There have been more mass shootings than days in the U.S. so far in 2019.
Gun violence takes the national spotlight following each shooting. Supporters of the Second Amendment push back against gun control activists who blame the tragic deaths on lackluster gun regulation. But behind each gun, there is a human being pulling the trigger.
Rates of anxiety and depression have grown exponentially in the last 20 years, particularly among the younger millennials and Gen-Zers. Feelings of desperation, distress, isolation, and hopelessness seems more typical than happiness, contentement, and fellowship.
This generation, driven by Instagram likes rather than real-life appreciation, and Facebook comments in place of in-person compliments, has replaced human interaction and care with superficial community.
When people live their lives staring at a phone, computer, or tablet screen, relying on any human interaction to be through a device, they are likely to miss signs of emotional instability in those around them. According to over 41 million health record data from Blue Cross Blue Shield, major depression is more common today than ever. After each shooting, people analyze the shooter’s behavior prior to the tragedy and point out signs that friends, family, and peers missed.
If we don’t log off our social media long enough to notice when those around us our struggling, mass shootings will continue to rise. Mental illness is thriving in our technology-crazed world, and it’s going to take genuine human care to help prevent it from spreading and help prevent mass shootings from taking over headlines.
Students ought to put their mental health first and try to help when they see friends struggling. There are two counselors at the Health and Wellness Office as well as a Lindsay Pierce, the new director of recreational sports and student-athlete wellness, available to ensure student-athletes make time for both their physical and mental health.