read the report at this link.

62 COMMENTS

  1. Suicide rates are up across-the-board. Even kids and teens. All ages. All Countries. Maybe if we could all just pull our heads out of our phones,,,,,,and look around! We might just notice that people are hurting! What we need more than anything is for someone to just give a damn. If you think that your kids, your neighbors your family your friends, hell even your pets aren’t starving for your love and attention and concern and care you are completely oblivious to what this so-called technology is doing for us all. We are all much to busy on our phones to even notice.

      • Wokeism in the military is what’s causing all of the suicides. Officers in all branches of the service know this, but they can’t say it out loud because of Biden’s policies.

    • Let’s get to the foundation of the problem., Too many people in the world and the unique qualities of individuals have diminished, people become self center and fail to recognize the quality in others, we are less courteous.
      In the early days there was less road rage, crime, suicide, for instance the damage that has been done stealing someone’s car, scamming on the www, fleecing old and young alike now means nothing to criminals, lenient left is largely responsible.
      Summarize, we are in the midst of the ”POPULATION BOMB”.

  2. Clearly, the recommendations don’t go far enough (perhaps for political reasons).

    If limiting access to firearms to those under 25 benefits society, why stop at 25? Clearly firearms suicides would decline even further if we limit access to firearms for those under 40. And to those over 45. There’s probably a sweet-spot right in between 42 and 44 where American servicemembers are neither too young nor too old to be trusted with the terrible risk of owning a firearm.

    But since those in the military under 25 shouldn’t have firearms…perhaps the next logical conclusion is that they….shouldn’t be in a profession that requires them to use firearms to kill the enemy in time of war.

    I’m suddenly reminded of the opening scene in War Games (Matthew Broderick, 1983) where they fire all of the Air Force personnel in charge of launching intercontinental ballistic missiles and turn those decisions over to a computer. I’m sensing the desire to pull human beings out of the decision process in other areas here as well.

    Suicides are terrible. Every suicide is terrible. Perhaps a culture that shows antipathy to life in the womb, in the infirmed, in the vaccine-hesitant, in the political party you least identify with, in the civilians who are trying to flee from a country you are in a proxy war with, and in so many other areas, might have something to do with why we count life so cheap, and fail to reach out to those who are truly in need of compassion, emotional connection, or other medical interventions.

    Don’t stop him from jumping, he’s a Republican (or insert here whichever party you don’t belong to)!
    Don’t stop him, he’s a Russian (or insert whichever nationality you least appreciate)!
    Don’t stop him, he’s anti-vax.
    Don’t stop him, he’s pro-vax.
    Don’t stop him, he’s ultra MAGA!
    Don’t stop him, he’s a fascist!

    The despised Samaritan wasn’t supposed to like Jews. Jews didn’t like Samaritans (hence his being despised). He stopped anyway. He saved a man from likely death in the parable.

    Human nature hasn’t really changed since Jesus first told the parable.

    Sure, we can take away guns. We can take them away from police officers under 25. We can take them away from soldiers under 25. We can hand over all firearms to battle drones. We can do all of those things. But are firearms really the problem? Or could it be something else…

    • Couldn’t agree more Rep.Eastman.
      How do I get these young military folks off the base and into my church, or to our family’s dinner table? There’s a huge divide. Even living in Anchorage or FB/NP. I’m serious here.

    • It’s not the gun, it’s the depression or PTSD that’s causing it. But taking away the gun is a start. As you may know, on any application to purchase a firearm, there’s a question that reads something like are you mentally ill or have you ever been diagnosed, something like that. I would recommend that those members of the military being discharged have to go through some sort of a psychiatric evaluation beforehand. Once they get a clean bill of health, then that changes everything. Many of these folks were broken defending and serving their country. We trusted them with firearms and a limited capacity while serving. Once they are no longer under that supervision, that’s where the trouble can start. The same thing can be said for x police officers. Domestic violence and worse can happen when PTSD kicks in. We have to be more vigilant and diagnosing and treating the suffering folks.

