It happened! It is going to happen again! Therefore forcing treatment and locking up the mentally ill is the answer!
When the bricks fall, they tend to fall on my side of the wall.
Was Lubitz an evil genius? I take exception to the conclusion that his actions were in any way “malicious”.
I must tell the truth here: I do not understand what Andreas Lubitz did. In my suicidal fugues, I thought of many ways that I might kill myself that involved others such as throwing myself in front of a truck or crashing my car into a tree or driving it off a cliff, but the idea of taking others with me — that wasn’t the self-annihilation that I planned. When I came close,I found a secluded place where someone would eventually find me. That was the maximum involvement of another that I planned. Though I thought capital punishment might work for me — and send a message to those who loved me — I did not want to assassinate others.
Rumor has it that Lubitz was going through some catastrophic issues with his girlfriend. He knew that he was ill and he was seeking treatment for it. The day of the crash, his psychiatrist issued a sick leave note. Andreas did not use it, however, and his doctor could not call the airline to tell them that he was at risk. But Lubitz did not stop at ending his own life:
Andreas Lubitz was breathing, steady and calm, in the final moments of Germanwings Flight 9525. It was the only sound from within the cockpit that the voice recorder detected as Mr. Lubitz, the co-pilot, sent the plane into its descent.
The sounds coming from outside the cockpit door on Tuesday were something else altogether: knocking and pleading from the commanding pilot that he be let in, then violent pounding on the door and finally passengers’ screams moments before the plane, carrying 150 people, slammed into a mountainside in the French Alps.
This will get me in trouble, but whatever.
Every so often I err and fall into an online game. Not the kind like Farmville, but something where people spend hours in chat rooms. Here you find the people your psychotherapist warned you about; the ones who drink and chat, the cyber-sex addicts, misogynist teenage boys, and people who have no social life besides playing online games. There’s a whole culture based on flirting and another based on being cruel to other players. I have found myself assimilated, at times, into the latter — a very tempting prospect for me and anyone else because this is a game based on Arthurian England except it is all numbers.
I’ve seen these behaviors before when I ran my own online game. The drinkers seem to believe that having a mood disorder is cool. What better beverage than liquid bipolar disorder? I have never understood why people insist on trying to become insane. I’ve been there. It’s no fun. Can’t they take my word for it?
The online romances have many faces, but I will speak directly of only one kind that makes me laugh. There is a breed of male who finds it entertaining to take on the personae of a woman. Most of these are misogynist assholes who give themselves charming names like “Sloot”, etc. An especially humorous subset are the ones who style themselves as lesbians for the express purpose of seducing women. The trouble is that most of the lesbians you meet online in these venues are actually men so any two lesbians you meet are likely to be men. And so men who spit on the idea of homosexuality end up cybering with other men like themselves. This is called “role-playing”: I call it interactive porn1 .
The teenagers who hang out in these places probably don’t need any further description. Like the males described above, their primary interest is prurient in nature. The game possesses a marvelous facility for taking revenge on these brats that I, alas, have sometimes taken part in.
Which brings me to the last group: those who have no life outside the game. There are people who play the game while they work. There are people who play the game because they are disabled. Many of these drink and game. Many of these don’t do much outside of their job than game and talk sex 2 . And I find myself in an odd place. I am there, admittedly because I don’t have much of a life. But I attend meetings where I help others, I write, I photograph, and I teach adults English. I am openly mentally ill 3 . So here I am, setting fire to a bridge that I have with other people. Is there any way I can live with this and respect myself? It’s a hard question to answer and I don’t doubt it will be shoved in my face once this sees publication.