It is bad enough to say Loughner is a victim of a health care system which ignores mental illness, but he is not the only victim. Congresswoman Giffords and the other people shot on Saturday are also victims of the same uncaring health care system. If Arizona had adequately funded health care for the mentally ill, Loughner would have been treated or institutionalized until sane.
Rather than fund health care, the Arizona legislature is spending millions of dollars defending the law which makes them famous, SB 1070, the most vicious anti-immigrant law in the state's history. A national boycott is costing the state billions. Rather than fund health care on a national basis, the Republican Senate Caucus enacted a “No Vote Pact” in which they refused to vote on any issues including the START Treaty to reduce nuclear proliferation until Democrats conceded to give every millionaire a $139,000 unfunded tax cut. With their pockets stuffed full of taxpayer money, the Republicans vow to repeal health care for the poor.
Shortly, Congresswoman Giffords and all of us will become victims one more time. Despite surely suffering extreme mental illness, Loughner will likely be judged mentally ill, but with enough capacity to know right from wrong. The Court will distinguish between mental illness and insanity. Rather than get treatment in a mental institution, Loughner will spend his life on death row. The message to other mentally ill people is, don’t reveal yourself, because you won’t get treated and your acts will be judged harshly. The mentally ill remain in the closet for a reason and that makes every one of us the next potential victim.