    • Yes, the problem is something else but it’s something we are afraid to discuss. There was no huge wave of suicides following WWII despite instances and incidents like the Bataan March, Operation Tiger, opening of the Nazi concentration camps, etc. etc. The difference was that we won that war!! We have lost every war since then, reaching a draw in Korea and then losing Vietnam much like we much more recently lost Afghanistan. The American lives lost in Vietnam and Afghanistan were wasted lives, and I think that explains the suicides. To examine why members of the US military are susceptible to suicide we have to examine why we are losing wars. In the meantime we are extremely fortunate that Ukraine is willing to fight the Russians as had the Russians attacked a NATO country we would likely have reached a stalemate with Russia in the Balkans and/or 50 miles inside Poland. The US military would not have been able to exploit or even show the world the sorry state of the Russian military. The United States could not win WWII today, and I know no one who believes we could. The answer to why that is would reveal the answer to these suicides. Restricting access to firearms and ammunition, and to Red Bull drinks, is silly; worse than silly.

    • Firearms are most definitely “NOT” the problem. This decision/recommendation just solidifies the why. Meaning, it is these stupid conclusions that these folks come up with and impose more stupidity through their woke ideas that is likely the cause for why the military is seeing a spike in suicide rates amongst the troops. Its these woke policies that are the direct result of the recruitment failures and is why they can’t keep the people they have. Most service members are not on the left, most believe in our country and our constitution and that is why they volunteer to begin with.

    • Yes-ban alcohol sales on base.

      Ban anti-democracy not really news sites from broadcast on military anything.

  3. I suspect my original comment won’t past moderation muster. Naughty language and uncharacteristic bluntness, even for me.

    If that’s the case, I accept it. I know a lot of vets from Vietnam to modern day. Their disposability by the nation they sacrificed so much to serve is a red hot button for me.

    Pretty much every POTUS, both parties are guilty of sweeping them away once used. It may be legal, but it’s also criminal. We’ve failed them from Johnson to today.

  4. Insane! As a retired veteran and father of 6 boys, 1 soldier, 1 airman, 1 sailor and 2 marines, I think that I might speak to this. The issue which I see is mission creep and ‘wokeness’. No more is the mission to ‘Defend against all enemies foreign and domestic,’ the military is now a giant laboratory for every loony social experiment thought of by the stupidest of leftist idealogues to ‘save mother Gaia.’ My time spanned Carter to Clinton (horror on both ends) and I observed it then, but nothing like policies enforced upon our military today. Return to the mission of ‘bring overwhelming deadly force upon those who threaten us,’ and ‘defend our proud nation at all costs,’ and most importantly stand behind our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines and allow them to take care of each other both mentally and physically. A senior soldier should not fear for his career for misgendering someone in the shower. To address the terrible depression and anxiety driving our people to suicide, fire all leadership above field grade (and many below) to allow competent real leaders to bring sanity again. The failure is leadership (starting in Washington), not the rank and file and this report is an insult.

  5. Of course the criticisms of this Committee and their recommendations will start rolling in shortly, as they include firearms restrictions of a sort. Once again, MRAK posts an article intended to trigger a particular group – in this case, the Alaskan gun rights zealots.

    But think about it: When someone really wants to kill themselves, finding a way to prevent it is an almost impossible task. Yet the Committee is charged with doing just that, and hence, must provide recommendations, even if they’re only marginally effective.

    So, before you all pop off and bad-mouth them, give some thought to the fact that the Committee has done what they could to try and solve an insoluble problem – that our Servicemen and women far too often feel the need to end their lives. Also consider that criticism of their recommendations implies that you’d rather go with the status quo, than try something – anything – to improve the situation.

    And if you have any better ideas, well, let’s hear them.

    • I have lots of better ideas, but you wouldn’t know what a soldier, sailor, airman or guardian deals with in the first place.

      Suicide is available by many means. The source for suicide is less easy to nail down. However, this is more a unit problem of leadership than a gun issue. A soldier, sailor, airman or guardian with a clear mission of absolute importance and the training and support required to fulfill that mission will not consider suicide, unless there are underlying conditions beyond the power of anyone or any military structure to avoid. Soldiers, sailors, airmen and guardians who are left to their own devices to deal with woke garbage that makes no sense and no set requirements of behavior have lots of time and reasons to spend time being emo teenagers long after they are teenagers. Simple as leadership, and engagement. Always has been.

      Just let them know you give a damn, and give them something substantive to do. Problem solved.

    • The ‘committee’ will never solve the problem as they cannot see the proverbial forest through the trees. More knee jerk reaction absolutely miles away from the actual problem. Way beyond their capabilities even remotely.

        • The first idea would be “do no harm”. Meaning, quite often well-intentioned bu kneejerk, ill-considered ‘solutions’ only add to the problem. But for radical leftists such as yourself, as long as it makes you FEEL like you’re doing something good, that is sufficient justification for you to blindly and simplistically try to ‘fix’ something.
          .
          I am not in the military, and never have been, but I can only imagine the confusion, disillusionment and bitterness that so many servicemen must be feeling today under the heavy-handed PC and ‘woke’ agenda that US military leadership is shoving down their throats.
          .
          Yeah, very effective strategy there: “You are white, you are trash, you are evil — now go die for us.” Or alternatively, “You are a minority, you are oppressed, you are helpless, you are a victim — now go die for us.”

          • They’re mentally and physically strong enough to be tough-as-nails Warriors, yet buckle the instant someone tries to force some PC stuff on them? Come on. What a load of cr@p.

            You’re reaching Jeffy. Not everything bad in this world can be blamed on your imaginary woke gay leftist communist pinko liberals.

            Please try harder next time, and come up with something that’s at least marginally plausible.

    • As usual, you’re a trolling fool dog. I’d be a touch more descriptive but you’re not worth the potential trouble.

      This committee is the same thing as the scat all over your yard once a bear raids a trash can. Nothing else.

      Biden and Obama before him have so corrupted anything regarding the military I’m frankly surprised the recommendations didn’t include gender reassignment and 9 new nonexistent pronouns.

      You wanted a better idea than robbing vets of their hard won rights without due process? Simple troll, here it is.

      Stop treating the people who sacrifice more than you can possibly imagine like disposable playthings once they’ve fought for this nation. Get rid of the stupid VA and gets vets the help they need.

      Here’s another, just for the left. Stop treating the military like some kind so social toy. Quit creating situations where the services have to drag the bottom of the barrel to fill recruiting quotas. Stop acting like it’s a life for anyone, it’s not.

      Stop sending our people into winless situations like Afghanistan and setting ROE so stupid they can’t easily and properly conduct themselves.

      I could go on at great length, but frankly you’re not worth it.

      • I’m all for doing anything that we can to help them, and I likely agree with many of your ideas. So why are you bit#hing at me? Just because I’m Whidbey Thedog? Because you’re sure not understanding that I want to get them help as much as you do.

        Stop avenging where no avenging is called for. Back off and listen to me before you lash out.

    • More that can be done for vets, especially combat vets.

      -limit the amount of times deployment can be extended without genuine emergency.
      -stop making it so easy for women to divorce and gain custody while men are stuck in a deployment they probably didn’t want.
      -reign in mission creep. Warriors are there to kill people and break things. Let them do what they do then come home. Not be the pawns of some politicians ambitions. Haliburton can nation build.
      -realistic ROE in combat zones.
      -stop using the military as political backdrops for unpopular policies.
      -mandatory counseling during combat potential deportments.
      -re entry classes for long deployed vets.
      -get rid of the abomination known as the VA and replace it with something that actually works.
      -acknowledge PTSD is a thing which can occur long after a deployment and make it as easy as possible for treatment. Recruit mental health professionals nationwide to learn the best ways to treat it, and give them a generous stipend to do it as part of their private practice.
      -create a safe haven on existing bases for vets in crisis where they can be helped by people who understand them.

      The list is near endless. The will in DC is not there. Service people are toys in cammo to be used and discarded when not needed.

      Amazingly, none of these ideas take way the rights of vets or impinge on a private person’s ability to make a living. Nor are they the latest woke fad.

      Imagine.

    • First of all, the problem with the committee’s recommendations is they are meaningless feel good claptrap that anyone with half a functioning brain cell knows will do nothing. You even said it yourself, they will be “marginally effective.”
      .
      And, because the committee focused on “doing something” instead of identifying the root cause of the problem and addressing that, their recommendations are even less useful.
      .
      The committee did not “do what they could” to try and solve the problem. They in fact made the problem worse. By recommending useless solutions, which will likely be implemented, they are harming those that are not suicidal, while doing nothing to help those that are.

    • Mine own idea would be to as unto the why servicemen and servicewomen chose to end their own lives rather than the methodology that they chose to do so with.

      They are most of them given access to firearms by their varied occupancies within the armed services, no matter the service, so having access unto firearms whether through applicable service accessibility or private accessibility matters not.

      A military member may commit suicide utilizing a weapon issued unto them by their military institution just as easily as a privately owned firearm.

      Most members of the volunteer military are trained within weapons at the age of 18, at the time of inscription, to kill an enemy but they are not allowed personal ownership of said weapons until an age of 25?

      Is it because that today’s 18- to 25-year-olds are far less mature within their own safety are and far less than what said ages were a generation ago, and unable to cope with the rigors of military service, or any other service whereas they may be challenged as to their own performance?

      You know, the whole trophy by participation thing?

      The equality or equity no matter how one actually performed thing?

      And what the heck does the consumption of energy drinks or alcohol have to do with anything?

      It is not the methodology, Whidbey, it is the cause.

      And the cause is weakness.

    • It is interesting that YOU did not bring forward any ideas of your own. Lead by example instead of lambasting others to come up with better solutions.
      The committee’s task was to ascertain the reasons for the increased suicide rates. The problem is that it is all guess work.
      People wish to feel valued and have purpose. The history of political leadership using the military as a giant social experiment, goes back a long way. At some point soldiers were turned into victims, because they supposedly could not afford movie tickets, food or housing. These attitudes showed great disrespect and disdain for those who serve/d, by people, who deemed themselves better and more important to the country. I will concede that this is a new generation of warriors, raised in a era of participation trophies and “special” everything. Reality can be a harsh task master.
      I am of the opinion that these disdainful attitudes are residual perspectives from the Vietnam era, treating returning vets poorly and with disrespect. All those students, who were “fighting the man” back then, have now become “The Man” and it shows.
      The committee’s recommendations are ridiculous window dressing. Blaming guns and Red Bull is asinine and avoids having to dig deeper into the whole mission focus, discipline, culture, morale and troop cohesion issues.

  6. It is 1000% a human mental issue. Not a gun issue.
    Is it the cars fault when you get drunk and drive and kill someone or yourself?
    No. It is the human driving it impared. Suicide is terrible. But this will stop nothing. It is not the gun. It is the mentally unstable human thinking that killing themselves is the way out. It could be pills… Same thing.

    • Far, far more lives can be saved by limiting who can drive (not a Constitutional right) than by blocking people from their Constitutional rights.

      But that inconveniences woke people and can’t be allowed.

  7. “In 2021, 23% of service members who died by suicide were experiencing or had experienced legal or administrative challenges during the preceding year. Over half of these service members were under investigation (DSPO, 2021). Being the focus of an ongoing investigation creates a combination of individual and occupational stressors that can increase risk for suicide compounded by poor handling by investigators or command,” the report noted.
    ‘Ongoing’ being the key word.

  8. Well, since it is a Godless, relativistic culture that is sought after by the left and the neo-conservatives – what is expected? No hope, no purpose, no absolutes, no right and wrong, no value of life … Then the wacky wokiness that is now our military leadership? Who would want to serve? I commend those who still do but too many enter with baggage in place. This problem began in dysfunctional homes, then furthered by our woke, relativistic, race, gender and sex obsessed educational system. Removing guns will solve little. Time will tell. Sadly.

  9. Lots of luck maintaining an All-Volunteer force. After driving males away be ready for your daughters to be drafted too because there are too few qualified males for service as is.

  10. They will use any excuse to violate their 2nd Amendment rights. It is the Pentagon goons that have caused troops to be depressed as they illegally force experimental vaccines on them and violate their 1st Amendment rights. Defense Secretary Austin needs to be fired and held accountable along with any senior officer that refused to support the rights of his troops. Unlawful orders are not okay.

  11. This is the stupidest legislation ever.

    Anyone can buy a second hand firearm that’s capable. If you really want to get fancy a hand assembled 80% lower along w/ a slide, spring, rod and about 2 oz of internal hardware and you’ve built yourself your own coup de grace exit vehicle.

    Maybe these dolts can suggest next that military members not be trained on how to break down and clean a weapon so that they also don’t know how achieve reliable function from an AlaskaList special or build their own. If there were ever a person that didn’t care about gun laws it would be the individual considering ultimate release.

  12. So one more clueless law to keep guns out of the hands of Americans, yet they’re shipping massive numbers of guns, ammo, and other Weapons over to UKraine and elsewhere lol, Good Luck with that Idea.
    Where do these loons Come from and how did they earn positions of power? With 330 million Americans and well over 200 million guns among atleast 50 million gun owners. And that number is multiplying daily, not to mention the millions of self made weapons all over the country, so do they really think people will turn in all their weapons lol, how and where, who’s going to go find these weapons lol, these people are complete morons wasting a lot of time on a subject that has been decided for decades!

  13. Let me tell you a little story:
    There is a young man in the national guard whose “girl friend” is actually a plastic sex doll. She has social media accounts and they correspond with each other digitally (he role plays her online). When this young man was investigated by his command, they found that everything he was doing was perfectly legal and referred him to voluntary psychological help.

    This is what young people are getting up to. Do you want to know WHY they kill themselves? They have NO MEANINGFUL HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS with each other any more. Their entire lives are digital and they have disengaged from reality. So their perception of “reality” goes flying off the deep end…. This person is one shocking example of how unhinged one can become when one disconnects from reality. Do you imagine that it’s any different for folks who become “trans”? At the end of this is a total lack of solid anchoring in reality. And it’s not JUST in the mil, it is a problem for the whole digital generation.

    Taking away their means of suicide won’t fix that. No one wants to look at the real reason for this social destruction. They simply want to politicize it for their own gain. And I’m not afraid to say this: the military is absolutely a participant in that.

  14. So, a bunch of “feel good” “common sense” solutions that will not have any effect whatsoever. History is abundantly clear on this front. Suicide is not prevented with a “take away the tool” solution. It is prevented by identifying and correcting the thing(s) that are driving the person to suicide.
    .
    But, the panel has to make it look like they did something…

  15. The SPRIRC was formed less than a year ago. My WAG is that the conclusion was written before the first meeting. It would be nice to know who is on the committee and their prior positions on things like 2A and wokeness.

      • Oh give it a rest Greg!
        Military installations are NOT an isolated island or a prison. Service members can leave and get what they want on their own at any store in town. This is solely a move to cover considerable behinds, so they can say “well at least he didn’t get the gun from us” but it makes no difference since that person will still be dead, if they were despondent enough to see no way out.
        A better way is to have a worthy mission, that is clearly defined. Treatment and respect of each individual as a valuable member of the team, regardless whether they cook, type or shoot. Filling valuable training time with sensitivity training and gender stuff, is a misuse of a service members time and insults their intellect and honor.

  16. How about a rule not to have security details for politicians loaded weapons. They should not have bullets in their guns. This legislation is not going to stop or change anything. They had better outlaw knives cars heights and drugs.

  17. Coming from personal experience, my dad took his own life, this is BS!!!
    It’s a bandaid on a much deeper issue! Who’s ever idea this was is throwing darts a this problem hoping to hit a target and at the same time patting themselves on the back for doing absolutely NOTHING!!!

  18. Just stop the sale of guns, ammo, and alcohol on all DOD property if you want to go full on stupid.

    Maybe not promote toxic leaders? Let’s start there.

    Nah, that makes too much sense.

    Good thing those service members in Alaska are getting that “Arctic pay” to help curb suicides. Oh wait, they haven’t gotten a dime of that yet.

  19. had to wait a day or two before ‘safely’ submitting my observations. Lol

    My bona fides; Staff NCO. Retired military with four deployments (two were combat zone deployments).

    This article is actually two separate issues. The first being these ‘proposals’ and the second being the suicides/attempts.

    Part 1) As to these proposals, they are mostly a crock of excrement. If we could see the makeup of the panel, it will be civilians and armchair generals. Exactly the WRONG people to asses any aspects of military life and mental health as they have experienced NOTHING of what the lower ranks go through on a day to day basis. As a matter of fact, I will never listen to nor take advice on my mental health status from any person that has not been in the military or is some kind of licensed mental health counselor. I also exclude those armchair officers that have exhibited no desire for ‘soldier care’ (and you two generals I’m thinking of both know who they are, don’t they). Even officers with a ‘bloody reputation’ like George Patton understood that you had to place effort on caring for the individual soldier. At best these proposals are empty and serve as window dressing. At worst, these proposals are and illegal infringement on individual Constitutional rights. Think about what is being pushed on us. I joined the military at the age of 18. I was a legal adult with the right to vote, drink alcohol, own personal weapons, and enter into legal contracts. Now you’re telling me that even though I can do these things as a civilian, the moment I join the military they become ILLEGAL?! So I’m good enough to be trained and trusted enough to train others but I can’t be trusted with my personal welfare? Get stuffed.

  20. Part 2) As to the suicides themselves, I have dealt with mental health issues of myself and of my joes. Even after I retired I was contacted for help a couple of times. As an NCO I will always have the responsibility to care for the men under my notch in the chain of commend even after retirement. As a matter of fact, I will go to my grave having the responsibility for any military member that needs help. And that is where the problem lies. The individual NCO, as a team or squad leader, has the direct responsibility of checking on his men. That covers all things including personal, medical, or mental health. You absolutely must find out the details as those details are what build up to become overwhelming mental health issues. And remember that we are not the pros that can deal with all issues, we are the pros that are responsible for getting the help necessary. So all of those platoon leaders and company commanders need to take my word for it that this particular joe needs help. We are the people that can and will get the individual soldier the help he needs. But is there going to be an argument about whether he ‘really’ needs it. Is there going to be a push back because some company or battalion commander doesn’t want this stat to show up on his paperwork? And get QUALIFIED mental health pros! As I stated before, no one in my position is willing to take advice from someone that has no perceived qualifications. It would be like taking weight loss advice from a fat person.

  21. Get rid of alcohol porn video games and tobacco as well. Surely any soldier under 25 who might be dealing with depression couldn’t have a need for any of these. Also let’s force them to take experimental vaccines or threaten to give them a dishonorable discharge. This should do wonders for morale.
    Yep get rid of red bull and and firearms, cuz there’s absolutely no other way for a person to kill themself than with a gun.
    Good job Austin and Milley.

  22. Boy I tell you, they want to save us all so bad they will take every right we have! It’s the same ole people trying to convince us if we didn’t have the right to bear arms suicides would fall to zero. Everyone would be healed. All you have to do is get ride of those evil guns, alcohol and sex!! 25 years of running psychiatric facilities gives me enough clarity to know these people either have their own agenda or they are bureaucratic idiots. There are 100 things they can do that could actually help soldiers before they are looking to jump into traffic, banning Red Bull and guns is not a single one of them.
    Paul in the Valley & Floyd George absolutely have it right.

    • Your 25 years of experience gives you the standing to talk to military members. So, thank you for chiming in.

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